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New York Times Employees Walk-Out Over Union Negotiations

More than 1,100 union employees awalked out of the New York Times Co began to facilitate a one-day work stoppage on Thursday, the union said, citing the company's "failure to bargain in good faith," after setting a deadline for a contract last week. The union had set a deadline for a contract for midnight Dec. 8.

"It's disappointing that they're taking such drastic action, given the clear commitment we've shown to negotiate our way to a contract that provides Times journalists with substantial pay increases, market-leading benefits, and flexible working conditions," Meredith Kopit Levien, president and chief executive of The Times, said in an email to the company Wednesday night.

An executive at The Times, who requested anonymity to speak candidly, acknowledged to CNN on Wednesday that the work stoppage would certainly create difficulties. But, the executive said, management has readied for the moment and could rely on the newspaper's other resources, such as its international staff which largely are not part of the union, to fill the voids.

"Today we were ready to work for as long as it took to reach a fair deal, but management walked away from the table with five hours to go," the New York Times union tweeted on Wednesday.

Many posted in support of the strike on various social media platforms.

"We're asking readers to not engage in any [New York Times] platforms tomorrow and stand with us on the digital picket line!," Amanda Hess, a critic-at-large for the newspaper, wrote on Twitter. "Read local news. Listen to public radio. Make something from a cookbook. Break your Wordle streak."

Congressman Bowman (NY-16) shared a similar sentiment to Amanda Hess tweeting the following.

"Tonight at midnight, 1,100 workers at @nytimes are going on a 24 hour strike. Here’s what you can do… Do not engage with any of the New York Times platforms. DO NOT CROSS THE DIGITAL PICKET LINE. Get your news from other sources and tell your friends to do the same."

These negotiations have been ongoing since March of 2021, when the previous contract expire The union has asked The Times to meet in the middle on wage increases, but the newspaper believes the union started from an extreme position, making doing so a non-starter. Both sides have worked throughout the week to avert the 24-hour strike. But it was to no avail.

"They refuse to meet in person," the executive told CNN. "It's a really important point. I can't emphasize it enough. We have negotiations on Zoom. There are eight or so people from management, as many as 18 people on the bargaining committee from the NewsGuild, and as many as 200 union members watching as 'observers.'"

Management at The Times had grown frustrated with how the NewsGuild has sought to conduct negotiations and partly blamed the lack of progress on it.


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