Guild membership votes 81-9 to accept furlough

Thanks to you for your phenomenal turnout Friday and today (over 77%) at our specially called, emergency meetings. After an impartial secret-ballot vote that was counted by stewards Adam Yates, Michelle Watson and Robert Annis and Guild member Amy Bartner, the Indy News Guild voted 81-9 to accept an unpaid furlough (totaling 40 hours per employee) to be scheduled and taken by the end of March. Please keep in mind that management told us they will do their best to let Guild members take that leave either in its entirety (4 or 5 whole days, depending upon shift) or one day at a time.

This has been a distasteful process, but thank you for your vote. Your sacrifice to lose a week’s pay preserved jobs — preventing an untold number of employees from being laid off.

This vote is a one-time agreement covering only the first quarter of 2009. While there are no guarantees, we hope this agreement will satisfy management’s desire to cut payroll and protect jobs.

Reminder: On Thursday, to fill a void left by former president Abe Aamidor’s layoff in December, the Guild will hold a meeting at noon to elect a president, first vice president and treasurer. Tom Spalding has agreed to run as president, Geoff Ooley as treasurer and Vic Ryckaert as first vice president. So far, no one else has stepped forward to run, although all are certainly welcome. Also, anyone interested in becoming a steward, please step forward and let us know either by e-mail or stopping by the Musicians Hall at 325 N. Delaware St. The terms of all officers, by the way, run through July 1, 2010.

—  The officers and stewards of Indianapolis News Guild Local 34070


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