We asked for respect. Here’s what we got instead.

On Monday, the Guild’s bargaining committee met with Gannett lawyers for another round of negotiations, two weeks after the last round and more than seven months since we’ve had a contract.

And once again we’ve walked away without even the hint of a fair offer on health care or wages.

The issue? Gannett wants to move Guild members off of our health care plan onto theirs. A move that we have calculated could cost members anywhere from a few hundred dollars to $1,700 per year.

We’ve maintained all along that any discussion about the possibility of moving to a Gannett plan must include mitigation of these effects. We even provided them with cost data so they could do their own analysis.

Yet, when we met on Monday, Gannett’s lawyer once again proposed that we move onto their health care plan without committing to any mitigation payments in return.

Why should Guild members agree to what amounts to a pay cut? Why, when at the same time, Gannett withholds merit raises in order to force us into a contract?

Last month, we delivered a letter to our newsroom management asking that Gannett come to the table and treat its award-winning, dedicated journalists and workers with basic respect.

It is clear to us now that our request has been ignored.

We continue to ask our community to call on Gannett to give us a fair contract. Send your messages directly to ronnie.ramos@indystar.com or tweet them to @Gannett or @RonnieRamos.

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