Jon Schleuss, President of the News Guild CWA, joined the America’s Work Force Union Podcast and spoke about an assault that occured on the picket lines during a strike by employees of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
For over six months, more than 100 Post-Gazette workers, represented by five unions, have been on strike. The strike is due to the Post-Gazette’s refusal to pay a $19 per week per employee increase in healthcare, which resulted in the loss of coverage for those who work in production, distribution and advertising.
Tensions on the picket line have increased and in mid-March, they erupted. According to Schleuss, on the night of March 11 at the newspaper’s South Side distribution center, a Post-Gazette driver allegedly crossed the picket line and punched two striking workers. One of the injured union members sustained a broken jaw. He is concerned the situation may esclate if the strike continues.
He noted that striking workers at the Post-Gazette continue to cover the news, but not for the newspaper. They now report for themselves through the website Pittsburgh Union Progress.
Schleuss also explained the ramifications of a late-February Federal Communications Commission announcement. On Feb. 24, the FCC said its Media Bureau referred an attempted takeover by the hedge fund Standard General to an administrative law judge for review. Last February, Standard General announced it would acquire TEGNA in an $8.6 billion deal. This will affect more than 60 local news stations throughout the U.S.
Listen to the entire episode to learn more.
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