The team takes the next step – The Hollywood Reporter

A union at Vox Media has taken the next step towards a potential strike against management as the expiration date for the group’s current contract approaches and negotiations for a succession deal remain. continue.

The board of directors at the Writers Guild of America East, which represents about 350 editorial and video staff at The Verge, Polygon and Eater publishers, voted unanimously on Wednesday to allow a strike for the publishers. Membership at the company begins at 12 a.m. ET on June 13. , shortly after the union’s first contract expires.

This action does not initiate a strike, but rather gives union leadership approval for a strike, if members at the company choose to authorize and then execute a strike. strike. On June 1, the union said 95 percent members signed a commitment to strike; Next, members will participate in a vote to authorize the strike, which will take place over the next few days, according to the union. If a majority of members vote to allow a strike, a strike can take place, with unit members determining when and if it will happen.

“The board of the Writers Guild of America, East takes the vote authorizing the strike very seriously. Most of us have experienced the stress of having to stop working,” WGA East president Michael Winship said in a statement. “But we also fully understand the issues our members are grappling with at the bargaining table – from fair pay increases to legacy language that protects workers if their hiring company is caught in the crossfire. sell. As a result, we unanimously voted to allow a strike if the company does not agree to a fair contract by 12 a.m. ET on June 13.”

In a statement, a Vox Media spokesperson said, “We are actively engaged in negotiations and with negotiations scheduled for most days until contract expiration, expect to achieve a solution we are all proud of.”

The current round of negotiations for the union’s next contract has been ongoing since January 2022, and four more sessions are currently scheduled between the parties. Union member Monica Chin, a senior critic at The Verge, said the union’s current priorities in the negotiations were to provide members with “stable and satisfying long-term careers.” “. Unions are advocating for guaranteed wage increases and benefits that take into account inflation, contract language that will protect union interests if the company goes through a merger or acquisition, “more measures to recognize employee loyalty and worker longevity and invest more in their personal development” and “The Company is more committed when it comes to diversity, equity and inclusion ,” Chin said.

On social media, in a letter on Action Network and in a story in New York TimesUnion members have also suggested that in this round of negotiations, the union is lobbying to restore a contractual minimum wage increase that has not been offered in 2020 (a Vox Media spokesperson told The Times. Times that the company as a whole did not raise its annual salary in 2020).

Vox Media Union (excluding Vox Media employees at New York Magazine, which was acquired by the company in the fall of 2019), was voluntarily recognized by management in early 2018. It took 14 months of negotiation to reach that initial deal, which established a salary of 56,000 dollars a year for full-time, waived. employee and an annual salary increase of 2.75 to 3.5 percent, depending on the employee’s annual income, for the duration of the contract.

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