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Pacific Northwest Newspaper Guild

Update

CPM and the Pacific Northwest Newspaper Guild sat for a negotiation session on January 8, 2020.

Topics discussed were:

Two counter proposals from the Guild:

  • Employment Practices
  • Package of 3 proposals: Guild Shop, Information, Dues Deduction

One counter proposal from Management:

  • Non-Discrimination

Status and Outcomes:

Teams caucused twice to review and returned to the table to provide answers to questions on current and previous counter proposals.

Next Steps:

  • The next session is scheduled for January 29, 2020
  • The Guild will provide a counter Non-Discrimination proposal for the next meeting.
  • Management will provide a counter No Strike proposal for the next meeting.
  • Management will discuss the newly packaged proposals from the Guild and prepare to respond at a future session.

Update

CPM and the Pacific Northwest Newspaper Guild sat for a negotiation session on December 16, 2019.

Topics discussed were:

Three counter proposals from the Guild:

  • Grievance Procedure (Counter)
  • No Strike / No Lockout (packaged with Grievance Procedure)
  • Non-Discrimination

Two new proposal from Management:

  • Definitions
  • Employment Practices

 Status and Outcomes:

Management caucused to review and provided counter proposals to 2 of the 3 Guild Proposals

  • Grievance Procedure (Counter)
  • No Strike / No Lockout (Counter, packaged with Grievance Procedure)

Discussion after Management Caucus

  • Reviewed Management Grievance and No Strike counter proposal language
  • Discussed Management’s new Definitions proposal
  • Guild Shop open proposal discussion as Management awaits counter proposal from Guild, potentially ready to review at the next scheduled bargaining session.

Next Steps:

  • The next session is scheduled for January, 8 2020
  • Management to review and bring counter Non-Discrimination proposal for the next meeting.
  • Guild to review and discuss open counter/new proposals from Management.
  • Guild to potentially provide counter on Guild Shop proposal.

Update

CPM and the Pacific Northwest Newspaper Guild sat for a negotiation session on December 4, 2019.

Topics discussed were:

One Proposal Ready for Tentative Agreement (TA):

  • Holidays

Two counter proposals and one new proposal from the Guild:

  • Sick Leave (Counter)
  • Vacation (Counter)
  • Severance (New and packaged with Vacation)

One counter proposal and one new proposal from Management:

  • Grievance Procedure (Counter)
  • No Strike / No Lockout (New and packaged with Grievance Procedure)

Status and Outcomes:

  • Tentative Agreement accepted and signed by representatives:
    • Holidays
  • Guild and Management caucused to review and discuss counter proposals

Next Steps:

  • The next session is scheduled for December 16, 2019
  • Management to review and discuss open/new counter proposals from the Guild
  • Guild to review and discuss open counter/new proposals from Management

Update

CPM and the Pacific Northwest Newspaper Guild sat for a negotiation session on November 20, 2019.

Topics discussed were:

Two Proposals Ready for Tentative Agreement (TA):

  • Stewards and Guild Representatives
  • Joint Guild-Management Committee

Five counter proposals from the Guild:

  • Holidays
  • Information (Broken out from previously combined Union Membership, Orientation, Information)
  • Guild Shop (combined Union Membership, Orientation)
  • Dues Deduction
  • Grievance Procedure

Status and Outcomes:

  • Tentative Agreement accepted and signed by representatives:
    • Stewards and Guild Representatives
    • Guild Management Committee
  • Management caucused to review and discuss counter proposals
  • Management provided a counter proposal on Holidays and a recombined Union Membership, Orientation, Information

Next Steps:

  • The next session is scheduled for December 4, 2019
  • Management to review and discuss open counter proposals from the Guild
  • Guild to review and discuss open counter proposals from Management

Update

CPM and the Pacific Northwest Newspaper Guild sat for a negotiation session on November 15, 2019.

Topics discussed were:

One counter proposal from the Guild:

  • Non-Discrimination

Four counter proposals from Management:

  • Joint Guild-Management Committee
  • Stewards and Guild Representatives
  • Union Membership, Orientation, Information
  • Grievance Procedure

Three new proposals from Management:

  • Vacation
  • Holidays
  • Sick Leave

Status and Outcomes:

  • Management and the Guild caucused to review and discuss the counter and new proposals
  • Management provided a counter proposal on Non-Discrimination
  • The Guild stipulated that it is prepared to TA (Tacit Agreement) the following proposals (with the proviso that the Guild will put forward cleaned-up versions, with small word changes, at the next session).
    • Stewards and Guild Representatives
    • Guild Management Committee

Next Steps:

  • The next session is scheduled for November 20, 2019.  
  • Agenda to include discussions and counter proposals from the Guild on the following proposals:
  • Grievance Procedure
  • Union Membership, Orientation, Information
    • Vacation
    • Holidays
    • Sick leave
    • Non-Discrimination

Update

CPM and the Pacific Northwest Newspaper Guild sat for a negotiation session on October 30, 2019.

Topics discussed were:

Three article counter proposals from the Guild

  • Joint Guild-Management Committee
  • Stewards and Guild Representatives
  • A consolidation of several articles retitled: Union Membership, Orientation, Information

One new article proposal from the Guild:

  • Grievance Procedure

Status and Outcomes:

  • Management caucused to review and discuss the counter and new proposals.

Next Steps:

  • The next session is scheduled for November 15, 2019.  Agenda to include:
    • Written responses from Management to the proposals presented in the October 30th session.
    • New proposals from Management regarding policies for Vacation, Sick Leave, and Holidays.

Communication to the Bargaining Unit Following Session:

From:  Carole Williams, HR
To:      CPM Bargaining Team
Cc:      Brad Sherman

It has come to our attention that the Guild bargaining team may misunderstand Cascade Public Media’s proposal on Union Security.  We are hearing that the bargaining team believes that CPM is proposing that employees will be required to revote or vote again for Guild representation. And that could not be further from the truth.

CPM acknowledges that the employees who voted in the July 2019 election voted unanimously for the Guild to represent them.  Our proposal for voluntary Guild membership does not require employees to “re-vote” for the Guild: it simply preserves individual employees’ right of free association – the right to choose whether the join the Guild or not.  Under our proposal, all employees in the bargaining unit are still represented by the Guild, whether they choose to join the Guild or not.

As we’ve expressed at the table, our reasoning for wanting to preserve employees’ right of free association is to allow each employee to decide whether to join the Guild.  Although all of the employees who voted in July voted for Guild representation, several employees did not vote at all. Also, there have been employees hired into the bargaining unit since July who did not get to vote, and there undoubtedly will be more employees hired during the term of the new contract who will not have had the chance to vote.  For these reasons, we believe voluntary Guild membership is in the best interest of all employees, because it preserves each employee’s right to decide whether to become a member.

Please let me know if you have any questions.

FAQs

1. Who is on the bargaining unit?

Cascade Public Media Pacific Northwest Newspaper Guild
Rebecca Farwell, Senior Vice President & COO Jen Dev, Producer
Victor Hernandez, Executive Editor Dorothy Edwards, Staff Photographer
Carole Williams, Director of HR Lily Fowler, Staff Reporter
Theresa (Terry) Briscoe, Attorney, Archbright  Aileen Imperial, Producer 
Stephanie Curran, Sr. HR Generalist 
(Observation)
Brad Sherman, Pacific Northwest Newspaper Guild Representative 

 

2. How many positions are represented by Pacific Northwest Newspaper Guild?

As of October 1, 2019 there are 21 editorial team positions represented.

3. How long does it take to negotiate a contract?

Contract negotiations will take place until representatives from Cascade Public Media and News Guild reach a tentative agreement and the contract is ratified by bargaining unit members.

4. What happens until a contract is ratified?

As we work through the contract negotiation process, our editorial team will continue to produce the same high quality, award winning journalism that our readers know and trust.

5. What is Cascade Public Media’s stance on unions?

Cascade Public Media recognizes the right of employees to form a collective bargaining unit. The organization is not opposed to unions. Currently, we have many employees represented by IBEW and Pacific Northwest Newspaper Guild. Our organization is committed to fair labor practices, and we will follow the processes and procedures as outlined by the NLRB. 

6. How did Cascade Public Media receive notice of the organization efforts?

On the morning of July 8, a group of employees gathered to deliver a document entitled Crosscut Employees Union Mission Statement. This document gave an overview of the group’s desires for representation, and was signed by 18 staff members. In the afternoon, CPM received a copy of formal notice of petition from the NLRB.

7. Why didn’t Cascade Public Media voluntarily accept recognition of this potential union?

Democracy is a core value of civic journalism and, as a fundamental belief, we felt that everyone who could potentially be a part of this union should have a chance to vote in a secret ballot election. Because not every employee who may be subject to union representation was included on the Crosscut Employees Union Mission Statement submitted July 8, 2019, we declined to voluntarily recognize the union.  We believe in giving every one of our staff a voice, and we are committed to following the processes and procedures as outlined by the NLRB. 

8. What do CPM’s Newsroom employees hope to gain in forming a union?

The Crosscut Employees Mission Statement identified pay, vacation and benefits, and layoff protection as primary reasons for organizing.

9. Is Cascade Public Media committed to local journalism?

Cascade Public Media is committed to local journalism today and for the long run. We have tripled the size of its newsroom since acquiring Crosscut in December 2015. The organization was founded on the belief that an informed public is essential to solving the challenges of our time. We are dedicated to a sustainable and vibrant future for nonprofit journalism in the Northwest.

10. What does Cascade Public Media pay its Newsroom employees?

The current, average pay for the editorial team bargaining unit positions is $61,000, based on role and level of experience.

Cascade Public Media has completed comprehensive, external compensation reviews the past two years and made adjustments to ensure that we are offering competitive pay to all employees.

11. Does Cascade Public Media offer competitive benefits?

We also conducted two external surveys of our benefits package to ensure they were competitive. All CPM employees working 20 hours or more hours per week are eligible for benefits. We offer medical, dental, vision, retirement with employer 401k contributions, life and disability insurance, paid leave (vacation, sick and holidays), tuition assistance, and transportation allowance. The benefits package is equivalent to about 25% of base compensation. Details are listed on our benefits page.

12. There appears to be a lot of turnover in the Newsroom. How many people have departed in the past 12 months and why?

As of July 1 2019, including managers, six people have departed the editorial team over the past 12 months for a variety of reasons including retirement, other opportunities, and performance-related issues.

13. Is Cascade Public Media struggling to recruit Newsroom staff?

From June of 2018 through June 2019, we recruited and hired for 16 positions in the newsroom. Our editorial team continuously produces high-quality, award-winning journalism.