"We're Worth More": Washington Post Staff Seek Readers' Support For Strike

Talks between The Post employees' union and the management to negotiate a contract over pay, remote work and other employment conditions have broken down

'We're Worth More': Washington Post Staff Seek Readers' Support For Strike

The Post employees have called a strike on December 7

New Delhi:

Employees of The Washington Post have put out a video message, seeking public support for their 24-hour strike against workplace problems. This comes after talks between the employees' union and the management to negotiate a contract over pay, remote work and other employment conditions broke down after 18 months.

In the video, The Post's correspondents said they had risked their lives and covered wars, a global pandemic and news on all subjects, from the hyperlocal to the global. They shared how their work held powerful institutions to account. The employees said they deserve "fair pay and a transparent pay process".

"I'm worth a living wage, I'm worth raises that keep up with inflation. I'm worth equal pay to my colleagues, regardless of my race or gender. I'm worth job protections that value my years of service," multiple employees are seen saying in the video.

They then announced their decision to "walk off the job" for 24 hours "because we are worth more than what the company is offering".

They appealed to readers to not engage with The Post content during the 24-hour strike and to write to the publisher, backing their cause.

The Washington Post, founded in 1877 and among the US' most prominent newspapers, is currently owned by Amazon founder Jeff Bezos. In a letter to readers, The Washington Post Guild has said in a letter to readers that the work of the Post employees has won awards and global acclaim and made the paper profitable again.

"Then our former publisher's bad business decisions squandered our profits. Instead of executives bearing the weight of this mismanagement, The Post repeatedly made workers pay the price. In the last year, the company has laid off nearly 40 people. If buyouts don't net another 240 cuts, Post leaders warned more layoffs will come," the Guild said.

Announcing the strike, the Guild added, "Taking this historic action is not a decision we came to lightly."

The management, it said, had "refused to bargain in good faith and repeatedly -- and illegally -- shut down negotiations over key issues". "The Post cannot stay competitive, retain the best talent or produce the kind of elite journalism you rely on without giving its staff a fair deal," it said.

"On Dec. 7, we ask you to respect our walkout by not crossing the picket line: For 24 hours, please do not engage with any Washington Post content. That includes our print and online news stories, podcasts, videos, games and recipes. Instead, share information about our strike and send a letter to Post leaders in support of the people who make this institution run," the letter read.