The chapel would obviously appreciate it if any freelances asked to
cover at these titles were unavailable on the strike days (see below).
Any freelances who suffer hardship while being unavailable should
get in touch and we'll
see what can be done.
Government figures put the average wage for a non-manual worker in the UK
at more than £24,000 with the overall average wage around £22,000.
Management have offered to increase the graduate starting rate to £11,000
and the newly qualified senior rate to £14,000. Other staff would receive a
2.5 percent rise.
These rates still compare badly with recent settlements so NUJ members at
Spalding voted 100 percent for strike action in a ballot with an 85 percent
Spalding is the only office in the Johnston Press-owned Welland Valley
Newspapers Group where the NUJ has recognition. At the other papers the pay
is even worse.
Johnston Press is not poor. They have made record profits for the past
two years and two months ago paid more than £500 million to buy Regional
Independent Media, another newspaper group.
Time for solidarity
The journalists are to hold two five-day strikes, the first from 1 June to 5 June
inclusive. Feel free to join the picket
line at the Spalding Guardian office.
The first day of the strike - 1 June - is a Saturday so we are urging as
many NUJ members and other trade unionists as possible to join us for a
demonstration outside the paper at noon. Please bring your banners.
The strikers will need money. Please urge your union branch to hold a
meeting and send a donation. You could organise a whip round in the
workplace. Please make donations payable to "Spalding NUJ Chapel" and send
them to Bieber House, Wilsthorpe, Stamford, Lincolnshire, PE9 4PE.
Messages of support can be a huge morale booster. Please take a few
seconds to email your support to union rep Suzanne Roberts on
Please send polite emails protesting about the shockingly low wages to
Johnston Press's group human resources director Malcolm Vickers on
Thank you for your solidarity.