Unionized employees at the New York Times Co flagship newspaper and its digital unit ratified a deal on Monday to cut pay by 5 percent, according to a memo obtained by Reuters, paving the way for a reduction in pay for 1,300 employees starting Tuesday.
New York Times Co management had reached a tentative agreement with the Newspaper Guild of New York last week to cut union worker pay at the Times in a bid to save $4.5 million. Employees will be given an additional 10 paid days off leave per year.
Under the agreement, workers will get reduced pay through the end of the year, though New York Times management rejected a Guild proposal to guarantee that there would be no layoffs during the period in which the pay cut is in effect.
Because our members know these are extraordinarily tough times for the news business, they were willing to pitch in to help the company cut costs without layoffs, New York Guild President Bill O'Meara said in the memo.
But if management comes back in a few months and cuts jobs despite the cooperation of our members, I think they will find that the reservoir of goodwill will have run dry.
Guild members at the newspaper voted 377 to 36 in favor of approving the agreement, while 50 members at the Times' digital unit ratified it unanimously, according to the memo.
Separately, the Times Co said Monday it would not file notice of its intention to close the Boston Globe, at least for now. Six of the seven unions representing Globe employees reached tentative agreements with the Times Co, which has threatened to shut down the 137-year-old Boston daily, unless employees agree to $20 million in concessions.
(Reporting by Robert MacMillan and Phil Wahba; Editing by Richard Chang)