By: Mark Fitzgerald
Boycott Of Newspapers Still In Effect
CHICAGO – Within the next three weeks, union workers who walked off their jobs at the Detroit Free Press and The Detroit News in 1995 will vote on contract proposals that management at the jointly produced newspapers say is their final offer.
Leaders of the six unions who agreed to let members vote on the offer huddled in meetings last week to discuss what recommendation, if any, they will make on a contract that includes provisions they have loudly rejected in the past.
Among them is the proposal that would link pay raises to a dramatic leap in daily circulation by next fall. A union boycott still in effect has helped drive down combined circulation of the papers from about 886,000 in 1995 to 603,000 last spring.
It’s not clear how the former strikers will react to the final offer. The unions say nearly 600 workers still have not returned to their jobs.
Those hoping for a court-ordered return to work with back pay were dealt a harsh blow in the summer when a federal appeals court unanimously reversed the National Labor Relations Board’s finding that management’s unfair labor practices caused the strike.
Mark Fitzgerald (email@example.com) is editor at large for E&P.
Copyright 2000, Editor & Publisher.