(en) Detroit newspaper struggle continues

planet earth (riccawu@MNSi.Net)
Tue, 3 Jun 1997 11:05:05 -0400

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>Return-Path: <clr2@igc.apc.org>
>Date: Mon, 2 Jun 1997 20:57:13 -0700 (PDT)
>X-Sender: clr2@pop.igc.org
>To: clr@igc.org
>From: Mike Rhodes <clr2@igc.apc.org>
>Subject: Detroit newspaper struggle continues
>Sender: clr2@igc.org
>Labor Alerts/Labor News
>a service of Campaign for Labor Rights
>[Text of this alert was excerpted from material provided by Action! Motown
>'97. See contact information below.]
>No News or Free Press Wanted Here!
>Since July l3, 1995, more than 2,000 families in six newspaper unions have
>been defending their futures, their unions, and the collective bargaining
>process against the two biggest newspaper corporations in America.
>>From the beginning, working people in Detroit and Michigan and all across
>the country have stood in solidarity with the Detroit newspaper workers.
>Gannett Co., Inc., and Knight-Ridder, Inc. have been charged with numerous
>unfair labor practices that caused and prolonged the labor dispute,
>according to the federal government's case against the companies.
>There is little doubt that the media giants and their newspapers, Gannett's
>Detroit News and Knight-Ridder's Free Press, will ultimately be found
>guilty of at least one violation of federal labor law. This means the
>newspaper workers will ultimately be returned to their rightful jobs, while
>the struggle for contracts continues.
>The striking unions made unconditional offers to return to work in
>mid-February. The companies' response was to put the workers on a
>preferential hiring list and offer them jobs as vacancies occur -- while
>some l,400 so-called "permanent replacement workers" remain on the job.
>The unions have asked the National Labor Relations Board to seek a federal
>court order to force the companies to obey the law and take back all
>eligible unfair labor practice strikers. If a court injunction is granted,
>many of the former strikers would be ordered back to work. No matter what
>happens, the struggle will go on until all the workers are back to work with
>contracts. Detroit area advertiser and subscriber boycotts are continuing,
>as is the boycott against Gannett's largest paper, USA Today.
>Gannett and Knight-Ridder are using their media holdings from coast to coast
>to finance their war on working people in Detroit. They have hired a
>private army of paramilitary guards to intimidate and harass union workers
>and supporters. They have hired more than l,400 so-called "permanent
>replacement" workers. They have continued to publish in the face of
>community outrage, criticism from religious and political leaders and the
>desertion of two out of three advertisers.
>The cost of this corporate arrogance has been high: The News and Free
>Press, backed by Gannett and Knight-Ridder, have thrown away an estimated
>$250 million in losses and foregone profits. They have allowed their core
>readership to shrink by more than one-third, an unthinkable erosion in
>today's highly competitive media market. Even worse, the newspapers have
>lost the respect and credibility they need to function effectively in the
>Unfortunately, this pattern of defiance and destruction has become all too
>commonplace in corporate America. Now more than ever, the Detroit newspaper
>workers need the support union people from all walks of life and all corners
>of the country. A show of solidarity in Detroit on June 20 and 21 would put
>corporate America on notice that union people stand together.
>STAND UP! Come to Detroit and make a stand for the newspaper workers and
>for working families everywhere.
>Friday, June 20
>12 Noon - Prayer vigil in front of the Detroit News
>Also (tentative) action aimed at Michigan's anti-labor Republican governor
>2:00 - 5:00 P.M. - A Gathering of Friends Engaged in Social and Economic
>Justice Work
>Episcopal Diocesan Center, 4800 Woodward Ave (at Warren), Detroit
>7:00 - 9:30 P.M. - AFL-CIO Teach-In. The Future of Economic and Social
>Justice: Labor, the Detroit Newspaper Strike and Beyond
>l0:00 P.M. - 2:00 A.M. Benefit for Locked-out Workers
>Magic Stick Club - 4l40 Woodward Ave. at Alexandrine, Detroit
>Saturday, June 21
>8:00 A.M. - 9:00 A.M. - Interfaith Religious Ceremony at Hart Plaza
>9:30 A.M. - l P.M. - Actions against Gannett and Knight-Ridder, and greedy
>corporate colleagues (Details of actions will not be released until day of
>actions for security reasons. Participants will gather at various staging
>areas in metropolitan area.)
>2:00 P.M. - March
>4:00 P.M. - Rally
>6:00 P.M. - Entertainment
>For more information (including hotel accommodations) contact Action! Motown
>'97 at
>313-896-2600 (toll free 1-888-97-MOTOWN), info@action97.w1.com or visit the
>web site at

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