Editorial staffers of BuzzFeed News announced this week that they are forming a union with the NewsGuild of New York-CWA Local 31003 and are requesting voluntary recognition from their employer. More than 90% of eligible editorial employees signed on to the union effort.
The efforts to organize to have a voice on the job follow several tumultuous weeks in which nearly 15% of the Buzzfeed staff were laid off company-wide.
"I love working at BuzzFeed News," said Albert Samaha, Investigative Reporter, in a press statement. "I care deeply about the future of this place, and I believe a union will bring stability to our workforce, grant us a crucial voice in company decisions, and make BuzzFeed stronger in the long run. My colleagues overwhelmingly support this effort, and I'm proud to stand with them."
Canadian staff at BuzzFeed also officially filed for union certification this week to join the Canadian Media Guild-CWA Local 30213.
"We are striving to improve transparency, equity, diversity, and working conditions across the company," Buzzfeed Canada staff said in a statement.
Journalists at the Hartford Courant have taken a major step toward joining the NewsGuild-CWA. Members of the newly-formed Hartford Courant Guild filed a petition for a union election with the National Labor Relations Board Monday and requested voluntary recognition from Tribune Publishing, the paper's parent company.
The Hartford Courant Guild will cover approximately 60 reporters, editors, and photographers.
In a statement, employees wrote that accomplishing their mission "has grown harder with each passing day." Declining revenues and decisions by corporate managers who have little regard for or knowledge of their communities and the work Courant employees do to serve them have led to deepening cuts to their resources and standards, they said.
Parking Production Assistants
Parking Production Assistants (PPAs) employed by Netflix, Possible Productions, and Big Indie The Hunt won voluntary recognition to join CWA Local 1101. These three employers signed on to the Master Agreement CWA negotiated recently with the employer group AMPTP (Association of Motion Picture and Television Producers).
Although PPAs work as freelancers, at any one time, Netflix employs about 25 PPAs, while Possible Production employs about 50 PPAs, and Big Indie The Hunt employs about 10.