Los Angeles Times newsroom guild leaders called for a one-day walkout Friday to protest planned cuts to offset steep financial losses, reports Meg James of The Times.
James writes, “The Times disclosed Thursday that substantial layoffs were coming due to a widening budget deficit. The one-day strike represents the newsroom’s first union-organized work stoppage in the paper’s 142-year history.
“Management has not publicly disclosed the number of newsroom positions that will be eliminated, but knowledgeable people said the plan is to lay off at least 100 journalists, or about 20% of the newsroom — the largest staff cut since the paper was owned by Tribune Co.
“The looming cuts have sparked widespread anxiety in a newsroom already shaken by last week’s abrupt departure of Executive Editor Kevin Merida, who stepped down amid tensions with Soon-Shiong, in large part, over Merida’s fears that the magnitude of the proposed cuts would hamper the paper’s progress toward strengthening its journalism to become a sustainable enterprise, according to the knowledgeable people.”
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