LA Times strikes a deal with its union
After 15 months of negotiation, the LA Times’ leadership and the paper’s guild have struck a deal.
The contract includes an immediate pay raise of at least five percent for newsroom employees, parental leave, book deal rights for journalists, diversity commitments, and more.
The Los Angeles Times’ unionization was a major milestone in the union movement that has now swept across digital and legacy media. The late Gawker Media started the wave in 2015, but the Times effort was important because of its context.
“There was just an overwhelming sense that management was bad, that there wasn’t anything we could do about it,” reporter and L.A. Times Guild co-chair Anthony Pesce told Nieman Reports earlier this year. “We didn’t have a seat at the table. That was when people really realized that if they stand up and say something about this, we can actually affect some change.”
However, two years later, with new owners, changed management and a lot of patient negotiations, a deal has been struck between the LA Times and its union.
“My thanks to the union leadership and its members, as well as my colleagues in management, and Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong for their dedication and professionalism through months of negotiations,” said Times executive editor Norman Pearlstine in the outlet’s article. “Initial contracts are inherently difficult to negotiate, with every article and clause having profound implications for both sides — now and in the future. With this agreement, I am convinced we have assured the revival of The Times under local ownership.”