Another media strike is looming.
Around 100 unionized staffers at Time have threatened to strike on May 23, the day when the magazine releases its highly anticipated annual Time 100 list, if a contract agreement is not reached by then.
The union alleges that Time management has delayed reaching a deal on a contract for nearly three years. The union’s top demands include fair wages with guaranteed yearly increases, protecting members from being disciplined for failing to hit certain metrics outside of their control, and securing a contract that covers all workers, across the editorial departments.
“After covering everything from impeachment hearings to a presidential election to a once-in-a-century pandemic as a reporter for Time, I was ecstatic to earn a promotion to staff writer,” said Abby Vesoulis, a staff writer at Time. “I was less ecstatic that my promotion effectively meant a $20,000 pay cut, as I would no longer be eligible for overtime pay. Time staffers deserve a fair contract with safeguards against this so they don’t have to worry that getting promoted for their hard work will result in getting paid less for it.”
Brian Bennett, a senior White House correspondent at Time, added that he’s willing to walk out because a “strong contract that covers all of us, not just some of us, will allow us to do the work we love under the conditions we deserve.”
The strike will not impact the second annual Time 100 Summit, which will take place at Lincoln Center’s Frederick P. Rose Hall in New York City on June 7. It has not yet unveiled its lineup, but its most recent summit featured talks from Nancy Pelosi, Ryan Murphy, Arianna Huffington, Martha Stewart, and Whitney Wolfe Herd, among others.
The lineup for this year’s summit, including honorees from the 2022 Time 100 list, will be revealed on May, 23, the day that the strike is planned.
“Time Magazine Union has shown time and time again how serious they are about winning a strong contract that covers all workers across the company. There is no Time 100, Time magazine or digital without them,” says Susan DeCarava, president, NewsGuild of New York, which represents the unionized Time staffers. “Today, Guild members at Time are collectively putting the company on notice: reach a fair deal swiftly or be without our labor. It’s time for management to memorialize in our contract the respect they claim to have for the workers who actually make Time.”
A spokeswoman for Time told WWD that Time is eager to conclude a contract that benefits its employees and sets the company up for a successful and sustainable future. “Since becoming an independent company, we have worked hard to advance these shared goals and will continue to do so in partnership with the Guild and all of our employees.”
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