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Baltimore Sun union reps negotiating contracts, looking for salary increase

Posted at 5:43 PM, Aug 08, 2019
and last updated 2019-08-09 18:11:07-04

BALTIMORE — Union reps from the Baltimore Sun are in a contentious fight with the Tribune over labor contracts.

Their Guild's Union contract negotiations with the newspaper and its parent company began this week. Their main demand being a long-overdue salary increase to about 100 union employees.

Reporters with the sun say they haven't had a cost of living adjustment or any across the board raise since 2013.

They want a fair shake and to be valued for the work they put in.

"To watch the company put forward its proposals at bargaining this week was really a slap in the face," said reporter Kevin Rector. "They are attacking the livelihoods of middle class journalists who put blood, sweat, and tears into this place, who work long hours, who work nights and weekends and they're doing so even as they're stuffing cash in the pockets of millionaires."

Reps are also looking to keep protections that have been in their contracts for decades but the company says they're outdated.

Scott Dance, a unit chair with the Sun Guild says the company blames an overall downturn in the news business, but they're not saying the company or the newspaper lost money.

They're just taking the opportunity to make cuts where they can.

From Renee Mutchnick, company spokesperson for Baltimore Sun Media:

We believe it is time for a new contract. The expired contract has significant sections that date back to the 1970s and even as far back as the 1950s. It is not reflective of today’s business. As part of the past contract, some Guild members receive annual raises ranging from nearly 10% to almost 21%. We are hopeful that we can agree on a new contract that benefits both employees and our company.