Buffalo Newspaper Guild

CWA Local 31026

News

    Tentative agreement for Guild furloughs in Prepress unanimously approved

    Saturday, April 18, 2020 by The Guild

    Guild members in the Typographical Unit representing Prepress employees at The Buffalo News voted unanimously Friday in favor of a tentative agreement that will allow Buffalo News management to furlough most members for up to five weeks.

    The agreement enables Prepress members to not only gain financially, in most cases, due to New York’s enhanced unemployment benefits, but it also saves the company about $45,000 above and beyond the two-week furlough directive laid out by Lee Enterprises.

    “This agreement saves the company and Lee more than twice what the company originally demanded in furlough savings, and it still protects and benefits the Prepress Guild members at The News,” Guild President Sandy Tan said. “That’s the best possible outcome.”

    The Executive Committee approved the tentative agreement Thursday night, followed by two membership meetings for Prepress members in Composing, Ad Services and Advertising Operations on Friday.

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    Guild members approve agreement to allow furloughs

    Saturday, April 11, 2020 by The Guild

    Buffalo Newspaper Guild members voted 65-2 Friday in favor of a tentative agreement that will allow Buffalo News management to furlough Guild members across the board, for the first time.

    The approval of the agreement reflects member support for a plan the Guild bargaining team devised, which mitigates financial losses to members with little-to-no cost to the company. It also reflects the mutual concern of both management and the Guild about the paper’s financial state.

    “This is a sad time for the Guild,” said President Sandy Tan. “This agreement will help protect our members financially, but the furloughs will do nothing but damage the paper’s ability to continue producing outstanding, critical, and even life-saving journalism at a time when it’s needed most.”

    In exchange for The News meeting the Guild bargaining team’s requirements that it mitigate financial hardship for members, we met our commitment to engage in intense-but-swift negotiations. The bargaining team and Executive Committee brought forward the tentative agreement for a membership vote quickly enough to enable the company to begin scheduling furloughs next week.

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    A message from the Buffalo Newspaper Guild

    Tuesday, March 31, 2020 by The Guild

    The Buffalo Newspaper Guild has never been prouder of the outstanding journalism produced by our members than during this Covid-19 public health crisis.

    Unfortunately, we received word that, as a Lee Enterprises paper, The Buffalo News plans to subject our members to furloughs over the next three months. This directive comes at a time when our public work has never been more important to this community.

    As a union, our members are protected by existing contract language. But in recognition of The Buffalo News’ financial circumstances as a result of lost revenue due to the coronavirus pandemic, we have begun discussing the best path forward to safeguard our members’ future. Our hard work on behalf of this community is undermined by an economic model that seeks to destroy the critically important work that newspapers play in keeping the public informed, protected and safe.

    The Guild will do its part to ensure the best possible outcome for our members. We hope the company will work with us in good faith. And above all, we hope the public will support our work and mission.

    Volunteers needed for annual John “Jay” Bonfatti shoreline cleanup

    Tuesday, March 3, 2020 by The Guild

    In honor of our late News colleague John “Jay” Bonfatti, Guild members will once again participate in the annual Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper Spring Shoreline Sweep.

    The Shoreline Sweep will be held from 10 a.m. to noon on Saturday, April 25.

    Every year, Guild members help clean up the Ohio Street Boat Launch and Father Conway Park in the city’s historic First Ward in honor of Bonfatti, a reporter who died in 2008. He loved the outdoors and believed strongly in caring for the environment.

    Here are some guidelines:

    1. Volunteers are expected to dress appropriately for the weather and bring their own water.

    2. Please arrive on time. Site Captains will be greeting volunteers from no earlier than 9:30 a.m. or later than 10:30 a.m.

    3. Guild members are encouraged to bring responsible children, but they must be accompanied by a parent at all times.

    Oh, and did we mention there’s an afterparty?

    Please email Ellen Przepasniak by April 15 to volunteer.

    Bracing for change

    Tuesday, February 25, 2020 by The Guild

    Guild takes action after sale of The News to Lee Enterprises

    By Sandy Tan

    It seems nearly incomprehensible that after decades of being owned by the Butler family, and then by the stable and hands-off Warren Buffett/Berkshire Hathaway, The Buffalo News will now be owned by a corporate media company for the first time in history.

    Our time as an independently run city newspaper is over.

    Publisher Warren Colville announced the change in the early morning hours of Jan. 29. In a few short weeks, Lee Enterprises will become only the third owner that our paper has ever had.

    Our ties to Berkshire Hathaway are not completely severed, however, since Berkshire Hathaway is now the sole lender for all of Lee Enterprises’ debt.

    There is still a lot we don’t know, but more answers are rolling out in the coming days as the transfer of ownership marches toward completion in mid-March. But despite all the uncertainty, there is one thing that we already know. And that is, there are far worse corporate owners than Lee.

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    Winter 2019/2020 Frontier Reporter

    Monday, February 24, 2020 by The Guild

    Read the winter 2019/2020 Frontier Reporter below:

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    Statement on the sale of The Buffalo News to Lee Enterprises

    Wednesday, January 29, 2020 by The Guild

    Since word broke this morning about the sale of The Buffalo News to Lee Enterprises, the Guild leadership team has scrambled to research all the implications this may have for our members. While there is limited information we know right now, we want to assure all members that we are doing everything possible to find out what this means for us and to answer as many questions as possible.

    Just since this morning, Guild leaders have had a preliminary meeting to discuss the sale and been in touch with national NewsGuild-CWA leaders. We are continuing those conversations tomorrow and in the days ahead. We have also been in the process of gathering more information about the sale and how this will impact the employees here, including the more than 200 who are represented by the Guild. We have also posted a statement on Twitter.

    For now, what is most important is for our members to know that our contract remains in full force and effect, and will continue to remain in place even after Lee Enterprises assume full ownership in March. Those working in Prepress should also know their current contracts also remain in effect.

    We have a regular membership meeting scheduled for Feb. 12. If we need to have one sooner, we will. In the meantime, we will send our members information and updates as soon as we have reliable answers. Please feel free to reach out to your department’s Guild representative or to our Administrative Officer Kim Leiser if you have any pressing concerns. We discourage anyone from publicly speculating on details that neither the Guild nor The News has confirmed.

    Regardless of who owns us, the Guild will, as always, do everything in its power to safeguard the work we do and the people who do it. Stay tuned for more to come.

    Holiday party closes out 2019 with cheer

    Friday, December 20, 2019 by The Guild

    Members of the Guild, retirees and family members, gathered at Templeton Landing on Friday, Dec. 6 for the annual holiday party.

    The Lonnie Hudgins Memorial Singers performed modified carols again this year and members of the Typographical Union No. 9 joined Guild members for the first time.

    Here are some photos from the party.

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    Cast your Guild vote Tuesday

    Friday, November 8, 2019 by The Guild

    Vote from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. on the fifth-floor cafeteria

    Earlier this year, The NewsGuild held a contested unionwide election for president. Incumbent candidate Bernie Lunzer faced a challenge from Los Angeles’ Jon Schleuss.

    Based on several election challenges, The NewsGuild must re-run the election.

    Lunzer is the current president of The NewsGuild. He has been a national officer since 1995. Schleuss is a data and graphics journalist at the Los Angeles Times, who helped lead the L.A. Times Guild’s unionization efforts in 2018.

    Guild members who work in The Buffalo News building are strongly encouraged to vote from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday in The News’ fifth-floor cafeteria. Members who do not work in the building have already received their ballots by mail.

    Guild’s Holiday Party set for Dec. 6

    Friday, November 8, 2019 by The Guild

    Click below to open the image in a new tab for higher resolution.

    Holiday party invitation with blue and green ornaments (Formal d