August 23, 2016
By Steven Wishnia and Neal Tepel
Sarasota, FL – Six days after the Lakeland Ledger became the first Florida newspaper to unionize, the newsroom staff at the Sarasota Herald-Tribune signed union cards for the NewsGuild-CWA.
They filed the cards with the National Labor Relations Board Aug. 17, which means an election will be scheduled 20 to 40 days later. “We're making this move because we owe our community the kind of journalism that has earned the Herald-Tribune two Pulitzer prizes over the past five years,” said reporter Billy Cox. "We have a newsroom environment that has supported 'impact journalism' for years, but our corporate culture fails to financially support the dedicated staff members who produce that work." Like the Ledger, the Herald-Tribune was purchased by GateHouse Media in January 2015. GateHouse has since eliminated at least 16 newsroom jobs, and Cox said many staffers have not gotten a raise in more than eight years. If the NewsGuild wins the election, it will represent the remaining 40 newsroom employees. Read more