Unions: NY Times threatening to shut Boston Globe
BOSTON ” Union leaders say The New York Times Co. has told The Boston Globe’s unions they must agree quickly to $20 million in concessions.
The Globe reported the Times Co. threatened to shut down the newspaper if the concessions aren’t met.
Executives from the Times Co., which owns the Globe, met this week with leaders of the newspaper’s 13 unions. Boston Newspaper Guild president Daniel Totten said the concessions could include pay cuts, the end of company pension contributions and the elimination of lifetime job guarantees. The Guild is the Globe’s biggest union, representing more than 700 employees.
Both a Times spokeswoman and the Globe’s publisher, Steve Ainsley, refused to comment for a story on the Globe’s Web site. Ainsley, Totten and Globe editor Martin Baron did not immediately return messages left after business hours by The Associated Press.
The concessions will be negotiated with each of the unions, leaders said.
“We all know the newspaper industry is going through great transition and loss,” said Ralph Giallanella, secretary-treasurer of the Teamsters Local 259, which represents about 200 drivers who deliver the newspaper. “The ad revenues have fallen off the cliff. Just based on everything that’s going on around the country, they’re serious.”
Economic woes have ripped through the newspaper industry in recent months. Scripps Co. closed the Rocky Mountain News in Denver and Hearst Corp. shut down the Seattle Post-Intelligencer. The Christian Science Monitor, which is based in Boston, stopped daily publication last week in favor of online news. Other major papers have filed for bankruptcy.
The Globe has gone through several rounds of layoffs and buyouts and reportedly lost tens of millions of dollars last year.