IBEW Local 4 at KSDK to consider strike vote Sunday

Union rejects ‘discussions’ that would change conditions already in current contract

Publisher Emeritus

An effort to destroy the union contract for broadcast engineers at KSDK Channel 5 will be outlined to members of IBEW Local 4 at a special union meeting this Sunday, Dec. 4 at which time the union anticipates taking a strike vote, Local 4 Business Manager Mike Pendergast announced in an email to his members last week.

While the union’s current three-year contract expires Jan. 31, 2023, an effort by the union to begin serious negotiations was rejected by company lawyers when in their first meeting on Nov. 16 they refused to offer a specific proposal for consideration and instead wanted “discussions” on a series of issues that “would effectively ruin our members’ futures by changing the conditions of our employment,” Pendergast told the Labor Tribune.

While Local 4 hasn’t had a strike at Channel 5 in nearly 50 years, according to Pendergast the position being taken by Channel 5’s current owner, TEGNA Media, is casting a dark shadow on that streak.

“We certainly don’t want to strike, but if their approach is to try and destroy our members’ ability to earn a living and create unacceptable working conditions, then we may have no alternative. Our members will decide,” Pendergast said.

KSDK-TV first signed on the air on Feb. 8, 1947. Initially owned by the Pulitzer Publishing Company, it was the ninth television station to sign on in the United States and the first television station in Missouri. At the time, there were only four television sets in the entire city of St. Louis.

It has had several owners since then. The newest is TEGNA Media, which includes 46 television stations and is the largest independent station group of major network affiliates in the top 25 markets, reaching approximately one-third of all television households nationwide.



  • It’s a shame that employees must tolerate the corporate greed from Virginia that would rather spend more to hurt them then invest in them. The nonsense started the first day Tegna/Gannett bought Channel 5 and still continues.

  • 50 years? Wasn’t there a strike somewhere around 2000? I feel like I remember some labor strife not long after I left there following the Pope visit.

    Proud former local 4 member!


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