IBEW Local 4 urges ‘Turn off Channel 5’ as full-scale boycott begins

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Station demanding right to outsource union's jobs at will

BOYCOTT CHANNEL 5 is the message IBEW Local 4 is taking to the public with the posting of a billboard on heavily travelled I-64 (Highway 40) on the north side of Jefferson Ave. facing east (to catch all the traffic coming from downtown). The billboard encourages viewers to shut off Channel 5 and switch to either Channels 2 or 4, both high quality stations for news and entertainment. Channel 5 is demanding that it have free rein to outsource the union’s work to scabs at any time.
BOYCOTT CHANNEL 5 is the message IBEW Local 4 is taking to the public with the posting of a billboard on heavily travelled I-64 (Highway 40) on the north side of Jefferson Ave. facing east (to catch all the traffic coming from downtown). The billboard encourages viewers to shut off Channel 5 and switch to either Channels 2 or 4, both high quality stations for news and entertainment. Channel 5 is demanding that it have free rein to outsource the union’s work to scabs at any time.

Turn to Channels 2 or 4 for news, weather, quality programming

 

Turn off Channel 5.

A request to boycott KSDK-TV Channel 5 was issued last week by IBEW Local 4 which is fighting to project its members’ jobs.

“Until we resolve our new contract with the station owners, who have been unwilling to compromise on their demand that we give up our work and allow the station to outsource that work to anyone, at anytime, we ask our brothers and sisters to please TURN OFF CHANNEL 5,” said Mike Pendergast, Local 4’s business manager.

“There are wonderful, professional stations in Channels 2 and 4 that will bring quality news and entertainment into your home,” he added.

The union’s contract expired March 15. It had been extended at the station’s request. No talks were scheduled as the Labor Tribune went to press.

However, on March 28, the station’s owner, Gannett, will meet with the union’s leadership to try and explain their “new vision of the future of broadcasting” which they say requires the unheard of modification of the union’s contract that would allow unfettered outsourcing of the work Local 4 members do now.

Local 4 members are broadcast television engineers, which include technicians, photographers, editors and broadcast maintenance engineers. When you see TV news cameras on the street covering a story, the person behind the camera is a Local 4 member.

UNION HAS ALREADY HELPED

This outrageous demand comes even after Local 4’s members took a 10 percent pay cut in 2009 and a pay freeze in 2011 to help in what KSDK owner Gannett said was a financial crisis.

“We’ve been willing to talk about compromises on issues, but the station has flatly refused. To them, ‘It’s their way or the highway’” Pendergast said.

YOU CAN HELP: TURN OFF 5

Local 4 is asking readers to clearly and loudly express their disdain of this outrageous demand by Channel 5 that will ultimately put veteran engineers out of work by first, switch to either Channel 4 or 2 and secondly, writing, calling or email Station Manager Marv Danielski and tell him you’ve switched and will not come back until a reasonable solution is negotiated. To reach Danielski:

Call: (office) 314-444-5271 or better yet, his cell: 314-452-6471.

Email: mdanielski@ksdk.com

Write: Marv Danielski, Station Manager, KSDK-TV, 1000 Market Street, St. Louis, MO, 63101.

3 COMMENTS

  1. Jannie and I have watched Channel 5 for a lifetime and miss it very much. Channel 5 Newsteam has been a part of our family for ever. Please settle this dispute so we can come back and Jannie can go back to watching Wheel Of Fortune.

  2. I miss 5 as well but I’m very tired of seeing these attacks on the middle class. So many of us who negotiated in good faith for better pay and benefits as did as our parents, have seen too many attacks on the people who perform the majority of the work for these multi-million dollar companies. The margin between management and blue collar workers has spread from 20 to 1 in the ’70s to 500 to 1 today; and they want MORE?

  3. The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that by 2022, three-fourths of all U.S. jobs will require a high school education or less. Nearly all of them will be low-wage service industry jobs. Some experts have gone so far as to suggest that a new “servant economy” is emerging, an upstairs/downstairs model made possible by the extraordinary gains of the few and the desperation of the many. Most of the remaining jobs are being converted to ‘contract employment’ status to lower or eliminate salary and/or benefits. That is what Gannet is trying to do here.

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