Windsor Star workers have overwhelmingly ratified a new three-year contract that provides annual improvements to wages, an additional statutory holiday and language aimed at protecting the news organization's journalists from online bullying and harassment.
“This collective agreement represents real gains in the media sector – both wage increases and addressing the harassment being faced by journalists today,” Unifor Secretary-Treasurer Lana Payne said. “Congratulations to all the members for this deal.”
Effective immediately, wages increase 2.25%, with increases of 1.75% in May 2023 and 1.5% in May 2024. Full-time employees receive a $1,000 signing bonus.
Postmedia, which owns the Star, will set up a working committee to tackle the growing problem of online bullying and harassment of journalists while engaged professionally in their vital work of keeping Canadians factually informed on the news in their communities.
“It’s a good deal given the challenging times for all news media in Canada,” said Julie Kotsis, Local 240 Unit Chair for editorial and advertising staff at the paper.
Kotsis is also chair of the Joint Council of Unions, which includes Unifor Locals 240 and 517-G as well as Communications Workers of America (CWA) Local 30553, covering about 120 Editorial, Advertising, Business Office, Reader Sales and Service, Pressroom and Mailroom workers.
A tentative agreement was reached June 24 after a week of bargaining. The deal was ratified by all members of the joint council on June 26.
Kotsis, a reporter at the Star, said wage improvements were a top priority for workers and made negotiations challenging, with the employer describing a “very disruptive environment” currently in the news industry.
Workers gained a new annual paid holiday in recognition of Canada’s National Truth and Reconciliation Day on Sept. 30.
Postmedia has established a working committee to tackle the growing problem of online bullying and harassment of journalists while engaged professionally in their vital work of keeping Canadians factually informed on the news in their communities.