Fairfax Media has announced the cutting of 120 newsroom editorial jobs from its different divisions across Sydney and Melbourne against which the journalists are planning to undertake an industrial action.
The employees of the Sydney Morning Herald, The Financial Review, as well as The Age will face the loss of jobs among its staff because of the media giant’s redundancies and cost-cutting measures, one of the journalists revealed. “We will shortly enter a consultation period with staff and the MEAA (media union) on a proposal to reduce costs across News and Business in the Sydney and Melbourne newsrooms by the equivalent of 120 full-time employees,” an email from Fairfax Media Editorial Director Sean Alymer told Mumbrella staff on Thursday.
“Change is a permanent part of our industry. It is a reflection of what we know about the ways our readers are consuming our stories. We must continue to evolve with them,” Alymer added.
Media Entertainment and Arts Alliance’s Chief Executive Paul Murphy said that there will be an equally strong reaction from the union. Murphy tweeted that the union will fight for each and every job in danger. “It’s the staff on the newsroom floor who have driven the transition to digital and through all the challenges continued to produce high-quality independent journalism,” he said as quoted by Yahoo News. “And this is the reward. Yet another savage cut to editorial.”
According to BBC, employees at the SMH and The Age in Melbourne have already started giving their reaction to the announcement by holding “stop work” strikes. Meanwhile, journalists said that they are devastated. Sunday Age journalist Jill Stark tweeted that she was worried about her future as well as her colleagues. She added that the day was one of the devastating days in the history of Australian journalism.
In February, Fairfax Media already announced the cutting of 70 jobs. Radio New Zealand reported that the media company will not only affect employees in its Australian division but will also take away jobs of NZ employees.