MEREDITH’S WFSB-TV CHANNEL 3 CHARGED WITH UNLAWFUL INTERFERENCE, DISCRIMINATION AND REFUSAL TO BARGAIN

GOVERNMENT TO BRING STATION TO TRIAL FOR NUMEROUS VIOLATIONS
OF FEDERAL LABOR LAW AGAINST EMPLOYEES

Hartford, July 8, 2004 - The National Labor Relations Board, Region 34 issued a Complaint and Notice of Hearing indicting WFSB-TV with multiple violations of federal labor law. The Complaint asserts that the Station has been:

  • Interfering with, restraining and coercing employees in the exercise of
    their rights;
  • Discriminating in regard to hire or tenure or terms and conditions
    of employment of its employees; and
  • Failing and refusing to bargain in good faith with the representative of
    its employees.

The Complaint lays out more than a dozen instances of illegal conduct including interrogating employees, threatening an employee with loss of future earnings, withholding raises and pay from employees, illegally imposing new contract terms and conditions, informing employees that they were not covered by the union contracts and discouraging employees from joining the union.

WFSB-TV is owned by the Iowa based Meredith Corporation; better known for its magazine publications than its dozen television stations. The Labor Board Complaint stems from charges filed by the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (AFTRA). AFTRA represents all anchors and reporters at the station. Despite what had previously been a long and cooperative spirit of labor relations with the Station, the union and the owners of the Station have been unable to come to agreement on terms for new labor contracts. The previous contracts expired in October 2002.

The Government’s attorney is set to begin its prosecution of WFSB-TV management at a trial on September 27, 2004 in Hartford.

The American Federation of Television and Radio Artists represents 80,000 broadcasters, actors and recording artists nationwide. AFTRA has 1,300 members in New England. Visit AFTRA online at www.aftra.com.

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Contact:
Tom Higgins or Dona Sommers  617.262.8001


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