The New Yorker
avoided a work
stoppage on Wednesday when the weekly magazine's staff and management agreed to a first union contract after two and a half years of talks.
The staff union of the publication, which is part of the NewsGuild of New York, announced on Twitter
that it had reached a tentative agreement with parent company Condé Nast to avoid a strike. The union, which is part of the NewsGuild of New York, stated that most members would receive pay increases of at least 10%, with some receiving raises of up to 63%.
The agreement also includes language on job security
, severance pay in the event of layoffs
, a prohibition on nondisclosure agreements, and a system to compensate staffers for after-hours work, among other provisions. No members of the bargaining unit would be paid less than $55,000 per year, well above the $42,000 the NewsGuild claimed some staffers were earning.
The union claimed that if it hadn't threatened a strike, it would never have reached such an agreement.
“These victories are the direct result of collective action — including a credible strike threat — demonstrating that when we stand together and fight, we win,” the union said on Twitter.
BREAKING: We avoided a strike! After more than two and a half years of negotiations, @newyorkerunion, @p4kunion, and @ars_union are proud to announce that we have reached an agreement in principle on our first contracts. Here are some of our victories: pic.twitter.com/gBzOwbKpqI — The New Yorker Union (@newyorkerunion) June 16, 2021
Staffers at the New Yorker had been negotiating alongside two other Condé Nast properties, Pitchfork Media
and Ars Technica, which also reached agreements on Wednesday; any agreements would still need to be formally ratified by members.
The New Yorker's bargaining unit consists of approximately 120 members, the majority of whom work in editorial and production roles; however, the union excludes the magazine's high-profile staff writers and contributors, the majority of whom are technically independent contractors.
Last week, the union announced plans for a virtual picket line if it was unable to reach an agreement with the magazine's leadership. Members requested that, in the event of a strike, readers refrain from sharing links to New Yorker stories and contributors refrain from pitching stories or handling edits to ongoing work.
Last Tuesday, members of the NewsGuild demonstrated outside Condé Nast chief content officer Anna Wintour's West Village home, chanting "Bosses wear Prada, workers get nothing!"