Dear Guild Members:
In an astonishing display of misdirected management, the Company today announced layoffs that decimate what just days ago the new publisher identified as the key to our future – digital reach and our unique print brands.
Of the Philly.com staff of 29, 17 Guild members will be gone as of Dec. 4.
At the Daily News, 10 reporters, including one as senior as 16 years, will be let go. Joining them in unemployment will be six copy editors, leaving one person to copy edit news (other than sports) and features. An editorial assistant that has served this company for 25 years is also among the casualties.
The Inquirer will lose five reporters, six copy editors and desk assistants, including an assigning editor, and one news artist.
The Guild is reviewing the layoff lists to determine whether any grievances are warranted.
In the meantime, the company assures that professional job-placement help will be provided to anyone wanting it.
Human Resources and a Guild representative will begin meeting tomorrow morning with those designated for termination to go over separation packages, including severance, COBRA and payment due for any unused time off.
In a profession known for its skill with words, we have none today to adequately express our shock, dismay and disgust over such an unimaginative and destructive path to the future.
In solidarity and heartache,
The Guild Executive Board (which is losing one member to layoff)
Bill Ross, Executive Director