Honolulu Newspaper Employees Wait for News About Their Job Layoffs
Employees at Honolulu’s two newspapers are still trying to make sense of a buyout that could put them out of work, writes Duane Shimogawa of HawaiiNewsNow tonight.
Both dailies employ 900 people and all of their fates are still up in the air a day after news broke the owner of the Star-Bulletin is buying the Advertiser.
Union leaders say it’s still too early to tell how many people will be laid off. They say they haven’t met with the new owners just yet. But they did sit down with the Hawaii Newspaper and Printing Trades Council and later on Friday, they met with Gannett officials, the owners of the Advertiser, to talk about the future of employees of both papers.
There are a total of nine unions at both the Advertiser and the Star-Bulletin that cover a total of about 600 employees, around 400 at the Advertiser and 200 at the Star-Bulletin.
The Hawaii Newspaper Guild represents employees from both papers.
“The company’s obligated to bargaining with us, Gannett to bargain with us over the effects of the sale and how it affects employees,” Hawaii Newspaper Guild’s Wayne Cahill said.
We do know retirees will keep their pensions and all workers will continue under their current contracts for now.
“The company has the right to do layoffs under both union contracts,” Cahill said. “They have to do any layoffs by seniority that is that most recently hired would be the first to be fired.”
Cahill says Advertiser employees are guaranteed their jobs until the day of the sale.