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BBC workers call foul over use as strike breakers

BBC workers call foul over use as strike breakers

BBC journalists today condemned the use of their broadcasts by Radio New Zealand during industrial action.

Radio New Zealand staff, members of the Public Service Association (PSA) and the Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union, walked off the job this morning to protest an unacceptable pay offer. The strike forced Radio New Zealand to abandon its flagship Morning Report news programme and it instead broadcast live feed from the BBC.

PSA Organiser Brenden Sheehan said Radio New Zealand are seeking a fair pay increase and it is past time for the nation’s public broadcaster to present a reasonable offer.

“We are receiving messages of support from other public broadcasting staff around the world for this dispute.

“BBC staff, members of the National Union of Journalists, are condemning the use of their material during industrial action because it makes them effective strike breakers. They are urging RNZ staff to stand their ground to secure a just settlement.

“RNZ salaries do not compare well with other public and commercial broadcasters. While there have been pay increases in the last two years, this followed a decade of cutbacks and minimal wage movement which still sees pay rates lagging behind those for other broadcasting colleagues.

“We are seeking a 5 per cent pay rise and a one week increase to annual leave entitlement. This is in line with other recent settlements in the public sector. Radio New Zealand is offering a 3 per cent one year agreement, with no change to annual leave entitlement. This is not acceptable to our members.

“Unless an acceptable offer is made by Radio New Zealand further industrial action is planned for later this week,” Brenden Sheehan said.


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