Home / US / AOC and Elizabeth Warren leave the New Yorker Festival in solidarity with the magazine’s union

AOC and Elizabeth Warren leave the New Yorker Festival in solidarity with the magazine’s union

The New Yorker union holds a digital picket at 8pm. ET on October 5 – the day Ocasio-Cortez and Warren were originally scheduled to speak at the event – to call attention to his fight for a just cause proposed in his union contract. Just cause is a job protection that requires an employer to build a reason why an employee should be fired.

“The NewsGuild and the New Yorker Union are fighting for basic dignity at work and we are with them,” Ocasio-Cortez and Warren said in a joint statement shared with CNN Business. “We will not cross the picket line and attend the festival unless the New Yorker leadership accepts the union’s demands ̵

1; they should do so immediately.”

The annual New Yorker Festival features conversations with celebrities, politicians and other high-profile speakers. This year’s speakers include Dr Anthony Fauci, Margaret Atwood and Malcolm Gladwell. The event is held virtually due to the pandemic and runs from 5 to 11 October. V.I.P. passes, which include access to most events, cost $ 51.45. With an individual price, most interviews cost $ 19.95. Subscribers to The New Yorker get a 40% discount.

The New York-based NewsGuild, representing the New Yorker union, sent letters to both Ocasio-Cortez and Warren on September 24. The letters asked each of them to withdraw from the festival and join the picket line, citing their support for unions and workers.

“The leadership you both demonstrate on issues such as worker rights and corporate responsibility brings hope at a time when it is difficult to obtain. Thanks to your strong support for unions and workers, we felt it important to let you know that The New Yorker is in a state of work turmoil “, reads the letter.

New Yorker staff members announced their intention to unionize in June 2018, joining a wave of media companies that have organized to seek better workplace protections. David Remnick, who has been editor of The New Yorker since 1998, recognized the union a month later. But in recent months, union staff members have asked the company to add a just cause to the contract and organized a half-day work break and online campaign in June as part of that effort.

“Many of our members work at the New Yorker Festival every year,” Natalie Meade, president of The New Yorker union unit, said in a statement. “We also work overtime, often without pay, to publish a magazine, a website and more. But our managers refuse to grant us a just cause, which would be a sign of mutual respect and dedication.”

Ticket holders for the event which was to include Ocasio-Cortez and Warren have received refunds, according to a spokesperson for the New Yorker. The spokesperson acknowledged the dispute over the proposed just cause in a statement to CNN Business.

“For more than two years, the New Yorker management has met regularly with the union in good faith to discuss its proposed just cause and other contract proposals,” the spokesperson said. “During that time, we worked with them to implement several important provisions on diversity, hiring and other issues. However, the union has yet to present us with key economic proposals that are central to any contract, which made it impossible to reach a comprehensive agreement. “.

“Like many other media outlets, The New Yorker firmly believes that its editorial standards should not be determined by arbitrators outside of The New Yorker, and we look forward to our continued discussions of just cause in the context of bargaining. We remain eager to achieve. a fair agreement as quickly as possible “, added the spokesperson.

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