FT journalists agree improved pay offer and call off strike action

Financial Times (FT) journalists have agreed an improved pay offer and have called off strike action that was scheduled for 22 March.

Around 250 journalists were due to walk out over the pay dispute. The minimum pay increase was to be 2% for all staff, while the total editorial pot was understood to be 3.5% with management proposing to use the remainder to reward particular staff as merit pay or for staff retention.

In a letter to staff, Lisa MacLeod, managing editor of the FT, said the company would pay a further 0.5% in addition to the previous award of 2%. The overall pay bill will still be 3.5%.

A letter from the National Union of Journalists (NUJ) chapel said: “Following negotiations with the NUJ, management has agreed to raise this year’s pay award by 0.5% across the board, starting from 1 July.†

“During final negotiations, we were also pleased to learn that the profit-related bonus, negotiated with the NUJ three years ago, will be £394 this year, to pay out at the end of this month.

“The FT NUJ chapel voted unanimously to welcome the decision to redistribute this year’s pay award more equitably. We welcome management’s commitment to discuss with the NUJ the lessons of the pay dispute and to revise and complete the draft house agreement accordingly. We urge management to convince us by its actions that it is serious about avoiding similar disputes in future.

Steve Bird, father of the chapel at the FT Group’s NUJ chapel, added: “This dispute has shown that our members are as principled and tenacious as trade unionists as they are as journalists.

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“I am proud of the chapel’s response and very pleased that management has listened to the majority of its staff. We hope to rebuild good relations with senior managers and get back to producing a great newspaper.”

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