The Cleveland Plain Dealer is one of Ohio’s biggest papers but neither size nor influence is likely to save the jobs of one-third of the paper’s newsroom employees who are preparing for big cuts to hit as the new year begins.
Workers at the paper found out on Wednesday that 58 employees would likely be losing their jobs starting in 2013. Harlan Spector of the Northeast Ohio Newspaper Guild reported the cuts as a one-third reduction in the news force.
Some of those members may be offered jobs at the Internet division for Cleveland.com, but most will be laid off starting in February when their current union contract runs out.
This is the another blow to Plain Dealer employees as last month workers began to fear that the publishing schedule of the paper would be cut to three days a week. The corporation that owns the Dealer also owns other papers where publishing schedules have been similarly cut down.
Plain Dealer Publisher Terry Egger gave Cleveland’s NewsChannel5 a statement:
“We are currently in discussions with the Newspaper Guild about a possible long-term extension of the current contract and various other issues. While it is our longstanding policy not to comment publicly on specifics while we are in negotiations, we are hopeful of reaching an agreement with the bargaining unit in the near future.”
The union is trying to get ahead of any changes by “mobilizing,” but it remains to be seen if that will stop the cut backs.