The Pueblo Chieftain laid off seven union-covered employees July 26, more than 10 percent of the bargaining unit. The layoff notice sent to the union cited “difficult economic conditions” as the reason for “a restructuring of jobs that has resulted in a reallocation of resources and staff.”The newsroom staff was already cut to half of what it was five years ago. With these additional cuts, remaining staffers will have to fill the void, pulling them away from their regular assignments.
The layoffs were from multiple positions and departments: Clerk III positions in Retail Advertising, News/Lifestyle and Circulation; one Photographer; one Regional Reporter; one Sports Reporter/Copy Editor; and one Mailer.
The notice also stated that each laid-off employee will receive two weeks’ pay in lieu of the contractually required two-week notice of dismissal and will be paid for accrued vacation and any severance owed.
According to Guild Unit Chair Marge Strescino, the staff cuts will affect news coverage.
“The newsroom staff was already cut to half of what it was five years ago,” she said. “With these additional cuts, remaining staffers will have to fill the void, pulling them away from their regular assignments. All employees at the paper are upset about this latest round of cuts. The Guild will find a way for people to collectively express their disapproval of management’s latest bad decisions.”