LONDON, Feb 18 – BBC journalists on Monday began a 24-hour strike in protest at compulsory redundancies, causing possible disruption to the broadcaster’s television and radio output.
Members of the National Union of Journalists (NUJ) walked out at midnight (local time and GMT) at the end of Sunday’s programming, over job cuts which are expected to affect BBC Scotland, Five Live, the Asian Network and the World Service.
The strike was called after meetings failed to produce agreement over the redeployment of 30 employees facing compulsory redundancy. Nine of the 30 jobs are at BBC Scotland.
NUJ general secretary Michelle Stanistreet explained: “NUJ members across the BBC are taking action to defend jobs and quality journalism at the corporation.
“They are angry and frustrated at the poor decisions being taken at the top of the BBC – decisions that are leading to journalists being forced out of their jobs and quality journalism and programming compromised.”
A BBC spokesperson said the organisation understood “how frustrating and difficult situations involving redundancies can be,” but said it was disappointed by the walkout.
“We are working hard to ensure that we succeed in getting staff redeployed wherever we can and will continue to work with the unions to ensure that their members receive the right redeployment support,” added the spokesperson.
The NUJ said that 7,000 jobs had been lost at the BBC since 2004 and is demanding a six-month moratorium in redundancies.
The corporation is cutting around 2,000 jobs over five years as part of its Delivering Quality First programme.