The Newspaper Guild, the union that represents New York Times newsroom employees, has been struck with a stiff fee for using meeting rooms in the NYT's own headquarters! A corporate snub? The tactics are getting dirty. Fortunately, this gives you an opportunity to read this pleasing two-sentence combo: "The easy-to-find hall is on the second floor on the 40th Streetside of the terminal, next to Drago's Shoe Repair. (Use the Port Authority entrance near the Ralph Kramden statue.)" Full email to members about the scandalous dirty dealing, below!
From: NEWSPAPER GUILD MAILING
Date: November 22, 2010 5:02:46 PM EST
To: NEWSPAPER GUILD
Subject: Guild UNION TIMES: Guild forced to change venue for NY informational meetings
November 22, 2010
Guild forced to change venue for NY informational meetings
While the Guild's first informational meeting last Wednesday was well-attended and conveniently located in a 15th-floor conference room, the remainder of our scheduled bargaining prep meetings for New York-based members will have to be held away from the New York Times building.
At the 11th hour, Restaurant Associates (which runs the cafeteria and the 15th-floor rooms) suddenly changed the terms of its initial agreement – reached in September – to allow members to meet at no charge in those rooms. It wanted to charge the Guild $350 per hour, in addition to the cost of any refreshments.
This was a dramatic turn of events since it had been made clear to Restaurant Associates from the beginning that these conference rooms would be used for Guild-sponsored informational meetings for New York Times employees.
Reached by telephone, the general manager of Restaurant Associates at The Times refused to budge on the last-minute charges, saying that "Restaurant Associates is only a vendor that answers to The New York Times Company," and that he had been informed that the Guild and its members were a "third party" and should be charged for the room.
It seems obvious that someone at The Times doesn't want you to hear what the Guild has to say about your rights and benefits and the issues that may figure prominently in our upcoming contract negotiations.
The Guild will not be dissuaded from interacting with you and is working hard to keep members informed and engaged.
Because of the late notice about this change, the Guild decided to pay the $525 to keep the 15th-floor room for the first meeting. But ultimately, Guild leaders did not feel it would be a wise use of members' dues to continue to pay the $350 per hour Restaurant Associates is demanding for all other meetings.
MEETINGS TO BE HELD AT PORT AUTHORITY
Fortunately, the Guild has found a convenient location for the remainder of the meetings to be held next month. Please note that the dates and times of these meetings did not change (schedule below).
The new venue is just across the street from the Times building at the Port Authority terminal, in meeting room called Times Square Hall. The easy-to-find hall is on the second floor on the 40th Streetside of the terminal, next to Drago's Shoe Repair. (Use the Port Authority entrance near the Ralph Kramden statue.) There is no charge for the use of this room, refreshments will be provided, outside food can be brought in, and there are restrooms specifically designated for those using the hall.
Please don't let this change dissuade you from attending these very important meetings. The room is literally just across Eighth Avenue from the Times building. It may even be more convenient if you happen to catch a bus or subway in the Port Authority building.
For anyone who missed the first meeting and would like copies of the handouts distributed, please call the Guild office on the 28th floor at [redacted].
We look forward to seeing you for the following meetings:
Thursday, Dec. 2 – 1-2:30 p.m. and at 3-5:30 p.m. Health care, pension and 401(k) discussion.
Friday, Dec. 3 – 1-2:30 p.m. Severance, subcontracting, buyout packages and layoff provisions.
Monday, Dec. 6 – 4-5:30 p.m. Severance, buyout, subcontracting packages and layoff provisions.
Tuesday, Dec. 14 – 1-2:30 p.m. and at 3-5:30 p.m. Health care, pension and 401(k) discussion.
# # # # #