RawStory.com Staffers Choose WBNG

Staff of the online publication RawStory.com have petitioned for voluntary recognition from management with the Washington-Baltimore News Guild.

Seeking greater workplace protections and clearer policies and guidelines around work responsibilities, seven of 10 staffers that should be eligible for a Guild bargaining unit signed a letter to management that was delivered June 19.

A progressive investigative-journalism publication founded in 2004, Raw Story has an estimated readership of 1.6 million per month. Employees want to further the organization’s progressive standing by forming a union with the Guild to make the publication and the lives of its employees even better.

These employees cover political and economic news nationally and internationally, with a focus on the stories of those disenfranchised by popular media. 

Here’s a copy of the letter delivered to management:

John, Michael and Roxanne,

As progressive writers we are thankful and proud to write authoritatively about the issues that matter to us most, while at the same time offering our readers crucial news and information. We wish for nothing more than to see Raw Story continue its successes over the years, including its role in highlighting racial discrimination in the criminal justice system, the right-wing assault on reproductive rights and the increasing number of roadblocks voters face every time they head to the polls.

As the writers for a progressive digital publication, we support the rights of all workers to form a union. We believe that the process of unionization is the best way that we as workers can work collaboratively with management to advocate for ourselves and for our ideals. Organizing a union is a way for Raw Story to practice the values of fairness and equality that it supports. We would like to work with management to create a contract that puts in place basic workplace protections, provides clear policies and rules regarding work responsibilities, and which fosters a productive, healthy and mutually beneficial work relationship between management and staff.

As demonstrated by our signatures below, a large majority of employees support this request for voluntary recognition of Washington-Baltimore News Guild, Local 32035, as our collective bargaining representative. For clarity, our bargaining unit will include all full and part time staff, including Tom Boggioni, Bob Brigham, Sarah Burris, David Edwards, David Ferguson, Travis Gettys, Elizabeth Preza, Brad Reed, Noor Al-Sibai and Brendan Skwire. This formal recognition can be accomplished by responding to this letter positively, and by offering a date for our first bargaining session.

We believe that voluntary recognition is the best option for Raw Story. Doing so would mirror the dedication on our part to working together in the most respectful and collaborative way possible.

Please respond by email to the addresses listed below, with a proposed date to open negotiations, by June 26th, 2017. Please use the read receipt in the email to acknowledge this communication.

In solidarity,

Bob Brigham
Sarah Burris
David Ferguson
Elizabeth Preza
Brad Reed
Noor Al-Sibai
Brendan Skwire