First contracts are critical to setting bargaining precedent for quality

The Washington-Baltimore News Guild President Fatima Hussein joined the America’s Work Force Union Podcast to discuss negotiating first contracts and why the quality of a first contract is critical to setting a precedent.

Thanks to successful recruitment efforts, the Washington-Baltimore News Guild is negotiating a large number of first contracts. As an important first step, the News Guild has strived to hire experienced representatives who are adept at organizing, she said. Since employers are often unwilling to provide basic protections for their workers, every contract becomes a standard that can affect the quality of future contracts.

Hussein also spoke about the struggle to recruit members in So-Called “Right to Work” states and getting workers to understand the importance of paying dues and supporting the union for mutual benefit.

Lastly, she spoke about the call from employers for journalists to return to the office. Many workers are alarmed with the short amount of time they were allowed to work remotely and have not been given adequate assurance that returning to the office will be safe. Hussein said the Washington-Baltimore News Guild currently has about 40 separate units negotiating for remote work.

Listen to the entire episode to learn more about these topics:


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AMERICA’S WORK FORCE IS THE ONLY DAILY LABOR-RADIO PROGRAM IN THE US AND HAS BEEN ON THE AIR SINCE 1993, SUPPLYING LISTENERS WITH USEFUL, RELEVANT INPUT INTO THEIR DAILY LIVES THROUGH FACT-FINDING FEATURES, IN-DEPTH INTERVIEWS, INFORMATIVE NEWS SEGMENTS AND PRACTICAL CONSUMER REPORTS. AMERICA’S WORK FORCE IS COMMITTED TO PROVIDING AN ACCESSIBLE VENUE IN WHICH AMERICA’S WORKERS AND THEIR FAMILIES CAN HEAR DISCUSSION ON IMPORTANT, RELEVANT TOPICS SUCH AS EMPLOYMENT, HEALTHCARE, LEGISLATIVE ACTION, LABOR-MANAGEMENT RELATIONS, CORPORATE PRACTICES, FINANCES, LOCAL AND NATIONAL POLITICS, CONSUMER REPORTS AND LABOR ISSUES.

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