New York Times staff to stage protest over job cuts

New York Times staff to stage protest over job cuts
© Getty Images

Editorial staffers at The New York Times will stage a walk-out from the newsroom Thursday afternoon to protest potential layoffs and staff reductions, according to an announcement from their union. 

"New York Times editors, reporters and staff will come together to leave the newsroom and their offices in protest of management’s elimination of copy editors," reads the NewsGuild of New York announcement.

"After a year and a half of uncertainty about their futures, New York Times editors and staff have expressed feelings of betrayal by management. The staff has been offered buyouts and if a certain number of buyouts is not reached, layoffs will ensue for the editorial staff and potentially reporters as well."

Earlier this week, NewsGuild President Grant Glickson penned an open letter to New York Times executive editor Dean Baquet to share how the union feels about the layoffs, calling it a "humiliating process" and noting that the number of editors being let go "dumbfoundingly unrealistic."

"We have begun the humiliating process of justifying our continued presence at The New York Times. We take some solace in the fact that we have been assured repeatedly that copy editors are highly respected here," wrote Glickson. 

If that is true, we have a simple request. Cutting us down to 50 to 55 editors from more than 100, and expecting the same level of quality in the report, is dumbfoundingly unrealistic," he continued. 

"Work with us on a new number."

Baquet responded with his own statement, saying the Times has a higher ratio of editors to reporters than its competitors.

"The Times has far more editors relative to reporters or to the number of stories we publish than any of our traditional print peers or our newer digital rivals. After this restructuring, we will continue to invest far more in editing than any of our competitors do," said Baquet, adding, "This is a difficult process for us all."

The Times has broken subscription records since President Trump's election in November but also recently decided to eliminate the role of public editor earlier this month, replacing the traditional voice for readers' concerns with an expanded commenting platform.