Vice Media confirms layoffs

The Canadian Media Guild estimates that just over 20 positions will be affected.
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Vice Canada informed employees on Monday that it would cut a number of positions.

A spokesperson for Vice confirmed the cuts to MiC on Tuesday, stating that the move will result in a combination of voluntary buyouts and involuntary terminations. The spokesperson would not confirm the number of layoffs, as the process of determining the voluntary buyouts is still ongoing.

Kamala Rao, president of the Canadian Media Guild, the union that represents Vice Canada, told MiC the total positions cut, including those removed as a result of voluntary buyouts, will likely be just over 20. “The position we take is that we look at overall positions lost or gone,” she explained. “[Vice wants] to talk about voluntary layoffs as though they’re not layoffs.”

According to Rao, the employees were given 24 hours notice to indicate their availability for voluntary buyouts. She said announcements from affected personnel will likely roll out later today.

Neither the Vice spokesperson nor Rao would confirm the departments from which the positions were terminated.

MiC has learned that the layoffs stem from the termination of Vice Canada’s partnership with Rogers Media in January. The three-year partnership was officially terminated earlier this year, resulting in an initial termination of 23 permanent and contract positions. Viceland reported a loss of just under $7.9 million for the year ended Aug. 31, 2017, according to the CRTC.

Vice has stated that after the layoffs, the Vice Canada office is still three times larger than it was prior to the Rogers deal.