Postmedia announces further layoffs

Approximately 40 unionized positions from Unifor and CWA Canada have been cut.

Just one month after Postmedia announced it would reduce salaries and cut 15 community papers – already resulting in 30 permanent layoffs – the media company has had to make further reductions, laying off approximately 40 staff.

A memo sent to staff from CEO Andrew MacLeod detailed the costly effects of COVID-19 on the company. “Postmedia has qualified for government subsidies because our overall revenues are down more than 30%… the subsidies, while welcome, don’t come close to mitigating these declines.”

MacLeod went on to explain that Postmedia’s request for a temporary salary reduction was not supported by its unions and “we were unable to find mutually agreeable common ground on alternative cost reduction measures.”

“Given the scale of the crisis, and the unprecedented level of revenue declines, it was very important to me that the burden of cost containment be shared fairly across the company,” MacLeod wrote. He then clarified that Postmedia is moving forward with “approximately 40″ permanent reductions. The company did not confirm which location and departments are affected.

Positions affected were represented by both Unifor and CWA Canada. CWA confirmed to MiC that 11 of its workers were cut, including: two non-newsroom staff from the Montreal Gazette; two voluntary buyouts from the Ottawa Citizen and Sun; one newsroom and one non-newsroom staffer from the Kingston Whig-Standard; and five production positions from the Windsor Star. Unifor did not return MiC‘s request for comment.