EFJ Calls for Urgent Dialogue in Faroe Islands Public Broadcaster Restructuring

Today the EFJ expressed

its surprise and concern about the restructuring taking place at the public

broadcaster of the Faroe Islands and called on management to launch a genuine

dialogue with staff.

 

On Monday 19th November, employees

ofKringvarp Føroya (the public service broadcaster in the Faroe

Islands) were informed that major changes in operations were to be implemented without

any process of information and consultation.

 

“Not only is there a plan

to cut one third of staff  from 84 people

to around 60, but the information came without warning nor contact between the

management and the union,” deplored Jógvan H. Gardar, Deputy chairman of the

Union of Journalists. 'Both employees and trade unions had called for

information about the situation, but they were simply asked to wait until the

management was 'ready''.

 

Immediately following the

announcement a number of programmes were stopped, including those produced by

freelancers.

 

"We are surprised and

concerned, not only by the scale of the restructuring plan, but also by the behaviour of the management", said EFJ President Arne König. "We call on the

management to open talks with the unions as soon as possible".

 

The situation at Kringvarp

Føroya is unfortunately similar to many other public broadcasters in Europe:

steady downsizing (from about 110 employees in 2007 to 84 employees today) and

decreasing revenues based on a loosely regulated license-fee.

 

"We hope that this

employment crisis will also raise awareness on the need for a strong,

independent and sustainable public broadcaster in the Islands" added König.

 

The EFJ is the European group of the

International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) and represents about 310.000 journalists in over 30 countries.

For more information,

please contact the EFJ at +32 2 235.2200