IFJ Backs NUJ Strike over Job Cuts and Future of BBC

The National Union of Journalists in UK and Ireland (NUJ), an affiliate of the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ), has called BBC journalists out on strike on Monday 18 February to protest against compulsory redundancies and cuts across the BBC.

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) and its European group, the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) back the NUJ in its action to protect the quality programming at the BBC.

"BBC journalists are at the forefront of the global battle to save public service broadcasting," said Jim Boumelha, IFJ President. "Journalists worldwide applaud their courageous stand to save jobs and maintain quality programming."

According to the NUJ, there have been years of cut backs and the latest are part of the scheme called Delivering Quality First, designed by the former BBC Director General, Mark Thompson. They will particularly affect BBC Scotland, Newsbeat, Five Live, Asian Network and the World Service.

The NUJ General Secretary, Michelle Stanistreet is scathing about the cuts, blaming the BBC management for eroding further morale among the Corporation's workforce in the wake of the crisis at Newsnight and the Jimmy Saville scandal.

"NUJ members across the BBC cannot believe why their management is failing to deploy colleagues at risk- at the very same time as advertising job vacancies. It is a monumental waste of talent and experience and paying needless redundancies is a waste of public money," Stanistreet said.

The IFJ and EFJ have also joined the NUJ in urging the incoming Director General, Tony Hall, to junk his predecessor's disastrous plans to save money by cutting jobs, which the NUJ general secretary described as an "attack on the ability of the BBC to fulfil its responsibilities as our public service broadcaster."

"This plan has started having a damaging impact at the heart of the BBC and risks impairing its ability to provide one of the highest standards of broadcasting in the world," added Boumelha. "Tony Hall must agree with the NUJ a moratorium on the cuts."

To follow the strike via the NUJ live blog on 18 February, click here.

For more information, please contact IFJ on + 32 2 235 22 07
The IFJ represents more than 600.000 journalists in 134 countries