European Journalists Back WAZ Journalists in Jobs Battle

The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ), the European group of the International Federation of Journalists, today called on the WAZ Media Group, one of Germany's leading newspaper publishers, which is threatening to cut editorial jobs in a restructuring exercise, to keep faith with its commitment to quality journalism and to strengthen, not weaken its editorial work.

"Journalists around Europe are supporting our German colleagues at WAZ in their fight to keep editorial jobs," said Arne König, President of the EFJ. "The WAZ management in Germany have publicly committed themselves to building trust in quality journalism and now they propose to make cuts -- it is untenable and simply absurd to believe you can maintain or strengthen quality by cutting down on body of talent and professionalism available in the newsroom."

König says that plans by the company's German management to concentrate journalists' work in newsdesks while discussing - in line with a cost-cutting programme - the loss of up to 300 jobs undermines claims to support for quality journalism. He says it also contrasts sharply with the commitment of the wider WAZ group, covering operations in ten European countries, which has signed a framework agreement with IFJ aimed at increasing quality in journalism across the group.

"These are hard times for the industry," said König, "but it is no solution simply to make cuts in journalism that directly diminish quality. That is a strategy for decline when we should be investing in building quality media that people can trust."

For more information contact the EFJ at +32 2 235 2200
The EFJ represents over 250,000 journalists in over 30 European countries