BBC News heading for strikes

BBC NewsAnother round of industrial action by journalists at the BBC could see News programmes taken off-air this Summer.

Members of the National Union of Journalists employed by the corporation have voted in favour of industrial action – 72% of those balloted voted yes to strike action. The industrial action is over compulsory redundancies within the News department at the BBC. BBC World Service and BBC Monitoring Staff face compulsory redundancies as the corporation seeks to cut nearly 400 jobs as part of its cost cutting measures. Some estimates claim 1000 jobs within the News department are under threat under cost cutting plans.

In November of last year members of the NUJ took industrial action with the BBC using stand-in presenters are regular anchors and newsreaders went on strike or refused to cross the picket line. While most of the BBC’s News bulletins still went out – but not with normal anchors – the Today programme on Radio Four was cancelled for a day because of the walk-out.

The cut backs at the BBC are because of the licence fee freeze imposed on the corporation last year by the Coalition Government. Additionally the BBC has had to take on funding responsibilities for the World Service, Monitoring and the Welsh language channel S4C.

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