A letter from Jon Schleuss, NewsGuild-CWA President

Dear Newspaper Guild of Pittsburgh and Toledo NewsGuild workers,

I wake up every day inspired by the amazing work created by journalists and those who support them. Through insanely difficult circumstances, we persevere. We run to the story to report it out for our communities. 

We’ve seen the complete devastation of local news over the past decade — losing half of the workers in our industry. There are many reasons why: the financialization of news, the rapid change of storytelling technology and bad owners. 

And yet, we push on. When we run to the story, we do it to inform and give voice to our communities. That voice is more important than ever as our industry and our democracy are under attack. Now is the moment to strengthen and invest in local news by investing in the workers and respecting their rights. We have an obligation to do it — for the folks who live on our streets, in our neighborhoods and in our cities.

And it’s essential that we look like and come from the people in our communities. We cannot be accountable to our readers if our newsrooms don’t reflect their great diversity. 

Thousands of journalists have unionized in the past five years, joining the ranks of thousands more before them. And they’re doing it to save their publications by safeguarding their jobs. They want to do their jobs, not fight over basic respect and dignity. But we will fight when we’re under attack. And we will, because our fight is a righteous one. 

Love,

Jon Schleuss
NewsGuild-CWA President

Jon Schleuss speaks at a rally in support of the Newspaper Guild of Pittsburgh in September 2020, outside of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette office on the North Shore.