Sunday, October 16, 2022


GANNETT is playing Scrooge with its workers and readers.  Enough flummery, dupery and nincompoopery from the greedy owners of the St. Augustine Record, corporate hedge funds and Citibank.

Originally posted on this blog on October 16, 2022:

FRANK GANNETT, the founder of GANNETT was a labor-baiting union buster. Today's GANNETT bears his shame and stain. Thank you, Nancy Smith, for breaking the story of oligopolistic GANNETT's immoral, low morale maladministration of a lawless, low-information newspaper chain that is destroying our St. Augustine Record:: 

In case you haven't seen today's dire announcement from Gannett CEO Mike Reed to all newspaper staff in his 100 daily newspapers nationwide (it's going viral on social media), read it here now.
It's all the more important because it affects US. Gannett owns our Treasure Coast Newspapers in Stuart, Port St. Lucie, Fort Pierce and Vero Beach. It owns the Palm Beach Post, Palm Beach Daily News, Florida Today in Brevard County and 18 other newspapers in Florida.
More diabolical news for hardworking newspaper staff, loyal readers and communities like ours, once buoyed by their newspaper's spirit and vigilance.
I've made no secret of the fact that I find Gannett one of the LEAST caring of all newspaper ownership groups today. Imagine for a moment what it had to feel like to be one of Mike Reed's employees reading this. The B.S. just keeps coming -- as it has in so many previous downsizing "announcements" from the Gannett top. "Our company is resilient, our people are the best in the industry and my confidence in what we can accomplish as Team Gannett has not wavered," Reed writes.
Blow it out your ear, Mike.
See for yourself:
From: A Message from Mike Reed <>
Sent: Wednesday, October 12, 2022 1:33 PM
To: A Message from Mike Reed <>
Team -
These are truly challenging times. The company continues to face headwinds and uncertainty from the deteriorating macroeconomic environment which has led the executive team to take further immediate action.
Before I share the specifics, I want to thank you all for your hard work and commitment. Whether you’re part of the Digital Marketing Solutions team, Gannett Media or USA TODAY Network Ventures, we will navigate this unpredictable climate by working together.
We pledged transparency – and while these actions are tough, I want to be explicit about what we’re doing and why. In order to sustain the mission of our company to empower communities to thrive, sustain local journalism and support small businesses with digital solutions, we need to ensure our balance sheet remains strong.
These are not decisions we made lightly, but they are critical for our long-term success. Here’s what you can expect:
401(k) Match Suspension
Gannett will temporarily suspend the 401(k) match for contributions made on or after October 24, 2022. This decision does not impact employee contributions, just the Company match. Employees may continue their contributions on a pre-tax basis, which reduces taxable income or on an after-tax basis to a Roth 401(k).
December Mandatory Leave
Employees must take 5 days of unpaid leave during the month of December. The mandatory leave will occur over a two-week period from December 19-30 (the holiday observance of Christmas will be paid). Teams will work with their managers to determine scheduling to ensure staffing and coverage as appropriate. HR will provide specific guidance to ensure FLSA compliance.
Voluntary Severance Offer (VSO)*
We are offering to pay severance to an employee in exchange for their voluntary resignation and execution of a separation and release agreement. This program provides flexibility for those who may wish to transition. Employees interested in the VSO must express interest by October 18 and work through November 4, 2022. *In accordance with Gannett’s 2022 severance program.
Hiring Pause
Gannett will cease overall hiring with the exception of key revenue and operating roles as well as positions deemed critical.
Voluntary Options
The following options are also available to employees who wish to reduce their work hours or take an extended break to meet their personal needs.
Adjusted Work Week
Employees may request an adjusted work schedule with fewer hours, commensurate with a 20% reduction in compensation, and maintain full-time employment status. Please note this is not a compressed work week where employees work their normal schedule in fewer days.
Unpaid Sabbatical
Employees may request an unpaid sabbatical from 1 month to 6 months in duration. As an approved personal leave, employees may continue health benefits coverage by paying their portion of premiums directly to Fidelity.
This is a lot to process. This mix of temporary and permanent actions allows us the near-term flexibility we need to drive improvement while preserving our ability to quickly pivot as we see the economy and areas of our business progress.
I recognize that these decisions take a financial and emotional toll but mitigating these economic pressures now will benefit Gannett’s future. The days and weeks ahead will require close partnership with managers and our human resources team to support you as we implement these measures.
Our company is resilient, our people are the best in the industry and my confidence in what we can accomplish as Team Gannett has not wavered. If you missed the Town Hall where I address these actions, you can watch the replay here. You may find additional information at hr4u.
My sincere gratitude for all you do,
Please note that this information may or may not apply to you if you are covered by a collective bargaining agreement, represented by a union or work for an entity that is part of a Joint Operating Agreement.

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