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STV Journalists Held 24-Hour Strike Over Pay In Scotland

STV Journalists' strike

Journalists from STV in Scotland have taken to the picket lines in a 24-hour strike action over pay disputes.

Further stoppages are planned next month if they cannot come to a resolution.

The strike led to the suspension of STV's usual news bulletins.

This included the main STV News At Six, which was replaced by Sean's Scotland, a program hosted by weather presenter Sean Batty. 

The National Union of Journalists (NUJ) advocates a 6 percent pay increase for its members to match inflation rates amid the cost-of-living crisis.

They argue that STV's journalists earn less than their counterparts at BBC or ITV.

STV, which operates independently from ITV, reportedly offered the requested raise only to the lowest 3 percent of its earners, citing financial constraints against a broader implementation. 

The broadcaster also mentioned a rejected bonus proposal, maintaining its overall offer was fair.

The dispute caught the attention of the Scottish Parliament, with Labour's Neil Bibby appealing to First Minister Humza Yousaf to intervene to promote fair negotiations. 

First Minister Mr Yousaf said: “While it’s not for the Scottish Government to intervene directly into this dispute, I would absolutely urge STV to get round the table with their employees and the union to try and ensure a satisfactory outcome can be reached.”

He said this should happen “immediately” and would enable “a fair pay settlement for STV employees”.

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Nick McGowan-Lowe, NUJ national organiser, said: “The First Minister’s intervention is welcome and it shows the importance of this dispute and the importance of STV coming back to the table with a sensible offer.

“There have been pickets at Aberdeen, Dundee and Glasgow, and in Edinburgh our members met MSPs outside Holyrood. We’ve had a really solid support.

“STV has closed down its news programming.”

He said substituting some programmes with ITV Border content would generate complaints.

Before the strike, he said: “Our members across Scotland produce the award-winning journalism that is the flagship of the STV brand and are only asking for their pay to keep track with inflation.”

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