Tell KQED To Stop Union Busting

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Please support our fight for a good contract – for good working conditions – and for local television production at KQED.  Send a message to KQED President John Boland or call him at (415) 553-2201.

Background:

For more than 60 years NABET has represented workers at KQED (radio and television).  We helped build KQED into the number one radio station in the Bay Area, and we produced the television that used to make the Bay Area proud.  We did cooking shows that were aired nationally at other stations: Yan Can Cook,  Joanne Weir’s Cooking at the Academy and recently Jacques Pepin’s programs; and we do the technical work on Check Please!, science programs: Quest, Digital Rapids; art programs: Spark, Independent View; and Newsroom– we were there when it started as a way to get the news during a San Francisco Chronicle newspaper strike….and we did the camera work, the audio, played back the video (first on film, tape and now digital files), and we represented the stage managers on all these shows.

But the KQED that we grew up with (and helped grow) no longer wants to treat their union represented employees or their Union fairly. Our work has always been to produce program material that was transmitted over the air, as well as by wire (internet). KQED is arguing that only work that comes over the air (from a KQED transmitter) is our work. They believe the internet is the future and see this as an opportunity to stop us from the work that we do and work that we have done for decades. They have slowly been making webcasts and podcasts with non-union employees and have doubled this non-union department. They no longer believe in “television” as we know it and want to shift the work to non-union employees and force us out.

We believe television is where you find it.  And KQED has lost its commitment to make local television programs each year. Now fewer than 45 new ½ hour “Newsroom” shows, and only 14 new episodes of “Check Please!” will be produced this year. But KQED has lost interest in television broadcasting – they only want to pass-through programs made by others.  

Our technical crew in television broadcasting was more than 30 people in 2003, now the group is fewer than 18.  WE know the work doesn’t just go away because there is a new way to transmit the product. There is an explosion in the amount of programming on cable and the internet – and we think that KQED should be producing local programing (they could even market such programs to other public broadcasters around the country as they did before).  But KQED has lost interest in television broadcasting– And when the government gave them an opportunity to sell the broadcast channel that delivers programming to over 3 million people in San Jose and the southern areas – they sold it last year for 95.4 Million Dollars!!  

We know that Union Busting is Not a Bay Area value…..we know that the residents of the Bay Area respect unions and workers.  So too do the viewers and listeners of KQED. And most certainly we believe that the members of KQED– who contribute funds – via the work of folks in the membership department who are also represented by NABET-CWA – are committed to good working conditions and unions at KQED.

When we gave notice to KQED we were terminating the contract extension – instead of focusing on their proposals and removing their union busting proposals from the table – KQED actively encouraged union members to resign from NABET-CWA – and asked if they planned to cross the picket-line.

Please support our fight for a good contract – for good working conditions – and for good local television production at KQED.  Send a message to KQED President John Boland or call him at (415) 553-2201.

Letter Campaign by
Dennis Csillag
Chula Vista, California