Today BBC journalists all over the country will be striking to defend jobs and quality journalism.
The national NUJ website explains why: 2,000 jobs are at risk in addition to the over 7,000 posts which have already gone since 2004.
The disastrous Delivering Quality First initiative is destroying the quality of programming while wasting public money on needless redundancy payouts.
Jobs are at risk at BBC Scotland, Newsbeat, Five Live, the Big Screens, the Asian Network and the World Service. But while there’s no money for hard-working journalists on the ground, the BBC has somehow found the cash to reward senior management when they leave. The national NUJ website explains that:
According to the House of Commons Public Accounts Committee, since November 2010, the BBC has made at least 10 severance payments to other former senior managers, each worth more than £250,000. The highest payment was £949,000 given to the BBC’s former deputy director general.The BBC’s former chief operating officer received a severance payment of £670,000. These payments do not include additional payments for legal fees and ‘outplacement’.
Meanwhile, regular journalists are working way beyond their contracted hours just to keep programmes on the air, causing unprecedented stress levels. Some are doing more senior jobs to those described in their contracts, for no extra reward. Cutting more jobs can only make the situation worse – and leave communities around the UK deprived of real news coverage.
If you support the BBC strike, please say so. Email the BBC Trust on firstname.lastname@example.org to say that you care about quality news coverage. And if you don’t have time to even do that, a quick message of support on Twitter with the hashtag #BBCstrike will give us a boost too.
This post has been edited to include a picture of the BBC Oxford picket line being set up first thing in the morning.