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Negotiations for a successor Master Agreement resumed today in New York with a morning session during which the Company’s Chief Spokesperson, Sean Quinn, walked through the Company’s package of proposals.

Based on the written proposals presented to the Union, and the accompanying explanations provided today by ABC, the NABET-CWA Network Negotiating Committee is alarmed by the shameless attempt to reduce favorable working conditions, reduce overall compensation, and eviscerate job security on every page of their package. These brazen concessionary demands include:

  • Reducing overall compensation by increasing work hours in replacing paid meal periods with unpaid 30-minute meal periods.
  • Expanding the scheduling of Opportunities to Eat (OTEs) to apply to all employees, eliminating the need to even schedule the 30-minute unpaid meal period.
  • Reducing the compensation currently received for OTEs by 32% (from $44 to $30 per day).
  • Deleting all night differential payments.
  • Trampling the jurisdiction of NABET-CWA-represented Newswriters in Chicago, San Francisco, and Los Angeles.
  • Virtually eliminating all jurisdiction of NABET-CWA-represented ENG and Studio Camera Operators under ABC’s Sideletter DN.
  • Eliminating jurisdiction over programming intercoms.
  • Expanding use of vendor employees to the detriment of NABET-CWA-represented employees.

While members of the NNC were vexed by the actual words on the pages of these proposals, the Committee was outraged when the Company callously declared that “hourly employees are not professionals.”  ABC’s overreaching Newswriter proposals to expand non-union salaried producers are offensive. That insulting and unworthy characterization of the hard-working members of NABET-CWA, who have served ABC above and beyond the call of duty during the pandemic since early 2020, was rebutted forcefully, loudly, and explicitly by your bargaining committee, led by Union Chief Spokesperson and Sector President Charlie Braico.

Shortly after that verbal exchange, the session adjourned. The parties then spent the rest of Tuesday in separate caucuses to review and evaluate the respective contract packages now on the table. Negotiations are scheduled to resume tomorrow at 10 A.M. EDT with a further discussion of the Newswriter proposals.

Issues affecting Daily Hires and Sports will be discussed in the next few days, with Sports Daily Hire members scheduled to attend in person next week to amplify our proposals for improvements.

In Solidarity,

The ABC NABET-CWA Network Negotiating Committee