Following a quiet couple of weeks in which striking Pittsburgh Post-Gazette workers mostly paused their actions to celebrate the holidays, picketing, leafleting and other actions aimed at ending the strike largely resumed this week.
Small handfuls of striking workers picketed outside the PG’s North Shore newsroom and Clinton press facility in the last days of 2022.
But during the first week of the new year, a larger group of workers convened on the North Shore on Tuesday afternoon and Wednesday evening. On Wednesday, they were accompanied by Scabby the Rat, who has made occasional appearances at events throughout the strike.
Before this week, striking workers’ most recent large-scale event was a holiday party on Dec. 22. That night, workers met to enjoy food and drink, sing strike-themed carols, and celebrate Christmas together at the United Steelworkers building (which is also the location of workers’ strike HQ.)
Advertising, distribution and production workers at the PG have been on strike since Oct. 6. Newsroom workers represented by the Newspaper Guild of Pittsburgh joined them Oct. 18.
Four bargaining sessions between the guild’s bargaining committee and the PG’s representatives — most recently on Dec. 20 — have led to no agreements to end the strike. The Union Progress reported then that the company has continued to bargain with workers in bad faith.
The National Labor Relations Board is prosecuting unfair labor practice charges against the PG, including bad-faith bargaining, illegal declaration of impasse and illegal unilaterally implemented changes to working conditions. An administrative law judge heard testimony regarding those charges in late 2022, and the guild says it anticipates a ruling early this year.
Striking PG workers are continuing to ask members of the community to support them by reading the Union Progress instead of the PG and by donating to the strike solidarity fund to aid workers.
Supporters are also encouraged to add their names the strike solidarity pledge and to promise:
- To refuse to speak to the Post-Gazette until striking workers’ demands are met.
- To speak with the striking worker-run Pittsburgh Union Progress instead.
- To ask their community to join them in canceling their Post-Gazette subscriptions until the strike ends.
- To urge folks to subscribe to the Union Progress.
Hundreds of supporters — including politicians, businesses, community organizations, labor unions and members of the public — have signed the pledge in recent weeks, including the Beaver County Democratic Committee, the Beaver-Lawrence Central Labor Council and SEIU Local 32BJ.