NUJ members at Newsquest Cheshire and Merseyside went on strike today in protest at job cuts in the region.
Newsquest is looking to make five journalists redundant across titles including the Warrington Guardian, Northwich Guardian, Sale and Altrincham Messenger, St Helens Star and The Wirral Globe
NUJ members will also begin an indefinite work-to-rule from today and have scheduled another day of strike action next Tuesday.
The union said that more than 40 members were involved in the dispute.
The NUJ is calling for the company to suspend the redundancy consultation to allow ‘space and time for constructive talks”.
It believes the redundancies could be finalised by the end of this week.
NUJ general secretary Michelle Stanistreet said: “Our members at Newsquest Cheshire and Merseyside voted 100 per cent in favour of strike action and the decision to go out on strike was backed unanimously at a chapel meeting last night.
‘Company intransigence has left members with no other option than to strike and Newsquest management need to acknowledge the strength of feeling amongst staff and urgently get round the table and talk to the union.”
NUJ assistant organiser for the North and Midlands, Lawrence Shaw, added: ‘In refusing our request to hold off on making seven redundancies this Friday and instead allow for more talks to take place, Newsquest have sadly left our members with no choice but to push ahead with industrial action before any cuts are made.
‘Newsquest Cheshire and Merseyside made £7 million of profit last year so they have the money available to invest in quality journalism. They should not be sacrificing workers’ livelihoods.’
Pickets and leafleting sessions are being held today outside the Warrington Northwich and Sale offices, while a team of strikers will be leafleting in different towns today including Knutsford and Crewe.