New Springfield unit focuses on unpaid overtime

Our new Springfield State Journal-Register is preparing to elect officers, select its negotiating committee and set its objectives for its first collective bargaining agreement.

One issue has moved toward the top of the list: Definition of the work week and the need to get paid for overtime worked.

The United Media Guild has held several meetings with these journalists, before and after their representation authorization vote. We also asked our new members to describe their biggest workplace concerns.

Here are a few excerpts from what they wrote:

“Overtime law and pay enforced — including travel time to assignments.”

“Overtime violations of federal rules are common knowledge.”

“Increased workloads with fewer people. Not sure exactly what my job isĀ  (it is ever changing) and what exactly is expected of me.”

We intend to meet with SJ-R management in the near future to address these concerns before our formal contract talks begin.

The decision of SJ-R journalists to unionize has already stirred considerable interest in the Springfield community.