BBC Scotland facing strike action as NUJ raises redundancy objections

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  By a Newsnet reporter
 
The National Union of Journalists has raised formal objections with the BBC over the corporation’s redundancy plans for its Scottish based staff.
 
According to AllMediaScotland, in a letter sent to BBC bosses at Pacific Quay, the NUJ has objected to the possibility of compulsory redundancies after reports suggested not enough staff were willing to accept voluntary redundancy.

The Union has announced that it is now in dispute with BBC Scotland.  The letter follows a meeting between NUJ officials and BBC Scotland staff over the planned cutbacks that will see 35 positions cut from the BBC’s Scottish operations. 

It is understood that only fifteen staff members have accepted a voluntary redundancy package amid claims that some staff were being intimidated and targeted.

The cutbacks are part of an overall reduction in spending driven by the Westminster government and BBC London Chiefs.  BBC Scotland is facing a reduction in its budget of 16 per cent which has already led to some programmes being axed.

Following the meeting, a motion was passed which read: “This chapel has no faith in the Selection for Retention process, believes members are being intimidated and targeted and moves to put the process into formal dispute.”

The letter – from Paul Holleran, NUJ Scottish Organiser, added: “We expect all the interviews related to this to be put on hold until a fair and equitable system is agreed and put in place.”

A spokesperson for BBC Scotland said: “We recognise that our savings targets are challenging and we’re committed to achieving as many as possible through voluntary means.  We’ve had a number of constructive meetings with unions and we believe that our process is fair and reasonable.  We have offered to meet union representatives again this week to discuss their concerns.”