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mX stop press costs 19 jobs

Thursday, 18 June 2015
By Print 21 Online Article

News Corp has announced 19 redundancies at its Port Melbourne printing press in the wake of the axing of the company’s free commuter newspaper mX.

Management held meetings with staff this morning, and the Australian Manufacturing Workers’ Union (AMWU) is now consulting with workers.

“The entire afternoon shift of press room printers at the Port Melbourne plant have lost their jobs,” said a union spokesperson. “We’re now in talks with the company and the workers to finalise details of redundancy agreements.”

The printers being made redundant were also responsible for printing several Herald Sun supplements. One of the sacked workers described the decision as “another nail in the coffin for manufacturing in Australia.”

In a statement, the AMWU slammed the decision:

The Australian Manufacturing Workers Union State Print Division Secretary, Tony Piccolo, said that the union is disappointed that News Corp has restricted the redundancies to the day and afternoon shift workers, and that they are not allowing any voluntary redundancies from the night shift workers. The union is working through these issues with the company.

Mr Piccolo also slammed News Corp’s decision to move MX online, saying that advertising revenue growth is actually in print news, not online. “We know, and the statistics also show that the best form of advertising is in print and not online” he said.

A report in Crikey says it’s understood that no further redundancies in printing have been planned by News Corp in Sydney or Brisbane, even though those cities have also shut down their editions of mX.

News Corp announced last month that it was ditching its free daily newspaper. “The decision is a reflection of the changing reading habits of commuters who now turn to their mobile phones and tablets on their way to and from work,” said a News Corp Australia spokesperson. “The last issue will be June 12 and we will redeploy as many affected staff as we can.”

In Sydney, mX circulation had dropped 21 per cent since March 2012 and in Melbourne it was down 18 percent.



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