New York Times Reaches Contract Deal With Union

New York Times Reaches Contract Deal With Union

The New York Times on Tuesday agreed on a new contract with the union that represents the majority of its editorial staff, ending more than two years of contentious negotiations that included a 24-hour strike.

If the agreement is ratified, union members will receive immediate pay increases of up to 12.5 percent for the past two years and 2023, and the required minimum wage will be raised from about $37,500 to $65,000. The previous contract expired in March 2021 and union members have not received any contractual increases since 2020.

The union negotiating the deal, part of the NewsGuild of New York, represents nearly 1,500 employees in the newsroom, advertising and other areas of the company. More than 1,800 people work in the Times newsroom.

The union said members would vote to ratify the five-year deal next week.

“This deal is a victory for all union members who fought for a fair contract that rewards our hard work and sacrifice,” said Bill Baker, chairman of the New York Times Guild, in a statement. “It shows that the company cannot take us for granted and must be held accountable.”

Cliff Levy, Times deputy editor, said in an email to Times union members that the deal would give them “significant, well-deserved pay rises, a big bonus and a number of important new benefits.”

“From the beginning of this negotiation process, we were determined to reach a deal that showed how much we value the contribution of NewsGuild members to the Times’ success,” said Mr. Levy.

The deal includes a contractual arrangement for hybrid work and entitlement to four weeks’ paid sabbatical leave for every ten years with the company. The company also agreed that new newsroom jobs, including any expansion into local markets, would be part of the union and pay fair minimum wages.

Negotiations for the treaty were often heated, with disagreements sometimes becoming public. Negotiators differed on salaries, health and pension benefits and other issues. The union accused the Times of slowing negotiations and refusing to share the company’s profits with employees, while Times executives stressed the need for prudent budgeting given the uncertain economic outlook.

In December, members of the Times Guild staged a one-day strike, a rarity at The Times, which has not had a work stoppage lasting more than a day since the 1970s. Last month, union members protested outside the company’s annual general meeting, delivering a letter signed by more than 1,000 members to AG Sulzberger, which read: “Enough is enough.”

Under the new contract, which runs from 2021 to February 2026, union members would receive a one-off retrospective bonus of 7 percent of their base salary from the date the previous contract expired.

Union workers would initially receive a staggered pay rise, with larger increases for those who are less well paid. Workers earning less than $100,000 a year would get an immediate 12.5 percent raise, while those earning more than $160,000 a year would get an immediate 10.6 percent raise.

All guild staff would receive a 3.25 percent increase in 2024 and a 3 percent increase in 2025.