IAPE 1096, the union that represents business journalists at Dow Jones & Co. properties such as The Wall Street Journal and MarketWatch.com, sent out the following on Wednesday:
The union has been informed by Dow Jones management that the company intends to eliminate a number of positions today via layoff. At this time, the total number of jobs, working locations and departments of affected employees is unknown. This does appear to be a global effort, with employees outside the United States also receiving invitations to layoff meetings.
IAPE will keep all members apprised of further developments. As formal layoff notices are delivered to the union, the IAPE website layoff page will be updated. IAPE does not expect to receive formal notices from management until the end of the day.
Under the terms of the collective agreement between IAPE and Dow Jones, employees affected by layoff must receive at least 30 days’ advance notice of the company’s intention to eliminate their positions. Similar notice must also be delivered to the union. Layoffs of IAPE-represented employees require payment of severance, extended medical benefits and other post-termination benefits, all guaranteed and protected by the IAPE contract.
Dow Jones is also obligated to follow the rule of seniority when eliminating positions via layoff. Seniority protection is determined by an employee’s hire date, relative to others with the same job title, working in the same department and assigned to the same location. Definition of “department” has caused problems for IAPE in the past.
The union will provide more details as they become available. If you have received an invitation to a meeting to discuss “organizational changes” and you have questions about your status, please contact the IAPE office.