The Australian Associated Press (AAP) has announced plans to make up to 25 editorial positions redundant before the end of June as part of short-term cost control measures.
Staff were briefed about the company’s voluntary redundancy program across news and data by editor-in-chief Tony Gillies yesterday, with the AAP’s news wire service under review so it can shift its attention to services that “work really well for subscribers”.
“We are in a constant state of change because you have to be in order to remain relevant,” Gillies said.
“While we are extremely proud of our news innovations and ‘can do’ attitude, we need to do even more.”
The APP has stated that it will force redundancies if its target is not reached through voluntary applications.
The Media Entertainment and Arts Alliance (MEAA) urged the AAP to show compassion and courtesy by allowing staff more time to plan for their future without having an unrealistic deadline imposed on their decision-making.
“Staff are telling us they are we are outraged that the company did not consult with them before making this decision,” MEAA media director Katelin McInerney said.
“But to then impose a deadline of Tuesday next week simply does not allow people enough time to receive a redundancy estimate, talk to their family, or to get financial advice on their individual circumstances.
“MEAA members at AAP have told management that it must extend this ridiculous deadline and meet with employees to hear their feedback and ideas for alternatives to redundancy.
“Management must engage with its people earlier in future restructures so that employees are treated with respect and dignity.”
B&T understands the AAP has granted a three-day extension for voluntary redundancy applications following the MEAA’s lobbying efforts.