Traficanti asks paper to put end to strike
The general manager said a pay raise is still on the table.
YOUNGSTOWN -- Mahoning County Commissioner Anthony Traficanti called on management at The Vindicator to end the strike at the newspaper, which is more than four months old.
"I am here today encouraging Mark Brown [general manager] and Betty Jagnow [publisher] to please, please do whatever they can to bring this to an end," Traficanti said at the beginning of the commissioners' meeting Thursday.
"This [strike] is not good for our community," Traficanti said, adding that he didn't want to see the union broken; it represents about 170 people in the paper's editorial, circulation and classified advertising departments.
"Please continue to bargain in good faith. Every time they go to the bargaining table, they come back with nothing," Traficanti continued. "Don't push people out of meetings. These people [strikers] are hard workers, and in a labor intensive society we have, their needs need to be heard."
Traficanti then encouraged his colleagues David Ludt and John McNally IV to consider passing a future resolution calling for The Vindicator's management to end the strike.
Brown responded: "We appreciate Mr. Traficanti's concerns as we continue to meet face to face with the union at the bargaining table.
"We have given the union, at their request, a final offer, and after eight years of operating losses, we have been more generous than we probably should have been.
"We have not removed any wage or bonus provisions from our offer, which increased the pay of all of our employees. We continue to ask our striking employees to be reasonable and join our other three unions and nonunion employees who are now working."