Station Filed Bankruptcy to Get Rid of Union

FTVLive told you about how Canadian station CHCH had filed bankruptcy and laid off more than 150 staffers.

The station returned with a new name and few newscasts. They hired back about half of the old workers, but many are still left out in the cold.

It looks like the station did all this to get rid of the union according to an email that one employee sent out.

In a Dec. 14 message that appears to be sent to a prospective client, CHCH account manager Kathleen Marks says the restructuring would create a new station where “changes could be made, free from old Union employees and their demands and free from carryover debt of Canwest.”

The restructuring would allow CHCH to live on as a news channel while allowing management to “hire new talent and bring on more daytime programming that will appeal to a wider demographic,” the email continues.

“Personally, I am very excited about the new face of CHCH,” says Marks, concluding with a smiley-face emoticon.

CHCH declared bankruptcy on Friday and slashed all of its 165 employees. Eighty-one have since been offered positions with the new company.

Marks did not return multiple requests for comment, but in an interview with the Star, the vice-president of parent company Channel Zero Chris Fuoco called her comments “regrettable and unfortunate.”

“What you have there is an employee that shared a personal opinion. It’s not the position of the company, it’s not the position of the ownership,” he said.

Fuoco told the Toronto Star the decision to restructure CHCH was an effort to shore up the channel’s troubled finances. He said the company had been open with employees and their union, Unifor, about the scale of the business’s fiscal challenges.

H/T Toronto Star