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Journos strike at BBC

24-hour stoppage hits shows

BBC news and public affairs shows were disrupted Monday in the second work stoppage by journalists in recent weeks.

The 24-hour strike, protesting pinkslips, hit TV and radio. “BBC Breakfast” was unable to air as normal on BBC1, while flagship Radio 4 public affairs skein “Today” bowed an hour late at 7 a.m.

Also hit were Radio 4 programs “PM,” “The World at One” and “You and Yours.”

The National Union of Journalists claimed the strike was solidly supported by its 3,000 BBC members.

The NUJ is furious that four people were laid off from the World Service as part of plans to nix 387 posts from the service and BBC Monitoring after the government announced funding cuts in October.

The BBC said it was disappointed that the NUJ had gone ahead with the strike and apologized to the audience for disruption to services.

It added that the industrial action did not alter the fact that the cuts were necessary.

“We will continue with our efforts to reduce the need for compulsory redundancies. However, the number of posts that we are having to close means that unfortunately it is likely to be impossible for us to avoid some.”

The NUJ said it had offered a range of solutions to stop journalists being forced into unemployment throughout negotiations with BBC management. “The BBC is wasting thousands of pounds making skilled and experienced people compulsorily redundant instead of redeploying staff, This is money that should be used to make better programs and to ensure the future of quality journalism at the corporation.” it said.The last walkout took place July 15.

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