The strike at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette continues to ripple through the community. The University of Pittsburgh’s student paper, The Pitt News, announced on Oct. 24 that it would no longer print the newspaper with the Butler Eagle after discovering the Eagle was printing the Post-Gazette while its workers were on strike.
After reading former Pittsburgh City Paper Editor-in-Chief Lisa Cunningham’s resignation letter posted on Twitter, The Pitt News said in an editorial that although the president of the Butler Eagle defended the company’s decision, they did not agree.
Reporters at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette went on strike on Oct. 18, joining the production, distribution and advertising workers who went on strike earlier that month. The unions want the Post-Gazette owners, Block Communications, to negotiate a new contract with fair pay and health benefits. Workers have not received a raise in the last 16 years, and have not had a collective bargaining agreement since 2017.
“It is our firm belief that if the Post-Gazette fails to distribute a print product for any length of time it would cause the end of the Post-Gazette,” Butler Eagle President and publisher Ron Vodenichar said in a statement. “Only through the assistance of a third party will the jobs of the workers — and maybe even the future of the company — survive.”
Pitt News Editor-in-Chief Rebecca Johnson says the student newspaper originally printed its weekly edition at the Post-Gazette’s printing facility in Clinton. When the strike began, The Pitt News contacted the Butler Eagle to print its weekly editions. However, only two editions of The Pitt News were printed at the Butler Eagle before staff discovered that the Post-Gazette was also being printed there and decided to stop working with the Eagle.
The Pitt News Editorial Board disagrees with the Butler Eagle’s decision to print the Post-Gazette while their employees are on strike, “and we were concerned about the company’s actions that Lisa Cunningham described in her resignation letter,” says Johnson.
“After raising these concerns with other entities at [The Pitt News], editorial, business and professional staff jointly decided it was the right thing to do to take our business elsewhere.”
The Pitt News now will be printed at Tribune-Review facilities in Tarentum.