Star Tribune journos want raises; displaying placards saying, "Show Us the Green in 2013"

The sign at right is displayed in the Strib's newsroom, Romenesko reports.
The sign at right is displayed in the Strib's newsroom, Romenesko reports.
Jim Romenesko

Star Tribune journalists haven't received raises in more than five years, and they're beginning to speak out about it.

-- Pioneer Press editor blasts Star Tribune writer for suggesting PiPress boycott
-- Star Tribune stands by Bachmann coverage, reporter's "butthurt" response to criticism
-- Star Tribune runs ads on behalf of polygamist Mormon sect

Jim Romenesko reports that Strib journos have taken to wearing green on Fridays and are displaying desk placards reading, "Show Us the Green in 2013."

More information about why Stribbers are more vocal with their displeasure is provided by veteran reporter Steve Brandt in a letter he posted on the StribGuild website:

From: Brandt, Steve
Sent: Friday, December 07, 2012 8:58 AM
To: Klingensmith, Michael; Barnes, Nancy; Sanchez, Rene
Subject: A respectful workplace

Dear company leaders:

Thank you for this week's training on a respectful workplace. I learned several things that I hope will help me as I enter the waning years of a Star Tribune career I began 36 years ago.

One of the things I learned from my training is that in a respectful workplace, people believe they matter, each person believes their contribution is valued and the contribution of others is valued, and each person knows that it is okay to raise concerns over matters that interfere with their safety, productivity or well-being (slide 4).

That prompts me to raise the impact of the company's pay policy on my well-being and that of our family. Since wages were last raised in the Star Tribune newsroom on Aug. 1, 2007, the cost of living has risen by 11.8 percent (Social Security COLA index) That means that we have been forced to see our standard of living reduced by that amount because we have now gone 1,952 days without a pay increase. In fact, most of us are earning less than we have in years, due to reductions in merit pay.

That has had a negative impact on my family's well-being. My wife and I now differ more over financial matters than we have at any time in our 37 years of marriage. We strive to live by a relatively conservative financial standard, paying off credit card bills monthly and incurring no long-term debt aside from our mortgage. We now find our paychecks straining to cover our monthly bills. She works for a large educational institution that is organized as a nonprofit, but even that organization has been able to squeeze out a percent or two raise each year.

I believe that this company has the capacity to grant similar increases to its workers. That would truly signal a respectful workplace.

Steve Brandt
Star Tribune (Minneapolis)
[email protected]

Brandt's letter was published one day after Minnesota state economist Tom Stinson projected that in a rosy scenario, the state will add about 50,000 jobs next year -- a rate roughly in line with this year's "tepid economic growth," MPR writes.

Sponsor Content


All-access pass to top stories, events and offers around town.

Sign Up >

No Thanks!

Remind Me Later >