PEORIA, Ill. — GateHouse Media, the local newspaper publisher, is laying off journalists across the country, including at the Peoria Journal Star.
Thursday, it was announced GateHouse Media was making cuts for the second time this year, following first-quarter layoffs.
The Peoria Unit 86 of the United Media Guild, made up of editorial and outside circulation employees at the Journal Star, released a statement after the announcement, saying three people were let go on Thursday.
“With utter sadness and disgust, I am pained to announce yet another round of senseless and greedy job slashings among Journal Star newsroom personnel, courtesy of corporate owner GateHouse Media. Its bloody axe chopped off three more heads today, reducing our Guild to just a dozen members. This is not just another terrible blow to a local union; this is a spit in the face of anyone in central Illinois who demands and respects solid local journalism.“
“As usual, these cuts aren’t necessary, as the JS is thoroughly in the black — and, as our publisher so proudly announced recently, doing better financially of late. Rather, the cuts, as always, aim to line the pocketbooks of the GateHouse front office and its shareholders. It’s another sad day in Peoria — as well as other cities which also lost journalists today in a massive payroll purge — as greedy GateHouse nonchalantly continues to torch local journalism.“
“We are doing a small restructuring — at least that’s what I would call it — that I’m sure will be misreported. We have 11,000 employees. This involves a couple of hundred.”
The company manages 156 daily newspapers and 328 weeklies.