Feb 7, 2017

Trump pushing journalists to unionize

Evan Vucci / AP

Three unions for journalists say Trump's election has sparked increased interest and reps from two newsrooms that recently unionized say Trump helped pushed the process along.

Why it matters:

Unionizing could protect journalists from employers if, for example, a news organization came under pressure from the Trump administration to fire a journalist. Interest in union protections can be seen as a response to Trump's critiques of the press and war on "fake news."

Recently unionized newsrooms:

  • MTV's digital staff announced Friday that it voted to unionize, and referenced the current political and news climate as a reason. "Under the new Trump administration, we are acutely aware of how necessary our constitutional rights are, and how much we need legal protection. - MTV said in a statement.
  • The Huffington Post announced last week that it ratified its union contract, citing job security as a reason for guild representation. A union representative said the current political climate helped speed up the ratification process.

Response from Unions:

  • NewsGuild of New York, which represents groups like The New York Times and Time Inc., said several workplaces have already expressed interest in organizing.
  • Washington-Baltimore News Guild, which represents groups like The Washington Post and The Baltimore Sun, said demands for union protection have "absolutely increased" since the new Administration came to power.
  • Writers Guild of America East, which represents Gizmodo, CBS and Fusion said guild interest has "unequivocally" increased.

Go deeper

Assault weapons ban dies in Virginia Senate despite Democratic control

Gun-rights ralliers at a protest outside the Virginia Capitol Building in January. Photo ROBERTO SCHMIDT/AFP via Getty Images.

An assault weapons ban died in the Virginia Senate Judiciary Committee on Monday despite a Democratic majority in the assembly, the Washington Post reports.

Why it matters: Democrats flipped the Virginia House and Senate last year after campaigning hard on gun control. The assault weapons bill would have banned future transfers and sales of all assault weapons in the state.

What we know: Deadly Storm Dennis whips at England, Wales and Ireland

Photo: OLI SCARFF/AFP via Getty Images.

At least two deaths are being attributed to Storm Dennis on Monday as it continues to strike at parts of England, Wales and Ireland, per AccuWeather.

The big picture: Dennis is the second-strongest nontropical storm ever recorded in the North Atlantic Ocean. Its hurricane-force winds and heavy rains have caused widespread flooding across the United Kingdom. The army has been deployed in the U.K. to help with flood relief.

Go deeperArrow24 mins ago - Science

Coronavirus cases rise as 14 American evacuees infected

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's NHC; Note: China refers to mainland China and the Diamond Princess is the cruise ship offshore Yokohama, Japan. Map: Danielle Alberti/Axios

14 Americans evacuated from the Diamond Princess cruise ship tested positive for the novel coronavirus before being flown in a "specialist containment" on a plane repatriating U.S. citizens back home, the U.S. government said early Monday.

The big picture: COVID-19 has now killed at least 1,775 people and infected more than 70,000 others. Most cases and all but five of the deaths have occurred in mainland China.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 2 hours ago - Health