Times-Picayune former employees sue over layoffs

Seven former longtime employees of The Times-Picayune in New Orleans who were laid off from their jobs in the fall of 2012 have filed suit against the newspaper and its owner Advance Publications, alleging “unlawful employment practices.”

The suits, filed individually in Orleans Parish Civil District Court on Dec. 11, allege that the companies violated Advance’s now-rescinded Pledge, which was instituted in the mid-1960s to head-off efforts to unionize its workforce.

The Pledge promised employees would not lose their jobs “because of technological changes or economic conditions so long as the newspaper continues to publish and [employees] are willing to retrain for another job, if necessary.”

The NOLA Defender has an article on the lawsuit. It is written by Rebecca Theim, a reporter at The Times-Picayune from 1988-94. Her book, Hell and High Water: The Battle to Save the Daily New Orleans Times-Picayune, was published in October.