The majority of employees at three Saint John radio stations have signed cards to join the Canadian Media Guild (CMG). The stations are K-100, 98.9 Big John FM and 93 CFBC, all owned by Maritime Broadcasting System (MBS).
“My colleagues and I love radio and enjoy working together,” says Gary Stackhouse, the host of the “Big John” morning show and one of the first employees to sign a union card. “We look forward to improving our working lives and making the case for better local radio in Saint John.”
The CMG has filed the union cards with the Canada Industrial Relations Board and is seeking immediate certification of the union so that it can begin bargaining a first collective agreement. Under federal labour law, a group of employees can receive union certification without a vote if more than 50% of the members of the proposed bargaining unit have signed union cards.
“We are delighted to welcome our Saint John colleagues into the Guild family,” says Carmel Smyth, national president of the CMG. “It is inspiring to see a group of workers come together and make the decision to improve their lives by joining the union. Working in private radio can be incredibly rewarding and also very challenging and we’ll be there to help this group enjoy the best of it.”
The Canadian Media Guild represents 6,000 workers across Canada at eleven media organizations, including CBC/Radio-Canada employees in Saint-John and workers at CJRC, a Cogeco-owned radio station in Gatineau, Quebec. The CMG’s parent union, CWA/SCA Canada, co-ordinated the organizing campaign at MBS in Saint John and represents workers at the Saint John Telegraph-Journal.