New Hampshire Public Radio has voluntarily recognized a union made up of content staffers.
The decision came after a neutral third party certified that a majority of the bargaining unit wanted to unionize, said CEO Jim Schachter in an email to staff Tuesday.
Schachter said the decision was “an important milestone on the path to our shared goal of making NHPR the best place to work and serve.”
“By working together with our content makers to strengthen our culture, we can build a sustainable and enduring news organization equal to the challenges we face,” he wrote.
The bargaining unit includes 31 employees in roles such as producers, reporters, hosts and editors, according to the Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists, which represents the union.
“We’re pleased this process has been respectful and collaborative so far,” the organizing committee said in a press release. “The principles that guide public radio and the principles behind our decision to organize this union are one and the same, and we’re thrilled to begin collective bargaining for a contract that will improve the lives of NHPR staffers and improve the work of NHPR itself.”
The content staffers called on management to recognize the union in June. They said they were seeking “meaningful changes to become a more diverse and equitable workplace.” More than 70% of the staffers signed the petition, according to SAG-AFTRA.
“We are thrilled to support NHPR content creators in their mission to seek a fair contract,” SAG-AFTRA President Gabrielle Carteris said in the release. “The organizing successes SAG-AFTRA has had in public radio over the past few years are unprecedented and demonstrate the power that collective action has to enhance workers’ lives. We thank the employees of NHPR for working collaboratively with SAG-AFTRA and their employer to ensure that a fair process was taken in recognizing employees’ wishes to be represented.”
The bargaining unit and NHPR management will now begin negotiating a contract.