Page last updated at 15:13 GMT, Thursday, 15 October 2009 16:13 UK

Journalists support strike action

Western Mail
Media Wales' titles include the Western Mail and South Wales Echo

Members of a journalists' union at publishers of the Western Mail and South Wales Echo newspapers have voted in favour of strike action.

National Union of Journalists (NUJ) members at Media Wales, Cardiff, were reacting to its plans to make 13 journalists redundant.

The NUJ said the 96% "yes" vote gave the union "a clear mandate" to organise action, but it would continue talks.

Trinity Mirror said it was "disappointed" by the ballot result.

The NUJ organised the strike ballot in defence of its policy that no member should be made compulsorily redundant.

Father of the chapel Martin Shipton said: "The ballot result gives the union a clear mandate to organise industrial action.

'Excessive workloads'

"We shall, however, continue to hold discussions with the company with the aim of achieving a position where all redundancies are voluntary."

Mr Shipton added: "We are also determined that those who remain will not be expected to undertake excessive workloads under the new working arrangements which we shall be negotiating with the company."

A spokesman for Trinity Mirror, which owns Media Wales, commented: "We are disappointed that NUJ members have voted in favour of this action, which does nothing to address the issues which are currently facing the Media Wales business."

A two-month consultation period on the company's proposals lasts until 23 November.

Media Wales publishes the Western Mail, the South Wales Echo, Wales on Sunday, the Celtic series of weekly papers and the Wales Online website.

In September, it announced it was to close the weekly newspapers, the Neath and Port Talbot Guardians, due to "tough economic times".

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