No agreement has been reached between ABC and unions representing news personnel, who have been working at the network with an expired contract since March 31. No date yet on when talks will resume.
According to Broadcasting & Cable, ABC wants to change the seniority system currently in place, to give them flexibility on who to eliminate during layoffs. They also want to freeze the pension plan, due to the volatility of the market. But the network is willing to drop this issue for the next four years if the unions agree on the seniority change – that’s only if the unions speed up ratifying the deal.
Reading up on the contract negotiations situation at ABC reminded me of the last time they went through the process that turned nasty – back at the end of 1998, when the network ended up locking out more than 2,000 of their employees for about three months, before they reached a deal.