Do you have questions about the labor unions and their benefits for the working class? Contact Labor United
Chicago is one of the few remaining cities in America that is a two-newspaper town, having the Chicago Sun-Times and the Chicago Tribune. If you ask around, you’ll find residents liking one over the other or sometimes having an interest in both. One resident stated, “I like to read the Sun-Times during the week and the Tribune on Sundays.”
The Tribune’s parent company, Tronc, intended to acquire the Sun-Times until a group of investors that included a coalition of labor unions led by former Chicago Ald. Edwin Eisendrath bought the newspaper, which prevented that acquisition. “In a way, the investment group resembles the city itself — or at least the people who run it,” said reporter Jackie Spinner.
After the purchase of the Chicago Sun-Times, Eisendrath shared with the public that “our investors include more than half a million hardworking people around Chicago and you can bet we’ll be talking with a voice that resonates with the working class… we’re going to organize around that to raise circulation.” Those in favor believe that this deal preserves two independent newspaper voices, which may not have been the case had Tronc’s acquisition gone through.
Labor unions are big business in Chicago and in Illinois, with one of the largest union workforces in the country. With this group of investors behind the Chicago Sun-Times, the paper has an opportunity to innovate and deliver news to the community of working class individuals and union workers, which many of the investors know very well.
The Chicago News Guild, which represents unionized newsroom employees at the Chicago Sun-Times, was very much opposed to the Tronc acquisition; after the purchase, a News Guild consultant shared that its employees are “thrilled with this development” and that they are “looking forward to working with Eisendrath and his backers in charting a new course forward for the Sun-Times.”
Representatives from the Chicago Federation of Labor (CFL) said the paper will retain its independence in reporting on labor unions and union workers. CFL secretary-treasurer said “our reporters will look at what is happening and report the story. If that means someone in the labor movement has an issue, then that’s the story.”
In addition to new ownership, stay on the lookout for the new home of the Chicago Sun-Times coming to the West Loop.