The WGA East has reached a new contract agreement with Vice Media that the guild calls “landmark,” consolidating the company’s four previous guild contracts under one deal. The new three-year collective bargaining agreement was ratified by Vice’s 160-member bargaining unit.
The guild previously had four contracts at Vice representing four main editorial divisions: Viceland, Vice News, Vice Digital and Vice Editorial. The new agreement now sees all four units working under one guild contract, with minimum salaries set to go up to $63,000 by the end of the contract, and with all those covered by the pact receiving minimum yearly raises ranging from 3%-3.75%.
“Thanks to a unified and strong union, workers across Vice will now work under one collective bargaining agreement,” said WGA East executive director Lowell Peterson. “This new contract and its substantial gains are a testament to the Vice bargaining committee’s diligent efforts to address the concerns and aspirations of workers at a company that continue to grow within the ever-shifting media landscape.”
In a statement, the WGAE/Vice Bargaining Committee said that “the Vice Union is stronger than ever, and is proud of our members for coming together and fighting for our third and best contract yet.”
According to the guild, the new agreement codifies workplace benefits and protections from their four previous contracts, and also includes:
• Retention bonus of $1000 for anyone on payroll at ratification and on 1/1/23 to be paid out first payroll after 1/1/23;
• No nondisclosure agreements around sexual harassment complaints;
• Cybersecurity and harassment protections including for laid off employees up to one year; Vice will also provide safe housing/security measures for employees at recommendation of security team;
• Increased severance terms with guaranteed severance of up to 18 weeks;
• New successor language in the contract;
• All non-Vice payrolled employees offered a pathway to full-time employment after one year;
• Contributions of the employer to the employee health flex plan for non-Vice payrolled employees go up to $22/day over the life of the contract.
The WGA East represents nearly 7,000 writers in film, television, news (broadcast and digital), and podcasts. In addition to Vice, it represents newsrooms at ABC News; CBS News; CBSN; MSNBC; Salon; Slate; MTV News; HuffPost, Inc.; Hearst Magazine; Vox Media; The Intercept; Gizmodo Media Group; Onion Inc.; 1010 WINS; Audacy (WCBS-AM, WBBM-AM, KNX-AM); Fox 5 WNYW-TV; WBBM-CBS 2 News; Thirteen Productions (Thirteen/WNET); Talking Points Memo; Thrillist; The Dodo; Fast Company; Bustle Digital Group; FT Specialist; Future Plc; Jewish Currents; NowThis; Refinery29; Chalkbeat; and the Committee to Protect Journalists.