In a post by Mediabistro, The Albany Times owes $600,00 in back wages to 11 employees that were laid off in August 2010. The Albany Times-Union reports that not paying these wages is illegal and will continue to fight for the wages to be paid. One of the salaries owed to a former employee amounts to over $100,000.
The paper was under fire at the initial start of the layoffs 2 years ago. An administrative law judge mandated that the laid off employees be returned to their jobs or were helped to find new ones. The paper suggested that these layoffs would be considered as “paid vacations.” Instead, the employees had acces denied to the buidling, their names were taken off mailboxes and their email accounts were taken away.
The judged ruled that to these employees, the integrity of the layoff was far from feeling like a “paid vacation.”Therefore he ordered them to pay their backed up wages, find them new jobs or reinstate their old ones.
But now The Albany Times is under scrutiny for breaking the law and not paying back the $600,000. It has been ruled that these actions are in fact illegal. There was no specific legal action stated in the post.
I think this is a sad fact about the future of newspapers. Layoffs are happening at alarming rates and this is on the heels of 16 layoffs at the Orlando Sentinel. Newspapers are struggling to survive and some of their faithful employees are feeling the effects the hardest.