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BBC workers stage 24-hour protest

Published:Tuesday | February 19, 2013 | 12:00 AM


BBC journalists walked off the job yesterday in a 24-hour strike to protest job cuts at the broadcaster.

Staff mounted picket lines outside of the BBC's studios in central London and around the country. Programmes went on, but many shows were cancelled, including the flagship morning news radio programme 'Today'.

National Union of Journalists general secretary Michelle Stanistreet said poor decisions by the BBC leadership were leading to quality journalism being compromised. The union says 2,000 jobs are at risk in the BBC cost-cutting. Many will be eliminated through attrition, but about 30 jobs are targeted for compulsory layoffs.

The union said members across the BBC, including the World Service, are at risk of compulsory redundancy.

The BBC said in a statement that it was disappointed by the union's actions. It said it had no choice but to meet savings targets that would require job cuts.

The BBC is funded mainly by a mandatory £145.50 ($228) annual levy on all households with colour TVs. Britain's government froze the fee in 2010, and the corporation has been forced to make cuts.