Gimlet Media employees learned last week that while their union contract has, among other things, created minimum wages and guaranteed wage increases, it does not fully protect them against dismissal. The Gimlet union, which is part of the Writers Guild of America-East, announced that three staff members had been made redundant after the show they were working on was canceled and rather than moving them to another show, they were fired.
“This is a very troubling development for production staff at Gimlet Media,” the union said in a statement. published statement on Twitter. “Many shows at Gimlet have been canceled over the years, and producers have been placed on other projects.” The union did not identify the show that was canceled or the names of those who were fired. He said it was a “topical show” that was among Gimlet Media’s top five podcasts until recently. The union’s statement goes on to say that it is not aware of any other impending layoffs at the Spotify-owned podcast studio.
“These layoffs didn’t need to happen,” he said. “We are grateful to have a strong union contract that ensures every union member receives at least 11 weeks of severance pay. But we are not convinced that management has made every effort to retain and reassign these employees. We call on them to do better.
Employees of Gimlet Media and The Ringer led the wave of podcasting unionization when they voted in 2019 to join WGAE. In a first for the podcast industry, writers and producers ratified their first collective agreements last April. Last month, employees of their sister Spotify Parcast followed suit and ratified their first union contract.
The latest to join the wave are the podcast employees at iHeartMedia. In February, iHeart management voluntarily recognized the union, paving the way for negotiations to begin on their first contract.