Tuesday, 9 December 2008

TorSun -6

Two decades or so ago, Mary, a kindly Toronto Sun switchboard operator, was attacked by a mugger while standing outside after work waiting for the King Street East streetcar.

Her throat was cut before the creep fled into the night.

The attack outraged Sun staffers and by the time Mary returned to work, management had implemented mandatory night security escorts for women walking to their cars or streetcar stops after dark.

Now, reliable sources say those evening security escorts have been axed this week along with two security guards, one full-time and the other part-time.

The sources say columnist Ajit Jain is gone, as is columnist Nicholas Davis.

Two longtime payroll office staffers, including Joanne Houston, are also gone.

That's six more pre-Christmas jobs axed by Sun Media, plus John Kerr, the Outdoors columnist for 27 years, and six others at the Kingston Whig-Standard who were cut last week.

"There may be more," says one source. "Who knows for sure?"

So we ask once again, why axe employees weeks before Christmas? What is the urgency? Year-end bookkeeping? Or is it an inherent need to be viewed as heartless scum?

That Scrooge mentality is so foreign to people who worked at the Sun when it was managed by real newspaper people who cared for their own, not by politicians and callous bean counters who don't give a damn about loyalty.

While Quebecor plays Scrooge, squeezing every dollar out of the profitable but shrinking Toronto Sun, Doug Creighton et al played Santa by rewarding staff with handsome Christmas bonuses, good cheer, a heartfelt handshake and sincere thanks for a job well done.

That was before the band of bastards in the boardroom ousted Doug in November of 1992 - the beginning of the end for harmony and good times at the Sun.

This Toronto Sun Family blog passed the two-year mark yesterday and while Michael Sifton's presence as Sun Media chief raised our optimism level for a few of those months, the slide and the pessimism have resumed.

PKP sent Michael Sifton packing recently after deciding to manage Sun Media personally. At least 13 jobs in Kingston and Toronto have been axed since then and perhaps others elsewhere.

It won't be a Merry Christmas for those folks and something tells us 2009 will not be a happy New Year for Sun Media employee worrying about where the axe will fall next.

Duck and cover.

No comments:

Post a comment