Former Chicago Sun-Times photographers and supporters protested outside the newspaper's headquarters Thursday against layoffs of virtually all of the full-time photography staff.
About 100 people chanted and carried signs that read "Save the photogs." Some Sun-Times reporters also joined the protest, as did Chicago Teachers Union President Karen Lewis.
The newspaper fired all 28 full-time photographers last week, saying it was shifting toward more online video. Spokesmen say the Sun-Times now will rely on freelancers and reporters for pictures and video.
The layoffs included photographers and editors at the Sun-Times' sister publications in the suburbs. Besides the Chicago Sun-Times, Sun-Times Media includes Pioneer Press, the Aurora Beacon-News, Naperville Sun, Elgin Courier-News, Joliet Herald-News, Lake County News-Sun, Post-Tribune and the Daily SouthtownStar.
The Chicago Newspaper Guild is asking the National Labor Relations Board to rule that the Sun-Times bargained in bad faith. Guild Executive Director Craig Rosenbaum says the company told the union during contract negotiations that no photographer layoffs were planned.