In local news, less is not more

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Maybe you’ve noticed some absences in the usual, familiar bylines of the Hartford Courant. Tribune Publishing executives have decided that unionized staff will not be spared from mandatory, unpaid three-week furloughs that The Laurel reported on in early May.

Reporter Steven Goode has returned from a week-long furlough but told readers that he will be taking another two weeks of furlough throughout the summer.

“I should make it clear that it’s for one week and it will happen again for a week in June and July. Most of our reporters will be doing the same and higher paid ones will be taking permanent pay cuts as a result of an agreement reached with Tribune,” Goode stated on Twitter.

The Laurel has learned through social media that for the week of May 17, at least three reporters, Shawn McFarland, Daniela Altimari and Christine Dempsey, are on furlough.

Courant reporter Rebecca Lurye said this on Twitter:

“Our newsroom will be down 10 positions every week through July due to furloughs. Here’s something even scarier: The Hartford Courant has cut 12 permanent in 2020, eight of them guild jobs. We’ll never stop fighting to rebuild.”