The Chicago Free Press, a weekly LGBT paper in the windy city, lost its art director, graphic designer and most of the writers this week in a walk-out over non-payment, the Chicago Tribune reports:
"The news follows financial struggles and decreased ad sales for the
paper, which is geared toward the lesbian, gay, bisexual and
transgender communities…[Editor Matt] Simonette (its editor, who also left) said Tuesday that editorial contributors had not been paid since mid-November and staff members had not received paychecks that were due Dec. 15. Other former employees said paychecks had not come on time in the past.' The senior staff did not resign; it was just simply a matter of leaving because of non-payment,' Simonette said.
The company's Web site lists about 20 employees at the newspaper, which has a weekly circulation of 23,000 to 26,000.
David Costanzo, the publisher of the Chicago Free Press, said he was torn between laying off people and asking them to wait for their paychecks. He said he plans to write the Dec. 15 paychecks Tuesday evening.' The last two to three payrolls, we've been having issues from a cash-flow standpoint,'he said. 'Over the last two payrolls, we had to delay some paychecks.'"
Costanzo says he's hiring replacements for those who left.