News / 01.12.2023

UJF Council: Carrot funding for inter-association cooperation to continue

On the second day of its meeting, the UJF Council discussed initiatives on carrot money, the use of press cards, reimbursement of travel expenses and subsidies for newsroom branches.

The union has been offering so-called carrot money to journalists’ associations to encourage cooperation between them. The experience has been positive. Last year, 13 such events took place, involving 440 union members. The Council approved the extension of the experiment for the period 2024-2025.

Clarifications were agreed on the criteria for distributing the money, including that the carrot money will normally be paid for face-to-face events.

No discussion on guidelines for the use of the press card

Helsinki Region Journalists proposed that the Council discuss union benefits and how to communicate them and their use to members. The proposal called for a discussion on the use of benefits. However, the Council did not discuss the issue as the union is not able to identify all companies or groups that offer free media access.

The UJF has two types of membership benefits. The union itself negotiates some, and others are offered by various companies or associations. Information on these can be found on the UJF website.

Increase in the basic subsidy for newsroom branches 

The Council approved a proposal by Helsinki Region Journalists to increase the basic subsidy for newsroom branches. The amount of the subsidy has been the same for a long time. However, it was pointed out that the branches can also apply for a discretionary subsidy for their activities, or so-called “carrot money” (see above), which can be used for activities that go beyond the boundaries of the organisation.

Reimbursement of travel expenses

Council rejected a proposal from the Northern Finland Journalists’ Association to reimburse travel expenses for training courses for all UJF members based on public transport fares.

The idea was rejected because the proposed travel reimbursement model would be too costly for the union and would significantly reduce the union’s training provision and undermine the service it provides to its members, as money allocated for training would be spent on travel allowances. Many of the union’s training courses are organised as webinars or can be attended remotely from anywhere in the country.

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