European Federation of Journalists

Labour Rights

The struggle to deal with the downside of globalisation is a challenge to journalists’ unions everywhere. Media staff, like the workforce in every other sector of the world economy, are under pressure from voracious employers who are cutting editorial budgets, slashing jobs and undermining trade union organisations.

In Europe, the labour rights of journalists continue to face threats from an increasing deregulated market and austerity measures. The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) has established the Labour Rights Expert Group (LAREG) to develop strategies and provide tools for EFJ members to create strong trade unions and to negotiate collective agreement.

LAREG has launched a “Database in Progress”, which comprises labor terms and remuneration data for journalists working in European countries. The conference on Equal Rights for Journalists, held in Thessaloniki in 2012, was the starting point of an effort to document innovative practices for unions.

In the coming years, the LAREG will implement the following actions as adopted by the EFJ Annual Meeting in Verviers, Belgium 2013:

    • Lobby for laws to reinforce the labour rights of journalists
    • Reinforce information exchange among EFJ members
    • Involve all EFJ members in LAREG especially those in the Central and Eastern European countries
    • Mainstream labour rights issues in all media issues (i.e. ethics, pluralism, press freedom)
    • Cooperate with the EFJ Freelance Expert Group on issues that arise from the new forms of employment
    • Implement recommendations on developing global strategy with the IFJ and the International Labour Organisation and training programmes, integrating all media workers in unions

Since 2016, thanks to the support of a UNESCO-EU project, EFJ LAREG has been transformed to LAREG+ including journalists and trade unionists from Western Balkans and Turkey.


The EFJ Collective Toolbox gathers the latest developments on labour rights, best practices for collective bargaining or new campaigns to strengthen the labour rights of journalists. We have gathered together all the information mentioned above from our affiliates and provided a range of informative tools and tips to get the most out of collective agreements for journalists.


Portugal: Solidarity with strikers from Global Media Group

Global Media Group (GMG), one of the largest media organisations in Portugal, is facing severe managerial difficulties impacting the future of the company and damaging labours’ rights. Job security and media pluralism are at stake, warns the Portuguese Union of Journalists (SinJor).  In September 2023, a new board took over the direction of GMG, which owns Diário de Notícias, Jornal de Notícias and TSF. The group is now backed by an investment fund owned by French businessman Clément Ducasse: World Opportunity Fund Ltd (WOF). Listed in the tax-haven Bahamas (Caribbean), it is registered by the Bahamas International Securities Exchange as…

World Decent Work Day: Better conditions for journalists working from home

On the occasion of the World Decent Work Day on 7 October, the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) has launched a report “Journalists working from home? a labour rights perspective for a hybrid future“ authored by Marc Gruber, showing the impact of the pandemic on the working conditions of journalists and the trend of the hybrid working model is becoming the norm. The report shows that while the working from home policies implemented by media companies are far from perfect, most journalists would still want to work from home but in a hybrid working model which allows them to work…

Trust in Media Telework Webinar: Challenges, opportunities and the way forward

On 22 and 23 September, the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) hosted a two-day webinar on “Trust in media: Telework during and after the Covid-19 pandemic”. Distinguished speakers explored the challenges, opportunities and future of work in the journalism sector. In particular, the practice of hybrid working will be the trend. Media employers and journalists’ organisations play an important role to help journalists transit smoothly to the new working environment while guaranteeing decent and fair working conditions for all. The webinars were part of a cooperation between the Trust and quality in journalism project, co-funded by the European Commission (DG…

Webinar “Trust in media: Telework during and after the Covid-19 pandemic”

The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) is hosting a series of webinars on teleworking and hybrid working during and after the Covid-19 pandemic. This new way of working has brought new challenges to journalists and media organisations, such as issues regarding the separation of work and private life at home in connection to mental health and the right to disconnect. As it has become clear that this “new normal” will last beyond the current health crisis, the webinars will discuss the challenges and address how journalists organisations and media employers should adapt. The webinars received financial support from UNESCO and the European…

International Women’s Day: More support for female journalists as Covid sets back gender equality 

On 8 March International Women’s Day, the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) calls for more vigorous actions to be made by governments and employers’ organisations to improve gender equality as the Covid crisis has deepened gender inequality.  Members of the EFJ experts groups on labour rights and freelances have looked at the working conditions of journalists during this period and noticed that working-from-home and lockdown policy has had a much greater impact on female journalists.  In Germany, according to a study from the Hans-Böckler Stiftung, women spend 1.7 hours more on work concerning family duties, since men tend to work…

COVID-19: journalists must be allowed to telework

The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) welcomes the measures being taken to ensure the safety of journalists during the COVID-19 outbreak. However, we condemn the attitude of some employers in the sector who are forcing their journalists to work from the newsroom. In the current situation, journalists’ health and safety is our first priority. We call on all media employers to apply the principles of prevention, implementing all appropriate measures to protect the health of journalists in the workplace. The EFJ has learned from its affiliates that some employers in the sector are refusing to allow journalists to telework. The…