News coverage of the recent strike wave has oscillated between the hostile and the farcical. Focussing on “gotcha” questions, reporters have often misrepresented how unions operate, while failing to analyse the causes of disputes. But it wasn’t always like this. Until their demise in the 90s, labour correspondents specialised in covering plant closures, strikes and the role of trade unions. The session will look at this legacy, as well as the attempts and growing urgency to revive this kind of journalism.
Emiliano Mellino is a journalist for the Bureau of Investigative Journalism and writes The Week in Work newsletter.
Sarah Jaffe is the author of Work Won't Love You Back and a labour journalist in Britain and the US.
Nicholas Jones was a BBC industrial and political correspondent for 30 years. He covered the major strikes and labour unrest of the Thatcher decade.
Polly Smythe is Novara Media's labour movement correspondent. She previously worked as a freelance writer, mainly covering the gig-economy.