Post-Dispatch to require unpaid furloughs

ST. LOUIS | The St. Louis Post-Dispatch will require all non-union employees to take a one-week unpaid furlough, citing the continuing economic downturn.

The newspaper said Friday that the furloughs must be taken by March 31 and will affect about 300 non-represented employees. The newspaper will ask union leaders for their support to include represented workers in the furlough plan.

The Post-Dispatch also says all 2009 merit raises for non-union workers have been suspended. And, the newspaper is suspending its match for the 401K program. A call to a spokeswoman seeking additional details was not returned.

The Post-Dispatch is owned by Davenport, Iowa-based Lee Enterprises. A Lee spokesman says the furlough plan does not apply to other Lee publications.