Writers make news at rally


About 150 newswriters belonging to NABET-CWA and the WGA East on Thursday staged a lunchtime rally in New York's Lincoln Square, protesting impasses in the unions' respective negotiations with ABC.

NABET's contract with ABC -- covering 2,500 TV and radio newswriters, technicians and others in New York, Los Angeles, Washington, Chicago and San Francisco -- expired March 31. The WGAE's alphabet contract expired more than two years ago, affecting 250 members in New York and Washington.

WGAE executive director Mona Mangan and other union officials made brief remarks to those assembled on the Manhattan plaza.

NABET negotiations are scheduled to resume in Chicago on Monday.

There was no indication of when talks between ABC and WGA might resume.

"We are past the point of negotiating," ABC spokeswoman Julie Hoover said.

The alphabet already has presented the WGA with a "final offer," Hoover said.