Morning Show pledge total nearly $50K; new 8 am show alienates listeners

Your responses to our PLEDGE TO BRING BACK THE MORNING SHOW with Aimee Allison, Brian Edwards-Tiekert, David Bacon and all the other wonderful original Morning Show staff have been amazing!

Our goal was $80,000 in pledges, and in the short time since our call went out, we have received nearly $50,000 in pledges. THANK YOU LISTENERS! Our plan is to present what we have to Pacifica management and see what can be worked out. Stay tuned.

If you haven’t pledged yet, please consider doing so. Or, if you are able, we hope you’ll consider an additional year-end amount. And remember: we are only asking for pledges at this time — no checks please. PLEDGE ONLINE | PLEDGE BY MAIL

We also thank those of you who donated directly to KPFA during its on-air emergency fund drive last week, or attended the recent KPFA benefit at La Pena. The outpouring of support has been very encouraging.

New 8AM show alienates listeners

On Monday, December 20, KPFA launched a new “all volunteer hosted” show in the 8 am slot that had been occupied by the Morning Show. The time slot’s audience has plummeted, amid allegations of patronage, political reward and violations of worker solidarity.

Many of KPFA’s unpaid staff have refused to participate, such as labor journalist David Bacon and PM Press publisher Ramsey Kanaan, who are among those who have issued statements of solidarity.

As one listener wrote to Pacifica, “This idea of yours to cut the Morning Show and replace it with volunteers is a big failure. We understand you got rid of Edwards-Tiekert & Allison for political reasons. You’ve also done a horrible thing by cutting David Bacon’s show. This was probably the only labor show anywhere on the dial. Oakland Scene is sorely missed as well. Frankly, none of the changes you have made are going over well with KPFA listeners. We want our Morning Show back!”

SaveKPFA has published a Fact Sheet on Boycotting the 8AM Show directed at those who might be invited to appear on it. Please read it and pass it on by email or xerox. Please also check out our new Facts About KPFA’s Crisis for answers to several key questions.

KPFA labor programmer David Bacon speaks out

Morning Show labor programmer David Bacon issued this letter about the terminations of hosts Aimee Allison and Brian Edwards-Tiekert, and KPFA’s union’s request for other staff to support them. Bacon says he believes “that the union contract and the labor rights of those two people have been violated. Their request is like a picketline…and in solidarity, I won’t cross it.” Bacon asks listeners to write Pacifica on the matter.

The South Bay Central Labor Council, the umbrella organization for over 100 unions and 110,000 workers in Santa Clara and San Benito counties, has unanimously passed a resolution supporting KPFA’s workers and calling for the Morning Show’s return. Similar resolutions had previously been passed by the Alameda County and San Francisco labor councils.

SF Board of Supes resolution pending, judge orders injunction against Pacifica

San Francisco’s Board of Supervisors discussed a resolution to support KPFA workers on Tuesday, but delayed a vote until the next meeting. Supervisors Avalos, Mar, Mirkarimi and Campos have co-sponsored the measure.

At Berkeley’s Tuesday city council meeting, Mayor Tom Bates tried to get Pacifica’s executive director Arlene Engelhardt to agree to mediation over the staff issues, but Engelhardt declined. She admitted that she “skipped over” KPFA workers with less seniority than Allison and Edwards-Tiekert in the layoff process because she felt they had vague “special skills.” City council members Darryl Moore and Linda Maio both put forth resolutions supporting KPFA’s staff, but neither won enough votes to pass.

Meanwhile, Pacifica management’s attempts to throw out the votes of several staff members who voted in the recent local board election have met with a preliminary injunction from an Alameda County Superior Court judge. The judge ordered Lewis Sawyer, a staff candidate, seated on the local board.

Ways to help KPFA today: pledge, dance!

KPFA is conducting an on-air fund drive this week, and the community is responding generously. Reports from KPFA phone volunteers indicate that many listeners are also mentioning their desire for all the Morning Show’s staff to return, and for programming to be locally-controlled. We hope you’ll contribute in whatever way you feel comfortable.

Another way to is participate in SaveKPFA’s PLEDGE TO RESTORE THE MORNING SHOW (online version | mail in version), which has a goal of $80,000. So far, listeners have pledged over $42,000 — enough to return the Morning Show to the air for 6 months. Please help put us over the top!

We also encourage you to attend Bay Area Artists Unite for KPFA, a benefit this Sunday, December 19 from 7 to 10pm at La Pena Cultural Center, 3105 Shattuck Ave in Berkeley. Admission is $15-50 sliding scale, $10 for students, and proceeds go to KPFA.

SF Board of Supervisors and Berkeley City Council to consider KPFA

On Tuesday, December 14, both San Francisco’s Board of Supervisors and Berkeley’s City Council will consider resolutions in support of fair labor negotiations with KPFA’s staff and local control of programming. Can you take a moment to add your voice in support?

To see San Francisco’s resolution and email its supervisors, CLICK HERE. The meeting takes place Tuesday in SF City Hall starting at 2 pm (item is likely to come up around 4 pm).

To see Berkeley’s resolution and email its councilmembers, CLICK HERE The meeting takes place Tuesday in Berkeley Council Chambers, 2134 MLK Jr Way at 7 pm.

On behalf of our beloved station, thank you for your support. See you there!

Pledge to Restore the Morning Show

Pacifica’s executive director told the City of Berkeley Commission on Labor that she did not anticipate any further layoffs at KPFA. It now appears that was untrue: more layoffs are imminent.

Thanks to all of you who have been responding to SaveKPFA’s pledge drive to restore the Morning Show and protect all locally-controlled programming. We’ll total the amount and present it to Pacifica management as part of a special fund. This pledge will go in its entirety to KPFA.  LEARN MORE: PLEDGE ONLINE | PLEDGE BY MAIL

Protestors also gathered outside of Pacifica headquarters today, World AIDS Day, to present over 600 signatures from AIDS organizations, doctors and others objecting to the network’s hiring of an AIDS denialist at its New York station, WBAI. Here’s a report from John Hamilton of the Pacifica Evening News.

More elected officials have signed the letter to Pacifica management, including State Assembymember Tom Ammiano and San Francisco Supervisor John Avalos. The letter notes that Pacifica’s actions “violate both the spirit and the letter of the democratic constitution of Pacifica’s unique experiment in listener-employee run radio,” and call on Pacifica to sit down with KPFA’s union and local supporters and “negotiate a collective solution that will be fair and accepable to all: cancel the layoffs and start over.”

Educators of all kinds — professors, teachers, researchers, writers and university staff — from around the nation are signing onto a letter of support for KPFA, which you can read here. If you’d like to add your name, please contact us.

Listeners at sister station KFCF in Fresno, which plays many KPFA programs, are also concerned, as this article in the Community Alliance newspaper documents.

KPFA’s local station board will meet on this Saturday, 12/4 at the North Berkeley Senior Center (1901 Hearst Ave, one block north of KPFA) starting at 11:00 am. This is the meeting at which the new LSB members will be installed. Please join us. Berkeley’s Labor Commission will meet about KPFA on Wednesday, 12/8 at 7 pm at the West Berkeley Senior Center (1900 6th Street at Hearst). We hope you’ll come and support KPFA’s hard-working staff.