NUJ calls in lawyer over Chambers Harrap

<p>The consultation into the closure of the Edinburgh office of Chambers Harrap will spill over into another week after the company failed to reach a resolution with the local National Union of Journalists yesterday. The NUJ is now taking legal advice over the consultation, and this week launched an online petition protesting about the likely closure.</p><p>A meeting between members of the NUJ Chapel and Hachette&#39;s HR staff took place on Wednesday (21st October) this week during which the NUJ informed Hachette that it had decided to bring in its own in-house lawyer. Liam Rodger, father of Chapel at Chambers Harrap, said &quot;the inadequacies of the consultation&quot; had compelled it to seek legal advice. A meeting has now been scheduled for next Monday (26th October) in order to discuss the advice.</p><p>It follows the announcement made four weeks ago that parent Hachette wanted to fold the two businesses into its French and London arms, with the possible loss of up to 27 jobs in Edinburgh. As reported on Tuesday (20th) an online petition, backed by Publishing Scotland, has been launched and has so far attracted more than 650 signatures.</p><p>Last week a spokesperson for Hachette said: &quot;We are doing everything we can to find alternative jobs within the Hachette group and elsewhere in publishing.&quot; Adding that &quot;a thorough independent review of the Chambers Harrap business&quot; had been commissioned prior to the closure announcement.</p><p>But Rodger said that the review had not considered keeping up a smaller office in Edinburgh, and had not assessed the skill-set of those employed in Edinburgh, and compared those skills with colleagues in Paris and London, who will take on the work if the Edinburgh office closes. He also said that none of the 27 employees had been offered alternative employment within the group, though job notices had been circulated.</p><p>Rodger said he expected Hachette to want to wind-up the consultation next week. &quot;We want to make sure that whatever happens we have given it our best shot, which might either save some jobs, or retain some sort of Chambers operation in Edinburgh.&quot; </p>