Leslie Turk

Advocate slashing 49 jobs today

by Leslie Turk

One of Louisiana’s most respected daily newspapers, the family-owned Advocate, is cutting 49 jobs today.

In a story published yesterday, David Manship said he wishes the layoffs could be avoided but that economic conditions, particularly those associated with the national recession, forced the personnel cuts. The publisher said the layoffs will be felt in every department of the newspaper, involving both full-time and part-time employees. The Advocate has an Acadiana bureau with seven full-time staffers.

“We are one of the few major newspapers in the country that had avoided this unfortunate step for as long as we did,” Manship said. “Our two biggest expenses are newsprint [paper] and people. We are trying to manage our newsprint usage, but that is not enough by itself.” Manship said unlike many newspapers, The Advocate’s circulation and readership have remained strong, even growing slightly in recent years.

“No one provides news about Baton Rouge and the surrounding area like we do,” Manship said. “We have been doing that for over 100 years, and we plan to continue doing that.”

Read the rest of The Advocate story here and more about cuts in Lafayette's newspaper business here.