USA Today Forces Employees to Take 1 Week of Unpaid Leave

No publication appears to be immune from the double-fisted hit of the recession and newspaper industry downturn.

USA Today, one of the nation’s largest newspapers, is forcing its employees to take a week of unpaid leave at some point over the next four months.

According to a Feb. 11 memo from publisher Dave Hunke obtained by Gannett Blog, all employees are expected to go on one weeklong furlough between Feb. 28 and July 3.

Hunke said in the memo that while “some business conditions have improved slightly,” the country’s economic recovery “appears inconsistent and unsure.”

In addition to the furlough, the memo announced that the company’s one-year freeze on pay increases, which started Feb. 1, 2009, will be extended for at least another 90 days.