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CNN Begins Mass Layoffs Ahead of Holidays

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CNN Headquarters via Wikimedia Commons

Is this CNN’s idea of spreading Christmas cheer?

The left-of-center news network has been undergoing major changes since CEO Chris Licht took the reigns, eager to undo the damage inflicted on the network and its audience by disgraced CNN President Jeff Zucker. To close out a difficult year for CNN, now Licht says hundreds of employees will be laid off as part of his budget cute strategy.

CNN’s senior media reporter, Oliver Darcy, shared a companywide letter from Licht on Wednesday.

Licht announced that the first round of layoffs will impact the network’s paid contributors, and the network’s remaining staff would be informed of these changes tomorrow.

Read the letter below:

To my CNN colleagues,

Our people are the heart and soul of this organization. It is incredibly hard to say goodbye to any one member of the CNN team, much less many. I recently described this process as a gut punch, because I know that is how it feels for all of us.

Today we will notify a limited number of individuals, largely some of our paid contributors, as part of a recalibrated reporting strategy. Tomorrow, we will notify impacted employees, and tomorrow afternoon I will follow up with more details on these changes.

It will be a difficult time for everyone. If your job has been impacted, you will learn more through an in-person meeting or via Zoom, depending on your location. In those meetings, you will receive information specific to you about notice period or any severance that would apply, and your anticipated last day. I want to be clear that everyone who is bonus eligible will still receive their 2022 bonuses, which are determined by company performance.

I know these changes affect both our departing colleagues and those who remain, and we have resources designed to support you. I will include a link to those resources in my follow-up email tomorrow.

Let’s take care of each other this week.

Chris

Since taking over at CNN, Licht has been vocal about his goal to reorient the network and remove much of its hyper-partisan slant.

“Reliable Sources host Brian Stelter was among those up first on the chopping bloc while primetime host Don Lemon was recently demoted to a morning talk show.

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