Hollywood union votes strike


Hollywood workers vote to authorize a strike, demanding better working conditions and fair wages in the film and streaming industry.

Over 50,000 members of the International Theater Workers Alliance (IATSE) which represents camera operators, makeup artists and other behind-the-scenes workers on Hollywood films and television ballots, and over 98 % voted in favor of allowing knocking.

The IATSE said on Monday that if they fail to come to an agreement with content producers on a new contract, they will go on strike – which is expected to hit the film and television industry.

Workers who have worked long hours in difficult working conditions, without guaranteed rest or meal breaks, are calling for better working conditions.

Working hours can reach around 14 hours per day as the demand for TV shows and movies has increased, especially for streaming platforms like Netflix, Disney +, Apple TV + and Amazon Video.

The IATSE also wants increases for workers on streaming projects, who are paid less than for work on mainstream and cable TV shows under an agreement signed in 2009, when streaming and media in line were in their infancy.

Thomas Pieczkolon, a sound mixer working on a $ 300 million project for a streaming service, said his hours were crazy at the protest in Los Angeles.

Her friend Jade Thompson, a costume designer working on a show, said she fell asleep on her way home.

“I dozed off and then I came to myself and drifted to the side and had a panic attack,” Thompson said. “It wasn’t even the end of the week! It was a Monday.

“The members have spoken loud and clear,” IATSE President Matthew Loeb said in a statement.

“This vote concerns the quality of life as well as the health and safety of those who work in the film and television industry. Our people have basic human needs such as time for meal breaks, adequate sleep and a weekend. For those at the bottom of the pay scale, they deserve nothing less than a living wage. “

The vote strengthened the hand of IATSE leaders who last month backed off an agreement with the Alliance of Film and Television Producers (AMPTP).

The two sides are expected to meet on Tuesday – their first contact in two weeks – a union source said after the election results were announced.

It was not clear whether the meeting would lead to a full resumption of talks.

“If they want to avoid a strike, they will go back to the bargaining table and make a reasonable offer to us,” Loeb said.

AMPTP said in a statement it was “committed to reaching a deal that will keep the industry working,” but said this would require both sides to show “a willingness to compromise and exploring new solutions “.

The deal would have improved wages and rest periods, the Alliance said, and included a nearly $ 400 million pension and health plan.

AMPTP has proposed to increase rest hours and salaries for crew members working on streaming shows, but the rates would still be lower than mainstream productions.

The IATSE has garnered the support of powerful Hollywood unions representing actors, directors and screenwriters. Actors Ben Stiller, Danny DeVito, Brie Larson, Seth Rogen and Kevin Bacon are among those who sent messages supporting his requests.

“I just spent 9 months working with an incredibly hard-working team of filmmakers under very difficult conditions. Support them fully in the fight for better conditions ”, Ben Stiller noted on his Twitter Account.

The last major strike in Hollywood was by film and television writers in late 2007 and early 2008. It lasted three months and shut down all scripted shows and forced TV networks to air reruns of. comedies and dramas.

Source: TRT World