The 60,000 members of IATSE (International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees) are on the verge of the first nationwide strike in the 128-year history of the union. 98% of all voting members approved the strike, including all cinematographers, camera operators, set designers, carpenters, hair and makeup artists, animators, and others who say they are “forced to work excessive hours and are not given reasonable rest via meal breaks and sufficient time off between shifts.”

The strike is set to kick off Monday, 10/18/2021, and will impact productions across the United States and Canada. “Matthew Loeb, the organization’s international president, told the Associated Press on Wednesday that the strike would begin at 12:01 am unless an agreement is reached on rest and meal periods and pay for its lowest-paid workers. Loeb cited a lack of urgency in the pace of negotiations as the reason for setting a strike date.”

“Without an end date, we could keep talking forever,” he told the AP in a statement. “Our members deserve to have their basic needs addressed now.”

“Folks have reported working conditions deteriorating and being aggravated,” Jonas Loeb, IATSE’s director of communication, told the AP last week. “And these 60,000 behind the scenes workers that are under these contracts are really at a breaking point.”

 

– Excerpt from an article for Hollywood Reporter by Carolyn Giardina. Read the full article here.

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