Hollywood nears strike that could paralyze almost all filming
Los Angeles, United States, Oct 4 (EFE).- Members of the main entertainment industry workers union unanimously approved Monday to call a strike that could paralyze the majority of Hollywood productions in the United States.
The almost 60,000 workers represented by the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees in the US authorized the union to organize a stoppage if they do not reach an agreement with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers. This is the employer’s association for studios and television channels.
The consultation received 98 percent approval and participation close to 90 percent, the union said.
“This vote has to do with the quality of life, with the health and safety of those who work in the film and television industry. Our people have basic human needs such as time in breaks to eat, get enough sleep and have a purposeful week,” Matthew Loeb, the alliance’s president, said. “And those at the bottom of the pay scale deserve nothing less than a living wage.”
The vote is not an immediate call to strike, but authorizes organization representatives to resort to it if they do not achieve improvements in working conditions, which, among other matters, include an increase in the contribution to health insurance, private health and pension plans.
Most of the union members have temporary contracts as technicians, artists and employees who provide their services in areas such as costumes, scenery or lighting.
A break in filming would greatly harm Hollywood studios, which already have several delays due to the coronavirus pandemic and have invested in platforms such as Disney + and HBO Max, whose business model relies on a constant flow of new content to retain subscribers.
In addition, other professional groups such as the actors and writers unions support the alliance’s demands.
The last strike to hit Hollywood was called in 2017 by the writers union and altered filming and television broadcasts for 100 days.
The alliance has not called a strike in its more than 120 years of history. EFE