The West Coast studio locals of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE) unanimously endorsed U.S. Congressman Howard L. Berman to represent California’s 30th District in the United States Congress. These locals represent over 35,000 Los Angeles-area men and women who make their living in the motion picture and television production industries and work in crafts ranging from costumers, set designers, grips, cinematographers to propmakers.
“Our Los Angeles Locals endorse Howard Berman because they recognize he has, throughout his decades of public service, been a consistent, reliable champion of the working men and women in the movie and television industries and the labor movement as a whole,” said Matthew Loeb, IATSE International president. “Howard’s record of extraordinary legislative accomplishments on behalf of our members is unparalleled. When it comes to protecting our jobs and livelihoods, Howard Berman is a workhorse, not a show horse.”
“I’m grateful for this important endorsement and acknowledgement of my work in Congress,” said Berman. “The motion picture and recording industries are the lifeblood of the Valley’s economy. Throughout my entire career in Congress, I’ve worked to protect the good paying jobs held by the working men and women who create and produce the films and music loved all over the world. The entertainment industry is one of the few American industries with a favorable balance of trade and we must be vigilant in protecting it.”
Throughout his career Berman has championed labor rights, including the right to bargain collectively. First as a labor lawyer, Howard Berman represented unions, including IATSE, in organizing efforts. As a state Assemblyman, he authored, sponsored, or negotiated nearly every piece of labor rights legislation that was enacted during his tenure. Most notably, Berman spearheaded the first-in-the-nation law to provide farmworkers with the right to organize and bargain collectively. And as a U.S. Congressman, he has authored and passed legislation to protect movies and TV shows against theft, while also supporting every major labor rights bill. Most recently, on Oct. 26 of this year, Berman joined the bipartisan leadership of the House Judiciary Committee as primary sponsors of the “Stop Online Piracy Act,” which is designed to protect the movies and TV shows made by IATSE members against theft by foreign commercial websites.