Earlier this week, the Motion Picture Editors Guild reached out to its members, urging them to vote “yes” for IATSE to have the needed strike authorization as an option on the table in negotiations with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP) for a new Basic Agreement.
The International Cinematographers Guild (ICG), Local 600, has followed suit, alerting its member about the vote for a strike authorization that will take place from Oct. 1 to 3. It also urged its members to vote “Yes” in support of strike authorization.
ICG’s National President John Lindley released a video message to Guild members on Thursday, saying, “We still want to deal. That’s our goal. And the best way to get a deal is to have a strong strike authorization vote. We can avoid a strike if we have that.”
National Executive Director Rebecca Rhine added, “The most important thing is that we send a powerful message to the employers that we’re united, that we have overwhelming support and that the bargaining process has to result in an agreement that addresses our core priorities.”
Both Rhine and Lindley reminded ICG members of the priorities in negotiations that would include fair wage rates that reflect the success of streaming in recent years, benefits that are sustainable, and weekend rest periods and daily rest periods to protect members from unsafe hours.
In August, Local 600 sent a letter to AMPTP about that last part, signed by 100 top cinematographers, including Roger Deakins, Emmanuel Lubezki, Erik Messerschmidt, and others that warned about the “hazards of unsafe working hours, a practice that continues despite all the medical and indisputable evidence of the harm caused by fatigue. Most notable are the numerous car accidents our colleagues have suffered in recent years, including the weekend before we entered these negotiations.”
As mentioned in Below the Line‘s previous reports, the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees will hold a strike authorization vote after the latest talks between the labor union and the producers failed to produce an equitable contract. For the move to pass, a “yes” vote would be required from 75% of the voting members of each Local, so that IATSE President Matthew Loeb has the authorization to call a strike if it’s decided that is the best course of action.
ICG is the largest of the 13 Locals that make up a portion of IATSE and whom are in talks for a three-year basic agreement. As reported yesterday, 23 of the national labor unions that make up IATSE may also call for a similar strike authorization for their Area Standards Agreement.
IATSE also released an online petition to show your support for the unions that make up IATSE by sending a direct message to AMPTP.