The International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE) filed Unfair Labor Practice charges against Bravo Media with the National Labor Relations Board yesterday.
The charges stem from Friday’s announcement that Ryan Seacrest Productions and Bravo Media were dismissing the editorial crew of Shahs of Sunset due to their efforts to secure an IATSE union contract. The show’s postproduction and production employees have been on strike since Sept. 10, and preliminary contract negotiations had just begun when the production issued a statement that it would “be unable to continue working with the editors that were previously engaged on this production.”
Federal law protects employees’ right to organize, including their right to strike. It is a violation of the National Labor Relations Act for an employer to retaliate in any way against employees for exercising their rights under the law.
The charges against Bravo were filed just as the network began to air a marathon of season 3 of Shahs of Sunset on the East Coast. The season 3 reruns airing today were completed prior to the current dispute. The strike has shut down postproduction and additional production on season 4 of the show, which had been scheduled to premiere on Oct. 13. Bravo has delayed the season 4 premiere indefinitely due to the work stoppage.
“If Bravo or Ryan Seacrest thinks that their problems go away because they announce that our editors have been fired, they’re sorely mistaken,” declared Alan Heim, ACE, president of the Motion Picture Editors Guild (IATSE Local 700). “This is no longer just a fight about whether this crew gets health and retirement benefits; it’s an unabashed attack on the right to organize. We will fight back and we will win. No self-respecting editor is going to cut this show after this show cut their colleagues.”