IATSE President Thomas C. Short today sent an open letter to all IA members and locals working in film and television who might be affected should a strike be called by the Writers Guild of America. What a different tack from the Teamsters‘. The current IATSE motion picture contracts have the same no-strike clause that has been in effect in previous contracts. The IATSE is an International Union that represents members employed in the stagecraft, motion picture and television production, and trade shows industries throughout the United States and Canada. President Short’s letter is quoted below in its entirety:
OPEN LETTER TO ALL IATSE MEMBERS AND LOCALS ENGAGED IN MOTION PICTURE AND TELEVISION PRODUCTION FROM THOMAS C. SHORT, INTERNATIONAL PRESIDENT
As you are aware, the Writers Guild of America (WGA) is currently in negotiations for a successor contract to the current agreement that expires on October 31, 2007. While the IATSE remains hopeful that a new agreement can be reached between the WGA and the Employers, there is a potential for a work stoppage.
The IATSE has over 50,000 members in two countries engaged in motion picture and television production. Any work stoppage may have a profound and long-lasting impact on you and your families.
The IATSE contracts contain provisions that require us to continue to honor our contracts. These ‘no strike’ provisions require the IATSE to notify our members of their obligation to honor these contracts and continue working. Any individual member who chooses to honor any picket line is subject to permanent replacement.
It is important for each IATSE member to be aware of their contractual obligation as well as the potential impact on them personally if they choose to not cross and are replaced. Contact your local union with any questions regarding this potential labor dispute.