Teamsters Urged To Honor Striking L.A. Teachers’ Picket Lines As Hollywood Guilds Show Solidarity

Los Angeles Teachers Strike
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UPDATED with FilmL.A. saying production at LAUSD schools continue: Teamsters Local 399 is urging its members to honor the striking Los Angeles teachers’ picket lines, which could disrupt plans for filming on campuses at local schools, which have long been favorite locations for film and TV shoots. “Honor the picket line!” the union says on its website.

“You have the right to honor the United Teachers Los Angeles picket lines,” the union said. “Teamsters don’t cross picket lines! If you are filming on a location at a school that has an active picket line you do not have to cross. We urge members to stand in solidarity with educators by honoring their picket lines.”

The union, however, told members that “while you have the right to honor the picket line where bargaining unit work is being performed, you do not have the right to strike. Picketing in support can only be done where there is no bargaining unit work being performed. You may honor the line, but not join the picket line.”

Despite the strike, the Los Angeles Unified School District is still open for filming.

“Incoming requests to film at schools are described as ‘steady,’ but many applicants seem to be looking for filming dates later in the month to avoid potential conflicts, or they are asking to film at schools in other districts,” FilmLA spokesman Philip Sokoloski told Deadline.

“As of right now,” he said, “LAUSD is still open at the district level and has staff available to help process filming licenses. Also as of right now, no applications to film have been denied or filming licenses withdrawn as a result of the UTLA strike. Whether union film crews will agree to work at LAUSD sites right now is a different question.”

Meanwhile, numerous other Hollywood industry guilds and unions are also showing their solidarity with the striking teachers, including the WGA West, SAG-AFTRA and the IATSE.

“All workers deserve fair wages and good working conditions, especially our public school teachers and the staff that supports them, so we stand in solidarity with our brothers and sisters in the UTLA in this difficult struggle,” WGA West president David A. Goodman said as he walked the picket line this morning at Hancock Park Elementary School, which the guild has adopted as its location for members to picket. “But for the members of the Writers Guild, this is not only about labor solidarity; many writers, like myself, went to public school, and got our start as writers under the tutelage of dedicated teachers like the members of UTLA. We owe our teachers a debt; without them we wouldn’t be here.”

sag aftra teachers strike

SAG-AFTRA meanwhile, is urging its members to picket at Hollywood High, the union’s adopted high school. “Walking off the job takes courage,” said SAG-AFTRA president Gabriella Carteris and LA Local president Jane Austin in a statement. “Going on strike is never an easy decision. As with any strike, solidarity among all unions is critical to success and SAG-AFTRA members stand with our sisters and brothers of UTLA as these deeply committed educators take action to improve learning conditions in their classrooms and for the future of public education.”

IATSE members from Locals 44, 705, 800, 871 and 884, meanwhile, joined the picket lines at schools across L.A. “IATSE doesn’t let a little rain stand in the way of our support for UTLA,” Local 871 tweeted.

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