Hollywood crews reach new studio deal averting major strike hours before the deadline

On Saturday, studios in Hollywood and a union that represents film and television crews from 128 years struck a deal narrowly avoiding a massive strike, less than a day before the Sunday deadline of the strike. Had there been a shutdown, it would have been an unprecedented incident as it would not only have been the first one in the history of the union but would have been the first major strike by crew since the Second World War.

On Saturday, the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE) and the Alliance of Motion Pictures and Television Producers (AMPTP) jointly said that they had finalized a new contract. It would be a three year one and would address the following issues: better working hours for crew, safe workplace conditions for all and improved benefits. It would affect about 60,000 workers.

Some of the benefits that will be accrued to the workers reportedly includes

10-hour turnaround times between shifts
54 hours of rest on weekends
A holiday for MLK Day
Initiatives fostering diversity, equity and inclusion
3 percent rate increase every year
The AMPTP to cover $400 million deficit in IATSE Health Plan

The hard fought deal has been on the negotiating table from weeks but all the hard bargaining took place in past two weeks after members voted to hold a massive strike and could have literally shuttered the entire industry. The union had noted that 90 percent of its voters had cast their votes. More than 98 percent of the votes were in favor of a strike, if a deal was not reached.

Now, it is almost given that Monday will be back to work for holiday and back to the ballot box for the unions as their members have to approve or disapprove of the deal.

According to a memo obtained by NBC News the deal has to be ratified by the union members who are figuring out an electronic process to do so.

The IATSE represents a wide group of workers including

industry workers
wardrobe workers
makeup artists and more.

Source CNBC, Deadline, The Daily Beast

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