The Writers Guild of America is a few days from their current contract expiring on May 1st. Negotiations continue as the industry shows support and members on East and West coasts prepare for a potential strike.
The Writers Guild of America has announced 2023 Strike Rules if and when the Guild calls a strike. A strike can only occur after a vote by Guild members authorizing a strike action. As of April 17th, the WGA announced members authorized a strike by 97.95%.
The announcement goes on to read: In the event of a strike, each WGAW and WGAE member is required to follow these Strike Rules. The purpose of the Rules is to win the best possible contract for writers. Please take the time to read and review the Strike Rules in their entirety. Strict adherence by all Guild members leads to a more effective strike and ultimately a better MBA.
The principle behind the Rules is simple: you (or your agent or other representative acting on your behalf) may not meet or negotiate with a struck company; and you may not provide writing services, sell or option literary material to a struck company.
The Director's Guild, Teamsters and IATSE released statements of support as the timeline for negotiations comes closer to the deadline.
The Directors Guild of America on Monday released the following statement regarding the Writers Guild of America’s negotiations with the AMPTP.
"As the WGA enters the last week of negotiations before its contract expires on May 1, we support them in their efforts to achieve a fair and reasonable agreement for their members. During this time of significant change for our industry, all the creative talent, artisans, craftspeople, and workers who make the films and television shows that drive our industry deserve to earn a stable living and share in the success we build together. We all have a stake in issues like wages, streaming residuals, funding for our health and pension plans, health and safety and more. We urge the AMPTP to seriously consider the writers’ concerns and reach a fair and reasonable agreement."
The following is a statement from Teamsters General President Sean M. O'Brien and Teamsters Motion Picture Division Director Lindsay Dougherty regarding negotiations between the Writers Guild of America (WGA) and the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP):
- The Teamsters stand with WGA members in their fight for a fair contract.
- The studios owe their success to these workers. They deserve to be paid fairly and respected for their labor.
- These multibillion-dollar corporations—including Amazon, Netflix, Disney, and Apple—invest in highly paid executives and lavish productions. They can afford to share the wealth with the writers who create the content we all watch.
- We are monitoring negotiations closely. This is a shared fight and Teamsters do not cross picket lines.
Founded in 1903, the International Brotherhood of Teamsters represents 1.2 million hardworking people in the U.S., Canada, and Puerto Rico.
Matthew D. Loeb, International President for the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE), issued the following statement Tuesday:
"IATSE supports the Writers Guild of America West (WGAW) and the Writers Guild of America East (WGAE) in their collective fight to win a fair contract from Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP) on behalf of the talented workers they represent.
The motion picture and television industry thrives on the creativity, skill, and labor of every worker involved, and writers' contributions are an important part of the success of the films, television shows, and other media IATSE members work on. We recognize and support our fellow entertainment workers in their mission to negotiate an agreement that addresses their issues from the AMPTP, an ensemble that includes media-mega corporations collectively worth trillions of dollars.
In response to the AMPTP's familiar resistance, the writers have taken the step of voting in favor of strike authorization, arming Writers' Guild leadership with the authority to call a strike if the ongoing talks do not produce necessary results. As their current agreement is set to expire on May 1, 2023, I call on the AMPTP to immediately acknowledge the contributions of these talented and dedicated professionals and negotiate with their unions in good faith.
Should it become apparent a strike is imminent, we are prepared to inform our members of all relevant individual rights and obligations within the context of all existing IATSE-AMPTP agreements."