Members of Animation Guild, IATSE local 839 voted overwhelmingly to ratify a new film and television contract with Alliance of Film and Television Producers. The vote was 87% in favor of ratification. According to the guild, the number of voting members has more than tripled since the last ratification vote.
“This ratification vote shows that members have recognized the incredible work of our negotiating subcommittees and are committed to continuing the work,” said Steve Kaplan, the guild’s business representative. “While we have made significant gains, we have not been able to achieve all the priorities that we set out to achieve and that our members deserve. The Local has committed to member engagement and open discussions about how to achieve these goals, and members have responded by ratifying this agreement and agreeing to support efforts to build our strength as a union and community to give us greater influence in the future. I must acknowledge and thank each member of the committee for their hard work during this long period of negotiations and thank the management and staff of the local for their endless support.”
According to the guild, highlights of the new contract include:
- Establish minimum wages for streaming derivative and original work. Programs that fall below the new media high-budget threshold provide freely negotiable wages. Now, derivative and original productions at least 11 minutes long and budgeted at $25,000 or more per minute are subject to minimum wages.
- For the first time in the history of the agreement, writers have their own job classification and framework for building a ladder for advancement. The progress added new minimum wage classifications and also addresses compensation issues for experienced writers who are not in a supervisory role.
- Pathway for union-covered telecommuting outside of Los Angeles County in an unpublished supplemental letter. The employers agreed that members who had been telecommuting out of state could continue to do so and be covered by the agreement under certain circumstances. This was not a mandatory subject of negotiation.
- Protecting extended parental leave to deal with other life events, such as caring for a family member with a serious health condition.
- Retroactive wage increase.