Wow, where to begin?
to hire both represented and non-represented editors, we, as IBEW members, are paid substantially more than the non-union freelancer. Recent meetings between management and the IBEW are generating serious positive movement in how manages shared jurisdiction.
That non-union freelancer is paid better because union rates bring up non-union rates to discourage organizing.
Most of the engineers in our shop never read our contract, never ask questions, never participate in the process, then complain about everything. We have to organize the organized to make our IBEW better.
said "98% of success is showing up". Our people have to start showing up, not just to work, but to union meetings. The challenges we face require everyone's help, not just the usual suspects.
We have a lot of work to do. We need salary parity with Fox5 and WWOR for both staff and freelance IBEW Engineers. We need a real Pension Plan, 401K with employer match, ESOP, and employer contributions to the IBEW Annuity Fund for both staff and freelancers.
Our freelancers need employer contributions to the Entertainment Industry Flex Plan so they can finally get health benefits. We need a minimum staffing clause and better work rules to keep us safe on the job. Seniority needs to be protected and we need a better severance package and better recall rights in the event of a layoff.
We need to finish addressing shared jurisdiction and deal with the company's drug testing policy issue.
We need to organize the non-union departments at WPIX. EDP/Traffic, Promotions, the Librarians, Production Assistants, Clerical Support Staff, and any other WPIX employee eligible for Union representation should all be IBEW Local 1212 members.
The success of the recent 18 day IATSE Local 1 stagehand strike is a great example of how trust, integrity, and solidarity really works.
It is nice to win one now and then. The support from the actors, musicians, ushers, box office staff, and porters that work in the theaters was great, but not surprising. If IATSE Local 1 stagehands had accepted a pay cut in the middle of the most profitable period in the history of Broadway, the Producers would have expected the same from all the other crafts as well.
Let's remember this lesson when issues come up at WPIX. Let's remember to be in solidarity with our staff and freelance AFTRA, DGA, IATSE, and Newspaper Guild brothers and sisters.
Remember what Benjamin Franklin said to the members of the First Continental Congress:
"We must all hang together, or assuredly we shall all hang separately."
All the best,