Unless an Agreement is Reached, IATSE Members Will Begin Nationwide Strike on Oct. 18 at 12:01 a.m. (PDT)
LOS ANGELES, CA — International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees International President Matthew Loeb announced today that unless an agreement is reached, union members will begin a nationwide strike against the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP) on Monday, October 18 at 12:01 a.m., PDT.
Loeb said the union will continue bargaining with the producers this week in the hopes of reaching an agreement that addresses core issues, such as reasonable rest periods, meal breaks, and a living wage for those on the bottom of the wage scale.
“However, the pace of bargaining doesn’t reflect any sense of urgency,” Loeb said. “Without an end date, we could keep talking forever. Our members deserve to have their basic needs addressed now.”
Last week, IATSE members who work in television and film production at 36 IATSE local unions across the country voted to authorize the union’s international president to call a strike if contract talks didn’t result in a new contract for 60,000 film and television workers. Voter turnout was 90 percent, with 98.6 percent of those voting in support of authorizing a strike.
Thanks to those who participated in our first successful MLK Freedom School event All Labor Has Dignity! (Si Se Puede!, Union, YES!, No Borders in the Workers’ Struggle). Our next event is 10/14/21. https://fb.me/e/NxOJqMWq
The United States and its junior imperialist partners of the United Kingdom and Australia have announced a new alliance called AUKUS, which is a clear threat to China. This comes on the heels of the recent defeat of the US in its 20-year war against Afghanistan, which was part of its strategy to surround China with its so called “Pivot to Asia.”
As part of the agreement, the US will provide Australia with nuclear powered submarines, which violates the spirit of the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. This new alliance also comes on the heels of the UK announcing a 40% increase in its nuclear arsenal and its announcement that it will join the US in its new initiative to build a military space force. Though the US may no longer be able to threaten China from Afghanistan, this new threat has nuclear overtones. With the enriched uranium needed to run a nuclear submarine, Australia may be in a position to build a nuclear weapon.
Australia previously had a contract with France to build non-nuclear-powered submarines but unilaterally withdrew in favor of the AUKUS deal. This angered France and the European Union and should be seen in the light of the UK’s recent increased trade agreements with Australia and its withdrawal from the European Union. This new alliance between the US, the UK and Australia may be the beginning of a new military and economic alliance as Australia’s main trading partner was previously China.
China’s reaction was swift. They characterized this new military alliance as a return to the Cold War mentality of the past. The AUKUS deal was quickly followed by a number of belligerent statements by the US and Australia directed towards China, and even called for a coup within the Chinese Communist Party.
AUKUS accelerates the arms race at a time of huge threats to the world from the COVID pandemic and climate change, two global threats that require global cooperation not more war.