The recent wave of cutbacks at the networks and the major studios has contributed to an unusually high rate of unemployment among members of the Publicists Guild of America. Guild president Henri Bollinger says 18% of the Guild’s active members currently are out of work.

Bollinger said it is not unusual for 40 to 45 of the Guild’s active members to be unemployed at any given time, but noted that 80 to 100 Guild members currently are out of work.

“Unemployment among active Guild members has reached 18%,” Bollinger said. “That’s higher than it’s been in years.”

He said the “financial crunch at the networks, executive upheavals at the major studios and the general tendency to try to cut costs have all contributed to this problem.”

During a time of cost-cutting, Bollinger said, “One of the first things that people like to cut is in the area of publicity.”

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