Prod'n assistants protesting pay cuts, casual workers

HOLLYWOOD — The American Federation of Television & Radio Artists has scheduled a midday informational picket today at radio station KFWB in Hollywood over stalled negotiations with about a dozen news production assistants.

The assistants, who voted last year to be repped by AFTRA, authorized a strike last month, and the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor has granted a strike sanction to the unit. AFTRA also filed an unfair labor practices complaint with the National Labor Relations Board last month over alleged lack of disclosure of salary and health benefits.

AFTRA said the last offer from Viacom-owned KFWB called for cutting starting hourly pay for casual employees from $10 to $9, no wage hikes in the first year and the ability to replace full-timers with casual workers.

KFWB had no immediate response.

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