IATSE on strike against Pac 12 Network

Union plans strike lines outside five basketball games on Saturday

The Intl. Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees has announced that it has gone on strike against the Pac 12 Network.

The below-the-line union plans to set up strike lines Saturday outside five basketball games.

IATSE president Matthew D. Loeb made the announcement early Saturday after polling the union’s exec board.

“The skills and commitment of the broadcast technicians we represent are unparalleled,” he said. “These folks go above and beyond to guarantee the viewers the experience they deserve, and these workers deserve the dignity of a contract that secures their interests in return.”

IATSE said it would set up strike lines Saturday at Arizona State University, Tempe; Oregon State University, Corvallis; University of Oregon, Eugene; University of Washington, Seattle, and University of Southern California, Los Angeles.

IATSE said strike is an attempt to establish standard wages and benefits for daily hire technical employees of the network working on live sporting events.

In response, the Pac-12 Network indicated in a statement it will continue to use non-union labor.

“We respect individuals’ right to decide whether to be represented by a union,” the network said. “Regardless of how they decide, we will remain focused on creating an environment that is inclusive, respectful and allows us to have direct relationships with our staff and contractors. We are building a robust enterprise that offers competitive compensation, an exciting and creative work environment, and growing opportunities for industry professionals, campus staff and students from our universities for many years to come.”

The union said the network went on air in September and has employed technicians represented by IATSE at venues of the ten institutions in its jurisdiction while also crewing many events in those markets using non-union labor, or a combination of non-union and covered labor side by side on the same job.

IATSE also said its members in the affected markets authorized their leadership to negotiate concessions to accommodate the needs of the Pac 12 Network. “Despite these accommodations and other IA attempts to reach out to the management of the Pac 12 Network they have refused to communicate with the union,” it added.

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