TAG Mobilize FAQs
- If the West Coast Studio Locals go on strike, will TAG members automatically go on strike too?
Not yet. TAG’s current Collective Bargaining Agreement expires on October 30, 2021. Until that date, TAG members cannot engage in any strike activity at signatory studios. Moreover, a strike authorization vote must be passed by Local 839 members before a collective action can take place. TAG members can and should participate in certain authorized forms of solidarity actions and are encouraged to join the IATSE picket lines on their non-work time. For more information on mobilization planning, email email@example.com.
- Can TAG call its own strike authorization vote?
Yes. Business Representative Steve Kaplan has informed AMPTP’s negotiator that at this stage The Animation Guild will not extend TAG’s current contract beyond October 30, 2021. Once the collective bargaining agreement expires, the contract’s ‘no strike’ clause is no longer in effect. Local 839’s Executive Board could proceed with a strike authorization vote among TAG’s active membership if necessary. If the strike authorization vote process is approved, the vote would take place electronically with ballots sent to all members in good standing. Only TAG members who are active and in good standing will be eligible to vote. Members on Suspension or Fi-Core will not be eligible to vote.
- What is the difference between a strike authorization vote and a strike?
A strike authorization vote is the first step towards a potential strike, but it does not necessarily mean a strike will occur. Every union has its own rules associated with a strike authorization vote. For example, IATSE members in each impacted Local must vote by at least 75% of the participating membership to authorize a strike. If the strike authorization vote is passed, it permits the elected leadership of the union to call a strike when necessary. If that occurs, all union members will cease work and contact their local union for picket duty assignments.
- What should TAG members do to show solidarity with the members of the 13 studio locals?
If the IATSE West Coast Locals call a strike, all TAG members will be encouraged to attend active picket lines on non-work time, show support online, and volunteer with TAG’s own member mobilization program. You can visit https://www.basicagreement.iatse.net to find out about important updates and access the IATSE Social Media Toolkit. Please update your TAG contact information and opt-in to receive important text messages, so we can share additional ways you can support your union kin in a show of solidarity.
- Will TAG members receive strike benefits or material aid during the strike?
The IATSE Defense Fund is not specifically designed for strike benefits or monetary payments to members who are on an authorized strike, but could be authorized by the IA Executive Board for this purpose. On the Local level, TAG just established its Relief and Defense (RAD) fund to support Local 839 members engaged in approved collective actions such as an authorized work stoppage. However, this is NOT a wage replacement fund. Read more about the RAD Fund here.
- Can I collect unemployment while I’m withholding services?
This is largely a function of state law. In California, however, the answer is “no.” Striking workers are not eligible for unemployment benefits in California.
- What happens with my health insurance if we go on strike?
The MPI Health Plans are structured so that participants earn future benefits or bank hours with current work, so you should not see any interruption to your health plans while on strike. Health care eligibility, however, is based on hours worked and hours banked both of which would be impacted at some point if you are not working during a strike.
- What happens if I'm on an O-1 Visa and the Guild calls a strike?
Animation Guild members who are visa holders and those with permanent residency status have the right to strike as a lawful activity. If you have questions about your specific circumstances, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
- What if a co-worker works outside of LA County and not covered by the Union? Would they still strike?
We would encourage them to show solidarity, including engaging in their own protected work-stoppage. It is unlawful for employers to retaliate against workers for showing solidarity. If they have any concerns, please email email@example.com.
- Are we allowed to continue working as freelance?
If a strike is called, do not provide services in any form to any signatory studio. We do not want to provide resources to hurt our own cause. Be aware that if you freelance for a non-union studio that is making a show for a signatory studio we are striking against, it is effectively crossing the picket line.