COVID return to work agreement temporarily extended as negotiations continue – The Hollywood Reporter

The industry’s return to work agreement – an agreement between studios and unions that has helped Hollywood productions continue to thrive during the COVID-19 pandemic – has been temporarily extended as both sides continue to negotiate. judgment on whether existing health and safety protocols should be adjusted.

The latest iteration of the deal was originally set to expire on Friday, at which point both sides offered temporary extensions. Discussions on the latest version of the deal began a few weeks ago between unions including the Organization of Directors of America, IATSE, Teamsters and SAG-AFTRA, and organizing negotiations for studios and people broadcast, Alliance of Film and Television Producers (AMPTP).

When reached prior to the renewal, legal sources said that their producer and director clients still plan to instruct production to adhere to the protocols outlined in the current agreement regardless of them. be loosened or not.

Meanwhile, the performers’ union SAG-AFTRA has had its own internal debates over the deal. The union has an outspoken faction that opposes the fact that the return to work agreement empowers manufacturers to impose vaccine mandates on “Area A” (the working group consisting of performers and crew members work closely with them) if they wish. On September 10, it held a meeting for its national board to discuss vaccine requirements for certain products. (Products with mandatory vaccines include Starz’s Gaslit and ABC’s General Hospital.) “The Board of Directors ended its meeting without taking any action to amend the applicable policy that supports the employer’s ability to perform such duties under the terms of protections included in the return to work agreement,” SAG-AFTRA said in a statement in September.

When the deal was last renegotiated in July, unions and studios made only two small changes to measures including transportation and dining when COVID levels were high. Currently, COVID levels are low in the Los Angeles area, and on September 23, LA County ended the requirement to wear face masks on public transportation and in areas like train stations and airports. fly. However, the arrival of fall could change conditions, health officials have warned.

Winston Cho contribution report.


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