New York State Senate and Assembly Call on AMPTP to Negotiate in Good Faith with WGA
NEW YORK, NY (June 2, 2023) – On the one month anniversary of Writers Guild of America (WGA) members being on strike, more than 50 members of the New York State Senate and Assembly signed letters to Carol Lombardini, President of the Alliance of Motion Picture & Television Producers (AMPTP), demanding the Studio association immediately return to the bargaining table with the WGA.
A letter from the Senate and one from the Assembly were delivered this morning, and both state, “We understand that, despite many weeks at the bargaining table, the AMPTP rejected a range of Writers Guild proposals that are essential to the well-being of writers in the episodic television, comedy-variety, and feature film areas. We call on the AMPTP, and its affiliated companies, to listen closely to what their writers are telling them about the difficulties in maintaining careers as streaming continues to transform the industry. We call on you to negotiate in good faith to reach a reasonable agreement with the Writers Guilds.”
Further, the letters call out the Studios for stalling on negotiations shortly after New York State voted to expand the Empire State Film Production tax credit, writing, “This film and television production incentive provides hundreds of millions of dollars in tax credits every year to companies represented by the Association of Motion Picture and Television Producers. It is disturbing to note that the same companies that will benefit enormously from this expanded tax credit have failed to negotiate a collective bargaining agreement with the Writers Guilds of America, East and West, whose members are on strike across the country.”
The Honorable New York State Senator Jessica Ramos (D-Queens, SD-17) and Honorable New York State Assemblywoman Latoya Joyner (D-Bronx, 77th AD) led the effort to gain support from 19 Senate members and 33 Assembly members.
“The writers on strike aren’t just standing up for dignified wages. This contract fight gets to the heart of existential issues facing the future of work,” said Senator Jessica Ramos. “My colleagues and I are proud to stand with the Writers Guild in their demands for good faith bargaining.”
“The members of the Writers Guild are at the heart of New York’s creative community and they bring an incredible energy and vitality that makes our state a truly dynamic and exciting place to live,” said Assemblywoman Latoya Joyner, chair of the Assembly Labor Committee. “I am proud to have so many of my colleagues join me in urging the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers to reach a contract with the Writers Guild that truly recognizes the talent of their members and treats them fairly and with respect.”
Read the letter from the New York State Senate here.
Read the letter from the New York State Assembly here.
More than 11,500 members of the Writers Guild of America went on strike beginning March 2, 2023, after nearly 98% of the membership voted to authorize a strike if a fair deal could not be reached with the AMPTP before their contract expired on May 1, 2023.
The Writers Guild of America, East (WGAE) and Writers Guild of America West (WGAW) are labor unions representing writers in motion pictures, television, cable, digital media, and broadcast news. The Guilds negotiate and administer contracts that protect the creative and economic rights of their members; conduct programs, seminars, and events on issues of interest to writers; and present writers’ views to various bodies of government. For more information on the Writers Guild of America, East, visit www.wgaeast.org. For more information on the Writers Guild of America, West, visit www.wga.org.