Labor Peace Restored In Canada’s Film Industry As Directors Guild Branch Ratifies Contract

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Members of the Directors Guild of Canada B.C. have voted to ratify a tentative deal with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers and its Canadian counterpart, the Canadian Media Producers Association B.C.

After five days of polling, 89.5 percent voted “Yes” to the new deal, with 64 percent of those eligible marking a ballot. Ratification ends a labor action in and around Vancouver that began after the DGC B.C. issued a formal strike notice on April 26 to the AMPTP and the CMPA.

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That action called for a strike and picket lines against any production not covered by a safe harbor agreement, which is part of B.C. labor law. Most film and TV productions in the Canadian province signed safe harbor agreements and, with compliance, were protected from any potential labor action from April 26.

Earlier in the labor impasse, the AMPTP and the CMPA warned that North American producers may steer film and TV series away from Vancouver after the DGC’s British Columbia branch held a strike authorization vote ahead of issuing a formal strike notice.

The union welcomed the new collective agreement. “Today is a momentous day. It has been a long and challenging process, but thanks to the efforts of many we have a deal we can be proud of,” Allan Harmon, District Council chairman, DGC B.C. said in a statement.

The ratification comes after fifteen months of bargaining and secured wage increases of 3 percent annually, retroactive to July 11, 2021, and minimum wage increases for low-paid workers. There’s also a meal penalty to ensure North American producers offer DGC B.C. meals at convenient times and mandatory accommodation or transportation for crew members working 14 hours or more and too tired to drive home.

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