A survey of Hollywood assistants, led by the #PayUpHollywood movement, found that a majority of respondents make between $500 and $900 a week after taxes and experience depression and anxiety because of their work.
The results, released on Tuesday, were taken from the responses of 1,516 current or former assistants across the entertainment industry. About 69 percent of the respondents identified as women and 78 percent were white.
Almost 73 percent of assistants reported making between $500 and $900 a week after taxes, and 90 percent of assistants said they were “rent-burdened” because of their salary or pay rate. As for yearly salary, roughly 64 percent of respondents said they make less than $50,000 and 68 percent reported having to work a second job “to make ends meet while working as an assistant,” according to the results released on Tuesday.
Ninety-two percent of respondents said they have felt an increase in anxiety because of their work, while 66 percent reported an increase in feelings of depression. Roughly 24 percent of assistants said they had increased their substance use because of their work. Almost 83 percent said they did not feel comfortable taking time off from work to take care of their mental health.
The assistants also reported being physically threatened at work, with 104 respondents — about 8 percent — claiming that a boss or supervisor had thrown an object — such as a stapler or a chair — at them. Forty percent of respondents said they worked 50-60 hour weeks, while 15 percent reported their hours as being above 60.
“What is astoundingly, pervasively clear is that the Hollywood system and culture is broken,” Liz Alper, a TV writer and co-founder of the #PayUpHollywood movement, wrote on Twitter. “Hollywood did not always negligently add to the income inequality, housing and mental health crises our country is facing. We can and must do better.”
View the survey results here.
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