UK VFX Unionising
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Unionising is on the move in the United Kingdom, with BECTU – the Broadcasting Entertainment Cinematograph and Theatre Union – recently having requested to represent the compositing department of MPC.
“Our view is that a properly managed company would be able to manage its staff”, BECTU’s Paul Evans said concerning paid overtime, one of their primary issue. He argues that any company must “allow [their employees] to have a work/life balance while getting the same level of productivity out of them.”
BECTU and Paul Evans have been holding weekly meet ups in the form of a Thursday lunch since June of 2015, and they’ve become quite successful – they report getting between twenty and thirty people showing up almost every week, and at one recent meeting the union saw over a hundred people show up.
“When people are prepared to go this far, it’s because they care about something”, Evans continued. “The employers have simply brushed us aside for too long and said ‘yeah, no, we’re not doing anything about this, we don’t have to’ – they’ve brushed us off. The big issue for our members is they want to be heard, they want to have a dialogue, they want to have a voice, this isn’t about them going in and mugging the company. It’s about going in and knowing that the companies can’t just fob them off. We believe that the solution to this is that every vfx company in London be unionized and we’re urging every member, everybody who works in visual effects, to join BECTU now.”