11 November 2010
Members working in regional theatres are voting on a pay offer for 2010/11 from employers' body the Theatrical Management Association (TMA). However BECTU is recommending that members vote 'no'.
More than 200 venues nationwide are covered by the TMA/BECTU agreement which sets out employment terms and conditions for both technical and front of house staff.
The TMA's pay proposals for 2010/11 are modest with a rise of 1 or 2 per cent on offer.
The employers' insistence on linking acceptance of either offer to changes in conditions makes this year's review particularly contentious.
If members opt to accept either pay increase they will also be accepting changes to the minimum performance call which would give theatre managers the option to schedule more than one performance during the standard call time.
Also at risk are the rights of members who work on a get-in to be scheduled to work on the get-out, the removal of payments for pick-ups and changes to the tv/film clause.
In his guidance to members, Willy Donaghy, supervisory official, stated:
"BECTU's negotiating committee believes that this offer is the best that can be achieved by negotiation, but recommends that the offer be rejected. This recommendation to reject is made because of the changes sought by the TMA within one or both pay options."
The result of the ballot will be declared on 22 November.
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