6 September 2019
As we mark Young Workers' Month (September) BECTU celebrates its active young members who are shaping and empowering their careers with union support. Share your story with the hashtag #futureunionised
Bectu Young Member Guy Bishop has praised the union for supporting him in his career since joining in October 2018 by declaring 'your union has your back'.
Posting on Facebook this week in an update that he was happy for Bectu to share, Guy said:
"Like many of you, I moved into London last year in search of work (and a chance at independence). I existed on a work/sleep/repeat cycle which frankly was pretty boring, but gave me a lot of time to bemoan the recent scrapping of the overtime floor to friends - one of which (An AD, for his sins!) suggested that I come along to a working group to discuss it. In order to attend, I had to be a Bectu member and since I finally had a contracted job, I thought ‘why not?!'"
"I think we all naively expected that one meeting would set the world to rights. Funnily enough it didn’t. Raised voices and circular arguments battled in the room while I sat at the back and wondered when it would end. Despite the fact that we all want roughly the same thing, there are different enough approaches that the details take an age to clear up. Much like politics and legal shindigs, nothing happens quickly."
"The overtime issue and conversations with the lovely [Bectu official] Paula Lamont, whose support has been invaluable ever since, convinced me to attend branch meetings. I’ll be honest, I was the only Location assistant for the first few I went to, surrounded by Managers, Scouts and a couple of experienced ALMs, but I persevered, partly because I wanted to learn more and meet useful people, but also because I saw something wrong with the industry - the lack of guidance or training for newcomers who might have all the enthusiasm but (due to daily employment or last minute place filling) had no experience on sets."
"As a marshal or assistant, with no affiliations, in an industry which cries out for skilled labour daily, there wasn’t anything I could do to change this. At least, not without Bectu’s help."
"In my short spell as a member (since last October, I think), I’ve been trying to draw the focus of our branch down to its newest recruits. It’s the whole purpose of this group. Our ‘Marshal Mixer’ & Networking initiatives, are (to my knowledge) the first of their kind and the upcoming event in September (if you’ve been living under a rock, you should check out our events tab) has drawn interest from employers on gigantic feature films, the managers who attend will likely be taking down every name they can - because they will have a lot of demand for marshals in the coming months or years. My insistence on only advertising jobs with Bectu Rates might be risky to flaunt in front of certain employers, but I’ll happily run that risk so that the rest of you can be paid PROPERLY for your time."
"I’ve volunteered as a youth rep for our branch and have sat in on meetings for the London Division of Bectu, observing and voting on policy which will affect all of us, members or not. I was a delegate at the national conference and have made many useful connections from my time there - hell I’ve been working for the last three months as a direct result of a handshake over a branch meeting"
"What I’m saying, in the most long winded way available to me, is that my experience of Bectu has directly lead to me getting where I want to be, for the first time in my career, I’m turning jobs down or cherry-picking the good ones available to me. Getting involved could get you up there too. It’s worth considering."
"On top of all the unquantifiables, there’s the facts, the numbers: discounts on Apple products, cinema tickets, exercise gear, Gym memberships, and all sorts to make life a little easier."
"And, without wanting to sound like more of a salesman than I already do; for £38 a year, you buy into Bectu’s Public Liability Insurance - that stuff which will cover you when production refuse to save you from damage charges, or pay you £100 week if you get injured at work or on your commute. Don’t worry about the cost, long as it’s less than £10,000,000.00 (hah) then don’t fuss:
"Your Union has your back."
Guy was posting in a dedicated Facebook Group he manages called Location Department Juniors where he promotes entry-level jobs & well-being/training/industry updates as well as plugging union membership. Join the group here https://www.facebook.com/groups/2047322668911457/
To find out more about joining BECTU as a Young Member, visit https://www.bectu.org.uk/join
Click on the £10 offer and a further discount will be applied for anyone 35 and under.