Being part of a union means negotiating collectively, rather than as individuals with little power, to set basic rights and standards in the workplace. These often include minimum rates of pay, overtime provisions, standards around hours of work and hiatuses, health benefits, and safety protections.
The Canadian Media Guild’s 2017 contract at VICE Canada meant average salary gains of 9%, guaranteed paid time off and better protections for contract employees (including extra pay for health benefits).
The Motion Picture Editors Guild’s, a local of IATSE, recently negotiated a deal for post-production workers at VICE in New York. This deal achieved a pathway for freelancers to full-time positions, median salary increases of 16% over the 3 years of the contract, and strong overtime provisions.