Why Should You Join the IATSE
Better working conditions, better pay, and future economic security. Local 126 and the IATSE have negotiated long and hard with employers to ensure safe and decent working conditions for its members. Yes, it can sometimes be an uphill battle but with strength in numbers the IATSE and Local 126 can demand, and usually receive the conditions and terms that are most essential for the workers it represents. Employers are continually pitting union workers against non-union workers. This type of strategy is called divide and conquer and dates back to the early days of the Roman Empire. The sole purpose of this strategy is oppressing wages and workers’ rights without any concern for the well being of them or their families. Most employers’ general motivation for doing so is their own greed. The unions’ priorities include insuring the physical safety of our members, protecting your job security, and obtaining fair benefits and wages that continue to grow. All working men and women deserve to have the comfort of knowing that they are entitled to a living wage, have the security of healthcare for their families, and a good pension when they retire. That is the right of every American worker whether you belong to a Union or not. America is the wealthiest Country in the world and no one should be left behind when it comes to these basic rights. The only way to make sure you have those basic securities is to join a Union, and to make sure you have a say in the workplace.
Who We Are
Local 126 is one of the many Locals of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees, Moving Picture Technicians, Artists and Allied Crafts of the United States; its Territories and Canada (IATSE). The IATSE Represents technicians who proudly serve all aspects of the entertainment industry. Since the birth of our organization over 100 years ago, IATSE stagehands and Film Technicians have been joined by a great variety of other crafts. Television productions, product demonstration and industrial shows, conventions, facility maintenance, audio visual presentation, and motion picture computer graphics, front of house people and managers to name a few, have all banded together to achieve the maximum unified strength possible.
Our goal at IATSE Local 126 is to represent all workers in the Fort Worth, Arlington and Tarrant Counties area, wherever they work and to work to provide them and their families with benefits that can travel with them from employer to employer. With Union representation, you could change jobs without fear of losing your health insurance, achieve a consistent Retirement and Annuity benefit – two of the basic necessities for achieving and maintaining a good quality of life.
The Federal Government has determined that workers have the right to organize and to bargain collectively and that it is in the best interest of commerce for employers to accept collective bargaining when workers determine that they want it. The government has also determined that the inequality of bargaining power between unorganized workers and powerful employers tends to cause depression of wages and benefits. Therefore, the government has protected these rights by the Taft-Harley Act and the National Labor Relations Act. Workers have the right to elect a union to represent them, and employers cannot legally dismiss a worker for looking into joining a Union for promoting union membership or for belonging to a Union.
Local 126 members can qualify for the finest medical plans available; coverage even includes benefits omitted from many plans, such as pre-natal care, dental and eye care, chiropractors, prescription drugs, life and mental health insurance.
A pension plan for your future. As soon as you become represented and earn your first dollar, your employer will begin to make contributions into a retirement plan for you for each and every hour that you work; it costs you nothing and is part of the contract.
And more as a member, you will also have access to additional benefits; Local 126 is continually developing educational and training programs to keep our members abreast of new technology. As members of the AFL-CIO, all IATSE members are also eligible to take advantage of a unique program of discounts for a wide variety of goods and services – you can participate in special home mortgage programs and may even be able to receive credit cards in situations where previous credit problems might make it otherwise impossible.
Without Union Representation you are often alone and isolated at the lowest end of the work environment and pay scale, lacking the means to protect your own self-interests. No doubt, some of your own personal experiences will confirm that fact. Alone, you have very little negotiating power against an employer who is determined to give you as little as possible. With Union affiliation you are participating in critical decisions that affect your life, such as daily wages, continuing education, medical benefits for your family, holiday pay, retirement benefits, working conditions. You receive professional representation in the work place. Your participation in these critical decisions is an example of the democratic process working for you. Membership participation and democracy are cornerstones of the IA. There is strength in numbers, and with tens of thousands of other IATSE workers on your side, you can have control over your future in this industry.