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Report from Irish Equity meeting

25 September 2013

In attendance: Stephen Spence, Equity Assistant General Secretary, Louis Rolston Equity Northern Ireland Councillor, Karan O’Loughlin, Sector Organiser, Irish Equity and Padraig Murray, Irish Equity President,

Matters arising from the previous meeting

Competition Act (Ireland)
While there are no developments on this issue since the last meeting on August 30th it was agreed to keep it on the agenda so that we can track progress on the matter.

Live Theatre Conference
Irish Equity has been in touch with the International Federation of Actors (FIA) about the requirements for making a pitch to hold this conference in Dublin. While FIA will be sending some formal guidelines to the 4 countries seeking to host this event (Ireland –as an Ireland/UK supported initiative, Portugal, Uruguay and Morocco) a lot of detail was provided and the Action Group will continue working on this with a view to presenting the pitch in mid-December.

Communications
It was noted that the Report for distribution to members had been drafted, agreed and circulated to the members within a week of the meeting as agreed and that it had also been posted on the websites of both Unions. It was agreed that future communications would continue to be circulated in this way and would encourage members to participate in the discussion.

Reports

Film and TV Negotiations.
A number of Equity organisers who carry various briefs joined the meeting at this stage, Laura Messenger (Film) Cathy Sweet (ITV) and Ian Bayes (BBC). The Action Group advised the organisers of the Ireland/UK joint policy: that all UK productions being done in the Republic of Ireland must be done on the terms of the Equity/PACT Agreement (or its equivalent) and that the Action Group is actively jointly pursuing this policy.

Pact/Equity
Negotiations on the Pact/Equity UK agreement on TV are ongoing.  Another meeting has now been agreed. Equity is keeping Irish Equity advised of the details and developments associated with this.

Irish Equity
A recent meeting with Screen Producers Ireland (SPI) to pursue the agreement on a new contract for actors that includes royalties and usage fees was reported as constructive. Another meeting will be held on October 11th and a full report will issued to the membership at the Irish Equity AGM on October 13th. Christine Payne Equity General Secretary and Malcolm Sinclair, Equity President will also attend the AGM.

Action Group Work

  • The good joint work that had been achieved on the Penny Dreadful Production was noted and it was agreed that the next joint initiative would involve the new Mrs Browns Boy’s Production to ensure that the Pact/Equity terms are being applied.
  • Following from an issue raised by Irish Equity on the ADR rates for Ripper Street Equity have been in contact with Voice Bank on this and we understand this issue to be resolved.
  • Work on developing the pitch for the FIA live theatre conference will continue.
  • The Irish Equity Reps attended the first meeting of the newly constituted Screen Committee (renamed to the Screen and New Media Committee) to observe and meet the participants. This was a very constructive meeting and will the matters discussed will assist the Irish Equity negotiation with SPI on an actor’s agreement for TV.

The next meeting is scheduled for October 30th in Belfast. Please join our conversation and email your observations or comments to equity@siptu.ie for Irish Equity members and to nbarker@equity.org.uk for Equity members.

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