Unions and engagers agreeing Brexit red lines for creative industries

Equity representatives have this month raised the issue of Brexit in the European Live Performance and Audio Visual Social Dialogue Committees taking the opportunity to warn of the potential impact on the creative sector and directly share concerns with engagers such as PEARLE*, the European live performance organisation (which includes SOLT/UK Theatre), the European Co-ordination of Independent Producers (CEPI), the Producers Alliance for Cinema and Television (PACT UK) and European Trade Unions including the International Federation of Actors (FIA). 

They are moving towards issuing joint statements on the potentially devastating impact of a ‘No Deal Brexit’, which will be communicated to UK and EU negotiators, highlighting the concerns that will affect creative workers in the live performance and audio visual industries in any Brexit deal.

Stephen Spence, Equity’s Deputy for the General Secretary commented:
"The final wording of these statements will include demands on professional mobility for creative workers to and from the UK and EU, the maintenance of quality working conditions (including rights to rest and holiday pay), continued access to co-production arrangements, a guarantee of rights for EU and UK citizens in each jurisdiction, vocal opposition to a ‘No Deal Brexit’ and the maintenance of co-operation with the EU Intellectual Property Office. The situation in Ireland is also of great concern and has been discussed.

"This important work between engagers and Unions, which in addition has been supported by organisations like Time Warner and Netflix, supplements the work done with UK Ministers to highlight the concerns of Equity members. The urgent need to maintain professional mobility for creative workers is recognised by the UK Government and civil servants working on Brexit following representations by Equity and other industry partners.

"This next period is critical for the Brexit negotiations.  Any deal must work for the creative industries which are worth £93 billion to the UK economy.  Unions and engagers are united in ensuring our issues are high on the priority list for both sets of negotiators. Equity will continue to strongly campaign to ensure any deal respects our members’ rights.  If a ‘no deal’ scenario emerges in the coming weeks the Union will further consider its position in relation to the additional action required to protect members’ interests." 

Explanatory Note
The European Sectoral Social Dialogue Committees
Taking Live Performance as an example the European social partners are represented by PEARLE*-Live Performance Europe, the Performing Arts Employers’ Associations League Europe, and the workers in the sector are represented by the EAEA, the European Arts & Entertainment Alliance, composed of FIM (International Federation of Musicians), FIA (International Federation of Actors) and UNI MEI (Media, Entertainment & Arts Sector of UNI Global Union).

Pearle*-Live Performance Europe, represents over 10,000 organisations in the music and performing arts and live entertainment sector (publicly funded and private). The EAEA represents about 600,000 workers in the sector.

The EAEA is also the trade union representative in the Audiovisual Committee, together with the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ).  The employers associations cover broadcasting, film and television production. The signatories to the joint statement in the Audiovisual committee are to include CEPI the European umbrella body for independent production companies and FIAPF the International Federation of Film Producers Associations.

The Social Partners meet at European level 3 to 4 times per year in their sectoral social dialogue committees facilitated through the European Commission, DG Employment – Industrial Relations and Social Dialogue Unit.

The Audio Visual Committee includes the Unions and engagers including PACT UK the umbrella body for independent production companies.

For Interest
A new study on the impact of Brexit on the Audiovisual sector commissioned by the European Parliament's Culture Committee has just been released: