LA Actors: We Don’t Need No Stinkin’ Minimum Wage
April 20, 2015
Hundreds of union actors and actresses in the Los Angeles small theater circuit have come out against a minimum wage campaign by their union, Actors’ Equity, which represents thousands of stage performers in Los Angeles. In a referendum last week, 66 percent of LA’s Equity union members voted against a proposal that would raise actors’ minimum wage to $9.00 an hour. It’s an “extraordinary rift,” writes Michael Paulson in the New York Times. Currently some small theaters pay nothing for rehearsal time and are said to pay as little as $7.00 per performance. The arguments against the minimum wage are that very small theaters are a training and proving ground for many LA performers at a stage in their careers when honing their craft and staying on the scene are more important than the money, and that the higher minimum wage would force many of the small theaters out of business.
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