Bectu`s Assistant Secretary of State, Helen Ryan, said: “Under normal circumstances, Bectu would not have been considered considering such changes to the agreement. However, these are not normal circumstances and we believe that members will understand that some temporary slippages will be necessary to help the West End get back on its feet. “We have doubled our membership in the West End in recent months, tripled the number of new employees, who have grown stronger to defend the conditions of buildings and productions, and we plan to organize our members closely for the reopening of theatres. Employers may have a vision to review the agreement, but so do our members, and Bectu will ensure that they are heard. The variants were presented to members after weeks of negotiations, which have now been agreed to facilitate the reopening of west-end theatres to the public. The agreement will enter into force on September 24, 2020 and will be reviewed every four months starting in January 2022. A copy of the temporary variation agreement can be downloaded, but in summary these are the main changes: the recent compensation agreement provides for a pay increase of 3.5% for 2017-18, 3.5% for 2018-2019 and 2.5% for 2019-2020. TEMPORARY VARIATIONS – Although the variations are not permanent, there are no predetermined results, even after the end of the Covid-19 variation agreement. There will be negotiations on the whole agreement, which is expected to begin in the fall of 2022, so that it can be implemented in June 2023. If no agreement is reached on the provisions of Sunday work by the end of June 2023, SOLT and Bectu will agree to refer the matter to the conciliation of THE CASA.
“This agreement is a compromise in recognition of the existential crisis facing the theatre industry in the wake of the pandemic. Continuous close communication will be essential, as reviewing this agreement will be a priority when the industry resumes its work. Looking to the future, we will focus on modernizing the agreement on the culture of long working hours, including long working days and six-day weeks. We also need to review basic wages and move away from dependence on bonuses and overtime in order to obtain decent livelihoods. The agreement between BECTU and SOLT (Society of London Theatres) includes West End Theater in London. SPECIAL TECHNICAL REQUIREMENTS – 9-for-8 bonuses for performance staff will continue to be paid if the bonus contract already exists for an existing production or if it is agreed on-site for a new production. If less than 8 performances in one week were possible as part of the short-term work offer, employees would receive an additional 1 show compared to what they actually worked on, i.e. if there were only 6 performances per week, in which case the performance staff would be paid for 7-for-6, provided they worked on the 6 shows that Bectu worked on to negotiate a series of collective agreements. covering workers in film, television and theatre. We also encourage agreements that guarantee best practices such as APA and implement a number of career evaluation programmes, which are found below: bectu members working in London`s West End commercial theatres voted 86.2% for temporary changes to the SOLT Bectu agreement. An agreement that covers all the important conditions of the crew involved in the big films, with budgets of more than 30 million pounds.
The union has a number of agreements with ITV licensing companies.