Is the Pac-12 Network an unfair employer?
Yes, if the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employee is correct. The organization authorized and conducted a strike Saturday against the college sports network, with strike lines occuring outside of basketball arenas at Arizona State University in Tempe, Arizona; Oregon State University in Corvallis, Oregon; the University of Oregon in Eugene, Oregon; the University of Washington in Seattle, and the University of Southern California in Los Angeles.
The reason for the strike is that the wages and benefits paid to the daily hire technical employees the Pac-12 uses for live sporting events are below standard.
"The skills and commitment of the broadcast technicians we represent are unparalleled. These folks go above and beyond to guarantee the viewers the experience they deserve, and these workers deserve the dignity of a contract that secures their interests in return," said IATSE president Matt Loeb.
The Pac-12 Network is new, with it going on air in September of this year. The IATSE says that the network has used non-union labor in a lot of its broadcasts, as well as non-union and union labor working together on the same jobs.
The network responded to the strike, saying that "We respect an individual’s right to decide whether to be represented by a union. Regardless of how they decide, we will remain focused on creating an environment that is inclusive, respectful and allows us to have direct relationships with our staff and contractors. We are building a robust enterprise that offers competitive compensation, an exciting and creative work environment, and growing work opportunities for industry professionals, campus staff and students from our universities for many years to come."