NORTHAMPTON, MA— Iron Horse Entertainment Group pays wages approximately 40% below area standard rates paid at other local venues with union contracts, such as the Academy of Music in Northampton, the Mullins Center in Amherst, or Symphony Hall in Springfield. IHEG does not provide health or retirement benefits for employees.
Stagehands employed by IHEG unanimously voted for representation by IATSE in March of 2011. As negotiations stalled, two Unfair Labor Practice charges were filed against IHEG with the National Labor Relations Board based in Boston claiming the employer which is owned and represented by Eric Suher was not negotiating in good faith. In early October 2012, the two ULPs were settled. The settlement agreement requires IHEG to post notices (see below) at the workplaces affirming the rights of employees to seek union representation, that IHEG will not interfere with those rights, and that IHEG will return to negotiations and bargain in good faith with the union. Representatives IATSE Locals 232 and 53 and Suher are set to resume meeting early November.
In the meantime, members of Locals 53 and 232 as well as IHEG employees are encouraged by the support they’ve been receiving from the public in response to their bannering campaign. The campaign is intended to inform patrons of both IHEG and other Eric Suher properties of the existence of this dispute.