New York, NY – Netflix Production Accountants working in New York and New Jersey have reached an agreement with Netflix to be recognized as members of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE) Local 161. The studio agreed to a card count by a neutral third party in November, which revealed on Wednesday that an overwhelming majority of the bargaining unit has signed union authorization cards. This bargaining unit of Production Accountants who work in motion picture includes Clerks, who have never been organized with Local 161 before.
The majority of Production Accountants on the East Coast were already members of IATSE Local 161, but have been working in New York and New Jersey without a union contract with Netflix since 2021, two years after the streamer joined the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP). Now that Netflix has agreed to formally recognize them, they will move forward towards bargaining a fair contract.
Local 161 has represented East Coast Production Accountants since 1974, but most Hollywood studios have refused to recognize Local 161, as well as Local 871 and other IATSE locals representing motion picture Production Accountants across the country. “The ‘Count Us In’ campaign is proof that we, as Accountants, deserve representation and a fair contract, just like our union kin in other crafts,” said Local 161 President Laura Fearon, a Payroll Accountant and Local 161 member since 2008. “We have always been IATSE, and like all IATSE members, we are an essential part of the crew, making sure that everybody in the cast and crew gets paid. We hope that other AMPTP studios will follow Netflix’s lead and meet us at the bargaining table.”
“Count Us In” is the latest in a series of successful IATSE organizing campaigns including Animation, Visual Effects, and Commercial Production workers. “Over the last several months, we have seen an unprecedented solidarity movement among motion picture workers across various unions and crafts,” said Local 161 Accountant and Vice President April Tafoya. “We are proud to be a part of that, as we take this historic first step towards winning the fair contract that all Production Accountants deserve.”
Production Accountants and all accounting department crew who have worked for AMPTP studios, regardless of union status, are encouraged to visit Count Us In HQ to learn more and join our fight for a fair contract.