I was devastated when everything began to shut down. We were doing well, moving forward, growing and working out some long-term issues. I had just started my second term as Business Representative in January.
Rose Etta Venetucci is the Business Representative for IATSE Local 28, Chair of the IATSE Local 28 Activism Committee and 125 year Anniversary Party Committee, member of the IATSE Women’s Committee, The District 1 Legislative Committee Chair, Oregon AFL-CIO Executive Board Member, NWOLC Executive Board Member, and SWWLC delegate.
The 30-year union member says she is thankful to have had a term under her belt when the pandemic hit.
“I am thankful to the IA education department and the current IA President and officers and representatives for giving us training prior to this,” says Venetucci. “They really set us up for success. I may not have been trained specifically for a pandemic but the toolbox I have has not failed me yet. However, what I do miss is being creative with my IA family.”
Venetucci’s day to day before the pandemic included; taking care of Local 28 workers, women of the IA, amplify the voices of entertainment industry workers to all levels of government, advocate for workers to whatever place was needed, secure work with good wages and benefits for workers and support all workers inclusive of all.
Venetucci says during the pandemic her Local has donated 1500 handmade masks, some gowns and caps.
“We’re so connected. We’ve spoken to an organization in Puerto Rico and some members in Florida. We’re all trying to help each other,” she added. “We call and check-in on members who live alone, retirees and members with kids.”
“We’ve distributed 50 food boxes and masks to neighbors or anyone who needs a mask,” Venetucci says. “We’ve even mailed masks to those in need too.”
Venetucci says her Local also uploads weekly resource letters for their members on the latest updates and resources to their website.
“Taking care of each other is what we do as an IA family,” says Venetucci. “We’re IA members that’s what we do!”
Venetucci says her hope is that this crisis will allow people to see why electing leaders who support humans is important to all of us and our planet.
“I hope the entertainment industry is given the opportunity to do what we do best, entertain the masses,” Venetucci said.