The DGA, SAG-AFTRA, IATSE, Teamsters and the Hollywood Basic Crafts Announce COVID-19 Safety Agreement to Expire May 11, 2023

Agreement Matches May 11 Date Federal Government is Ending its COVID Public Health Emergency

Los Angeles — The Directors Guild of America (DGA), International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE), International Brotherhood of Teamsters (IBT) and the Hollywood Basic Crafts, (Teamsters Local 399, IBEW Local 40, LiUNA! Local 724, OPCMIA Local 755 and UA Local 78) and Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA), today announced the expiration of the COVID-19 Safety Agreement and its related protocols, effective May 11, 2023. This is the same date the Biden administration plans to let the coronavirus public health emergency expire.

First enacted in September 2020 after a months-long production shutdown, the COVID-19 Safety Agreement is the outcome of unprecedented coordination and solidarity between the unions and collaboration with employers. The agreement, reflecting science-based protocols, transformed creative workers as one of the nation’s first industries returning to work safely.

The transition includes the following conditions:

  1. Grandfathering: Projects in production before May 11, 2023, which had already established a mandatory vaccination policy in Zone A, may keep that policy for the duration of that production. For episodic projects, this applies only to the season in production before May 11, and not for subsequent seasons.

  2. Intimate Photography: SAG-AFTRA and AMPTP have reached an understanding on a testing system for performers involved in intimate scenes to ensure their safety and well-being.

  3. Additional Paid COVID -19 Sick Days: The unions have secured an additional five paid COVID-19 sick days for all employees through the end of the year.

For the past three years, workers throughout the entertainment community have benefited from our robust protections exceeding the practices of many other industries.  With the public health emergency now ending and the expiration of the COVID-19 Safety Agreement, individual employers continue to be responsible for ensuring safe workplaces for their employees, but must seek separate agreement with the applicable joint unions before implementing any COVID safety protocols.

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In the eight decades since its founding in 1936, the DGA has fought for the economic and creative rights of its members; protected their ability to financially benefit from the reuse of their work; established strong pension and health plans; and established jurisdiction in new technologies and distribution platforms. Today we represent more than 19,000 directors and members of the directorial team working in film, television, commercials, new media and other audiovisual media.


SAG-AFTRA represents approximately 160,000 actors, announcers, broadcast journalists, dancers, DJs, news writers, news editors, program hosts, puppeteers, recording artists, singers, stunt performers, voiceover artists and other entertainment and media professionals. 

SAG AFTRA members are the faces and voices that entertain and inform America and the world. A proud affiliate of the AFL-CIO, SAG-AFTRA has national offices in Los Angeles and New York and local offices nationwide representing members working together to secure the strongest protections for entertainment and media artists into the 21st century and beyond. Visit SAG-AFTRA online at sagaftra.org


The Motion Picture Division of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters represents over 12,000 Teamsters in North America who work on feature, television, commercial, and theatrical productions produced across the United States, Canada and around the globe.


The Hollywood Basic Crafts are comprised of approximately 7,500 members that are part of Teamsters Local 399, IBEW Local 40, LiUNA! Local 724, OPCMIA Local 755 and UA Plumbers Local 78.  The Hollywood Basic Crafts Unions represent a wide variety of classifications within the Motion Picture Industry such as: drivers, location professionals, casting directors and associates, animal trainers, wranglers, mechanics, dispatchers, cook helpers, electricians, HVACR technicians, sound installers, generator operators, portable A/C technicians, laborers, plasterers, sculptors, plumbers and more.

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The International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees or IATSE (full name: International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees, Moving Picture Technicians, Artists and Allied Crafts of the United States, Its Territories and Canada), is a labor union representing over 170,000 technicians, artisans and craftspersons in the entertainment industry, including live events, motion picture and television production, broadcast, and trade shows in the United States and Canada.

For more information please contact:
General: comms@iatse.net
Press: press@iatse.net


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