The International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE), commonly known as the stagehands union, has signed a three-year contract with Philadelphia-based facility management firm Global Spect

The International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE), commonly known as the stagehands union, has signed a three-year contract with Philadelphia-based facility management firm Global Spectrum, covering IATSE work in Global Spectrum venues.

Among the Global Spectrum facilities included under the arrangement are the Everett Events Center in Everett, Wash.; the Dodge Arena in Hidalgo, Texas; and the Budweiser Events Center in Loveland, Colo., all of which opened this past fall.

The contract, endorsed by a unanimous vote of the IATSE General Executive Board, is the first of its kind, covering multiple privately-owned venues.

"We're pretty excited about this," says Global Spectrum chairman Peter Luukko, who jointly announced the deal with IATSE president Thomas Short. "I think this really tells you how far our industry has come in that management and labor can work together to support concerts, which are an integral part of our business," says Luukko. "It is very important to us that we have good, solid, quality labor to set up and tear down shows, rig shows, etc.

"And I think it's absolutely important from a financial standpoint that we [offer] fair work rules and fair wages," he adds.

Luukko says the IATSE pact will effect all Global Spectrum facilities "where it makes sense" immediately. "We're not re-writing any existing arrangements, but we want to work with IATSE on a case-by-case basis," says Luukko. "What this really does is insure we won't have any protracted [labor] negotiations because we already have set work rules."

The deal will cover all shows at Global arenas impacted, whether they are promoted by an outside promoter, in-house or co-promoted. Promoters typically pick up the stagehand bill, and Luukko says early feedback from promoters on the deal has been favorable.

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