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Client Spotlight: IATSE Local 134

The International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees, Moving Picture Technicians, Artists and Allied Crafts of the United States, Its Territories and Canada was founded in 1893 when representatives of stagehands working in eleven cities met in New York and pledged to support each others’ efforts to establish fair wages and working conditions for their members. Our union has evolved to embrace the development of new entertainment mediums, craft expansion, technological innovation and geographic growth.

Today, our members work in all forms of live theater, motion picture and television production, trade shows and exhibitions, television broadcasting, and concerts as well as the equipment and construction shops that support all these areas of the entertainment industry. We represent virtually all the behind-the-scenes workers in crafts ranging from motion picture animator to theater usher.

During a period when private sector union membership has been in sharp decline the IATSE has continued to grow. In 2016, our membership reached over 130,000. This growth is attributable to our willingness to adapt our structure to protect our traditional jurisdiction and accommodate new crafts. But that alone is insufficient. The IATSE has maintained and enhanced its position in the vanguard of the entertainment industry through effective rank and file empowerment, political engagement, and our dedication to grass roots organizing. On both the International and local union levels, the motivating principle of the IATSE is to represent every worker employed in our crafts.

On April 1st, 1907 the Federal Trade Council granted fifteen people in San Jose, California a charter for the New York based Theatrical Mechanics Association, more familiarly known to us as I.A.T.S.E., the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees, Motion Picture Technicians, Artists and Allied Crafts of the United States, its Territories and Canada. Since that time, IATSE Local 134 has consolidated its jurisdiction as Santa Clara County. Presently, the local dispatches stage technicians throughout the county for live theater, concerts, conventions, tradeshows, sports events, major motion pictures, theatrical installations and other entertainment and corporate events.The IATSE Local 134 workforce is comprised of residents of Santa Clara County and surrounding areas. From moving light programmers to rope access technicians to film grips to set carpenters to high-end projectionists to audio engineers, the local provides employers with highly skilled technicians. The local is run by its members, and gives each person an opportunity to guide the organization in ways that best benefit its members. The local works within the community to provide a better quality of life for everyone. Entertainment technology, like most other industries, is getting more and more sophisticated. Currently, the union has focused its attention on increasing the training available to its workers to keep them up to date to meet the needs of the area employers.

Local 134 continues to grow with hundreds of men and women in the workforce. It has played an important role in Santa Clara County, providing a valuable service to area employers.

“Let the nobility of our aspirations for justice, truth, liberty and the grander development of our craft in the future, be the guiding starts to our actions.” Stated at the 3rd National Alliance of Stage Employees Convention, in 1896, by President Lee M. Hart

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