TONIGHT: Union Stagehands to Picket Merrill Auditorium, Demand Fair Contract

Union Stagehands to Picket Merrill Auditorium, Demand Fair Contract & Halt Union Busting Tonight, Thurs. Nov. 18, at 5:30pm

Members of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees. (IATSE) Local 114 will be holding an informational picket outside Merrill Auditorium at 20 Myrtle Street tonight, Thursday, November 18 at 5:30pm. If you are in the Portland area, please join them and show solidarity!
The group will meet on the steps of Portland City Hall at 5:30pm and walk over to the Merrill Auditorium to hand out leaflets to audience attendees demanding that the City of Portland rejoin into negotiations for a fair contract and to halt efforts to undermine their workers by allowing non-union labor to be brought into the city-owned Merrill Auditorium. IATSE 114 is currently working without a contract after its previous contract expired in 2020. Despite several efforts to bring management to the table, union members have been repeatedly rebuffed. 
Most recently, Merrill Auditorium has announced that it will no longer honor an exclusivity agreement with the union to provide stage labor and instead is allowing a concert promoter to hire an outside labor provider for the Chelsea Handler show Thursday night and potentially more events in the future. Members of IATSE 114 will be handing out leaflets to audience members tonight to call attention to the venue’s anti-union tactics. 
“We have been the de facto sole provider of stage labor at Merrill since it opened in 1997,” said Local 114 Business Agent Douglas Born, “and our members provided labor at the old City Hall Auditorium for decades before that.  We finally got the city to put it in writing several years ago to avoid situations just like this one, but suddenly the city wants to ignore that history and our continuing contribution to its operation.”