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Los Angeles Unified Board of Education Approves Resolution in Support of Striking Writers (05-23-23)


May 23, 2023



Alex McElvain




Los Angeles Unified Board of Education Approves Resolution in Support of Striking Writers


Unanimously approved resolution from Tuesday’s board meeting supports writers, calls upon AMPTP to prepare responses and meet writers in good faith at the bargaining table. 


Los Angeles, CA (May 23, 2023) – In solidarity with Writers Guild of America (WGA), the Los Angeles Unified Board of Education unanimously approved today a resolution in support of the writers.


The resolution, sponsored by Board President Jackie Goldberg, Board Vice President Scott Schmerelson and Board Members Dr. Rocío Rivas, Nick Melvoin, Kelly Gonez and Tanya Ortiz Franklin, and officially supports the striking writers and calls upon the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP) to prepare a response to WGA demands that justifies a return to the bargaining table, brings an end to the strike and ultimately leads to a just contract. It also directs the Los Angeles Unified Superintendent to report back to the board all contracts, subscriptions and other business between the district and AMPTP members in case the WGA calls for boycotts or other actions in solidarity with striking writers.


“It’s true that these writers are responsible for the stories that add so much entertainment and meaning to our lives and thus deserve a fair share of the profits generated by their work,” Board President Jackie Goldberg said. “But this strike is about so much more than that. We are on the verge of unprecedented technological transformation that could remake the shape of labor compensation throughout the economy in every sector. Writers understand that. The contract that results from this negotiation will set a precedent for the role of human creativity and labor in an increasingly automated and artificially human world. I am happy the board unanimously recognizes the importance of the writers’ principled stand today. Los Angeles Unified stands with the WGA.”


“I am happy to co-sponsor the Pencils Down resolution,” Board Vice President Schmerelson said. “It is important to support the Writers Guild in their mission to support their members and their families. Los Angeles Unified supports students in the arts they choose to follow. How can we, in good conscience, tell our students to chase their dreams if those dreams don’t provide them enough in pay and benefits to live and thrive in Los Angeles? I stand with the Writers Guild of America, not just for the current writers but for the future of the profession.”


“I wholeheartedly support all workers' rights to organize,” Board Member Dr. Rocío Rivas said. “The solidarity shown by Writers Guild of America members, whose work often reaches global audiences, sends a clear message to the world that the dignity of workers must come before profit.”


“I’m proud to co-sponsor this resolution and affirm LA Unified’s support for the talented writers whose words bring the entertainment industry to life,” Board Member Nick Melvoin said. “We appreciate the WGA members taking a stand to ensure that aspiring generations of writers in our classrooms now can pursue these opportunities for the future.”


“Some of the WGA’s future writers are sitting in Los Angeles Unified classrooms right now, honing their writing skills and dreaming of an exciting career in film and entertainment,” Board Member Kelly Gonez said. “I co-sponsored this resolution and stand in solidarity with the WGA because our current and future creative professionals deserve fair wages that reflect the value of their craft.”


“Students deserve to be inspired to pursue fulfilling professions with fair compensation and positive working conditions, including the arts and entertainment industries right here in our vibrant city of Los Angeles,” Board Member Tanya Ortiz Franklin said. “I stand with my colleagues and wholeheartedly support the writers who help to ensure a robust career pathway for our students, as well as provide many joyful and moving experiences for viewers and readers worldwide.”