Arts and Entertainment Workers Fighting for Their Rights
Animation Workers Sign New Contracts
On September 24, animation workers at Titmouse Vancouver signed their
first union contract with IATSE (International Alliance of Theatrical
This is only the second collective agreement signed by animation
workers in Canada with Oasis Animation Workers Union in Montreal having
signed their contract in November, 2019 with Oasis Animation. The union
is a member of CSN (Confederation des Syndicats Nationaux).
Oasis union President Tamarind King said, "Salaries will improve and
there will be annual raises. Even as the country's animation production
booms, labour conditions remain poor. There is a lack of job security
and prevalence of unpaid overtime. Some Canadian studios still pay
animators by the frame, a sweatshop tactic that is also common
in Asia, which means animators are not paid for overtime and often have
to work crunch hours just to make a living wage."
are 70,000 animation workers in Canada with Vancouver being the centre
of animation production with over 60 studios and one of the
biggest animation centres in the world. Big Bad Boo is the largest
animation company in Canada. Ontario has a $200 million dollar a year
The Titmouse agreement will cover approximately 200 workers and is
the first-ever contract for the recently chartered Animation Guild,
IATSE Local 938.
The world's largest animation companies are Pixar U.S., (subsidiary
of Disney); Walt Disney, U.S.; Studio Ghibli, Japanese, (Disney);
Dreamworks, (owned by Reliance Entertainment Pvt Ltd) India;
Nickelodeon, U.S.; Aardman, UK.
Highlights of the four-year Titmouse agreement include defined
procedures, increased wage minimums, improved annual wage increases, a
15 per cent premium for employees taking on supervisory duties,
increased sick/personal days (and the ability to take half-days), and
enhanced RRSPs with a lower fee structure. "There are real gains
for everyone in this agreement," remarked Emily Gossmann, IATSE Local
938 Senior Steward and member of the bargaining committee, adding
"these gains will be backed by the strong representation that the IATSE
"The IATSE is proud to have these talented workers within our
ranks," said IATSE International President Matthew D. Loeb, "and
thrilled that they can now begin to experience similar benefits and
protections to those long enjoyed by the IATSE-represented animation
workers in Los Angeles."
This article was published in
October 8, 2021 - No. 93