Actors, directors want contract disputes settled by Labour Relations Board

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TORONTO - Actors, directors and musicians are urging the government to give them the same right as other workers to have disputes settled by the Ontario Labour Relations Board.

The Directors Guild of Canada, the Toronto Musicians' Association and ACTRA, the union representing 15,000 performers, say too many of their contract disputes end up in costly legal wrangling over jurisdiction.

They want the province to adopt a private members' bill from New Democrat Peter Tabuns, which would see their contract disagreements settled by the Labour Relations Board.

ACTRA Toronto president Heather Allin says passing the bill would add stability to a sector that pours $1 billion a year into the provincial economy.

She says it would send a message that "Ontario is the best, safest and most stable film production centre in the world."

The Directors Guild says ambiguity about the application of Ontario labour law to the film and television production sector threatens to make dispute resolution difficult, time-consuming and expensive.

Labour Minister Linda Jeffrey says she hasn't seen Tabuns' bill, but is always interested in advice on how to improve workplaces, and has a meeting with ACTRA scheduled later in the month.

Organizations: Ontario Labour Relations Board, Toronto Musicians, ACTRA Toronto

Geographic location: TORONTO, Ontario, Canada

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