The Writers’ Guild of America (WGA) has set a date for its first strike authorization vote in ten years.
The WGA West will vote at a special membership meeting at the Sheraton Universal in Los Angeles on April 18, followed by online balloting the next day. The WGA East will vote on April 19 at the New York City offices of the Service Employees International Union. Both meetings will begin at 7 pm.
“We will be returning to the bargaining table with the AMPTP for the week starting Monday, April 10,” guild leaders said in a statement. “We continue to need your support to achieve a fair contract before the May 1st expiration date.”
A strike would disproportionately affect network television series, which operate with weekly writer’s rooms. Streaming sites like Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon would have to hold production, but their model insulates them from immediate disruptions. A hiatus for late night shows like Stephen Colbert’s and Samantha Bee’s would sting particularly hard at a time when many Americans are turning to such shows for levity in an uncertain political moment.
The last writers’ strike lasted approximately four months, from November of 2007 to February of 2008.