UK’s Pact publishes ‘Red Book’ of terms & conditions as Bectu stand-off continues

John McVay

UK trade body Pact has published its own set of terms and conditions for indies to use in engaging crew on scripted productions, as the ongoing stand-off with broadcast union Bectu rumbles on.

Pact said its conditions would “provide clarity” when the existing agreement ends on 1 September, which will see the UK trade body without a mandate to proceed with collective negotiations.

Bectu members “overwhelmingly” rejected the latest terms offered by Pact in a ballot held earlier this month. Without a deal, scripted producers in the UK will no longer have a uniform set of term of conditions to work from when setting crew contracts.

Among Bectu’s sticking points has been that the proposed terms don’t do enough to protect the boundaries between working and personal hours.

Last month, a host of UK prodcos, including Marcella producer Buccaneer Media and Normal People firm Element Pictures, urged Bectu members to take the proposed deal or risk “the whole of scripted TV” being damaged.

Red Book rules

Pact said a proposal for a four-week extension on the existing agreement, which would also have allowed time for new negotiations, was rejected by parts of Bectu, adding that its “recommended Red Book terms and conditions” would offer “clarity around engaging crew in a fair and transparent manner on new productions.”

Pact added: “These honour the promise made to crew to address the work-life balance and include a shorter working day and enhanced payments for night work, weekend working, bank holidays and prep and wrap.”

John McVay, Pact CEO, said: “We are very disappointed that these serious efforts to get all sides around the table have been rejected by some of the BECTU branches despite the efforts of the union leaders.

“We are always willing to get back around the table if circumstances change.

“But we are acting today to create clarity for producers and crew from next month. The Red Book honours the improvements to terms and conditions, including improvements to the work-life balance, which were offered to crew this summer. The terms are designed to benefit crew at all levels, from the most experienced to those working in the industry for the first time, and to work for productions of all budgets.”

Tags: BECTU, Pact

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