Cut Down Trees Outside Of A LA Studio Spark A Strike


Cut Down Trees Outside Of A LA Studio Spark A Strike:

The office of the Los Angeles City Controller is looking into why NBCUniversal cut down a row of trees on the outside its studios where SAG-AFTRA members were picketing company leaders, taking away their shade during a heat wave.

In the fight between Hollywood companies and striking screenwriters as well as actors, a row of closely clipped ficus trees on a path outside of Universal companies has become a hot spot.

Chris Stephens, a comedian and TV writer, didn’t notice anything strange Monday morning when he crossed the street to attend the other writers protesting outside the Universal Studios Lot north of Hollywood. Someone then asked him if he’d seen the trees.

The Union And Several Local Politicians Think The Studio Cut Trees In Order To Remove Shade From Picketing Workers:

A number of members of the Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Radio and Television Artists as well as Writers Guild of America unions, as well as some sympathetic local politicians, think that the studio cut down the trees on purpose to get rid of a source of shade for workers who were picketing in the hot Southern California sun.

Even so, they came together on Wednesday. One woman wore a green wreath upon her head and held a sign with a picture of a full, untrimmed tree and the words “Never Forget.”

Since May 11,000 Writers Have Been On Strike:

Since May, 11,000 Writers Guild of America members have been on strike because talks between the union and the Alliance of Motion Picture as well as Television Producers, which represents the studios, broke down. Last week, SAG-AFTRA’s 160,000 actors and other media stars joined them.

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But in some parts of the country, it’s been very hot, so strike leaders are telling people to stay hydrated as well as apply sunscreen. This week, SAG-AFTRA called off their pickets against Disney as well as Warner Bros. because of “extreme heat in LA.”

The City Controller’s Office Stated It Was Looking Into Claims That Studio Cut The Trees That Provided Shade To Protesters:

The city controller’s office said it was looking into claims that Universal cut down a row of trees that provided shade for protesters in front of an opening to its theme park this week. The strikes in Hollywood were still going on during a very hot spell.

About 20 members of the Writers Guild of America were picketing outside Gate 8 at the corner of Barham Boulevard as well as Forest Lawn Drive. They were partly shielded from the sun by some thick trees along the path, which made some people wonder if the studio giant had cut the trees on purpose. On social media, some people started calling the event “Treegate.”

“Our Office is looking into the tree trimming that happened outside Universal Studios, where workers, writers, as well as actors were exercising their right to picket,” L.A. City Controller Kenneth Mejia wrote within a Twitter thread, adding that the trees in question belong to the city and that any code violation could lead to tickets.

The part of Barham Boulevard where the trees were cut is in Los Angeles and not in the city borders of Burbank. Anthony said that he had talked to politicians in Los Angeles about the cutting.

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“We are unable to locate any work orders for trimming this tree, which is a problem because there are a lot of rules about trees in Southern California,” he said.

In Southern California You Can Not Cut Trees Until October:

“Usually, you don’t cut until October, and the same style as well as type of tree approximately 200 feet long this way is not manicured. But those don’t give the protesters shade, do they?”

In a statement to CNN, the Los Angeles Public Works Department said that the city had not given any licenses to trim trees in the area outside of Universal’s buildings.

NBCUniversal Spokeswoman Stated That The Compony Is Getting Pop-up Tents And Water For The People:

The NBCUniversal spokeswoman also said that the company has been working on getting things like pop-up tents and water for the people who are there. “We keep talking with the union leaders on-site in an open way so we can work together throughout this time,” they stated.

When asked for a reply, the Writers Guild of America declined to respond right away. A representative for SAG-AFTRA told The Post that the two unions each filed charges alongside the National Labor Relations Board in opposition to NBCUniversal on Tuesday for dangerous conditions at picket lines. The tree-trimming incident was used as an example.

“SAG-AFTRA appreciates the attempts to make sure our members have an appropriate environment to use their federal rights to participate in protests and ask for a fair agreement,” they said.

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“Suspiciously timed construction that forced picketers through streets without proper safety rails and now tree trimming that took away shade during a record heatwave have led SAG-AFTRA to decide that it can’t safely bring its members to picket at NBCUniversal.”

An NBCUniversal spokesperson said in response to a question about the unfair labor charge, “We strongly believe that the company has met all of its legal obligations beneath the National Labor Relations Act, and that we will work with the National Labor Relations Board if they want to know more about this.”

“We know that the exact moment of our multi-year building endeavor has made it hard for people who want to protest, but we are still working alongside public agencies to make access easier.” We back the unions’ right to hold safe protests.”

Individuals Who Are Protesting Are In Danger Of Heat Stroke And Heat Exhaustion:

The National Weather Service says that the high temperature in Los Angeles this week will be in the low 90s.

The agency says that being in full sunlight may increase “feeling” temperatures by as much as fifteen degrees. Picketers would be within risk of heat stroke as well as heat exhaustion if they didn’t have shade.