BACKGROUND AND EXPLANATION
The DCINY orchestra has been fighting for over two years for a fair contract with DCINY, a for-profit company that holds most of its concerts at Carnegie Hall.
The orchestra successfully formed a union with Local 802 over two years ago. But their employer, DCINY, has essentially locked them out and refuses to offer industry standards like union wages, proper rest breaks, health insurance, retirement payments, recording or streaming payments, job security, a primary hiring list and more.
The company resumed live performances in 2022 and immediately replaced the full professional orchestra with just a handful of musicians. The company also attempted to replace professional musicians with an amateur high school ensemble. At a recent negotiation session, management introduced a new proposal that would force musicians to audition for positions they’ve already been awarded, which could allow musicians to be replaced permanently. Musicians have responded with protests and demands for a fair contract.
Management refused to schedule negotiations with the union for many months. This stalemate was finally broken after Local 802 filed an Unfair Labor Practice charge against the company. The company has also been charged with a second Unfair Labor Practice, which is in progress.
“An injury to one is an injury to all” is the motto of the labor movement. We must stand up for professional standards, especially when an employer hires musicians to perform at an iconic major venue like Carnegie Hall.