Actors’ Equity Association and the Broadway League Reach Deal on Safety Plans for Reopening

New York -- Actors’ Equity Association, the national union representing more than 51,000 professional actors and stage managers working in live theatre, and the Broadway League, the national trade association for the Broadway industry, have announced an agreement on safety protocols for Production Contract shows on Broadway and in sit-down productions across the country. This news comes as Pass Over, the first Broadway play set to resume performances, moves into the August Wilson Theatre today for rehearsals.

Key provisions of the agreement include:  

  • Improved HVAC standards; 
  • Mandated vaccines for the workforce, with the exception of those who cannot do so for reasons such as age or risks to their health; 
  • Weekly testing for employees; 
  • Allowance for modifications to the protocols where necessary for individual shows or locations.

“This is an important milestone on the path to getting all our members safely back to work,” said Mary McColl, executive director for Actors’ Equity Association. “We are grateful to the League for their partnership on these protocols. We all feel this plan is robust, adaptable to changing conditions and in line with the science. Vaccines work, and those who are vaccinated will protect both themselves and those who can’t be at this time.” 

“The secure return of our casts, crews and employees is our top priority. The Broadway League and Equity, faced with ever-changing COVID related variables, have agreed on health and safety protocols for actors and stage managers returning to Broadway. We will continue to partner with our union colleagues as we work together towards raising all of our curtains again,” said Charlotte St. Martin, president of The Broadway League.

Background: During the pandemic, Actors’ Equity Association has worked to prioritize workplace safety, retaining former head of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) Dr. David Michaels, to advise the union on pandemic safety issues. The union has regularly released updated safety guidance for producers. Equity also fought for a testing and vaccination site in New York to help reopen the city’s theatre district.

ACTORS' EQUITY ASSOCIATION, founded in 1913, is the U.S. labor union that represents more than 51,000 professional actors and stage managers. Equity endeavors to advance the careers of its members by negotiating wages, improving working conditions and providing a wide range of benefits (health and pension included). Member: AFL-CIO, FIA.  #EquityWorks  

THE BROADWAY LEAGUE (Charlotte St. Martin, President), founded in 1930, is the national trade association for the Broadway industry. The League’s 700-plus members include theatre owners and operators, producers, presenters, and general managers who present in nearly 200 markets in North America. Each year, League members bring Broadway to nearly 30 million people in New York and on tour across the U.S. and Canada. The Broadway League has recently added a new category for International membership to collaborate with professionals from around the world who produce and present Broadway quality theatre. The Broadway League annually co-presents the Antoinette Perry “Tony” Awards®, one of the most coveted awards in the entertainment industry.

July 29, 2021