Media Advisory: April 7, 2008
Reality TV Workers Demand Fair Pay

Workers from Top Shows Take Legal Action to Collect Unpaid Overtime

On Tuesday, April 8, workers from some of TV's top reality shows, including American Idol, Are You Smarter Than A Fifth Grader?, and American Inventor, will gather at the Van Nuys office of the California Division of Labor Standards Enforcement (DLSE) to file claims alleging that the producers of these shows owe them unpaid overtime and penalties that could total over $500,000.

Despite the huge profits made by the companies that produce these shows, many of the workers - including writers, production assistants, contestant coordinators, craft services, and office workers - work long hours without receiving overtime compensation or being allowed to take proper breaks.

According to Harsh Reality, a study released last fall by the Writers Guild of America, West, reality TV workers report widespread violations of wage and hour law, including failure to pay overtime, provide meal periods, and maintain accurate payroll records. The study also revealed that many of these workers do not receive any form of health care or pension benefits.  

Press conference with workers from hit reality TV shows American Idol, Are You Smarter Than A Fifth Grader?, So You Think You Can Dance, Gene Simmons' Family Jewels, Amazing Race, American Inventor, On The Lot, and others.

Speakers to include: Deputy District Director Kan Matoo, representing Assemblyman Lloyd Levine (AD-40), UCLA Center for Labor Research and Education Director Sharon Delugach, Teamsters Local 399 Organizing Director Steve Dayan, reality TV workers, and more to be announced.
Tuesday, April 8, 2008 - 11:00 a.m.

Outside the Division of Labor Standards Enforcement office
6150 Van Nuys Blvd, Van Nuys CA 91401
*Press conference will take place near the Delano St. entrance.

Statements from workers and guest speakers, one-on-one interviews, shots of workers filing claims inside the DSLE office.

For press inquiries, please contact Gregg Mitchell and/or Terence Long at (323) 782-4574, or email: Gregg Mitchell or Terence Long.