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Nickelodeon Animation Studios has agreed to voluntarily recognize The Animation Guild as the bargaining representative for production workers at the studio.

In December of last year, a supermajority of production workers at Nickelodeon Studios voted in favor of unionizing with The Animation Guild (TAG), IATSE Local 839, and started working on their first collective bargaining agreement. The production workers joined more than 400 Nickelodeon artists who were already represented by TAG at that time.

After the vote, Nickelodeon was presented with the request for voluntary recognition. The company’s lawyers instead chose to strategically exclude a group of those workers based on job title, capitalizing on “common misconceptions of labor law in order to unnecessarily prolong the process.”

Now, however, the company has reversed course and all 177 production workers will be represented by TAG. To date, that is the largest bargaining unit of production workers to organize under The Animation Guild.

The organizing committee responsible for advancing the drive to unionization said in a release:

The organizing committee is overwhelmingly thrilled that Nickelodeon Animation Studios has decided to voluntarily recognize their production workers as members of The Animation Guild. By doing this, the studio has shown that they are willing and ready to recognize the hard work, time, and love we pour into our productions. We are so excited to work with them and our artist colleagues to come to an agreement that reiterates their support for what we do.

Steve Kaplan, business representative of TAG added:

I am glad that we were able to reach an agreement where Nickelodeon Animation Studios recognized both the determination of the animation production workers and our long-standing productive labor relations relationship. I look forward to bargaining a successor agreement.

And s Brian Keane, executive VP, production and operations, Nickelodeon Animation Studios finished:

Nickelodeon Animation Studios supports its talented and dedicated production workers who play an instrumental role in the making of our content. The studio’s collaborative relationship with The Animation Guild spans many years, and we look forward to bargaining an agreement with the union covering this new group of employees.

Pictured at top: The Loud House


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