Drake Accused of Ignoring Union busting of Stagehand’s Union in Seattle Peformance


Writing for the Guardian, Payday Senior Labor Reporter Mike Elk has a look at why the Canadian rapper Drake is being accused of ignoring the plight of stagehands facing union busting:

Drake recently said his US tour was an opportunity to bring the values of his home town, Toronto, to a wider audience. “I’m forever grateful, everywhere I go, I carry the values of this city with me,” he said. “Every night that I go and do a show in America, I tell them, ‘This is how the world is supposed to work,’” he told a crowd in Toronto in August.

Members of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE) have written to Drake asking him to share those values by speaking out against the anti-union activities of the organizers of his Tacoma Concert on 1 November.

“What we are asking you to do is to share ‘the values of our city’ on the stage and in a letter to Rhino Staging Northwest, Live Nation, and the Tacoma Dome,” wrote Toronto-based IATSE Local 58 business agent Nelson Robinson in a letter to Drake. “We urge you to let [the crowd] know that you support the people, who work backstage, that they have a right to a union contract, better safety, and health insurance”.

For more, go to the Guardian. 

About the Author

Mike Elk
A protege of Bill Greider, Mike Elk is an Emmy-nominated labor reporter who covered Lula & the drug war in Brasil and spent years covering union organizing in the South for The Guardian. In 2016, he used his NLRB settlement from being fired illegally for union organizing at Politico to start the crowd-funded Payday Report. The son of retired United Electrical Workers (UE) Director of Organization Gene Elk, he was once described as an "abrasive gadfly" by the New York Times for his role in exposing sexual misconduct in the labor movement. He lives in his hometown of Pittsburgh. Email: [email protected]

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