DGA Statement on Passage of Expanded Coronavirus Relief Legislation Securing Access to Economic Support for Creative Workers

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March 27, 2020

LOS ANGELES – Directors Guild of America President Thomas Schlamme made the following statement today upon Congress’s passage of a new coronavirus economic relief bill which includes provisions expanding access to economic support for creative workers. The expanded measures protect DGA members and other entertainment workers – whose freelance, project-to-project employment can make qualifying for unemployment benefits difficult – and ensure that benefits will be more generous given the wide-ranging suspension of film and television production. The expanded protections in the bill increase and extend unemployment benefits, send one-time direct payments to individuals and families, provide financial support to states, and establish the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program for those who would not otherwise qualify for unemployment insurance.

“We applaud our allies in the House and the Senate for including provisions that provide access to vital lifelines, including unemployment benefits and direct cash payments, for our members and hundreds of thousands of creative workers whose unique working situations were a barrier to such critical relief. Lawmakers have heeded our urgent calls to address the needs of our members and others, everyday working men and women, who were so hard hit by the coronavirus crisis as film and television production shut down, including aid for those whose future projects were canceled.

“We thank Congressional leadership, and the lawmakers championing the critical work of our members whose films and television programs entertain billions of people around the world. This support will keep them protected and will allow them to come out strong on the other end when they’re able to continue work again. We urge the President to approve these protections, which will soon put much needed money in the hands of our members and their families.”


DGA Communications Department (310) 289-5333