The IATSE (International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees) Local 22 Training Fund began in 2000 and is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) training trust. The Fund is an organization comprised of a Board of Trustees, a Director of Education and Training, and an Administrator. Currently, the Board is made up of five representatives from Management and five from Labor. It is financed through contributions from IATSE Local 22’s contracts including the Kennedy Center, the National Theatre, GLP, Ford’s Theatre, Capital One Arena, the Music Center at Strathmore, and a number of partners. Funding is also sought and received from individual contributors and granting organizations. The purpose of the Fund is to train members of the IATSE Local 22 Referral List in stagecraft and safe working practices thereby creating a highly trained and safe work force for our ever-changing industry.
Providing employers with a more educated and safer work force allows them to allocate resources to additional events, fewer worker’s compensation claims, and increased productivity. This work also contributes to the reputation of the employers as having venues with highly skilled union labor whom touring and special event companies want to work alongside.
The continued growth of the Fund has allowed for an expansion in the number of courses taught, the number of instructors, the frequency of outside instructors brought in for specialized courses, and access to an even greater variety of resources throughout the industry. The course catalog now includes more than thirty classes with more in development. This enlargement of the Fund has encouraged us to focus on some specific training needs, such as ETCP Electrician and Rigger requirements, AV instruction for the special event industry, and video and lighting console programming. The importance of educating employers and employees to the safety standards set forth by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration is addressed by holding at least annual 10 hour General Industry classes with plans to increase these and add Construction as well as 30 hour options.
As the entertainment industry continues to evolve, the IATSE Local 22 Training Fund strives to maintain a higher level of education for all its participants. The partnerships the Fund has fostered with employers, other educational entities, professional organizations, and leaders in the industry encourages and cultivates participation, and benefits all parties involved.