The wave of unionizing among art workers in USA continues to spread across museums. The most recent example was seen at the Museum of Contemporary Art (MoCA), Los Angeles.
Around 50 workers from MoCA shared an Instagram post, expressing their intentions of forming a union. The group said that the aim of the union would be to seek fair compensation for all workers within the museum. It must be noted that MoCA announced plans to restructure the admission fees for public earlier this year. The general admission into the gallery was made free, but entry into special exhibitions saw a fee hike. However, according to the workers, this was a decision involving only the top administration. External consultants were hired who claimed to speak on behalf of the entire staff. The group said that instead of hiring external consultants, the leaderships should instead directly listen to the needs of its workers.
The initial response of the museum has been less than enthusiastic. A representative of the museum said that while they certainly care about the opinions of their employees, they don’t think that forming a union would be in ‘best interests’ of the workers.
The calls to unionize at MoCA comes closely at the heel of other similar events. The most notable of them was the unionizing efforts at Marciano Art Gallery, which sadly resulted in a layoff of 60 workers and indefinite shuttering of the gallery. However, the protests at MoCA only strengthens the idea that art workers across the country are joining a larger movement of unionizing. Already the New Museum at NY succeeded at its attempts at unionizing, while similar movements at Guggenheim, Frye Museum and Brooklyn Academy of Music are currently ongoing.