Occupational Hazard –
DECEMBER 3, 2019 – Some of the survey’s findings point to gender and racial disparities within the industry. (Around 70% of the assistants surveyed were women, in contrast with the upper echelons of the industry, and 78.21% were white.) Meanwhile, other statistics point to issues which haven’t been as widely discussed.
#PayUpHollywood previously shared with Variety that 72 assistants reported that a boss or supervisory colleague had thrown an object at them at work. (Most often a stapler.) That number is now 104. Equally troubling is that more than half felt anxious about reporting workplace violations for fear of being fired or losing future opportunities, potentially an indicator of unreported or under-reported workplace abuses.
In terms of the pay issue at the heart of #PayUpHollywood’s fight, the survey revealed that 64.41% of respondents are paid less than $50,000 before taxes, with almost 11% paid less than $30,000. #PayUpHollywood co-founder Liz Alper said at the organization’s first official town hall on Nov. 24 that given the current cost of living in Los Angeles, an assistant would have to be paid $53,600 after taxes in order to not be rent-burdened, which means that housing costs encompass more than 30% of their income. It’s no surprise, therefore, that 90% of the assistants who took the survey reported being rent-burdened.