10 Useful Emergency Financial Assistance Resources for Film Workers

10 Useful Emergency Financial Assistance Resources for Film Industry Workers
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Things have been getting more and more difficult for film workers, with two strikes now dragging on for months with no end in sight.

The writers’ strike, and now the actors going on strike, is taking its financial toll on many of us film industry workers, including those who aren’t on strike.  Many film workers have now drained their savings and need emergency financial assistance. Since the writers went on strike, the work slowdown has now ground to a complete work stoppage, impacting thousands of people working on film and television projects.

If you’re one of those industry workers affected by the strikes, help is available.  I’ve compiled this list of resources because navigating through the available resources can be confusing and stressful.  

Here are some resources available for emergency financial assistance:

1. Motion Picture and Television Fund Grants

The MPTF is a charitable organization that’s been helping those in need in our industry since the silent film era.  If you have a demonstrable financial need due to the strike, the MPTF can provide temporary help.  

323-634-3888; 855-760-6783; [email protected] 

2. Entertainment Community Fund

The Entertainment Community Fund offers emergency financial assistance to qualified union and non-union workers in performing arts and entertainment who are unable to pay their immediate basic living expenses.  

Los Angeles – Western Region: 323-330-2455; [email protected]

New York – Eastern Region: 917-281-5919; [email protected]

Chicago – Central Region: 312-372-0989; [email protected]

3. SAG-AFTRA Foundation Emergency Assistance Program

The SAG-AFTRA Foundation has an emergency financial assistance and disaster relief fund for eligible dues-paying SAG-AFTRA members who are in urgent financial need.  

You can find the eligibility requirements and the application online.  

[email protected] 

4. IATSE Local 600 Hardship Fund

For members in good standing of IATSE Local 600, the cinematographers and camera crew union local.  

Request a letter at [email protected].  More information on the Hardship Fund can be found on the Entertainment Community Fund website.

5. IATSE Local 798

IA Local 798 is the industry union for makeup artists and hairstylists.  Financial assistance is available for eligible verified union members.  See the Entertainment Community Fund website for details on how to apply. 

6. Hollywood Support Staff Relief Fund

HSSRF offers one-time emergency financial assistance grants for film and television assistance and support staff who have less than three years of industry experience and have lost work due to a work stoppage.  

Contact the Entertainment Community Fund for details on how to apply.

7. Directors Guild Foundation

The DGA Foundation has an emergency financial relief fund, which exists alongside the longstanding interest-free loan program for DGA members.  The emergency relief fund issues $1000 financial relief grants to members.

For the emergency relief fund, call the MPTF at 323-634-3888 or email [email protected].

For the DGA Foundation interest-free loan program, contact the foundation at 310-289-2037 or email [email protected]

8. SAG-AFTRA Federal Credit Union

The SAG-AFTRA Federal Credit Union has low-interest loans available for credit union members affected by the strikes, with no interest or payments due for four months.  Loan amounts up to $5000 are available with a credit pull, up to $2500 with no credit pull.

See the SAG-AFTRA Federal Credit Union website for details.

9. Casting Society Cares

Casting Society Cares is the emergency assistance fund for members of the Casting Society.  Current active members of the Casting Society, a trade organization for casting directors, can apply for emergency financial assistance to pay basic living expenses on the Casting Society website.

10. American Guild of Musical Artists Relief Fund

Current members in good standing of this guild may be eligible for financial hardship assistance, as well as grants through the Entertainment Community Fund.  

Contact [email protected]

If you need emergency financial assistance and are eligible through any of the above-mentioned organizations, don’t hesitate to reach out to them.  This is an unfortunate and unique time in our industry, and you’re not alone if you’re struggling mentally, emotionally, or financially.  

Help is available.


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