Find the latest breaking news and information on the top stories, science, business, entertainment, politics, and more.

‘SNL’ crew threatens to strike: ‘NBCU wants to shut us up… we’ll scream louder’

Members of the “Saturday Night Live” crew have threatened to strike if they cannot reach a contract agreement with their employer, NBC, by the end of this month.

The sketch comedy show’s post-production team plans to go on strike on April 1, the Motion Picture Editors Guild announced Thursday. via Twitter. Staff members are demanding higher wages, maintained health benefits and collective bargaining rights.

According to MPEG, members of the show’s editorial department are paid “well below industry standards,” with assistant editors reportedly earning “just a fraction of what their counterparts on union shows make.”

“After months of negotiations, NBCU has still not agreed to address the crew’s concerns, or even to ensure that current health benefits are maintained…,” the MPEG statement read.

“The season is almost over. NBCU is not only saying no to the union’s reasonable proposals, but by offering annual raises that are below industry standards, they are pushing for a deal that ignores the rising cost of living (and) rolls back crew in future years.

In addition, the union accused the studio giant of introducing an “egregious ‘management rights’ clause that would strip union employees of their right to bargain over workplace rules (and) policies.”

According Variety, other “SNL” employees have shown their support for their post-production colleagues by wearing “Contract Now” T-shirts to work in recent weeks. At the end of an episode hosted last month by Pedro Pascal, several members of the cast, including Colin Jost, James Austin Johnson, Andrew Dismukes, Sarah Sherman and Bowen Yang, wore the shirts on air during the scene call.

A source close to the situation told The Times on Thursday that NBC has committed to closing negotiations by the end of the month and is working quickly to reach an agreement. However, the union is skeptical.

“NBCU claims that they too want to reach an agreement. But… the talks are dragging on,” says the MPEG statement.

“NBCU has refused to show the SNL post team the respect they deserve. NBCU wants to shut us up, so we’ll scream louder. Plan to join us on the picket line on April 1.”