days since last accident 165

Los Angeles (December 12, 2005) --- Dancers need protection--and the Washington Ballet refuses to provide it. Despite ongoing negotiations, the Washington Ballet refuses to provide its dancers with any reasonable level of protection against injury, job security or professional respect.

The dancers want what any other employees want: a safe working environment, protection against discrimination, protection against mean-spirited, vindictive and arbitrary treatment, and a contract that guarantees their rights as employees and as great dancers.

Dancers live to dance. But their talent, their skill and the beauty they create isn’t enough to protect them against injury, to protect their jobs, or to guarantee the necessities of life. Without a viable contract and forceful defense of their rights, dancers are vulnerable to injury, exploitation and discrimination.

The dancers need support from their fellow performers. Screen Actors Guild members can send an email to Washington Ballet Artistic Director Septime Webre (, Washington Ballet Executive Director Jason Palmquist ( and President of the Washington Ballet Board Kay Kendall ( ), and express their support and shared desire for respect and a meaningful contract.