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Strippers want to be part of a union

NAfter attacks and undercover video recordings by guests at a California nightclub, the Actors Equity Association (AEA) has demanded membership. About 30 dancers from North Hollywood’s Star Garden topless dive bar signed a petition to the federal labor relations board Wednesday.

“Strippers are live entertainment. While some aspects of their job are unique, they have a lot in common with other members of the union who dance for a living,” said AEA President Kate Shindle. The dispute between the strippers and the nightclub’s operators began in March. Back then, the dancers did not feel adequately protected by the security staff when they insulted, groped, and filmed the intoxicated guests against their will.

Backed by Strippers United, many women took to the streets in front of the bar on Langersheim Boulevard throughout the night. “We love what we do. But we do it if we enjoy basic labor protections,” dancer Velveeta said on Broadwayworld.com’s “Star Garden.”

Membership in the Actors’ Equity Union provides health insurance, compensation for work-related injuries, and protection against wrongful termination for the stripper and his fellow members.