Nia Vardalos claims her Writers Guild of America health insurance has been canceled amid the ongoing strike.
The My Big Fat Greek Wedding franchise writer — and star — took to Instagram on Thursday, September 21, to share the news with her followers and fellow WGA members, whom she believes are facing the same issue.
“My Writers Guild health coverage was just canceled. Yours too I bet,” Vardalos, 60, captioned the post, which featured a giant confused-face emoji. “Hi @wgawest you might want to give extensions while we are all walking that strike line. K thanks. Edit: and let’s do a benefit to raise donations for those in need 💰.”
Vardalos — who wrote and starred in My Big Fat Greek Wedding 3, which was released earlier this month — got into specifics about the alleged loss of the insurance in the comments section.
“There are a lot of writers with families who are in the same position and the @wgawest should offer extensions to everyone while they are on strike,” she explained to a fan. “A film’s payment fee to the writer has a cap that can be counted toward health, and yet, the higher the fee, the higher the yearly dues 🙄. I was paid for the script in 2019&2020, but because of the pandemic, filmed it in 2022. So while the film is in theaters, and we are on strike, the @wgawest decided to revoke health care.”
The actress further claimed that in order to keep her and her daughter’s health insurance via COBRA, it would cost her “$1900 a month.”
“So imagine how some of these writers with families are suffering right now,” Vardalos — who shares daughter Ilaria with ex-husband Ian Gomez — pointed out.
Vardalos’ post comes one day after she picketed with Octavia Spencer, who shared photos of their time on the WGA picket line via Instagram on Thursday.
“Thanks for walking with me yesterday @niavardalos it felt good to do something to further the cause,” Spencer, 53, wrote. “I’m also Glad to hear negotiations are going well with #WGA. Let’s resolve these strikes across the country by paying teamsters, autoworkers, actors, and writers what they deserve. #UnionsStrong.”
Vardalos shared Spencer’s sentiment, commenting on the upload: “I adore you @octaviaspencer and would walk anywhere with you from a strike line to @target to get my favorite undies. Yes, let’s all union workers, auto, crew, writers, actors get fair wages and back to work ❤️.”
The WGA has been on strike against the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP) since late May as they advocate for better wages amid the streaming service landscape. The Screen Actors Guild American and Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA) joined the picket lines for their own strike against the AMPTP in July over similar issues. Both strikes have led to the postponement of dozens of television shows and movies.
Us Weekly has reached out to the Writers Guild of America for comment.