NEW YORK (Reuters) -Major League Baseball (MLB) players on Friday announced they were launching a $1 million support fund for workers impacted by the ongoing lockout.
The fund, administered jointly by the Major League Baseball Players Association (MLBPA) and the AFL-CIO labor federation, will be used to benefit stadium employees and others experiencing financial hardship after MLB canceled the start of the regular season when it failed to reach a labor agreement with players.
“There are a lot of people who make our game great. Many aren’t seen or heard, but they are vital to the entertainment experience of our games,” MLBPA Executive Board leaders Andrew Miller and Max Scherzer said in a statement.
“Unfortunately, they will also be among those affected by the owner-imposed lockout and the cancellation of games. Through this fund, we want to let them know that they have our support.”
MLB has not commented on the record. A league source confirmed to Reuters that it is in the process of setting up a similar fund.
MLB locked out its players in December after failing to reach terms on a new collective bargaining agreement.
Commissioner Rob Manfred on Tuesday canceled the first two series of the season, marking the first missed games due to a labor dispute since the players’ strike of 1994-1995.
Representatives for the league and its players association met for informal talks in New York on Thursday.
MLBPA said it would work in conjunction with the AFL-CIO to identify the communities most in need of financial support in the weeks ahead.
(Reporting by Amy Tennery in New YorkEditing by Christian Radnedge and Jonathan Oatis)