JOINT PRESS RELEASE
AFTRA and SAG Members Overwhelmingly Ratify
Two-Year Extension of Commercials Contract
Los Angeles (September 26, 2006) – In national voting completed today, members of the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists and Screen Actors Guild overwhelmingly approved a two-year extension to the Commercials Contracts with the advertising industry covering advertisements on TV, radio, the Internet, and New Media.
The memberships of AFTRA and SAG voted 95.8 percent in favor of the agreement. Approximately 125,000 members of the unions received ballots, of which 21 percent returned them. The final vote was certified this evening by Integrity Voting Systems, an impartial election service based in Everett , Washington .
The pact with the Association of National Advertisers and the American Association of Advertising Agencies goes into effect October 30, 2006, and will remain in force until October 29, 2008.
SAG and AFTRA members voted on the tentative agreement that had been reached with the advertising industry August 4 and recommended by the SAG-AFTRA Joint Board by an almost 95-percent margin in a meeting on August 26. Ballots were sent Sept. 5 to all union members in good standing; performers with memberships in both unions received one ballot.
AFTRA President John Connolly said: “The overwhelming support for this extension to the commercials contracts is a victory for the entire industry—performers and advertisers alike. In exchange for express recognition of jurisdiction and increased wages and benefits, AFTRA will now work in partnership with our sister union and the advertising industry to analyze the rapidly evolving media environment. This agreement will increase job opportunities for professional performers in every corner of traditional and new media.”
SAG President Alan Rosenberg said: “Our members recognized that this two-year commercials contracts extension was a solid, fair deal for working actors. The agreement clearly establishes jurisdiction over commercials appearing on all new media platforms, calls for a crucial joint study that will allow us to analyze the rapidly changing industry and provides SAG members with an expected $45 million in additional annual compensation. This overwhelming approval by members across the country is evidence that Screen Actors Guild is unified and committed to achieving fair contracts. I commend the hard-working SAG/AFTRA member-staff team for its efforts.”
For further information on the contract, including a summary of the agreement, click here>>
The American Federation of Television and Radio Artists—affiliated with the AFL-CIO—is a diverse national union representing more than 70,000 professional performers, broadcasters and recording artists in 32 Locals throughout the country. AFTRA members work as actors, broadcast journalists, dancers, singers, announcers, hosts, comedians and disc jockeys in all aspects of the media industries including television and radio, sound recordings, commercials, industrial non-broadcast, interactive games and the Internet. For more information, visit www.aftra.com.
Screen Actors Guild is the nation’s largest labor union representing working actors. Established in 1933, SAG has a rich history in the American labor movement, from standing up to studios to break long-term engagement contracts in the 1940s to fighting for artists’ rights amid the digital revolution sweeping the entertainment industry in the 21st century. With 20 branches nationwide, SAG represents nearly 120,000 working actors in film, television, industrials, commercials, video games, music videos and other new media. The Guild exists to enhance actors’ working conditions, compensation and benefits and to be a powerful, unified voice on behalf of artists’ rights. SAG is a proud affiliate of the AFL-CIO. Headquartered in Los Angeles , you can visit SAG online at www.sag.org.