SAG, AFTRA Members Ratify Commercials Pact
In a nationwide mail ballot completed yesterday, members of the Screen Actors (SAG) and the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (AFTRA) overwhelmingly approved new three-year contracts with the advertising industry. The new agreements cover performers working in commercials made for and reused on TV, radio, the Internet and new media.
The unions estimate the contract will raise members’ earnings by more than $108 million over the three-year agreement. The deal also establishes a first-ever payment structure in commercials for the Internet and new media. The new payment structure goes into effect in the third year of the contract.
SAG President Alan Rosenberg said:
I am pleased that SAG and AFTRA were able to work together to reach an agreement that will benefit actors who work in the advertising industry.
The pact with the Association of National Advertisers and the American Association of Advertising Agencies goes into effect retroactively to April 1, 2009, and expires March 31, 2012.
AFTRA President Roberta Reardon said:
These new agreements provide significant increases in payments to working performers now—a major achievement in a severely depressed global economy—and the contracts will guarantee our continued participation in this important area of work as it evolves in response to consumer tastes and trends affected by the changing landscape of digital technology.
The tentative agreement was reached March 31, and ballots were mailed to members on April 30.
Sue-Anne Morrow, SAG chairwoman of the SAG-AFTRA Joint Commercials Negotiating Committee, says the contract shows that SAG and AFTRA members “have enormous power when we negotiate jointly and it put us in a great position from day one.”
Achieving a minimum for ads made for the Internet and new media was a huge win. It was time to insist that actors be paid fairly for their exposure in these developing areas and members clearly approved through their overwhelming votes to ratify.