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FRESH FACES, NEW DIRECTIONS
PLEDGE TO VOTE
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ABOUT UNITE FOR STRENGTH

OUR MISSION

(TEMP) We are committed to making SAG-AFTRA the world’s premiere union, representing those who work in front of a camera or behind a microphone. We do this by increasing SAG-AFTRA’s collective strength in organizing new work, streamlining our union’s operations, negotiating strong contracts, enforcing those contracts, getting our members paid rapidly and accurately, all while and developing new leaders to carry us into the future.

Unite for Strength is not a slate. we are a CALL TO ACTION.
THE values BELOW are the foundation of our PRINCIPLES
AS LEADERS and OUR MISSION AS UNION MEMBERS.

THEY drive THE COMMON GOAL OF makING SAG-AFTRA
the STRONGEST union for EVERY MEMBER.

OUR VALUES

RESULTS

It’s all about the work. The work of finding solutions to the issues that concern you every day of your career. Talk is cheap, however, having something to show for it is priceless. We’re committed to not just telling you how we plan to improve working conditions, we pledge to show it to you; both in the contracts you work and the leadership we provide.

VISION

The only constant in life is change. In order to prepare for it, one must have the ability to know which direction it is going. This requires foresight, and leaders who continuously study shifts in this ever-changing industry, to better position your ability to earn a living; today and well into the future.

INCLUSION

Our membership is diverse and so are the contracts you work. We believe leaders should reflect the people they represent. We also believe our union should cover the variety of ways you earn a living.

OUR PLATFORM

SAFER SETS

No one, repeat, no one should feel unsafe on the job. From stunt safety to sexual harassment, we are committed to making sure your job is conducted in professional and respectful environment. This commitment also extends to the audition process. Your first priority is to do a good job as a performer; our first priority is to help you focus on your job; and nothing else.

MORE MONEY

Long gone are the days of working for only three broadcast networks. In the age of streaming services the opportunities for employment has multiplied by the hundreds. Our industry isn’t as simple as it was “back in the day”. We consider that a good thing, because with your work now being seen by a global audience, the opportunities to earn more money has multiplied. Making sure that your checks reflect this new landscape is one of our top priorities in the boardroom.

A STABLE FUTURE

Times are tough. We’re also feeling the pain of a rapidly changing industry. Like you, our heads are spinning trying to stay ahead of the curve. However, we’re not letting that stop us from setting the best foundation possible for when the dust settles and ensure that your future is everything you’ve ever dreamed. We can't control how the industry changes, but we can control how we prepare for them.

RESULTS MATTER: BECAUSE UFS LEADERSHIP HAS ...

  • Merged SAG and AFTRA into SAG-AFTRA.
  • Negotiated over 1 billion additional dollars in game-changing contracts; like the 2019 Commercials Contract,
    The Netflix Deal, and Video Game Contracts.
  • Confronted sexual harassment through legislative action and contract improvements. Resulting in the only industry-wide 24/7 hotline and the use of on set intimacy coordinators.
  • Strong pensions in the Green Zone.
  • Won the BBH Strike!
  • Organized Telemundo; the first TV network to unionize in 65 years.
  • Helped secure and expand California Tax Incentives.
  • Achieved Dancer and Background coverage in Music Videos.
  • Achieved Performance Capture coverage in the Netflix Deal.
  • Total member earnings at an all-time high!

We're charting a course to ...

  • Continue strengthening our contracts and increase our residuals.
  • Improve contract enforcement and fight unfair exclusivity.
  • Bring even more commercial producers back to our contracts.
  • Continue protecting our pensions.
  • Advocate for stunt safety, better travel, and turnaround protections.
  • Fight to increase background pay and opportunities.
  • Organize new broadcast stations.
  • Champion diversity and inclusion.
  • Keep improving our low budget contracts and streamline the signatory process.
  • Push to restore performers ability to deduct commissions and safeguard against
    future unintentional tax increases.
  • Continue to keep SAG-AFTRA financially stable with surpluses that are building our reserve funds.

UFS HISTORY

In 2008, Unite for Strength (aka UFS) was formed by a few members of the Screen Actors Guild Hollywood Division. They’re concern was that leadership at the time had been creating division among performers and isolating the guild, which weakened its position in contract negotiations with the AMPTP. The infighting resulted in the two unions negotiating their TV/Theatrical Contract separately for the first time in over 25 years.

With the belief that the only way issues between the two unions could be fixed, this group began its long steady journey to bring all sides together at the negotiating table and complete the desire to merge SAG and AFTRA into one unified union.


In 2012, Unite for Strength was instrumental in bringing a merger referendum to the membership; complete with a new constitution. The membership of both legacy SAG and legacy AFTRA voted, overwhelmingly, in favor of the merger and as a result gave birth to SAG-AFTRA.

2008

A group of Unite for Strength members run for the board of directors, to offer SAG members a new direction. They call for a more unifying and strategic leadership approach; calls rejected by leaders of Membership First.

MF leaders fail to successfully negotiate any of SAG’s numerous expired contracts, including the all-important TV/Theatrical contract.

As film production halts due to the lack of a contract, UFS representatives, joined by board members from New York and across the country, form a new majority coalition and take control of the negotiations.

Three weeks later, a new TV/Theatrical contract was approved by members nearly 4 to 1 with a record voting turnout of 94%.

2009 - 2013

January: In a 28hr marathon session of the National Board, (National Executive Director) and the board appoints new NED with David White.

September: Unite for Strength candidates win 21 of 33 Hollywood Board seats, 4 additional National Board seats and both National Officers with Ken Howard elected as National President and Amy Aquino as Local President and National Secretary/Treasurer.

2013: Historic vote merges SAG and AFTRA into SAG-AFTRA; with Ken Howard and Roberta Reardon elected as Co-Presidents.

Ken Howard is elected first president of SAG-AFTRA.

2021

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Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

Fran Drescher - Candidate for President

MEET FRAN DRESCHER

From the set to Capitol Hill, Fran has met every challenge head on.
She brings a fresh perspective and unique voice to our union.

She beat cancer, founded the non-profit Cancer Schmancer, got a
health bill passed with unanimous consent by working across the aisle, and served under two White Houses.

Introducing the woman who's gearing up to be the next president
of SAG-AFTRA.

learn more about FRAN'S VISION

UFS CANDIDATES

Fran Drescher - Candidate for President

FRAN DRESCHER

sag-aftra president
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CANDIDATE STATEMENT
Anthony Rapp - Candidate for Secretary-Tresuerer

ANTHONY RAPP

sag-aftra secretary-treasurer
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CANDIDATE STATEMENT
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As artists, we come together—from all walks of life—to create something bigger than ourselves. We have the same opportunity as a union, to collectively and responsibly move SAG-AFTRA into the future. Throughout my 40 years of union membership, I’ve experienced every aspect of this industry, and it would be my honor to leverage our collective power to protect our safety, improve our working conditions, and shepherd SAG-AFTRA into a new era. Our union’s funding is a result of our collective hard work, and as Secretary-Treasurer I will act with integrity to safeguard our union's finances

‍-Anthony Rapp, Candidate for SAG-AFTRA Secretary-Treasurer
Yvette Nicole Brown Photo

yvette nicole brown

PRESIDENT - LOS ANGELES
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CANDIDATE STATEMENT
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Two years ago, I ran for the National Board because I wanted to give back to the union that protected and supported me for 25 years. Union service has been one of my greatest joys, and I remain committed to ensuring that every member has what they need to do their job safely and joyously. To that end, I am running for President of the Los Angeles Local. Trust me to lead our Los Angeles Local: I promise to be a respectful, efficient, kind, and productive force as we work together to build a greater future for this union we all love.
- Yvette Nicole Brown, Candidate for Los Angeles Local Presidentwww.UniteforStrength.com
Katie von Till - LA VP Candidate

KATIE VON TILL

VICE PRESIDENT - LOS ANGELES
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CANDIDATE STATEMENT
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Although the contention in the LA Board Room has been difficult to bear at times, I have managed to get along with just about everyone I work with in union service. The LA Membership had a glimpse into how I run rooms when I co-chaired the Commercial W&Ws (with someone from the opposing party, no less). Just yesterday, a member wrote to me, “I so appreciate the energy, intelligence, commitment and maybe most of all the perky good will you bring to our meetings.” Vote for me and I will do my best to make sure all voices are heard, that debate is productive, and that all agenda items are discussed in the allotted time. Time is money. And I don’t want to waste yours. Let’s do this!

- Katie Von Till, Candidate for Los Angeles Vice President www.UniteforStrength.com
Jeff Garling Photo - Local VP

JEFF GARLIN

VICE PRESIDENT - LOS ANGELES
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CANDIDATE STATEMENT
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A vote for me is a vote for Jeff Garlin.

- Jeff Garlin, Candidate for Los Angeles Vice President

National Board CANDIDATES

National Board Candidates

Brooke Smith

A proud SAG-AFTRA member since 1987. With changes in the industry, I’m working harder and earning less. Let's stop the in-fighting and come together. Only 21% of members voted last time! I decided to stop complaining, get informed, and try to make real changes instead. We all want the same things: better pay and working conditions, good residuals, pension, retirement, healthcare, increased diversity, inclusion, better advanced pay terms, better contract enforcement, an end to unfair exclusivity. I’ve learned a lot about self-advocating and I will work hard to make our union better for all of us!

CANDIDATE STATEMENT
National Board Candidates

Camryn Manheim

Having served as Secretary-Treasurer the past 2 years, it’s clear to me what issues the members are most concerned about. It’s my mission to transform the way SAG-AFTRA engages and communicates with the members, instilling pride and ownership in our union. Working in unity we can tackle the most important issues of our time. Earning fair wages, reversing unfair options and exclusivity, protections from sexual harassment, diversity, equity and inclusion. I want to leave this union strong for generations to come.

CANDIDATE STATEMENT
National Board Candidates

Clark Gregg

I was honored to have served in the past on both the Local and National Boards. Now it’s time to re-join the fight to protect and serve our members as another seismic and pivotal evolution is taking place in what we do. Please help me achieve that goal by supporting me and my fellow candidates from www.UniteforStrength.com

CANDIDATE STATEMENT
National Board Candidates

Dan Navarro

National Recording Artists / Singers Vice President 2013-2021; Los Angeles Local Board 2013-2019; Committees: Sound Recordings Code Chair 2002, 2014, 2018, 2021; Executive, Litigation Review, Convention Review, Government Affairs and Public Policy, TV/Theatrical Performers, Communications, National Singers, President’s Task Force on Education, Outreach and Engagement; Sexual Harassment Task Force; multiple negotiating teams since 2000. Working bilingual singer (Coco), voice actor (Pirates of the Caribbean 5, American Dad, Fallout 4), hit songwriter (Pat Benatar’s “We Belong”), touring recording artist (17 albums), 28 years vested SAG, 22 years AFTRA. I bring consistently rational, collaborative, future-focused leadership to the boardroom, negotiations, and union advocacy, generating unprecedented gains in contracts, organizing, and safety. I focus on solutions, without unproductive rancor and personal attacks. I get the job done.

CANDIDATE STATEMENT
National Board Candidates

Dulé Hill

As a 30+ year member, I was honored to be serving on the board when we merged into one unified union. I appreciate the value of unity and the collective pursuit of the overall well being of every union member. Nearly a decade later, artists face new challenges as the landscape of our industry continues to evolve. Though we’ve made great strides, the journey continues and there’s more work to be done. I will listen, learn and pursue all options that work for the betterment of our members. There is strength in numbers. We’re in this together.

CANDIDATE STATEMENT
National Board Candidates

Gabrielle Carteris

Being President of SAG-AFTRA for the past 5 1/2 years has been an honor and a privilege. I’m stepping down as it’s time to pass the baton and asking for your vote as a Los Angeles National Board member. We’ve made significant progress: reimagining our Commericials contract, securing better streaming residuals, fighting sexual harassment and keeping our members safe, developing Intimacy Coordinator accreditation to provide protection during intimate work. With the Pandemic, we fought to include members in the stimulus package and for additional unemployment compensation, then led the way to reopening the industry. My commitment has not wavered.

CANDIDATE STATEMENT
National Board Candidates

Jason George

For better or worse, technology is changing our industry everyday. Diversity is now a requirement of the business model. As chair of the Diversity Advisory Committee, I’ll continue to fight for better, more authentic representation and equal treatment on both sides of the camera, in all categories of work, for all races, ethnicities, genders, sexual orientations, ages and (dis)abilities. Streaming has destabilized the economics of the business. Logic, experience, strategy and data must guide us in future negotiations, not emotional arguments, outdated paradigms, or wistfully hoping to resurrect the “good ol’ days.” Our diversity and unity is our strength.

CANDIDATE STATEMENT
National Board Candidates

Jeff Garlin

A vote for me is a vote for Jeff Garlin.

CANDIDATE STATEMENT
National Board Candidates

Jenny O'Hara

SAG-AFTRA must continue moving forward. Under the leadership of Unite for Strength and its allies we achieved over $1 Billion in contract gains, $318 Million in 2020 alone, garnered huge increases in streaming residuals, secured protections for new and emerging platforms, and created new member driven contracts. We helped create the Return To Work Safety Protocols , Sexual Harassment and Nudity Protections in auditions and on set, and a 24-hour Safety Hotline. No lies, no attacks. Just progress. Boards: National/Local. Committees: LA/National Executive, LA/National Honors & Tributes Chair, Disciplinary Review Chair, TV/Theatrical Standing, Communications. For the facts.

CANDIDATE STATEMENT
National Board Candidates

Lee Purcell

My passion is to help ALL members, but my focus is to end ageism and gender bias toward senior and women members to increase employment opportunities and respect for those underserved “minorities.” As a Los Angeles Local Board member and Chair of the LA Seasoned Performers Committee, I immediately collaborated with insurance professionals (and continue to do so) to tirelessly guide countless seniors to new health insurance after theirs was unceremoniously cancelled. I campaign against ageism, including Stop the Hate. Committees include: National Seniors; LA Women's; SAG-AFTRA Radio Plays. Twice Primetime Emmy nominee, member of the Motion Picture Academy and Television Academy.

CANDIDATE STATEMENT
National Board Candidates

Michelle Hurd

I have been a proud union actor since 1994, working many contracts: soap operas, commercials, VO and on-camera, background, stand-in, day players, guest stars, recurring arcs and principal series regulars. Every contract deserves a strong voice fighting for rights and security in this changing market. I’ve been honored to serve as a POC National Board member. As Actor and Activist I cannot stay silent when I witness inequality and injustices. I understand the intricacies of negotiations and the diligence required to protect our rights in this shifting playing field. I want to continue to be that voice.

CANDIDATE STATEMENT
National Board Candidates

Neal McDonough

Being married to Ruvé for 20 years and a father of five, I know how important a good union is! Family first, me second is our motto. It’s the exact same with our beloved union. We must look out for our collective family first. All members of our family! Our industry is revolutionizing, and we must embrace the challenges that lay ahead, keeping a hard eye for data and a compassionate heart. I want to be a part of this new legacy and help lead our amazing union to meet all our members' needs.

CANDIDATE STATEMENT
National Board Candidates

Sara Rue

I have been a proud, grateful union member for over thirty years, working steadily in film and television since I was 9 years old. I'm running for both Local and National Boards to listen, learn, and vote my conscience in hopes of creating more equitable and safe working environments for performers. The landscape of our business is ever changing. As more unique opportunities for actors emerge, I believe we need board members who have experience in all capacities and who can provide realistic perspectives on the potential challenges and pitfalls that could lie ahead.

CANDIDATE STATEMENT
National Board Candidates

Shari Belafonte

I have literally been in this “bizniss” all of my life. As a Scion, the daughter of a passionate celebrity activist, I became aware of the strength of unionizing, watching my father fight for what’s right in both social justice and artistic arenas. Ageism, sexism, racism, and wage disparity have no place in a strong workforce. I applaud how far we’ve come, but am staunchly aware of how far we still have to go for fairness in our worth, comparable opportunities, and being hired to tell OUR stories, in front of and behind the camera. Diversity, not Division.

CANDIDATE STATEMENT
National Board Candidates

Wilson Cruz

After nearly 30 years as a union member, journeyman actor, and a champion for fairness, equity, and inclusion, it would be a privilege to serve and represent you on our National Board. Alongside my fellow UFS leaders, I will bring a wealth of experience from a career and life that has taught me resilience and has empowered me to be a voice for justice. I have a passion for our work, our art, and for our safety, which includes our physical and mental health and an unflinching eye to secure our future. Thank you for your vote.

CANDIDATE STATEMENT

Los Angeles Local Board CANDIDATES

Local Board Candidates
Armand Vasquez
CANDIDATE STATEMENT
Local Board Candidates
Austin Highsmith-Garces
CANDIDATE STATEMENT
Local Board Candidates
Ben Whitehair
CANDIDATE STATEMENT
Local Board Candidates
Chantal Cousineau
CANDIDATE STATEMENT
Local Board Candidates
Clyde Kusatsu
CANDIDATE STATEMENT
Local Board Candidates
Danielle Towne
CANDIDATE STATEMENT
Local Board Candidates
Dileep Rao
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CANDIDATE STATEMENT
Local Board Candidates
Ellen Crawford
CANDIDATE STATEMENT
Local Board Candidates
Ever Carradine
CANDIDATE STATEMENT
Local Board Candidates
Fletcher Sheridan
CANDIDATE STATEMENT
Local Board Candidates
Giselle Gilbert
CANDIDATE STATEMENT
Local Board Candidates
Jasper Randall
CANDIDATE STATEMENT
Local Board Candidates
Jenny O’Hara
CANDIDATE STATEMENT
Local Board Candidates
Katie Von Till
CANDIDATE STATEMENT
Local Board Candidates
Malcolm Barrett
CANDIDATE STATEMENT
Local Board Candidates
Michelle C. Bonilla
CANDIDATE STATEMENT
Local Board Candidates
Michelle Hurd
CANDIDATE STATEMENT
Local Board Candidates
Neal McDonough
CANDIDATE STATEMENT
Local Board Candidates
Parvesh Cheena
CANDIDATE STATEMENT
Local Board Candidates
Romy Rosemont
CANDIDATE STATEMENT
Local Board Candidates
Shari Belafonte
CANDIDATE STATEMENT
Local Board Candidates
Stacey Travis
CANDIDATE STATEMENT
Local Board Candidates
Vivicca Whitsett
CANDIDATE STATEMENT
Local Board Candidates
Woody Schultz
CANDIDATE STATEMENT
Local Board Candidates
Yvette Nicole Brown
CANDIDATE STATEMENT

CONVENTION Delegate CANDIDATES

ALAN STARZINSKI

ALISON PILL

AMIN EL GAMAL

AMIR TALAI

AMY HILL

ANN MARIE RAVENS

ANSON WILLIAMS

ARMAND VASQUEZ

ASSAF COHEN

AUSTIN HIGHSMITH GARCES

BARBARA ROBERTS

BEHZAD DABU

BEN WHITEHAIR

BILL BELLAMY

BROOKE SMITH

BRUCE WEXLER

BRYAN COFFEE

CAMILLE MANA

CAMRYN MANHEIM

CAROLYN HENNESY

CATHERINE DENT

CHANTAL COUSINEAU

CLARK GREGG

CLYDE KUSATSU

CRYSTAL RIVERS BADEUX

DAVID ERRIGO, JR

DAVID VILLAR

DILEEP RAO

DULÉ HILL

DWAYNE COLBERT

ELIZABETH MCLAUGHLIN

ELLEN CRAWFORD

EVA CEJA

EVE GORDON

EVELYN STOKES

EVER CARRADINE

FEODOR CHIN

GABRIELLE CARTERIS

GISELLE GILBERT

GRETCHEN PALMER

HOLLY PITRAGO

IQBAL THEBA

ISMAIL BASHEY

IVAR BROGGER

JACKIE JOSEPH

JAKE O'FLAHERTY


JAMES BABBIN

JASON GEORGE

JAY DISNEY

JAYA SUBRAMANIAN

JEFF GARLIN

JEFFREY LANDMAN

JEN FAITH BROWN

JEN LEVIN

JENNY O'HARA

JERILYN STAPLETON

JODIE BENTLEY

JODY STEVENSON

JOHN CONNOLLY

JOI CARR

JONELLE ALLEN

JULES BRUFF

JULIE BROWN

KATE LINDER

KATIE VON TILL

KAY WILSON

KEITH JOHNSON

KEVIN ASHWORTH

KEVIN HIGH

KRISTA MARIE YU

KYM JACKSON

KYRA SCHWARTZ

LAURA LINDA BRADLEY

LAURI HENDLER

LEE GARLINGTON

LEE PURCELL

LILAN BOWDEN

LORI ALAN

MALCOLM BARRETT

MARIJA TOMAS

MARY HEISS

MELISSA COOK

MELISSA GREENSPAN

MICHAEL CARNEGIE

MICHAEL JAMES BELL

MICHAEL C. MAHON

MICHELLE C. BONILLA

MICHELLE DUNKER

MICHELLE HURD

MIKE GENOVESE

MINDY COHN

MOUZAM MAKKAR

NEAL MCDONOUGH

NINA SIEMASZKO

PARVESH CHEENA

PATRIKA DARBO

REN HANAMI

RICKY RYBA

ROB BROWNSTEIN

ROBERT KENISTON

ROBERT PINE

RODNEY TO

ROMY ROSEMONT

RON MORGAN

RUBEN ROBERTO GOMEZ

RUTH LIVIER

SARA RUE

SEAN MICHAEL BOOZER

SHARI BELAFONTE

SHARMILA DEVAR

SHEA SCULLIN

SHYLA LA'SHA

SPENCER GARRETT

STACEY TRAVIS

STEPHEN R. PELUSO

STEVIE NELSON

TESS PARAS

TIFFANY YVONNE COX

TIM FRIEDLANDER

TIMOTHY BLAKE

TODD PETERSON

TODD WARING

TOM CHOI

TONI TRUCKS

VINCENT AMAYA

VIVICCA A WHITSETT

WILLIAM CHARLTON

WILSON CRUZ

WOODY SCHULTZ

Broadcasters

 ROB ARCHER               

TAMI HEIDE

 JOY BENEDICT

Singers

FLETCHER SHERIDAN

SUZANNE WATERS

CHARLEAN CARMON

JASPER RANDALL

DAN NAVARRO


DANCER

DANIELLE TOWNE

STUNTS

ALYMA DORSEY

MIKAL KARTVEDT


WHY we endorse ufs

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UFS ON THE ISSUES

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Factually Answered Questions

Click the Questions Below for Answers

Are the pensions underfunded?

No, they are not.
Both are considered in the green zone with a long term plan to be fully funded.(source)

How do staff pensions work?

The truth about staff pensions. 

They have virtually no effect on our bottom line, yet they allow us to retain top talent. Risking the loss of our most valued staff could cost us tens of millions in poor decisions and contract negotiations. Want to reduce their accrual rates? Then get ready to pay them much higher salaries to match their for-profit sector counterparts, costing us substantially more.

FIRST, SOME HISTORY:
In the early 2000’s, when SAG-PPHP agreed to cover Screen Actors Guild staff, as the union was bleeding money as a result of rapidly expanding staff benefit costs. At the time, staff benefits were provided through private insurers at significant cost to the union’s general treasury. That means it was OUR dues money paying for it. So it was a tremendous benefit to members when SAG-PPHP agreed to include this small group of additional participants (literally 1% of pensioners and 2% of health plan participants), thereby reducing substantially the amount of member dues money that the union had to spend to pay for staff benefits. This freed up money for our union to focus on members. 

All of this happened under different (previous) union leadership but still, the changes to staff benefits had to be accepted by the then-current employees of SAG, including by the many internal unions that represent our staff across the country. There were commitments made to our employees about their benefits at that time and in the future. Accordingly, the pension benefit, including such things as the accrual rate for staff, cannot simply be yanked away. The union trustees surely understand the complexity of this issue and we should all understand the tremendous benefit to members to have great benefits for our staff at limited cost to the union and minimal costs to the Plans.

IMPORTANTLY, having good benefits for our employees has helped us stop Producers from poaching our best staff and has SAVED our union money. In the past 5 years, Netflix, CBS, NBC and others have lured our staff away – after we spent time and money to train them in the business – with higher salaries, big bonuses and company stock. This is not good for members and we don’t want to go back to being the training camp for future studio executives. Having an excellent benefits package for our staff – the people who negotiate and enforce your contracts, protect and distribute your residuals and look out for you in myriad other ways – helps us retain them in the face of competition from studios, advertisers, law firms and other companies. If the union reduces their benefits, then it will have to offset that loss with higher salaries – salaries that come directly out of your dues money. In other words, it will cost members more money.

KEEP IN MIND:
Staff are our representatives, negotiators and contract enforcers. They’re prohibited from competing for our jobs, they don't earn residuals or royalties, and they could make twice as much money working against us at a studio or network. It is absolutely paramount that we attract and retain the best possible staff to fight day in and day out on our behalf.

ACCRUAL RATES:
SAG took a big hit in 2008 by refusing to negotiate a new TV/Theatrical contract which lost SAG members over $100 million in pay raises and SAG Pension BENEFIT contributions. MF(the same people) were leading SAG. At that time both staff and members had the same accrual rate (3.5%).

The plans took an almost catastrophic hit due to a plunge in contributions from losing TV to AFTRA, in addition to the implosion of the financial markets. In order to keep the plans on stable footing, the Trustees elected to lower members’ accrual rate to 2% with the long-term goal of raising it back to 3.5%.

Can you tell me about the new Netflix deal?
What's the status of New Media residuals?

Contrary to statements about residuals disappearing, UFS is leading the way in improving our residuals structure in HBSVOD.

The truth is complicated, but it’s important to note that with the markets evolving (fewer network reruns, etc.) we are focused on improving residuals in the areas where we see dramatic growth; like HBSVOD, where a show may live for years. 

In 2017 we successfully improved the Episodic/TV streaming residual formula.

Can SAG-AFTRA control the pension and health plans?

In short, no.

The Pension and Health plans are entirely separate from SAG-AFTRA.

50% of the trustees on all three plans (SAG-AFTRA HEALTH, SAG Pension and AFTRA Retirement) are union appointed. Management (AMPTP, JPC) has the other 50%, which means agreements have to be made between both sides to make changes to the plans.

In other words, the union trustees and management trustees must negotiate changes to these plans: they are not unilaterally decided solely by the union’s trustees.

The national board appoints our union-side trustees through nomination and voting. The names of the trustees are on each of the different plan pages under the “about” tabs.

Being a trustee requires the member to accept personal financial responsibility for any malfeasance to these plans: it is not a responsibility to be taken lightly, which speaks volumes for the integrity that comprises our trustees.

We have past presidents, past secretary-treasurers, past officers, members-at-large and a couple of executive staff on our trustee side.

Trustees must also participate in continuing trustee education.

Should SAG-AFTRA buy or rent a building?

In order to purchase a building, we must first ensure that contract enforcement, contract negotiations, and building a solid reserve fund are in place.

When MF was leading SAG, they put the union in a deep financial hole. After the merger with AFTRA, we have been slowly and steadily repairing the union’s finances and building a reserve fund so that we are prepared in the event of a strike.

SAG-AFTRA has completed initial research and found that there are no buildings currently available that are big enough, affordable enough, and offer easy accessibility to the membership to house our headquarters.

SAG-AFTRA will continue to evaluate the feasibility of purchasing a building, but in the meantime our current lease is below the market rate and a responsible expenditure of our funds.

It is centrally located, close to the studios, and easily accessible to a substantial portion of the membership.


SAG-AFTRA is a nationwide union with 25 locals and offices throughout the country.

How is UFS leading on the issue of sexual harassment?
do you have an example of how you are encouraging member involvement in the union?

We always want members getting involved and taking an interest in what is going on at the union.

Our recent commercials contract is a success story, and a prime example of member involvement.

The union created the #adsgounion campaign, instituted painstaking step-by-step processes from monthly meetings, and actively engaged in member outreach to get members onboard and involved.

Result: a game-changing commercials contract which is already BRINGING ADVERTISERS BACK TO THE CONTRACT

what progress has been made in respect to low-budget
and member-produced content?

We have recently promulgated a new Low Budget, platform agnostic approach to low budget production. It includes substantial pay raises for members and wages indexed to our master contract. 

The SPA (Short Project Agreement) gives member producers more flexibility in shooting low budget projects without leaping through too many hoops.

The signatory process still needs improvement and remains something we are focused on to make it more responsive and communicative to both producers and members.

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