My Fellow SAG-AFTRA DFW Local Member,
I hope this finds you and yours healthy and safe during these precarious times. It’s amazing how much life can change over a few short months, and this year has been unlike any other in recent memory.
By now, you probably have read the news that SAG-AFTRA reached an agreement with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers on June 11 and the SAG-AFTRA National Board approved the tentative agreement by a super majority of 67.61% to 32.39%. It is now up to the membership to ratify these three-year contracts.
As your DFW Local president, I want you to know that I will be voting YES on this deal — and here’s why I urge you to vote YES as well.
First, the obvious: The $318 million value of this package is more than we have ever achieved. We were able to secure huge gains that will be meaningful in areas like wages and benefits for all members. We’re talking about REAL dollars.
Our negotiating team stayed focused on the FUTURE with a 26% increase in fixed streaming residuals. Make no mistake about it, this is HUGE. It’s no secret the bulk of our work is now either originally produced for streaming platforms or moving there after an initial broadcast run. We continue to position ourselves to maximize our earnings in digital, as traditional broadcast and syndication models fade. The additional impact on foreign residuals (which are based on a percentage of domestic totals) as well as new budget thresholds will translate to even more money in members’ pockets.
Considering that this record-breaking deal was accomplished in the middle of a global pandemic, at a time of economic upheaval and dramatic declines in industry revenue, you’ll be glad to know a key priority of our negotiators was to make sure our pension and health plans stay strong.
The projected funding increase of $97 million to the benefit plans for the next three years, including a $54 million increase for the health plan, could not come at a more important time. Should we need it, the deal provides for options to shore up the plans even further in the second and third years.
This would be a great package under any circumstance. But considering the current economic landscape of our industry, it’s truly remarkable to be able to achieve these gains and ensure that a new contract paves the way for our membership to get back to work as soon as possible.
There are many more important details in the contract highlighted in the 2020 TV/Theatrical Referendum that you can find at sagaftra.org/contracts2020. I encourage everyone to attend an online informational meeting to discuss details of the contract on Tuesday, July 14, at 5 p.m. Please register for it at sagaftra.org.
All eligible members were mailed a postcard on July 1 with a PIN number and instructions on how to vote online or how to request a paper ballot. If you don’t have your PIN, you may retrieve it at the voting website. Whether submitted online or by mail, ballots must be received by 5 p.m. PDT on Wednesday, July 22, 2020.
I hope you will join me in voting YES on this landmark contract — our FUTURE is ready and waiting!
President, SAG-AFTRA DFW Local