Ac­tors union OKs con­tract

Los Angeles Times - - BUSINESS - By David Ng

SAG-AFTRA mem­bers ap­prove a three-year con­tract with the ma­jor Hol­ly­wood stu­dios.

SAG-AFTRA said late Mon­day that its mem­bers had voted to ap­prove a new three-year con­tract with the ma­jor Hol­ly­wood stu­dios, rat­i­fy­ing the ten­ta­tive agree­ment that the union reached in July.

Mem­bers of the screen ac­tors union voted nearly 76% in fa­vor of the con­tract, though only slightly more than 15% of the 140,000 el­i­gi­ble mem­bers cast their bal­lots.

The con­tract, which retroac­tively goes into ef­fect from July 1, faced vo­cal op­po­si­tion from some mem­bers in­clud­ing ac­tor Esai Mo­rales, who is one of sev­eral can­di­dates run­ning for union pres­i­dent.

SAG-AFTRA said the new con­tract will guar­an­tee raises of 2.5% to 3% for each year, as well as in­creased pen­sion and re­tire­ment con­tri­bu­tions. In ad­di­tion, it pro­vides ear­lier and big­ger resid­u­als, with an in­crease of more than 300% for con­tent streamed on new me­dia plat­forms such as Net­flix and Ama­zon.

“I thank the many mem­bers who had in­put through­out this process. The gains in this con­tract re­flect their hard work and their voices in ne­go­ti­a­tions,” Gabrielle Car­teris, SAG-AFTRA pres­i­dent, said in a state­ment. Car­teris, elected in 2016, is run­ning for re­elec­tion. The union ne­go­ti­ated the new con­tract with the Al­liance of Mo­tion Pic­ture and Tele­vi­sion Pro­duc­ers, the bar­gain­ing or­ga­ni­za­tion that rep­re­sents stu­dios, broad­cast net­works and ma­jor ca­ble net­works.

Be­fore the ten­ta­tive agree­ment was reached July 4, SAG-AFTRA had threat­ened a strike af­ter the two sides failed to make suf­fi­cient progress on cru­cial is­sues. But a strike was never called.

SAG-AFTRA is the last of the three big Hol­ly­wood unions to rat­ify a new con­tract. The Writ­ers Guild of Amer­ica and the Di­rec­tors Guild of Amer­ica rat­i­fied their new three-year con­tracts ear­lier this year.

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