The combined SAG-AFTRA membership voted to approve new three-year contract for television and film. It was an overwhelming majority vote in support of the new contract deal reached in July between the union and the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers, with 92 percent of members voting in support of it.
The agreement covers film and digital television programs, motion pictures and new media productions. It marks the first agreement covering both prime time broadcast and basic cable production.
“Once again, we have made history,” said SAG-AFTRA president Ken Howard. “With the approval of the first-ever SAG-AFTRA Television Agreement, we have reached yet another of the goals we set when we merged. I am thankful to all members who participated throughout this process and the dedicated staff of SAG-AFTRA who worked to ensure our new contract would usher us into the next generation of entertainment and new media production.”
Voting cards were sent to approximately 137,000 members of SAG-AFTRA, with 16 percent of them returning votes, according to a press release.
SAG-AFTRA and the AMPTP reached the agreement July 4 after months of negotiations and three 24-hour extensions. The new deal provides an 8.5 percent wage increase and a process to facilitate the merger of the old SAG and AFTRA health plans for members.
It also addresses technological advances in how people are consuming media, offering advances in SVOD coverage, include a new residual for on-demand viewing, and a reduction of unpaid online streaming windows for most television programs.
“This is a terrific result for our first TV/theatrical negotiation as a merged union,” said chief negotiator David White, national executive director of SAG-AFTRA. “I want to thank the SAG-AFTRA members and staff who dedicated their time and tireless effort to these negotiations. We emerged with solid financial gains and with a structural foundation that supports the union’s strategic goals well into the future.”
The new agreement becomes effective retroactive to July 1, 2014 and remains in force through June 30, 2017