SAG-AFTRA Merger Team Readies for 9 Days of Talks

Start Saturday to iron out details of combining the two unions

Members of the Screen Actors Guild and the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists  merger committee will meet in Los Angeles for nine days beginning Saturday to iron out details of how to combine the unions.

The committee will release a statement at the end of the meetings, but spokespeople for the two unions declined to discuss specifics.

The unions have said that they hope to have detailed proposals for each board to review this month. The unions need approval from their members before they can merge.

Also read: Ken Howard on the SAG/AFTRA Merger: 'A Hurricane Couldn't Stop Us'

The meetings will bring together members of the “G1,” or “Group for One Union” committee, made up of AFTRA’s New Union Committee and SAG’s Merger Task Force.

G1 has been broken down into study groups, which have been in talks for several months. Those groups have examined governance and structure, finance and dues, collective bargaining, pension, health and retirement, operations and staff and member education and outreach.

Ken Howard, SAG’s president, was elected in 2009 on a pro-merger platform. He and AFTRA president Roberta Reardon have been working toward that goal.

In 2003, nearly 58 percent of SAG members voted to merge the two – a clear majority but short of the supermajority actually needed to proceed.