To everyone in the motion picture and television industry…
I should say: To all my fellow brothers and sisters in all the crafts with whom I have spent the best years of my life. All of us have given to the Motion Picture Home either through voluntary deductions from our paychecks or by direct donations of both money and items useful to the home.
We have given because we have all thought of the MPH as one of the best things our industry does in providing for its "own." Long-term care was not only included in the original concept of the MPH, but it is the most crucial part of the services the home was built to provide.
As a public charity it is not intended to be run at a profit, nor does it seem appropriate that the managing director be compensated as a CEO having his pay package inclusive of "bonuses" normally associated with profit performances.
Why is it that the Actors Fund is able to successfully operate multiple facilities, a portion of which have not only long-term care units but also provide hospice care, yet we cannot seem to operate one? If the MPH was in financial problems, why were we, the people who are direct contributors, never informed?
I regularly do fundraising performances for the Actors Fund and I would imagine similar events could easily have made up the budgetary shortfalls for the MPH, but that would have required collaboration on the part of the board of directors and the members of the industry.
I am mostly offended, as indeed you should be, that the long-term care unit's fate was arrived at without our unions or guilds being notified prior to the decision. Now we are somewhat after the fact; however, there is still a small opportunity. No board of directors is infallible and decisions can — and in this case should — be overturned. But it must be done now while the long-term care unit is still somewhat functional.
Please add your voice to this cause, because you never know if the next one who may need the services of the home might be you.