Boy, talk about a way to show union solidarity. The Screen Actors Guild is trying to persuade 44,000 of its members who also belong to the other actors union, AFTRA, not to ratify the tentative AFTRA contract. Well, we should say 13 members of SAG's executive committee (10 board members voted against the silly effort). On Monday, SAG is planning a rally to support the cause, whatever that might be. The guild leadership has been pressing for demands that go beyond the deals worked out by not only AFTRA but the Writers Guild, a tricky maneuver since the union hasn't even taken a strike authorization vote. Should the guild impasse with the media companies go on too long, AFTRA could wind up as the representative union for shows now under the jurisdiction of SAG. This thing is a mess. At least it minimizes the prospect of a strike. From Variety:
“This is really unfortunate and I’m frankly horrified to see my SAG dues money spent this way,” said AFTRA president Roberta Reardon on Sunday. “I think SAG should be concentrating on making a deal. And it’s disingenuous of SAG to call it a ‘solidarity’ rally when it’s clear that it will be an anti-AFTRA rally.”
SAG president Alan Rosenberg notified members Sunday that there remain half a dozen major gaps -- including DVDs, force majuere, product integration, mileage pay and new-media pay. “These are examples of priorities for actors that were not achieved in the AFTRA deal,” he added. Rosenberg also asserted that AFTRA’s partly to blame for the lack of progress because it won’t agree to delay the ratification vote. “We believe that the tentative AFTRA deal and its pending ratification -- coming as it does within several days of SAG’s June 30 contract deadline -- is a distraction that the employers are using to delay significant progress in our negotiations.