SAG-AFTRA and the advertising industry have reached an agreement on a new TV commercials contract. Neither side is discussing the terms of the new three-year pact, but both say it’s a good deal.
“This negotiation dealt with where we are now and where we will be in the future,” said Gabrielle Carteris, SAG-AFTRA acting president and co-chair of the union’s negotiating committee. “The tentative agreement delivers essential gains while properly positioning us for future growth in digital and social media. As content evolves, we are poised to grow work opportunities that support members and their families.”
“We secured significant financial gains that will benefit our members right now,” said Sue-Anne Morrow, the other co-chair of the union’s negotiating committee. “Equally important, we achieved creative new elements that make our contract more relevant in a rapidly changing industry and guarantee the expansion of work opportunities for our members.”
Douglas Wood, the ad industry’s chief negotiator, said that “The success of this negotiation reflects the sense of partnership the JPC and SAG-AFTRA have built over the past fifteen years. Despite very complex issues that initially had significant differences for both sides of the table, through open and honest collaboration we reached a balanced and fair agreement for all parties.”
The union’s talks with the Joint Policy Committee (JPC) of the Association of National Advertisers and the American Association of Advertising Agencies, got underway in February but were overshadowed by the recent deaths of SAG-AFTRA president Ken Howard and ad industry negotiator Kathleen Quinn.
The new deal next goes to the union’s national board for approval, and then to the membership for ratification. The contract which generates more than $1 billion a year for actors, extras and voice-over artists, had been set to expire on Friday, but the talks were extended by two days to give negotiators a chance to reach a deal and avert a strike.
Actors last struck the ad industry in 2000 – a protracted walkout that lasted six months. They struck again for 26 days in 1988; for seven weeks in 1978-79, and for 10 weeks in 1952-53.