A month after its SAG-AFTRA’s national board of directors approved a new TV commercials contract, the union’s members voted overwhelmingly today to ratify it. The count was 92.3% in favor of the new deal with the ad industry that generates about $1.1 billion annually for actors, extras and voice-over artists. Retroactive to March 31, the new pact runs through March 31, 2019.
The union says that the new deal includes over $200 million in wage increases and other payments. This includes an immediate 7% hike in minimums, an additional 6% increase in national cable use fees, pay raises for ads used on the Internet and new media ranging from 6.25% to 16.7% on top of the general increase and a 1.2% increase to the union’s pension and health plans.
“The commercials contracts help protect the working conditions, livelihood and pension, health and retirement benefits of thousands of our members,” SAG-AFTRA president and negotiating committee co-chair Gabrielle Carteris said in a statement. “The robust participation in this ratification vote demonstrates how SAG-AFTRA’s future is driven from our members up to the elected leadership. I want to thank the members who voted and congratulate our negotiating team, including co-chair Sue-Anne Morrow and our negotiators, David White and Ray Rodriguez, on a job well done.”
The union’s talks with the Joint Policy Committee 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.