Saying that “acting careers are at stake,” SAG-AFTRA President Fran Drescher has sent an audio message to the guild’s members urging them to vote “Yes” for strike authorization.
The guild’s often fractious national board voted unanimously last week to recommend that members authorize a strike in advance of the June 7 start of its negotiations with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers. The guild’s current contract expires June 30.
“SAG-AFTRA is taking a big bold step as the union prepares for our upcoming TV, theatrical and streaming negotiations,” Drescher said in a message posted on social media. “We’re asking you, one of our members, to vote ‘Yes’ for a strike authorization. This will give our negotiating team much needed leverage at the bargaining table. You know, acting careers are at stake. We must ensure that our employers don’t continue to devalue the performers who bring productions to life.”
She noted, however, that approval of a strike authorization “Doesn’t guarantee a strike. Far from it. But it does send a strong message. And we need our membership’s unity as we fight for our future. Now the deadline to vote ‘Yes’ on a strike authorization is Monday, June 5, at 5 pm Pacific. Hurry, and vote ‘Yes’ today.”
Members can vote at sagaftra.org/contracts2023
In order to authorize a strike, at least 75% of voting members must approve, although the guild is hoping for a number closer to 100%.
Hear her message here.
The strike authorization vote is being conducted against the backdrop of the ongoing Writers Guild strike, which is now in its 25th day, and the Directors Guild’s ongoing negotiations with the AMPTP for a new film and TV contract, which began May 10 – the ninth day of the writers’ strike.