SAG-AFTRA Taking Jurisdictional Dispute With Actors Equity to AFL-CIO

variety.com
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Leaders of SAG-AFTRA have taken the union's bitter jurisdictional battle with Actors Equity to the AFL-CIO by filing a complaint and requesting a mediator. SAG-AFTRA President Gabrielle Carteris and National Executive Director David White made the request Saturday in a letter to Richard Trumka, president of the AFL-CIO. "It is with heavy hearts that we […]
Leaders of SAG-AFTRA have taken the union's bitter jurisdictional battle with Actors' Equity Association, asking that the Associated Actors and Artistes of America name a mediator.

SAG-AFTRA President Gabrielle Carteris and National Executive Director David White also requested AFL-CIO intervention in a letter to Richard Trumka, president of the AFL-CIO.

"It is with heavy hearts that we file a formal complaint and request for a mediator in our jurisdictional dispute," Carteris and White said in a message to their members. "Let us be very clear: this is a last resort. We tried negotiation, but Actors' Equity Association refused our waiver and walked away from talks with no notice."

The two unions are locked in a dispute over which should cover the streaming of live events. Each has blamed the other for the breakdown. Actors' Equity, which represents 51,000 theater actors and stage managers, has accused SAG-AFTRA of raiding its turf and undercutting its contracts by negotiating lower-paying deals with theaters for streaming productions. SAG-AFTRA, which represents 160,000 performers in film, TV and radio, is asserting that work made for broadcast is within its jurisdiction.

White and Carteris said in the letter to Trumka, "Since the conflict has arisen as a result of, or at least been greatly exacerbated by, the financial strains placed on AEA union members during the COVID-19 pandemic, SAG-AFTRA has made clear its willingness to grant waivers to AEA to allow it to perform much of the work in dispute for a limited period of time, and subject to various jurisdictional…
Dave McNary
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