Strained relations between two unions representing performers came to a head Saturday as the board of the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (AFTRA) voted to bargain on its own with TV and film studios, rather than jointly with the Screen Actors Guild (SAG).
"AFTRA’s primary goal is to improve and protect the working lives of performers. During the past year, AFTRA has fought hard and expended an enormous amount of time, energy and resources to maintain the integrity of our Phase One joint bargaining process with the Screen Actors Guild, so we could sit across the table from the industry with total and unequivocal unity. Unfortunately, SAG leadership has made this impossible. For the past year SAG leadership in Hollywood has engaged in a relentless campaign of disinformation and disparagement, culminating in a recent attempt to decertify an AFTRA daytime soap opera. As a result of this continued and ongoing behavior by SAG leadership, which at its core harms all working performers and the labor movement, we find ourselves unable to have any confidence in their ability to live up to the principles of partnership and union solidarity,” said AFTRA National President Roberta Reardon.