SAG and AFTRA moving ahead with merger plans


The Screen Actors Guild National Board of Directors has unanimously approved the creation of a Merger Task Force to work with their AFTRA counterparts in developing a formal plan to unite SAG and AFTRA members in one union. The unions have been focused on merging for some time, with AFTRA’s national board giving the green light to merger negotiations in January.

The SAG board’s resolution instructed the newly-formed Merger Task Force “to meet with representatives of AFTRA as soon as practicable, but no later than June 2011, to initiate the development of a plan to create a successor union formed from the best elements of both SAG and AFTRA.”  The AFTRA national board is expected to take up a similar resolution at its May 14 meeting.

Led by SAG National President Ken Howard, the Merger Task Force members were selected from among those who served on the Guild’s SAG-AFTRA Relations Task Force.

“The message from SAG and AFTRA members across the country has been clear – they want this done as soon as possible. If our boards approve the merger plan in January [2012], our members will make the final decision through a referendum vote less than a year from now. I’m proud that we’ve taken a major step today, and I’m extremely grateful for the unanimous support of the SAG National Board. I also want to thank AFTRA National President Roberta Reardon, whose remarkable leadership has been essential in bringing us to this point,” said Howard.

The joint SAG and AFTRA Presidents’ Forum for One Union that has been meeting regularly since October to discuss the potential merger.