The Ol’ Dog is continually warning you about the AFTRA Operatives in SAG that are doing everything in their power to bring down SAG. They threaten to scab if SAG doesn’t allow AFTRA to have a 50-50 say in SAG’s contracts. They use their power on the SAG Branch Boards to undermine SAG National Board Policy by encouraging their constituents to sign a biased AFTRA sponsored petition. And in the meantime, they refuse to inform members of their branches that AFTRA is undercutting their contracts and giving away their residuals.
The leader of the “We First Party,” or as the Ol Dog calls them, The US-AN’s, United Screen Actors Nationwide, is former NY Branch President and current board member, Paul Christie.
Here’s and excerpt from an article entitled “AFTRA-SAG On Verge of Permanent Split as Negotiations Approach” that appeared in the online Chicago Midwest Theatre Magazine Performink and featured some telling comments from Mr. Christie.
Full article – http://www.performink.com/11.23.07/_html/AFTRA-SAGFeud_2.htm
“US-AN” Christie isn’t being completely upfront in his comments. He talks about New York and branch members not following a strike call (Scabbing) while giving the impression that it’s a spontaneous reaction by NY and Branch members. But what he fails to mention is that the USAN party, that he heads, has encouraged members to threaten to do so.
The following is from Mr. Christie’s USAN website.
The USAN statement is a LIE designed to INCITE members into doing their bidding. No one on SAG’s Negotiating committee would be denied the right to vote their individual conscience under unit voting, but rather the majority of SAG’s negotiators would determine SAG’s position in negotiations. (Hello! That’s how democracy works.)
What is even more disturbing than the lying in the above statement is that it encourages UNION BUSTING by telling SAG members to threaten to NOT honor ANY action taken by a negotiating committee, or as Mr. Christie puts it, they might not honor a strike call. The message is clear, if they don’t get their way, THEY WILL SCAB!
Is it just me, but isn’t inciting to SCAB, a chargeable offense that might be considered CONDUCT UNBECOMING A MEMBER? If not, it is certainly a despicable anti-union act that should be condemned by not only by every SAG member and every union but by John Sweeny and the AFL-CIO.
As to Mr. Christie’s threat to split the union into SAG East and SAG West, I’d say be careful what you wish for!
Should such a split take place, the Ol’ Dog has already designed logo’s that encapsulate both coasts vision of the approach SAG takes in dealing with our employers.
Can this split be avoided? I think it can. The answer is for SAG to use the TWO MILLION dollars it pays AFTRA every year for shared staff and offices and put that money toward SAG having its own staff and offices for its members. As, it is now, SAG is paying to have its members propogandized by AFTRA staff. SAG was ready to do this six years ago, but it was put on hold by CEO Pissano in order to pursue his failed CONsolidation. After assuring that members are no longer under the thumb of AFTRA staff, then SAG should do everything in its power to inform SAG’s actors that these SAG Board members/AFTRA operatives are working on behalf of AFTRA interests, rather than theirs, and The Screen Actors Guild’s.
As US-AN leader Christie said above,
As a SAG board member, this guy is supposed to be working for SAG, but his only concern is for AFTRA, to the extent that he encourages members to threaten scabbing if he doesn’t get his “AFTRA First” way. And if you think he is alone in his AFTRA Operative stance, read this email being circulated.
Now if you have any doubt about who is sponsoring this bit of AFTRA propaganda that these AFTRA Operatives in SAG clothing are endorsing just access the site, and do a little checking and you’ll find this.
As you see NY and Branch SAG board members are directing SAG members to a propaganda site PAID FOR AND HOSTED BY AFTRA. Yes, our union is under siege from within by AFTRA Operatives. It’s a problem that can only be solved by having a truly informed membership in NY and the branches.
As to the Phase 1 problem, of having AFTRA and their SAG NY and Branch operatives having numerical superiority over SAG Hollywood in upcoming contract negotiations, and thus, the final say in SAG contracts–it is not going to be solved by proportionality with AFTRA in bargaining, but rather by assuring that ONLY SAG determines the content of its contracts.
Our leadership needs to get the message from the membership that its time to enforce our jurisdiction and stop pussyfooting with those who would destroy us.
Here’s the message one SAG member, the indefatigable Cupid Hayes sent to the SAG Board.
No pussyfooting there.
If you think it’s time for SAG to stand up to AFTRA to stop their poaching of SAG contracts and the giveaway of actors’ residuals, there is a way to get that message to SAG’s leadership without writing an email.
SAG Ralph Morgan Award winner, Scott Wilson, who saved actors millions upon millions of dollars by stopping agents from taking commissions on supplemental residuals, has stepped up again for members with a resolution to give them a voice in assuring that SAG enforces its jurisdiction, and stops AFTRA’s wholesale sell out of their minimums and residuals.
If you would like to add your voice to those who have already signed it, click the following link.
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