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Two Trek Actors Against SAG-AFTRA Merger

Posted by T'Bonz - 24/02/12 at 11:02 am


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Two actors from the original series have joined more than forty actors who are against a merger of the Screen Actors Guild (SAG) and the American Federation of television and Radio Artists (AFTRA).

The merger of SAG and AFTRA would combine SAG’s 140,000 members and AFTRA’s 80,000 members, some of whom have membership in both groups.

“We are confident our members will agree that we have created something we can all be proud of — actors, singers, broadcasters, dancers, voiceover artists, background actors, stunt persons and all entertainment and media professionals that will be represented by this new union,” said Ken Howard and Roberta Reardon, national presidents of SAG and AFTRA, in a statement last month.

“The consensus process allowed our [negotiating committee members to fully discuss, debate and reach agreement on critical provisions that form a strong foundation for a single union that will protect and strengthen the future for all our members,” they added.

However, the actors against the merger, which includes Nichelle Nichols (Uhura) and Malachi Throne (Commodore Jose Mendez in The Menagerie, and Pardek in TNG’s Unification Parts I and II ), disagree and have filed a lawsuit to stop the merger vote. The group of actors believes that the merger would have an adverse impact on health and pension benefits. SAG is asking members to “take a blindfolded high dive without knowing whether there is any water in the pool,” the group said in the suit.

“We believe that this suit is completely without merit and we will vigorously defend all claims in court,” said SAG, in response to the lawsuit. “We are confident that our actions are appropriate and consistent with the law and our own rules of procedure.”

The lawsuit document, in PDF form, may be seen at Deadline.

Source: Deadlinevia Airlock Alpha

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  • entfan

    Um, you do realize that Scott Bakula is ON the SAG board, and firmly opposed to the merger?

  • Mary

    Actually, there are at least three: Scott Bakula also opposes the merger. I can’t fathom anyone but an idiot voting for the merger. The health insurance issues alone should ensure a significantly lopsided NO VOTE.

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/RDCUJP52CEMHA6WTQYYGRWWHCU Douglass

    I’m not in the industry and don’t have a horse in this race, but I’d think that the prospect of AFTRA leadership possibly holding separate contract talks with the studios again in the future would be enough for many members of both unions to at least consider the merger. The separate deals last time undercut SAG’s negotiating stance and cost many working actors potential income.

  • Roger1999

    Message to SAG: If you have Trek actors against you, you aren’t going to win. I’d like to know the name of the SAG individual who made this comment:

    ““We believe that this suit is completely without merit and we will vigorously defend all claims in court,” said SAG, in response to the lawsuit. “We are confident that our actions are appropriate and consistent with the law and our own rules of procedure.”

  • Angie

    I’m voting YES. 90% YES Vote. That’s what we’re aiming for. Vote YES for ONE UNION!

  • http://www.facebook.com/rik.deskin Rik Deskin

    As much as I adore and respect Ms. Nichols, Mr R.Throne and Mr. Bakula, they are wrong.

    Being a fan of Star Trek in all of its’ incarnations I would expect the Actors that have been lucky enough to work in Gene Roddenberry’s vision of the future to embrace and understand the Vulcan philosophy of Infinite Diversity in Infinite Combinations and the concept of unification that Ambassador Spock was working towards.

    I voted Yes for SAG-AFTRA and a brighter future.

  • hostile_17

    I imagine IDIC is not a valid business reason.