One of the Screen Actors Guild’s top officers has issued a plea to members to stop brawling on the eve of a potentially acrimonious board meeting over revamping SAG’s ruling body.
“It is time for all of us to stop the fighting,” declared David Jolliffe, 11th national VP and a key SAG rep in the last two contract negotiations. “It is accomplishing nothing. It is becoming extremely destructive to the union we all love so much.”
SAG’s board will meet today on a proposed governance plan that will shrink the panel from 107 to 60 and boost Hollywood’s representation from 46% to 54%. The goals are to make the board operate more efficiently and to accurately reflect Hollywood’s share of the membership.
Officers repping branches outside Los Angeles successfully blocked the plan in April and have claimed that passage will lead to branches being closed, an allegation denied by Hollywood reps.
Jolliffe, who is based in Los Angeles, said he was “extremely troubled” by emails sent by board reps in opposition to the plan. One suggested that members violate SAG’s ban on non-union work; another called Los Angeles reps “Nazis.”
“Let alone how appalling the comments are, they show again the underlying mistrust and borderline hatred among ourselves,” Jolliffe wrote. “I have not named the person who wrote this, as hurtful as it is, because I want all of the b.s. to stop.”
Jolliffe said he still plans to push for the governance plan but will stress that the debate should not include personal attacks. “This is about fundamental fairness, and I’m very troubled that Hollywood is underrepresented in the board room,” he added.