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Directors Guild Reaches Deal on Commercials Contract

The Directors Guild of America’s national board has approved a three-year tentative commercial contract deal, to be sent to the membership for ratification.

The agreement was announced Tuesday. The successor deal to the master contract was negotiated with the Association of Independent Commercial Producers and covers a three-year term from Dec. 1, 2017 to Nov. 30, 2020.

Terms of the deal are similar to the master contract for film and television work, which went into effect on July 1. The commercials agreement includes wage increases of 2.5% in the first year of the contract and 3% in each of the second and third years of the contract.

It also includes a permanent increase in the employer contribution rate to the DGA Pension Plan by one-half percent (.5%) in the first year of the agreement from 5.5% to 6%. The DGA will also have the right to allocate up to .5% of the negotiated increases in salary rates in the second and third years of the agreement to the DGA Pension Plan or DGA Health Plan.

The deal also calls for mandatory safety training for assistant directors and unit production managers “to support their roles in helping the employer maintain best practices and a safe working environment.”

“In the face of a rapidly changing advertising industry, our Commercial Negotiations Committee achieved a solid agreement securing significant benefits for our members working in commercials,” said DGA President Thomas Schlamme. “This contract will grow this area of work for years to come.”

The DGA team was led by Associate National Executive Director Bryan Unger and Eastern Executive Director Neil Dudich. The DGA’s National Board voted unanimously at a special board meeting on Saturday to approve the agreement and send it to the membership for ratification.

“Throughout the process, we were focused on working with the AICP to find practical solutions to challenges on both sides, and it paid off,” said Unger. “We are pleased that the new agreement will keep our members working, securing their retirement benefits and important wage gains – while also allowing producers the flexibility they need to keep this global industry thriving.”

Ratification ballots will be mailed this week. The DGA has more than 17,000 members.

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