Members of SAG-AFTRA have ratified the three-year master contract covering non-primetime work with the four major television networks with 93% of those voting backing the new contract.
The non-primetime deal with the networks includes language limiting auditions in hotel rooms and private residences. Those limits are part of the initiative announced earlier this year by SAG-AFTRA leaders in response to the industry’s sexual harassment scandals that came to light in October with the revelations about disgraced mogul Harvey Weinstein. It’s the first time the union has included those specific provisions in a master contract.
The contract goes into effect retroactively to July 1 through June 30, 2021. The contract’s official name is the SAG-AFTRA National Code of Fair Practice for Network Television Broadcasting — better known as the Network Television Code or Net Code. It covers about $200 million in annual earnings from work on ABC, CBS, NBC and Fox. Ballots were mailed to approximately 142,000 members.
The contract includes nearly all daytime television, as well as programming produced for digital media, morning news shows, talk shows, soap operas, variety, reality, contest, sports, and promotional announcements.
“I am gratified by our members’ vote of approval for this agreement. SAG-AFTRA members working in this area will benefit from stronger protections and meaningful increases in wages and residuals rates,” said SAG-AFTRA president Gabrielle Carteris, who served as chair. “Moreover, the agreement now reflects important new language limiting auditions or meetings in private hotel rooms and residences, which helps us make tangible changes in the way our industry is addressing sexual harassment.”
SAG-AFTRA national executive director David White said, “This contract contains significant gains and protections for members working under the agreement. Dancers, singers, promo announcers, stand-ins, stunt coordinators and background actors will now receive stronger protections and increased wages that can be built upon in the future. I applaud President Carteris, our terrific member negotiating committee and our superb staff for securing these achievements in this negotiation.”