AFTRA Members Approve Network Television Contract

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The three-year deal primarily covers soap operas and unscripted programming.

AFTRA members overwhelmingly ratified a three-year renewal to the union’s agreement with the four major television networks and other producers, the union announced Wednesday. The vote on the contract – known as the AFTRA National Code of Fair Practice for Network Television Broadcasting, or “Front of the Book,” was 96 percent in favor, and was expected.

Deal terms include a 1 percent increase in employer contributions to the AFTRA Health & Retirement Funds, 2 percent annual wage increases, and a variety of other provisions. The new contract runs through Nov. 15, 2014.

“I am proud our members overwhelmingly voted in favor of this hard-fought contract,” said AFTRA president Roberta Reardon.

AFTRA national executive director Kim Roberts Hedgpeth served as chief negotiator, and was assisted by co-negotiators Joan Halpern Weise, assistant national executive director of entertainment programming, and Stephen Burrow, the union’s New York Local executive director.

The agreement is AFTRA’s largest national collective bargaining agreement and generates more than $250 million a year in member earnings. The Code covers programming in all television day parts (except for scripted primetime programs on the networks and the CW which are covered under the AFTRA Exhibit A contract) and programming produced for digital media. Covered programs include dramas in first-run syndication, morning news shows, talk shows, serials (soap operas), variety, reality, sports, contest programs, award shows and promotional announcements.

Current programs covered by the contract include Good Morning America, The View, The Price Is Right, The Young and the Restless, Saturday Night Live, Jeopardy, Dancing With the Stars, Late Show With David Letterman, The Voice, Amazing Race, Deal or No Deal, The Tonight Show and American Idol, among others.


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