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Posted October 7, 2005

AFL-CIO Executive Council Announces Formation of First Industry Coordinating Committee Covering the Arts, Entertainment, Media and Telecommunications Industries

Actors’ Equity Association Among Ten Unions to Create First Industry Coordinating Committee

Top AFL-CIO Leaders Forge New Ground in Organizing and Fighting for Working Families’ Top Priorities

The 46-member AFL-CIO Executive Council, meeting for the first time since the Federation’s July convention, acted on one of the most sweeping reforms included in the AFL-CIO Winning for Working Families plan by announcing a request by 10 unions in the Arts, Entertainment, Media and Telecommunications industries to create a new Industry Coordinating Committee (ICC). The ICC will build more power for workers in these industries in the face of rapid media consolidation and massive technological shifts. The creation of the new ICC is subject to the approval of the leadership groups of each of the 10 individual unions.

The ICC is the first announced since the convention, which drew up plans for ICCs to bring together unions that represent workers in an industry, employer, occupation, or region and develop an organizing plan as well as contract standards.

“Those professionals who work in the arts, entertainment, media and telecommunications industries need a strong, united effort to address their issues in the face of ownership consolidation and unprecedented changes -- and today, they’re one big step closer to winning more power,” said AFL-CIO President John Sweeney. “The AFL-CIO is 100% committed to supporting efforts to help the millions of workers in these industries improve their lives through unions.”

"We are pleased to be part of the first Industry Coordinating Committee," said Alan Eisenberg, Executive Director of Actors' Equity Association. "The formation of this committee will help us focus our collective resources, strategies and joint organizing efforts. The results will further strengthen our Unions."

“For the first time, all of the major AFL-CIO unions in these sectors will work together to devise joint organizing and collective bargaining strategies in conjunction with their long-standing collaborative work on legislation and public policy,” said Paul Almeida, President of the federation’s Department for Professional Employees.

The Arts, Entertainment, Media and Telecommunications ICC will build power for working people in this industry by undertaking collaborative initiatives in four principal areas -- organizing, collective bargaining, contract standards and public policy. The 10 unions that are part of the new ICC are: Actors’ Equity Association (AEA), American Federation of Musicians (AFM), American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (AFTRA), Communications Workers of America (CWA), International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE), International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW), National Association of Broadcast Employees and Technicians (NABET-CWA), Screen Actors Guild (SAG), The Newspaper Guild (TNG-CWA) and the Writers Guild of America East (WGAE). Combined, these unions represent nearly one million workers in these sectors.

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