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   April 14, 2006

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Actors’ Equity Launches Enhanced Website

Expanded Members-Only Section, Online Dues Payment Options and Benefits Are Key Features of

Seven years and nine months after its initial debut, Actors’ Equity has launched the first major update to its popular website, with major improvements in design, appearance, functionality, benefits and online services. The website is a joint project of the Communications and Information Technology Departments, headed by National Communications Director David Lotz and National Computer Services Director Doug Beebe. The new design is by Tim Thayer, Eyebuzz Design.

Pay Dues Online, here's how:
1. Logon to Members Only
2. Go to "My Profile" link in left menu
3. Go to "Financials"

The newest innovation is a redesigned Members Profile section, where members can manage their contact, financial and security information. Starting with the May 2006 billing period, members will be able to pay their Basic Dues and Initiation Fees online using a major credit card or electronic bank check (click here to see related story). In the Members Only section, members can browse Equity’s online franchised agents directory, the Equity theatre directory, Deputy and Stage Manager information, and a welcome area for New Members. Convenient drop-down menus provide links to all Equity Agreements and Codes (for minimum salaries and rulebooks); a new Benefits section; the News & Media index; and many other areas.

Other Features
A new Benefits section has been created, highlighting numerous contract and membership benefits and services provided by, or through, the Union. Among these are: agency regulations, discounts, diversity and EEO initiatives, free tax assistance, name protection, social services (through affiliated organizations), unemployment insurance assistance, and Workers’ Comp information. There are separate sections for Health Insurance, Pension, and 401(k) information, which link directly to the Equity-League Trust Funds website.

Casting Call, Equity’s popular database for hundreds of Equity Auditions, has been formatted so it is easier to read. A new “save the date” calendar has been added to provide information about upcoming meetings and events.

There are updated sections for Deputies, Stage Managers, Equity Membership Candidates and New Members, with quick links to rulebooks and forms in the Document Library as well as other pertinent resources.

The Document Library has dozens of Equity rulebooks, forms, brochures, Stage Manager/Deputy kits, and safe and sanitary information (including protocols for smoke and haze). All documents are downloadable.

A new Education and Outreach section gives an overview of AEA’s popular outreach seminars for students and new members. For educators, there’s information about scheduling the seminar as well as a list of upcoming presentations and events.

The News & Media section has been revamped with a regional news index, a press room and downloadable press releases and photos. There is an online news archive dating back to 2002, with links to Equity’s 90th Anniversary timeline and awards sections.

Other features coming in the near future include a “Council/Boards Only” section and further enhancements on Casting Call.

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