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AFTRA and IATSE Conclude First Meeting of Joint Strategic Alliance Committee

LOS ANGELES (October 24, 2007) – The special Strategic Alliance Committees of the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists and the International Alliance of Theatrical and Stage Employees, which included elected and staff leaders of the two unions, held two days of discussions as part of its inaugural meeting that concluded Tuesday.

IA and AFTRA issued a joint statement following the meeting: “The AFTRA/IA Strategic Alliance Committee conducted enlightening and productive discussions on how members of our two unions can work together to further the interests of our members who work across all of our areas of common interest in the entertainment and media workplace.  We shared information on our respective organizational structures, governing documents, collective bargaining agreements, and communications tools to better understand the workings of each union.  We also examined our common areas of employment, and challenges and opportunities for organizing new work and maintaining a stable union presence in the media and entertainment sectors.

”We each have much to learn from each other, and see tremendous potential for this strategic alliance to turn non-union work into unionized work opportunities for members of AFTRA and IA. These initial discussions confirmed the optimism expressed by IA International President Thomas C. Short and AFTRA National President Roberta Reardon when they announced the formation of this Strategic Alliance Committee in July.  Our work during these two days is just the beginning of the development and implementation of exciting joint programs and projects that will bring positive results to all workers in the entertainment and media industry.“

Fields of work covered by both IA and AFTRA include television news, sports, and entertainment programming, music video and television commercial production, basic cable programming, internet, and new media, among others.