Today I attended the 2006 Screen Actors Guild National Membership Meeting. As I have said before, every time I'm in the company of the new guild leadership I feel much, much better than I did with the old leadership. To me, I was never sure what side the old leadership was on. It always kinda felt like they were more about being afraid of the opposition and we have paid for it dearly. Not that things are perfect now, but it does seem much more like we are moving in the right direction.
One of the things I thought was pretty cool was listening to rank and file actors make a suggestion during the Q&A. Yeah, they were able to go to the microphone, voice concerns about a union issue directly to the President of the guild then we took a vote of those in attendance and if there was enough votes it would be looked into further. THIS is where change is made and, believe me, we performers need some serious changes from the top down to survive and thrive in this business climate.
Important stuff - really important stuff. It's only our futures. It's pension, health, dues, pay rates, working conditions, background performers, residuals - oh yes, residuals. I really, really wish more of us would go to these meetings. There shouldn't have been an empty seat in that place. Don't get me wrong, I don't understand everything that is said at these meetings or even most of what is said. I DO understand that it has EVERYTHING to do with my future in the business and if I'm going to being able to make a decent living. Some of it can be kinda "lawyer-speak like" and I usually get lost in that, but every time I go I understand it better than last time.