#NextChapter: WGAE Council Recommends Constitutional Changes to Make Room for All Voices in Council, Reaches Agreement on a Path Forward for Organizing All Sectors
NEW YORK, NY (April 7, 2022) – The Writers Guild of America, East (WGAE) has announced that the union’s governing body has unanimously recommended changes to the constitution that will modernize the union and ensure balanced representation on the Council of members from different work sectors. It has also approved a new organizing resolution that will ensure aggressive goals for organizing writers equitably in all of the union’s work sectors.
The union is kicking off a campaign, called #NextChapter, and will be encouraging members to approve the changes in a referendum later this spring.
“The WGAE Council has spent the last several months working together and with an outside facilitator. I think I speak for everyone involved when I say that it has been a learning process in which everyone exchanged ideas and listened to one another,” said Michael Winship, President of the Writers Guild of America East. “Now we have united. I’m enthusiastic about the result and the next chapter for this brave union of storytellers.”
“I’m thrilled that our governing body has not only created an agreement to increase and formalize our commitment to organizing but also built a process to collaborate with each other on finding solutions to challenges across all work sectors,” said Sara David, a member of the Council who works in online media. “These changes mark an exciting new chapter of the WGA East where we can negotiate stronger contracts, expand our organizing work, and ensure that every member’s voice is heard.”
“The organizing resolution and constitutional changes, when combined, mark an exciting new chapter for the Guild where members have better representation on Council and we will have aggressive new organizing goals that will benefit everyone,” said Gail Lee, a broadcast member of the Council. “Reaching agreement on these changes wasn’t easy, but I am proud of everyone’s willingness on Council to have the difficult but necessary conversations.”
To ensure that members from all work sectors are represented on the union’s governing body, Council is recommending that members approve changes to the constitution that include creating three work sector vice presidents―Film/TV/Streaming, Broadcast/Cable/Streaming News, and Online Media.
The organizing resolution approved by the Council requires the appointment of an organizing committee made up of Council members from all work sectors that will meet regularly to advise and consult with staff about potential organizing targets―and requires an increase in the organizing budget to aggressively grow the Guild equitably across all sectors.
The WGAE will be holding Town Hall discussions by Zoom in April to share more information with members about the changes. Members will receive additional information about the changes by email in the next few days.
ABOUT WRITERS GUILD OF AMERICA, EAST
The Writers Guild of America, East, AFL-CIO (WGAE) is a labor union representing writers in film, television, news and new media. The Guild negotiates and administers contracts that protect the creative and economic rights of its members; conducts programs, seminars and events on issues of interest to writers; and presents writers’ views to various bodies of government. For more information on the Writers Guild of America, East, visit wgaeast.org.