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Michelle Jones

Us vs. Them - Why Unions Are Failing Members

August 20, 2013 at 3:37 PM

Having recently spent eight straight days in meetings related to the musicians’ union, I see why the AFM is failing its members. Like most unions, it is creating an “Us vs. Them” mentality when it comes to contractors and management. This may work well for other unions, but when it comes to musicians, we are all our own contractors and managers. Most of my musician friends are self-employed, self-managed musicians who are trying to make a living doing what they love – making music! Some get together with other self-managed musicians and give shows or create ensembles with the hopes of being hired as a group for shows. Very few are fortunate enough to have a W-2 employer that guarantees hours and wages and working conditions on a regular basis, and these are usually under a collective bargaining agreement. So why is the AFM treating its own members as the enemy?

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