ACTRA, ACA renewal agreement maintains stability for commercial sector

ACTRA and the Association of Canadian Advertisers (ACA) have reached a tentative agreement on a one-year renewal of the National Commercial Agreement (NCA), including the Local and Regional (L&R) Commercial Addendum, to provide important stability for our industry.

The renewal agreement was ratified by the ACA’s Board of Directors on May 2 and by ACTRA Members on May 12. The renewal agreement includes a 2% increase to all rates and fees and is effective from June 1, 2022, to May 31, 2023, over which time ACTRA and the ACA will work to simplify and modernize the NCA.

The Institute of Canadian Agencies (ICA) is no longer a co-administrator after seeking terms unacceptable to ACTRA and the ACA and ultimately left the bargaining table.

The current terms and conditions of the NCA remain in effect until May 31, 2022.

Bargaining a new NCA took place for over a year (see timeline below). Negotiations with the ICA were not easy but emerging with this renewal agreement with the ACA is an important achievement and one that will benefit ACTRA members.

Following the renewal of the NCA, commercials continue to be union-made with our partners in the ACA and the many signatory engagers that respect and value the ACTRA performers who make great commercials.

ACTRA Members can only work for agencies that adhere to the NCA terms and conditions, and non-adhering agencies will not be able to use ACTRA talent on inferior non-union terms and conditions.

While casting breakdowns that are sent for a specific commercial production should highlight if the production is union, if you or your agent are unsure, please contact your ACTRA Branch directly to confirm if a production is being shot under a union contract. ACTRA Members are not permitted to audition for or work on non-union commercials.

Questions? Read our FAQs.

Negotiations Timeline

August 2020: ACTRA and the Joint Broadcasting Committee of the Association of Canadian Advertisers (ACA) and the Institute of Canadian Agencies (ICA) agree to extend the terms and conditions of the current NCA, including the Local and Regional (L&R) Commercial Addendum, for a one-year term without any changes or concessions to support the commercial industry in its pandemic recovery.

April 2021: ACTRA and the Joint Broadcasting Committee of the Association of Canadian Advertisers (ACA) and the Institute of Canadian Agencies (ICA) commence negotiations to renew the NCA, including the L&R Commercial Addendum.

March 2022: The ICA triggers a lockout of ACTRA Performers, initially as of midnight ET on April 2, 2022, but later extended to 12:01 a.m. ET on April 26, 2022.

April 2022: The ICA seeks terms unacceptable to ACTRA and the ACA only to leave the bargaining table and subsequently deem the contract has expired.

April 2022: ACTRA and the ACA reach a tentative agreement to renew the NCA for a one-year term (June 1, 2022, to May 31, 2023) with a 2% increase to rates and fees over which time the two parties will work together to simplify and modernize the agreement.

May 2022: The ACA’s Board of Directors and ACTRA Members ratify the renewal agreement.

May 2022: ACTRA files 14 grievances in Montreal, Toronto, and Vancouver seeking full compensation for performers who had their union contracts pulled out from under them and to cease-and-desist engaging in non-union operations in violation of the NCA.

May 2022: ACTRA files a complaint with the Ontario Labour Relations Board that the Institute of Canadian Agencies (ICA), and the nine ad agencies it represented in negotiations, bargained in bad faith over the past year as ACTRA sought to reach an agreement on the renewal of the National Commercial Agreement (NCA). ACTRA is also seeking damages in the form of wages, benefits, and retirement contributions lost as a result of Engagers unlawfully making non-union commercials.

Member Bulletins

ACTRA is sending Member Bulletins with information about our National Commercial Agreement (NCA) renewal agreement. Please take a few minutes to catch up on the issues; and please do what you can to share what you learn.

May 4: Want a legal opinion on the status of the NCA?
May 5: What’s the status of the NCA?
May 6: Voting is open. Vote Yes.
May 9: Background on bargaining.
May 10: What did you miss from last night’s NCA Town Hall?
May 11: Where in the world do union members still make commercials?
May 12: Vote YES today.
May 13: We have a contract and we are acting to enforce it
May 16: We need your help to keep making great commercials
May 17: ACTRA takes the ICA to the Ontario Labour Relations Board
May 20: Taking legal action against ICA’s union-busting