Now is the right time to become an American Federation of Musicians member. From ragtime to rap, from the early phonograph to today's digital recordings, the AFM has been there for its members. And now there are more benefits available to AFM members than ever before, including a multi-million dollar pension fund, excellent contract protection, instrument and travelers insurance, work referral programs and access to licensed booking agents to keep you working.

As an AFM member, you are part of a membership of more than 80,000 musicians. Experience has proven that collective activity on behalf of individuals with similar interests is the most effective way to achieve a goal. The AFM can negotiate agreements and administer contracts, procure valuable benefits and achieve legislative goals. A single musician has no such power.

The AFM has a proud history of managing change rather than being victimized by it. We find strength in adversity, and when the going gets tough, we get creative - all on your behalf.

Like the industry, the AFM is also changing and evolving, and its policies and programs will move in new directions dictated by its members. As a member, you will determine these directions through your interest and involvement. Your membership card will be your key to participation in governing your union, keeping it responsive to your needs and enabling it to serve you better. To become a member now, visit


Home » Officer Columns » Executive Board Members » Build Back with a Strong Union

Build Back with a Strong Union

  -  AFM IEB Member and President, Local 47 (Los Angeles, CA)

As the US and Canada begin to re-emerge from the COVID-19 crisis, the road to an economic recovery will be long and arduous. Recessions hurt low-income and middle-income families the most, dragging down wages and decimating the savings of the working class. Without targeted solutions by governments, the effects of this pandemic will be long lasting, hurting those workers at the lower end of the spectrum the most.

In the US, the Protecting the Right to Organize Act (PRO Act) would authorize financial penalties for employers that violate workers’ rights, improve the possibility of workers joining boycotts and strikes, and enhance the ability to collectively bargain, along with other reforms. The PRO Act would do much to modernize federal labor laws in the US.

Senate Republicans seem to resist taking up this legislation, with claims that it is stacked against employers. But, after the unprecedented COVID-19 crisis, lawmakers have an obligation to do right by the working class. Without government intervention, the recovery will be fleeting and, at best, unbalanced.

As our sector begins to rebound, we must build a stronger union. A strong union will be critical to the recovery, equalizing the economic effects while ensuring that wages, benefits, and working conditions reflect what is truly fair compensation. As the union bargains back stronger, those effects will reverberate across the industry with improvements in conditions for all workers, union and nonunion alike.

Our union has been blessed by the amazing work we see in both small and large locals alike, from the Western Conference to the Southern, from the Eastern to the Mid-States, and our sisters and brothers in Canada. Our local and national leadership have demonstrated a selfless commitment to our cause, all in the name of music and musicians. They have kept our federation intact, pulling us through the unprecedented challenges and the once in a lifetime crisis that COVID-19 has dealt us.

As governments continue to debate what path will lead our nation to a true recovery, focused and commonsense solutions must include support for labor unions. And with these targeted solutions, we will emerge stronger together.

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