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 www.afm.org/join.
February 10, 2016IM -
The AFM applauded the introduction of federal legislation to streamline the visa process for musicians and other artists traveling to the US.
Currently the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) is instructed to process arts-related O and P visas in 14 days. Unfortunately many artists have encountered outrageous delays—with some visas taking six months.
The Arts Require Timely Service (ARTS) Act, introduced by Senators Orrin Hatch (R-UT) and Patrick Leahy (D-VT), would reduce waiting times by requiring USCIS to treat as a premium processing case (15-day turn around), free of additional charge, any nonprofit arts-related O and P visa petitions that it fails to adjudicate within 14 days.
“I want to thank Senators Hatch and Leahy for their commitment to the arts and for their leadership on this issue. Unfortunately, many Canadian musicians have suffered economically from gig cancellation and job loss in the US because of bureaucratic backlogs, despite current law. The ARTS Act will help musicians by repairing our broken visa system,” says AFM President Ray Hair.
For some time, the AFM has been working with a broad group of organizations including the League of American Orchestras, Performing Arts Alliance, and The Recording Academy to improve the visa process.