Actors union opposes same-sex marriage ban

LOS ANGELES (AP) - October 29, 2008 After weeks of being criticized for not contributing enough to defeat Proposition 8, members of the film-TV industries have recently stepped up their contributions - financial and otherwise - to fight Proposition 8, and on Tuesday a union committee voted to oppose the measure.

"No actor should have to disclose his or her sexual preference in order to get health and retirement benefits," said SAG Chairwoman Anne-Marie Johnson. "Being legally married means everyone is treated the same. It's important that we take a stand to protect all actors from discriminatory hiring practices and provide same-sex couples access to benefits."

SAG said the organization does not endorse political candidates, but the actors union often takes positions on ballot initiatives.

The union's Colorado branch previously announced it is opposing Amendment 47, a right-to-work measure on the state's November ballot which would bar unions from requiring nonunion workers to pay dues.

In the last two weeks, several SAG members have personally donated money to defeat Proposition 8, according to state fundraising records, including: "Two and a Half Men" actor Jon Cryer ($10,000); "Bones" actress Emily Deschanel ($2,000); "The New Adventures of Old Christine" actress Wanda Sykes ($3,500) and "In Plain Sight" actress Mary McCormack ($3,000).

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