NPR and SAG-AFTRA reach a tentative deal on a three-year contract

The headquarters for National Public Radio in Washington.
(Charles Dharapak / Associated Press)

SAG-AFTRA has reached a tentative agreement with National Public Radio on a new three-year contract covering 400 union news and programming employees at the nonprofit radio service.

Terms of the new deal reached just after midnight Eastern time Saturday night were not disclosed. A representative for SAG-AFTRA said the deal provides for “salary increases and effectively repelled efforts to erode union protections and institute a two-tiered salary system.”

SAG-AFTRA and NPR had been approaching a standoff as the union balked at management’s proposals for lower minimum salaries for new hires and more flexibility in allowing union work to be contracted out to its 600 member stations, most of which use employees who are not covered by the bargaining unit.

The contract with the SAG-AFTRA members working for the Washington-based NPR, which provides the daily national news programs “Morning Edition” and “All Things Considered,” expired June 30. The two sides agreed to another 24-hour extension following the end of a two-week extension that expired midnight Friday.


On Saturday, the national board of SAG-AFTRA authorized the NPR bargaining unit to ask its members to vote on whether to strike. But the tentative pact puts off any potential job action.

“Both sides have been working over several months to reach this new, forward-looking agreement that meets the needs of NPR’s employees and operations. SAG-AFTRA members will have an opportunity to vote to ratify the agreement in the coming weeks,” an NPR representative said in a statement.

Twitter: @SteveBattaglio


4:05 p.m.: This article was updated with information about the deal’s impact on a potential strike vote.

This article was originally published at 11:30 a.m.