Serving members in two nations with different legal systems,money, social programs and tax issues, can pose some challenges. Through our Canadian committee, Local 1000 works to make sure that US and Canadian members are served equally well.
Is Local 1000 the same union as the Canadian local which serves my geographical area?
Yes, Local 1000 is a full member of the American Federation of Musicians (AFM). The only difference is that we serve traveling musicians living and working throughout Canada and the US, rather than those from just one region or city. As a Canadian member of Local 1000, you have access to the same AFM benefits and programs as all members of Canadian geographic locals.
Is there any difference in the dues?
Yes, because annual membership dues are set by each local, depending on the budgetary commitments of that local. In general, though, Local 1000 membership dues are very competitive.
How does Local 1000 handle the issue of Canadian dollar scale?
Canadian members pay annual membership dues at the current exchange rate. We accept CAD cheques.
Regarding work dues, we apply the principle that a dollar is a dollar. In other words, if scale is $110 US for a particular type of gig in the U.S., it will be $110 CAD for the same gig in Canada. Work dues are calculated on the same principle.
Why can’t Local 1000 treat work dues and membership dues the same?
Because we have to forward a percentage of membership dues to the AFM in US dollars. Canadian locals must do the same. More importantly, most of Local 1000′s expenses are paid in US dollars. Our Canadian members therefore pay the same dues as our US members.
Are there any differences in benefits available to Canadian and US members of Local 1000?
Yes. The pension plans are separate, although a Canadian member can become vested in the US plan and vice-versa, if (s)he is doing enough cross-border work.
What about the various group insurance plans?
There are differences, but AFM Canada offers instrument and other kinds of insurance at excellent rates, through a Canadian-based insurer.
Can Local 1000 help me to get a US work permit?
Yes. As a Canadian AFM member, you are able to take advantage of Federation sponsorship in the US. You can apply for a P-2 petition through the AFM’s Canadian office. If you are working regularly (at least monthly) in the US, you can get a multiple-entry visa for the same fee. (UPDATE 10.21.10 Please see our Crossing the Border page for the newest information about increased fees) The P-2 Petition (and instructions) are here.
Is MPF money available to Canadian members performing in Canada and the US?
Trust fund money is available in Canada. For MPF gigs in the US, you need a US Social Security number (not available to most Canadians) or Tax ID number. To apply for a Tax ID number, use a W-7 form, available from the IRS.
As a Local 1000 member, am I covered by the federation’s collective bargaining agreements with national organizations such as the CBC?
Yes, you can play for the CBC and collect pension contributions, as can any Canadian member of the AFM.
Is Local 1000 literature available en français?
Oui. Veuillez nous joindre à firstname.lastname@example.org.
Is there anything else I should know?
We’d like to know the answer to that, too. Please tell us if you think of something important we have missed. If you have further questions, please contact us or the AFM Canadian Office at the coordinates below.
Canadian Federation of Musicians
150 Ferrand Drive, Suite 202
Toronto, Ontario M3C 3E5
Phone: 416 391 5161
Toll Free: 1 800 463 6333
Fax: 416 391 5165
For visa, work permits and Letters Of Cultural Exchange assistance:
Susan Whitfield: email@example.comFor all other enquiries use: firstname.lastname@example.org