Musicians for Pension Security celebrated its first anniversary in April. Thanks in large part to the overwhelming support from fellow musicians across the country, we have had a very successful year.
Since April of 2017, MPS has built a network that now connects 20,000 fellow musicians across the country who are in search of more information about the state of our pension and desire more transparency and accountability from the AFM-EPF Trustees.
In April 2018, we hosted the MPS National Meeting, which was filled to capacity in NYC and streamed online to musicians across the country via Facebook Live. Just one week later the video of our presentation had been viewed over 4,000 times!
Immediately after the meeting, we launched our second ever MPS fundraiser with a goal of raising $15,000 by June 1st. We are happy to report that we met our goal in just two weeks and have now raised a grand total of $23,000. We want to thank all our fellow musicians for their speedy replies and kind generosity.
The overwhelming support for MPS from the AFM community speaks volumes. Musicians across the country have made it clear that they want the problems that have plagued our pension fund for years to be addressed and corrected. MPS pledges to put your hard-earned dollars toward this effort and will continue the fight to protect our pension fund.
A Look Back at MPS Year One
The problems with our pension fund are very complicated, and there is no silver bullet to fix everything. However, MPS has never let this daunting task stop us from working hard on your behalf. We have made considerable progress. Here is a list of just some of the things MPS has accomplished with the help of fellow musicians across the country:
- We built and organized the MPS network through our website and mailing list to now connects 20,000 musicians across the country.
- MPS published over 40 articles arming fellow musicians with the necessary information to have a better understanding of the issues facing the fund.
- We hosted the MPS National Meeting on April 4th, that was filled to capacity, streamed across the country and has since been viewed over 4,000 times by fellow musicians.
- With support from musicians across the country, in just one year we raised $43,000 to help fight to better protect our pension fund in the future.
- In order to connect organizers across the country affected by the pension issue, we launched the MPS national conference call network. Every month we lead a conference call to discuss solutions, listen to experts, and have a national conversation focused on how to address the pension crisis moving forward.
- We created the MPS Local 802 committee that meets monthly to address how the problems at the pension fund affect 802 members at the local level and possible solutions.
- MPS created a political action committee to help find legislative solutions to problems at the AFM-EPF. We have built a network that connects us with members of Congress on both sides of the aisle who are decision-makers in Washington, D.C. Some of our contacts are Senators Sherrod Brown, Patti Murray, Senator Lamar Alexander, Orin Hatch, Richard Shelby, Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, Rob Portman, and House members Peter King and Marsha Blackburn.
- MPS brought in Jonathan Kantor as senior advisor and legal counsel and hired one of the most well-respected actuaries in the country Tom Lowman, FSA.
- Executive Director Adam Krauthamer was recognized by the Pension Rights Center in Washington, D.C. with an award for his activism.
- MPS organized and implemented a highly successful call to action which, after months of pressure, we believe successfully influenced the AFM and the AFM-EPF trustees to endorse the Butch Lewis Act.
- With the guidance of actuary Tom Lowman and legal counsel Jonathan Kantor we developed the MPS Action Plan, a set of reasonable and actionable steps that, if implemented, can significantly improve the health of the fund and revamp the way the AFM-EPF does business.