Since 2005, the Motion Picture and Television Fund (MPTF) has partnered with the Writers Guild of America West (WGAW) to administer the Good and Welfare Emergency Assistance Fund. For 100 years, MPTF has provided a variety of services that provide emotional and financial relief to industry members and their families during times of need. Whether the hardship is personal or the result of an entertainment industry-wide event, MPTF has been there. MPTF’s history as a charitable organization, coupled with the expertise of the social services team, makes it keenly prepared to address the unique needs of entertainment industry members.
WGAW Good and Welfare Emergency Assistance Fund
The fund provides temporary emergency financial assistance, in the form of interest-free loans to Current and Post-Current members in good standing who are experiencing acute financial distress. They may contact MPTF Community Social Services (CSS) by calling (323) 634-3888, a voicemail number, to leave a message. Calls to this line are generally returned the same day; however, it can take up to 1-2 business days if the call volume is high.
Applicants will speak to a CSS professional who will assess their eligibility, specific circumstances and needs. Applicants will also be asked to complete a release of information consent form that will be submitted to the WGAW to assist with eligibility determination. MPTF is informed of the applicant’s earnings, membership status, dues balance, loan history and pension compensation.
Based on the assessment of the applicant’s specific circumstances, the CSS professional completes a budget, develops a case plan with the applicant, and completes a loan recommendation. The loan recommendation is submitted to MPTF’s Director of Community Social Services, who reviews and submits it to the WGAW Membership and Finance Committee (MFC) for loan consideration.
Applicants may receive as many as two loans of up to $7,000 each, for a total lifetime amount of $14,000.
MPTF’s Director of Community Social Services is notified by the WGAW CFO if the applicant is approved and the applicant is notified by the assigned CSS professional of the determination. Approved applicants are emailed a promissory note and notarized funds assignment, and instructed to return to the WGAW CFO who will issue a check upon receipt.
If the applicant is not eligible for a loan, the CSS professional will inform the applicant of the reasons and guide the member as to what is needed to resolve the matter. If the reason for ineligibility cannot be resolved, the CSS professional will provide additional referrals as appropriate.
Each case is reviewed on a case-by-case basis and dependent on financial need. If an applicant is able to meet MPTF’s eligibility guidelines and have a demonstrable need they may be eligible for assistance.
Applicants have the right to appeal a decision by the CSS professional. The applicant should write a letter to the MPTF Manager of Community Social Services stating why a change in the CSS professional’s decision is warranted. A packet, including the applicant’s letter, the budget, and the CSS professional’s reasons for assistance or denial should be forwarded by the MPTF to the WGAW for review. The MFC will consider the appeal within two (2) months. Its decision is final.