- IFPTE – SPEEA-IFPTE has charged Boeing with unfair labor practices for ending early retiree medical benefits effective Jan. 1, 2007. Boeing and the IFPTE agreed to negotiate a new program for workers who retire as early as age 55. The company sent the union a letter saying negotiations had concluded although no replacement plan has been reached. http://blog.aflcio.org/2006/12/09/bargaining-digest-weekly-37/
IATSE – Theatrical Stage Employees is considering going on strike at the filming of The Battle in Seattle movie portraying the World Trade Organization demonstrations in 1999 where the AFL-CIO played a prominent role. http://blog.aflcio.org/2006/12/09/bargaining-digest-weekly-37/
TNG-CWA – In Philadelphia, the Newspaper Guild is in a stalemate with the papers. One day after settling all non-economic issues, the papers refused to moved off the proposal to freeze pensions and a strike is increasingly likely. The Guild proposed moving to a multi-employer pension plan. Guild leaders asked members to take home their personal items from their desks and await further instructions. The other nine unions in the council will vote on the company’s last offer. Meanwhile, on the other coast, the San Jose Newspaper Guild reached a new deal with the Mercury News that is expected to save more than 40 jobs from an expected layoff of 69 newsroom staff. However, at the Wall Street Journal, the Guild was stunned by the announcement the paper will close its Canadian bureau. http://blog.aflcio.org/2006/12/09/bargaining-digest-weekly-37/
WGAE – Both branches of the Writers Guild of America voted down the final CBS offer by a 99 percent margin among newswriters. The pact would have set up a two-tier wage system and reduced job security for newswriters. Writers Guild of America, East and ABC returned to the table to try to get a new pact for newsroom workers. http://blog.aflcio.org/2006/12/09/bargaining-digest-weekly-37/
FPA – The NBA players union has filed two unfair labor practices against the league, the first claiming a new ball introduced this year cuts the hands of ballhandlers and that the union was not consulted on the decision to put the new ball in play. The NBA has admitted its mistake in introducing a new ball without consulting players. http://blog.aflcio.org/2006/12/09/bargaining-digest-weekly-37/
- AFSCME – Community and student groups filed a complaint against the University of California for failing to follow a state law mandating that the university notify the public of its intent to begin midterm contract negotiations over proposed pension contributions affecting AFSCME professional members.
TNG-CWA – Employees at the Dayton Daily News call for a fair contract to keep quality journalism and jobs in Dayton. For more information please visit the following website: http://www.prnewswire.com/cgi-bin/stories.pl?ACCT=104&STORY=/www/story/11-03-2006/0004466899&EDATE=
- UAN – UAN nurses at Wilcox Hospital in Kauai,HI tentatively agreed to a new contract ending a strike that began June 24. For more information please visit: http://www.thehawaiichannel.com/news/10150864/detail.html
- CWA – AT&T is returning some tech-based jobs to the United States, a move that could create 2,000 new union jobs in the Internet/DSL support field – and a sign of union strength in tackling the exporting of jobs. Read the full article: http://blog.aflcio.org/2006/09/21/att-moving-2000-jobs%e2%80%94back-home/
TNG-CWA – Employees of The Seattle Times largest union, the Pacific Northwest Newspaper Guild, ratified a new contract calling for a two-year wage freeze. The Guild recommended ratification of the contract amid financial difficulties at the paper.
- UAN – Aug 19, 2006 In Hawaii, striking nurses represented by United American Nurses (UAN) remain steadfast in their resolve at Wilcox Hospital since the strike began in June. The hospital has adopted a take-it-or leave it stance in its demands and introduced new demands during the strike that threaten to deny striking nurses their jobs back after a settlement.
SAG and AFTRA – Aug 19, 2006 The Screen Actors Guild (SAG) and Television and Radio Artists (AFTRA) reached a new tentative two-year extension of their current agreement with ad agencies and commercial production companies. The agreement includes a 6 percent pay increase and an increase in company contributions to the health plan. During the agreement, both sides will continue to study the impact of new technology, such as Internet and cell phone videos, on the pay structure for commercial actors.
TNG-CWA – Aug 5, 2006 The Newspaper Guild-CWA (TNG-CWA) workers at The (Toledo) Blade delayed a planned advertiser boycott while they try to negotiate a new contract to replace the one that expired in March.
AFSCME – Aug 5, 2006 AFSCME Council 28 and Washington State are in the final stages of negotiations for 38,000 workers. AFSCME is asking for a 5 percent wage increase.
- CWA – CWA Union: Ready for the Future Communications Workers of America (CWA) delegates wrapped up their annual convention in Las Vegas in mid-July where they approved a bold strategic plan that includes creation of a $24 million per year Strategic Industry Fund to support campaigns to change employers’ anti-union behavior and changes in public policy on issues such as trade and health care that affect working families. CWA, which has run a hugely successful campaign to enable workers at Cingular Wireless to gain a voice on the job-some 17,000 workers joined the union in the past year-recently completed a process of self-review to determine how the union should prepare for the future. In a democratic exchange of ideas, union leaders met with members, stewards and local executive boards and solicited comments on the CWA website. Based on this exchange, says CWA President Larry Cohen, a central theme emerged: strengthening CWA’s bargaining power. From there, says Cohen, the union developed its Ready For The Future plan, which includes four key goals: strengthening employment security, maintaining quality and affordable health care, ensuring retirement security and restoring workers’ fundamental rights to organize and bargain collectively. We all know that the reason union membership has fallen below 8 percent in the private sector in the U.S. has been a relentless attack by management and their government allies, which weakens union bargaining power across every industry and sector. In his keynote convention speech July 10, Cohen said energizing and educating members is essential for CWA to help light the fire of a resurgent labor movement. Further: Some leaders of other unions today say that we can “change to win” but do it mainly top down. They took their unions out of the AFL-CIO. We, in CWA, have the opposite view. Real change means mobilizing more of us. We need a more unified movement, not more splitting. All of us here need to work to build unity on every front, from the workplace to the labor council. We can help lead but not alone, not without resources, and it will not be easy. Rallying delegates, Cohen said, CWA districts, sectors, locals and members must work together To do things we can’t do on our own. All&points in Ready For The Future depend on us working together, the trust that we can do big things, not just as one local, but as CWA and as a key part of a movement. Decent health care, secure jobs, good retirement and collective bargaining rights can be a reality in the richest country in the world. by Tula Connell blog.aflcio.org July 14, 2006
- CWA – Comcast Workers Tenacity Pays Off with Historic Victory – It took five years of solidarity, tenacity and community support for Comcast workers in the Pittsburgh area to win a series of ground-breaking contracts with the notorious union-busting cable company. Over the past three weeks, some 350 technical workers represented by Communications Workers of America Local 13000 ratified contracts at three facilities. Marge Krueger, the unions chief negotiator, says the workers fought hard for union representation and contracts. I felt it was a privilege to work with people like that. Ive been doing organizing for 20 years, and to see people just keep fighting and fighting,even though the company tried to beat them down so much. I just cant say enough positive things about them. Says CWA President Larry Cohen: We could not be prouder of our members at Comcast, our Local 13000 leaders and our staff for never backing down, even as Comcast illegally fired workers and tried every other trick in the book to keep CWA out. These contracts represent a historic victory for us. Coupled with contracts ratified at two other Comcast facilities in the area last fall, western Pennsylvania now has the largest number of unionized employees in the company, Cohen said. The AFL-CIO helped build a religious coalition to back the workers. More than 100 clergy and religious leaders across the country formed the Religious Leaders for Justice at Comcast. The group joined with workers to leaflet outside the cable giants shareholder meeting in Philadelphia last year. Several clergy also spoke at the meeting, demanding that the company honor the workers desire for a union. The coalition also issued a strong open letter in support of the workers. The workers first joined the union in 2001 when they were employed by A&T Broadband, which merged with Comcast a year later. Comcast has aggressively fought workers efforts to form unions since the merger. The company promoted a campaign to decertify the union in 2002. When that failed, Comcast refused to bargain over a first contract. The company also fired a worker in Oakland, Calif., for speaking out at a public hearing on Comcasts violations of labor laws. Another worker in Montgomery County, Md., and two workers in Pittsburgh were fired for supporting a union, according to arbitrators and a National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) administrative law judge. The company went so far as to drop its pension plan for workers in one of the facilities in Beaver Falls, Pa. The Pittsburgh-area workers enjoyed strong support from members of the Pittsburgh City Council and other political leaders. U.S. Rep. Mike Doyle (D-Pa.) hosted a town hall meeting that helped increase pressure on Comcast to bargain. The contracts have different expiration dates, Krueger said. They all include an initial wage increase of 2.5 percent to 3.5 percent and a $700 signing bonus, as well as a second-year raise of 2.6 percent. by James Parks blog.aflcio.org May 17, 2006
<strong>Bargaining Digest Weekly – 5/27/2006</strong> – Members of United Steelworkers (USW) Local 675 in Las Vegas ratified a new three-year contract May 24 with Medco Health Solutions Inc., ending an illegal lockout of about 580 mail-order pharmacy workers that began April 5. Workers had refused to give up their right to bargain over benefits, according to USW. The contract provides for a medical and dental plan that cannot be altered or changed during the life of the contract, USW said. Other benefits such as life insurance and the 401(k) plan are restored. The agreement, which runs through Sept. 1, 2008, provides an immediate wage increase of 3.5 percent, another 3.5 percent increase this September and a final 3.5 percent in September 2007. Workers also will get three lump-sum bonuses totaling about $3,800. Union members across the country used their purchasing power to urge Medco to end the lockout and bargain fairly with the USW. More than 6 million union members and their families, about 25 percent of the company’s business, are covered by one of the company’s prescription plans. USW represents more than 5,100 workers at Medco facilities in Las Vegas; Tampa, Fla.; Willingboro, N.J.; Columbus, Ohio; North Versailles, Pa.; Fort Worth and Irving, Texas; and Liberty Lake, Wash. In Los Angeles, six cities in the L.A. Unified School District have made a proposal, backed by Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, to take over control of their schools from the district. Los Angeles teachers represented by a joint AFT-NEA local are seeking a 14 percent pay hike in their negotiations.
- <strong>From Professors to Pumpernickel Drivers, Workers Choose a Union Voice</strong> – Don’t skip this class&.Professors and instructors at Western Washington University in Bellingham voted to join the United Faculty of Washington State/AFT/NEA. The vote by the 777-member faculty was certified in late February. “This is a great day for the faculty at Western and for our efforts to improve the lives and futures of the students at Washington State,” says history professor Steven Garfinkle, a member of the organizing committee. WWU is the third faculty group to form a union in the Washington State system since a 2002 state law granted collective bargaining rights to faculty members at public universities and four-year colleges. The union-led effort in 2002 also won collective bargaining rights for some 38,000 state workers and graduate and research assistants at the University of Washington.
<strong>Workers from Idaho to Puerto Rico Latest to Join Unions </strong>- Corrections officers, school support staffers, nuclear power plant technicians, college academic workers and child care workers all stood together and won union voices on the job in recent elections. Growing stronger with time&Corrections officers at Puerto Rico’s 456 correctional facilities voted to join Alianza Correccional Unida (ACU)/Servidores Peblicos Unidos (SPU)/AFSCME Council 95. The election results were announced March 14, nearly four years after the workers initially voted to join ACU/SPU/AFSCME. A 2002 election was overturned for an irregularity at a single polling place and the revote was delayed by legal battles. But the support by the 6,400 offers for a union voice grew. In 2002, the vote to join the unions was 2 to 1. This time around, workers voted by 3-to-1 margin for a voice at work.
<strong>Working Families Celebrate Victory in New Hampshire</strong> – Longtime observers of the New Hampshire Legislature say that so-called right to work (RTW) legislation has surfaced about 30 times. Just once did it every make any headway. It got a slight majority in a House vote many years ago. On March 22, after a working families’ mobilization plan that showed lawmakers just how deeply right to work laws go against the grain of New Hampshire voters, the latest RTW proposal again failed. The bill was put out its misery by a 255-85 vote in the state House of Representatives, which has just 150 Democratic lawmakers.
- AFSCME – ILLINOIS WORKERS JOIN AFSCME – Some 248 clerical, technical and professional workers at the state Toll Highway Authority and 154 accountant supervisors, staff development specialists and public information coordinators in other departments joined AFSCME Council 31 recently. More than 1,400 Illinois state employees have joined Council 31 since 2003, when the state authorized majority sign-up, in which the employer agrees to recognize the union if a majority of workers signs union authorization cards. In North Dakota, 100 correctional workers joined Council 59 on Jan. 1.
AFT – SYRACUSE FACULTY GAINS VOICE-Part-time and adjunct faculty members at Syracuse (N.Y.) University voted to join Adjuncts United, an affiliate of New York State United Teachers/AFT. Along with part-time faculty members, the 600 teachers include adjunct faculty-professionals outside of academia who teach classes in their fields of expertise.
IBEW – Nearly 100 nurses, and other workers at Knife River Care Center in Beulah, N.D., a community-run elder care facility, voted to join the Electrical Workers recently.
UAN – The 310 registered nurses at Mercy Medical Center in Roseburg, Ore., voted Jan. 11 to join the Oregon Nurses Association/United American Nurses. The nurses were forced to attend captive-audience meetings and endured name-calling from management but said they are looking forward to addressing staffing concerns at the hospital as full partners with management.
AFSCME – COAST TO COAST, WORKERS CHOOSE AFSCME-More than 400 workers in four states voted to join AFSCME recently. In Bellefonte, Pa., 252 nurses and clerical workers at Centre Crest Nursing Home voted to join AFSCME Council 13. In Indianapolis, 111 workers at Wishard Memorial Hospital voted to join AFSCME Local 2065. Also, 31 municipal workers in Two Rivers, Wis., and eight employees of the Village of Hustisford voted to join AFSCME Council 40. Twenty-six vocational supervisors in Washington State’s Department of Social and Health Services chose AFSCME Council 28.
CWA – MULTIPLE CINGULAR VOICES-Employees at Cingular Wireless continue to show what happens when workers have a free choice to form a union: Nearly 16,000 Cingular employees who once worked for AT&T before the Cingular/AT&T merger have joined Communications Workers of America since August under an agreement in which Cingular agreed to honor the workers’ freedom to form a union when a majority signs authorization cards. More than 2,400 Cingular Wireless workers became the most recent to join CWA in late December and early January. The new CWA members include 1,288 Orlando, Fla., call center workers; 400 retail sales workers at several Pennsylvania locations; 158 sales and customer service workers in Hawaii; 151 retail sales reps in Colorado; 51 retail sales workers in Iowa; and 14 New Mexico sales workers.
AFT – TEACHERS, EDUCATION WORKERS WIN AFT VOICE-More than 200 workers nationwide recently won a voice with AFT. In the Cuba (N.M.) Independent School District, 125 teachers and paraprofessionals voted to join AFT, as did 42 paraprofessionals of the Barnstead (N.H.) Educational Support Team. Also, 28 teachers at the Western New York Maritime Charter School in Buffalo won recognition through majority sign-up, in which the employer agrees to recognize the workers’ choice when a majority signs authorization cards. In Helena, Mont., six pharmacy technicians and clerks at Western Snyders Pharmacy voted for AFT representation.