The purpose of this newsletter is to inform you of recent activities by the Department for Professional Employees, AFL-CIO as well as emerging issues affecting the professional and technical workforce. NewsLine will be published on the first of every month. Issues of NewsLine are accessible on the DPE web page www.dpeaflcio.org. Feedback welcomed; send to email@example.com.
In This Issue:
- Special Thanks
- Coming Soon: Sign up for the Unconference Conference!
- Working into the Future Professionally
- International Comparisons in Health Care: A Lunch and Learn Program and Discussion with Gerard Anderson, Ph.D.
- New Fact Sheet provides International Perspective on Health Care
- Overtime: Paying for the Election
- Developing Links to Professional Societies – APHA
- Is Offshoring Over?
SPECIAL THANKS: To all of the DPE staff who pitched in and went the extra mile during the recent election. Senator Kerry said it best in his concession remarks, “What you did made a difference, and building on itself — building on itself, we go on to make a difference another day. I promise you, that time will come. The time will come, the election will come when your work and your ballots will change the world, and it’s worth fighting for.”
COMING SOON: SIGN UP FOR THE UNCONFERENCE CONFERENCE! – Watch www.dpeaflcio.org. That’s where this month the Department for Professional Employees (DPE) will start posting information for its unconference conference on March 14-16, 2005, Organizing Professionals in the 21st Century, scheduled for the Crystal City Hilton in Arlington, Virginia.
Professional and technical workers form the fastest growing, and one of the most heavily unionized, segments of our economy. Here’s a chance for national and local union decision-makers, organizers, key staff, and researchers to share what’s working, tap newly commissioned research, brainstorm, and shape a research agenda for our future.
The hard work of a Planning Committee that’s been meeting since January 2004 has created a unique conference structure. DPE will ask every participant, from the start of the conference, to note questions and ideas that the conference sessions spark. Before the conference ends, every participant will join in a breakout session to set priorities for testing ideas with research.
Already confirmed: a lead plenary session about population, economic, and technological trends for professionals with Dr. Lynn Karoly, Senior Economist at the RAND Corporation, and co-author ofThe 21st Century at Work: Forces Shaping the Future Workforce and Workplace in the United States, published this year; and Dr. Richard Hurd, Professor of Industrial and Labor Relations at the Cornell School of Industrial and Labor Relations and author of, among many other studies, a DPE special report, The Organizing Challenge: Professional and Technical Workers Seek a Voice(1997).
Eight other plenary sessions and a dozen workshops range from “Professionals Organizing to Function as Professionals” to “Into Cyberspace and Beyond! New Tactics for Organizing.” Among other topics: building a union without collective bargaining, alliances and affiliations between unions and professional associations, outreach to pre- and young professionals, professional education as a core for organizing, and forms of organizing in entertainment and media, education, health care, engineering and science, information technology, the public sector, contingent employment, and outside the U.S.
DPE offers special thanks to the representatives of its affiliated unions on the Planning Committee –AEA, AFT, TNG-CWA, AFSCME, IFPTE, UFCW, and WGAE – who continue their invaluable work despite innumerable other obligations; its collaborators, the Albert Shanker Institute and the Organizing Research Network; and the many DPE affiliates and allies who have readily responded to our requests for participation on the program and in the conference.
For questions or comments, please contact David Cohen at 202-638-0320 extension 13, firstname.lastname@example.org.
WORKING INTO THE FUTURE, PROFESSIONALLY – On December 14, 2004, the DPE Committee on the Future of Professionalism will meet for the second time. Professor Thomas W. Malone of the MIT Sloan School of Management, founder and director of the MIT Center for Coordination Science, a founding co-director of the MIT Initiative on “Inventing the Organizations of the 21st Century,” and author of The Future of Work: How the New Order of Business Will Shape Your Organization, Your Management Style, and Your Life (Harvard Business School Press, 2004), will address how information technology is reshaping organizations and how unions might respond. Robert Laubacher, a Research Associate at the Center for Coordination Science with whom Prof. Malone coined the term “e-lancer” in 1998, will accompany him.
IFPTE President Gregory Junemann, who proposed the initiative and chairs the Committee, frames its work with two questions: What jobs or careers will people have? For what jobs or careers should our unions be preparing to organize? The objectives of the Committee include analyzing the trends affecting the future of professional careers and seeking a consensus about policy, legislation, bargaining, and organizing goals and tactics. Representatives – either top officers or key senior staff – from 13 unions affiliated with DPE attended the first session of the Committee in August.
INTERNATIONAL COMPARISONS IN HEALTH CARE: A LUNCH AND LEARN PROGRAM AND DISCUSSION WITH GERARD ANDERSON, Ph.D., 12 noon-1:30 p.m., October 19 – “We spend twice as much as other developed countries, yet judging by lifespan and infant mortality, we are less healthy than most…In his last debate with John Kerry, George Bush claimed that our health care system is the best in the world, and the envy of the world, so it’s especially important to put the U.S. health care system in international perspective,” said DPE President Paul E. Almeida, who chaired a special program and discussion on international comparisons in health care. The program featured Gerard Anderson, Ph.D., Professor of Health Policy and Management and International Health at the Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health, and Director of the Johns Hopkins Center for Hospital Finance and Management.
Dr. Anderson examined the cost of care and major health indicators, as well as the cost of prescription drugs in the US compared to other industrialized countries. Widely published, he is the author of new studies on both subjects. Dr. Anderson’s PowerPoint presentation will be posted on the DPE Web site, www.dpeaflcio.org, under Breaking News.
Participants in the program included representatives from AFM, AFTRA, IBEW, UFCW, the AFL-CIO, BCTD, Working for America Institute, CLUW, ARA, Commission for Labor Cooperation, Metropolitan Washington Public Health Association, Families U.S.A., American Medical Students Association, Universal Health Care Action Network, Health Care for All, Center on Disability and Health, George Washington University, National Consumers’ League, Economic Policy Institute, Urban Institute, Center for Economic and Policy Research, New America Foundation, Shire, Inc., Americans for Democratic Action, America’s Agenda, Campaign for America’s Future, Women in Government, National Organization for Women, the Kamber Group, and the Embassies of Denmark, Germany and the Netherlands.
This is the fourth in a series of DPE programs examining the state of the health care system and proposals for change. We encourage active participation in these programs: Please spread the word. For further information about the series, contact Pamela Wilson by phone, 202/638-6684, or email, email@example.com
NEW FACT SHEET PROVIDES INTERNATIONAL PERSPECTIVE ON HEALTH CARE – The U.S. has the smallest amount of public insurance or provision of public services of any developed nation in the world. Yet it spends considerably more on health care than any other developed country and also as spends the highest proportion of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) on health care. One primary reason for the high cost of U.S. health care is the high administrative costs. This new fact sheet includes information on the three main types of health care programs in OECD countries, and covers the high private administrative costs of the U.S. health care system; health insurance: the rising premiums and falling coverage, and the quality of U.S. health care in an international context.
To obtain copies of DPE fact sheets, visit the Website, www.dpeaflcio.org/policy/factsheets/htm, or email Marcie Lawrence, firstname.lastname@example.org. For information about ongoing research, contact Pamela Wilson, by phone: 202/638-6684, or email: email@example.com
OVERTIME: PAYING FOR THE ELECTION – Voters are likely to pay for the November 2 election outcome – literally. The Bush victory increases the threat that the Bush Department of Labor (DOL) regulations finalized on August 23 will remain in place. By enlarging the professional, executive, and administrative categories of workers not entitled to overtime pay, those regulations could cost more than six million Americans their overtime pay protections. Just to make matters worse, many commentators expect Republican leaders, with larger majorities in the House of Representatives and Senate, to renew their push for compensatory time in place of overtime pay. Congress returns for its lame-duck session on Tuesday, November 16, when it will take up its largely unfinished business of funding the federal government, most likely through an omnibus appropriations bill or continuing resolution.
In its August-September-October 2004 issue, The American Editor, the magazine of the American Society of Newspaper Editors, focused on overtime pay for journalists. “New regulations change the overtime picture” by Pam Luecke (pages 10-12) quoted Linda Foley, president of The Newspaper Guild-CWA and DPE Treasurer: “The result is fewer people are eligible for overtime and we don’t think that’s a good thing.” Also quoted was DPE assistant to the president David Cohen. To see the article, click on http://www.asne.org/files/tae200409.pdf.
DEVELOPING LINKS TO PROFESSIONAL SOCIETIES – APHA: The Annual Meeting of the American Public Health Association, which represents more than 50,000 public health professionals, will be held from November 6-10 in Washington, D.C.
This year the Labor Caucus will have five 90-minute sessions during the Annual Meeting. These will all be held at the Convention Center. These sessions have been planned in collaboration with the AFL-CIO Nurse Committee, the AFL-CIO Public Policy Department, and other Caucus members, including Greg DeLaurier, Ph.D. who developed the session on Organized Labor and Public Health as a Continuing Education Institute. The sessions, which will all be held in the Convention Center, are:
Organized Labor and Public Health (10:30 a.m.-12 noon, Monday, November 8);
The Nurse Staffing Crisis: Aspects of the Problem (4:30-6:00 p.m., Monday, November 8);
Worker’s Freedom to Join Unions: It’s a Public Health Issue (12:30-2:00 p.m., Tuesday, November 9)
The Nurse Staffing Crisis: Solutions (2:30-4:00 p.m., Tuesday, November 9)
The Labor Movement and National Health Policy (12:30-2:00 p.m., Wednesday, November 10)
Speakers from DPE affiliates, including AFSCME, AFT, SEIU, UAN, and USWA, will be featured, as well as the representatives from the AFL-CIO, CLUW, Kaiser, and academics and public health officials sympathetic to labor. The sessions will be cosponsored by several major Sections and Caucuses within APHA. The Labor Caucus will also be joining the Occupational Health and Safety Section in co-sponsoring a Social from 6:30-8 p.m. on Monday, November 8. The program for 2005 will be discussed at the Business Meeting from 6:30 – 8:00 p.m. on Tuesday, November 9.
The Department has been developing and expanding its connection with APHA for several years. Pamela Wilson currently chairs the Labor Caucus within APHA and is continuing efforts to expand the connection and presence of the affiliates within the association. The Caucus is working to expand its membership. The Labor Caucus Newsletter, which provides further information about the sessions, plus articles and notices, and information about the Caucus, including a membership form, is available from the DPE Website, www.dpeaflcio.org, under Breaking News.
IS OFFSHORING OVER? – Not by a long shot. Based on request and interest in this topic DPE President Paul E. Almeida participated in three different forums on the subject of offshoring in October.
GLOBAL HIRING STRATEGIES: Exploring the New Jobs Migration in the World Economy
A conference of the Labor & Worklife Program at Harvard Law School
Topic: “Public and Media Responses to Outsourcing”
Aaron Bernstein, BusinessWeek
Daniel Drezner, University of Chicago
Paul E. Almeida, DPE AFL-CIO
INFORUM – Value Creation Under Uncertainty: Innovation and Productivity Driving the New Business Ecosystem
Robert H. Smith School of Business, University of Maryland
Topic: Cross-Border Outsourcing of Services: A win-win strategy?
American workers face direct global competition at almost every job level. White-collar jobs are increasingly migrating across borders joining lower-paid manufacturing jobs. What are the short and long-term implications of offshoring and outsourcing for the U.S. economy? What are the considerations for U.S. firms thinking about offshore outsourcing? What is the real story in terms of cost savings and competitiveness for these companies? What are the benefits to their shareholders and end customers?
Raymond E. Vickery, Jr., Vickery International
Dr. Arun Maheshwari, CSC India
Josh Bivens, Economic Policy Institute
Max P. Michaels, CRYZTAL Capital
Paul E. Almeida, DPE AFL-CIO
NAACP FEDERAL SECTOR TASK FORCE TOWN HALL MEETING/SYMPOSIUM
Marriott Wardman Park Hotel, Washington, DC
Topic: The privatization of Federal jobs and the effects of offshore outsourcing on the U.S. workforce.
Paul E. Almeida, DPE AFL-CIO