New Car Loans?

It’s the ultimate in ironies. The car companies looking to get new car loans. Now it’s their turn. Hopefully they’ll also get the idea of what it’s like to deal with their salespeople, and their service departments. The fact is, most people hate the American car companies because of the treatment they get at their dealerships. The customers have to put up with rip-off treatment by salespeople keeping their keys, holding them hostage, yelling at them, and making their general sales experience a life living hell. Then the customer in turn gets to deal with condescending service writers, work that doesn’t need to be done, exorbitant parts prices, incomplete work, and again a generally poor and expensive experience. Now in fairness the foreign cars try to follow in the same footsteps, but the teachers in the system are the American car companies. I Love Old American CarsI love American manufactured cars, and will buy them whenever possible, but I won’t do business with their dealers, and I do my own mechanic work. I can rebuild an engine for what a tune-up can cost at many dealerships. I am a staunch union guy, and I support all of the efforts of the UAW to survive in this crisis. My contention is that the car companies are failing because of management bad decisions, not the cost of their labor. Anyone that tries to tell you otherwise does not live in the real world, (Richard Shelby, multi-millionaire traitor to America). If the guys wearing the ties don’t get a clue, the Detroit 3 will die like Oldsmobile, Pontiac, Yugo, etc. The first car company to live in the real world will surpass them all, (that labor union will see to it, and their people will thrive.) It’s just like the republicans failed to see, “you can deal with the people now, or you can deal with the people later, but one thing is sure, you will have to deal with the people!” 
Buy American, Your Own Survival Will Depend On It!

The Unions Want the Company to Survive, The Managers Still Have No Clue, See it Here
                                              The Chinese are knocking on your door.

What We Will Stand For

Let us not forget in this day and age of Tax dodging appointees, and wheel and deal Democrats, (Burris), about the last regimes lobbyist scandals with people promoting legislation for campaign bucks. The fact is some of the people we send to represent us are dirty. Most of them fortunately are honest, and hard working and without them we could not weed out the bad. Unfortunately you are being sold by the Rush’s, and the Hannity’s, and the O’Really’s that it is rampant in the democratic party, and they continue to sell you that Obama is no better than the rest. So far none of Obama’s people have gone to jail as in the Bush administration. (Oh good!) Also Obama at least holds hope for the future as opposed to Bush’s Republican sell out to corporate America. Let’s not forget! Let’s also not stand by and allow it to happen again. Write Barack Obama and demand he hold his people accountable, and that he boot them out if they do not know how to behave. Also contact Harry Reid and demand he do the same. Let them know we’ve had enough of soul selling politicians, that we expect them to represent our best interests, not their own. Whether they be Republican or Democrat!

Tell President Obama What You Think!!

Let Harry Reid Know What You Think!!

Let Nancy Pelosi Know What You Think!!

Remember these people work for you. We elected them to save our economy, protect our jobs, and to work for us. You have every right to demand that they hear your voice. You do not have to be afraid to let them know that if they do not perform as we elected them to, we will vote them out.
We have the power. Use it

Check out the VIDEO page

I’ve added a new page to the website. VIDEOS. There are so many great videos these days that I wanted to give everybody a place to watch them without having to search the whole world wide web. These are videos that I like; some are UPS videos, some are Union videos.  And in the near future I may add my own videos, so watch for those too.

                                                        Videos at Denverbrown

Where Supervisors Come From

I don’t know who said it first, but it’s worth repeating.

The world is divided into two groups.
There are those who know, and those who don’t know.
Those who know, they’re no problem.

Those who don’t know are also divided into two groups.
One is those who don’t know, and know they don’t know. Well, they can learn!

But then, there are those who don’t know, and don’t know they don’t know.
They become supervisors.

Thom Hartmann – Debating The Employee Free Choice Act Part 1 of 3

There is going to be a lot of debate very soon concerning the Employee Free Choice Act. 
We need to be ready to argue. We will not win Card Check without a fight.
Are you ready to fight?
This video is part 1 of a 3 part debate. It will help you understand the argument.
I will publish parts 2 and 3 soon.
Thom Hartmann can be heard evenings on AM 760.


Friends of Labor/ Help for You

With the company’s policy of harrassing anyone that gets hurt, I am happy to be able to provide you with people that will help you. The company specifically targets people that are hurt on the job. Making an example out of them, in the hopes that their harrassment will scare off everyone else. Their idea is to persuade people into assuming injuries on their own dime and own time. These guys come highly reccomended by our local, and I have had the pleasure of working with them. Don’t let the company hurt you, then make you assume the financial consequences.
Help yourself!Don’t Get Screwed!

How to Grow the Union

It’s important that we grow the company because it makes our jobs and our pensions more secure. But it’s equally important to grow the Union. Many people don’t know how to grow the Union. They think it takes a big organizing campaign to bring in new workers under the Teamster umbrella. But there are many things you can do everyday to grow the Teamsters Union. Here are a few of them.

        First, take your full lunch everyday. We are requiered to take an hour for lunch each day. Every minute you don’t take and choose to work for instead is work that should have been dispatched to another car. Our building dispatches about 300 routes a day and if just 16 of those drivers skip half of their hour  lunch, they have ran an entire route that should have been dispatched and run by anotherTeamster. Don’t let the company reduce our ranks and undermine our power by skipping part of your lunch. Every Teamster on the payroll is another person making our union stronger. Make it grow
        Use your 8-hour requests. Each driver in Denver gets three 8-hour requests per month. Our center has 45 drivers. If each one reduced their dispatch by one hour (from 9 to 8 hours), 3 times a month, that’s 135 hours a month or the equivalent of over 3 weeks of work that we could generate just by taking what’s is rightfully ours to enjoy. We could add a driver in our center if everyone used all of their 8-hour requests.
        Refuse to work excessive overtime. We have strong 9.5 language in our contract. Use it. Keep your hours under control and the company will need more drivers to cover the routes that we are running ourselves right now by working 10 to 11 hours a day. Just 8 drivers working an extra hour per day are absorbing a route that another Teamster should be running. Excessive overtime weakens our union and hurts our families.
        Don’t work off the clock. Every time you work off the clock you are giving the company a false impression of how long and how many people it takes to get the job done. Don’t give away precious minutes that someone should be paid for. UPS made $3 billion profit last year, you don’t have to work for free to keep them afloat.
        Stop supervisors from doing our work. Go to your steward every time you see a supervisor working and have him investigate the reason for this violation. Sometimes the reasons are legitimate, sometimes not. If not, then file a grievance. Time slip grievances encourage the company to put on more people. See the next blog entry here for the steps to follow when you see a supervisor doing our work.
        And finally, grow the business. The company consistently refuses to hire more people because the growth is flat. They say it would be bad management to add people when the business isn’t growing. So, grow the business and grow the Union. 

        None of these simple ways to grow the Union require a degree in organizing or long weekends spent talking to unorganized workers. These are things we can do everyday at work to grow our Union. Do your part, grow the union.

How to Win a Supervisor Working Grievance

        Supervisor working grievances are filed under two articles of our contract; Article 3, section 7 of the National Master Agreement and Article 1, section 2 of the Central States Supplement. Both state that the job of the supervisor is to supervise, not to do the work of the person he supervises. The person who files the grievance gets paid for the hours worked by the supervisor. It’s easy to win a supervisor working grievance.
        You need 5 things. Who, what, when, where and why. Be ready to take notes when you see a supervisor working. 
        Take notes and winFirst, find out Who. When you see a supervisor working, you have the right to walk up to them and ask them who they are. They should be wearing a name tag. You do not have the right to inhibit the flow of packages in any part of the operation at any time. Be careful not to interfere, but go ahead and get their name. Tell them that they need to stop doing the work of the hourly employees.
        Make note what the supervisor is doing. Is he advancing the progress of the packages? They have the right to pull packages out of the system and audit them at any time, but should return the packages to the same location they pulled them from. They have broad powers when it comes to training and can help an employee being trained in an effort to keep the trainee on schedule. Examples of the work they should not be doing includes driving tugs with packages on them, sending home hourly workers and wrapping up themselves, delivering stops to ‘help’ a driver and shuttling out packages to drivers.
        Put down in your notes when the violation occurred. Note the day and time. Record how long you observed the work being done.
        Be specific on where the supervisor was working. Was he pulling from a box? Which box and which boxline? What center was he in when you observed him driving a tug and dropping off packages? All of this information will be important to your winning the grievance.
        Why? This is often the most important step. Most grievances are won or lost on the question of why. This is where you get your steward involved. Your steward will take the who, what, when and where and go find out the why. The company feels it has a responsibility to its customers to make service at any cost and uses this to justify supervisors working. When the Teamsters don’t show up for work and that shift is understaffed because of it, supervisors will be working and that’s a hard grievance to win. Let your steward find out why the supervisors were working. He can request staffing records and time cards. The investigation into why is the job of the steward.

        It’s not hard to win a supervisor working grievance if you keep good notes. Often, supervisors don’t want to be working and (while they may be afraid to say it) will welcome a grievance to hi-lite their own concerns. Feel free to accommodate them. Contract enforcement is everyone’s responsibility.

Twist and Shout

It’I Hate Yous been an interesting week. The company never fails to seaze on an opportunity to increase profit and production. The fun part this week was the earnings announcement. Yes we shouldn’t make assumptions about the future! Yes things could be worse tomorrow! Yes the world may end! The reality is big brown is still making tons of money. They love to keep you in a state of fear much like the Bush administration did for the last eight years. They get to control you thought process, and it makes you easier to buffalo. The big thing is the battle over nine fives. Management has been telling drivers they don’t have the right to file if they didn’t plan an 8.4 hour dispatch. Their new rule is you have to plan 8.4 and run scratch before you have the right to excersize your rights under the Union contract. Huh? When did that happen? They think we’ve forgotten that many of the areas have not been time studied since 1948. Many of our allowances do not reflect the specialized delivery requirments of today. I made a few phone calls to the union this week just to be sure we were all on the same page. All 9.5 rules remain as they were. Obviously we advocate a fair days work for a fair days pay. Do your job correctly, safely, and to the best of your ability. If you continue to be dispatched over 9.5 hours, file! For those of you that don’t mind the overtime, let them know. For those of you that do not want the overtime, let them know. Just don’t ask for one thing then do another. Don’t make your steward crazy by getting your dispatch reduced, then working over 9.5 hours anyway. Also don’t make your steward crazy by telling them you’ll work over 9.5 hours then filing after your 20th 9.5. They have made it clear that they intend to harrass anyone filing a 9.5 hour grievance. Be consistant in your work methods, (we’ve discussed that here), and know what is a reasonable dispatch for you. Be upfront about what you think is reasonable, but don’t expect something for nothing.

Keeping Management Off Your Back

I got another email today from someone asking me how to keep management off their back. This is an age old problem at UPS.

Management is like the bully in the school yard. How do you keep from drawing his attention? The answer is simple. Do what he wants. Then he looks at someone else to harass.

Look at this video. This guy is makng his numbers, he’s going to look good  on paper and he thinks he’s doing what management wants since management is all about numbers. But if management can identify the driver in this video, they’ll fire him. Is he doing what management wants? Will the bully harass this guy?

Sometimes it’s hard to find the balance between using the methods and making your numbers. Most drivers believe that hitting the numbers will keep them out of the spotlight and the methods don’t matter as long as you stay out of the spotligtht. NOT. The methods are everything. The numbers are not your problem, no matter how much management tries to make you think they are your problem.

Hitting the numbers and not using the methods will get you fired. Using the methods and not hitting the nmbers will not get you fired. How tough is it to figure out which is the right path for you?

UPS driver information