Why Should YOU Fight Like Hell for the Employee Free Choice Act?
There are a lot of good union people out there who are sitting on their hands while the battle rages in Congress over the Employee Free Choice Act. The legislation was introduced in Congress on March 11.
The anti-labor community is going full guns to defeat the measure. It’s passage is far from a sure thing, because even if every Democrat in the Senate votes for it, it will still come up 1 vote short of passage.
And even that scenario is not certain because a couple of Dems are on the fence. One of those is our own new Senator, William Bennet. He was appointed by Gov. Ritter to replace Ken Salazar, who joined the Obama cabinet.
Every Union member at UPS ought to be on the phone every day to Bennet’s office in Wash. D.C. telling him he needs to support the working class. It’s that important that the Free Choice Act pass. It’s that important to YOU.
Now I know a lot of UPSers who would ask, “Why should I care if it passes or not?”.
Well, I’ll tell you why.
UPS drivers make the best wages and enjoy the best benefit package on the street today. FedEx used to be relative close to us in wages and benefits but they have suffered some take-aways since the economy crashed. Now, UPS drivers are way out in front with raises and free insurance and pension benefits guaranteed into 2013.
One of the oldest rules of Unionism is that if you outpace the competition in wages then you put your employer at a disadvantage. And the best way to keep the competition at a pay level siimilar to yours is not to reduce your wages to match theirs. The best way is to raise their wages to match yours. And the best way to raise wages at FedEx is get them unionized. And the best chance at unionizing FedEx is the Employee Free Choice Act.
So if you want to keep your wages and free insurance and defined benefit pension after 2013, you better get off your duff and get on the phone to your Senators. The battle is happening now. You need to act now.
The Employee Free Choice Act is you best hope of maintaining your wages and benefits. But it won’t pass if we remain silent. The anti-laborites are not silent right now. They are out to defeat you. Will you allow that to happen?
Contact your elected officials in Washington.
Thank You Bernie Sanders, (Independent Senator from Vermont), for asking the questions that need to be asked. The attached video shows how the American people have been sold out by the banking industry and the Bush administration. I keep hearing people question why President Obama doesn’t have this banking fiasco fixed yet. The Republicans have had 8 years to screw it up. President Obama has been in office for two months, and has done more to fix things than the Bush Republicans ever did, in fact all they did was screw it up. Listen to Ben Bernanke, (Bush’s Fed Chairman), try to explain his way out of the mess. The ironic thing is, Bernanke has the attitude that he was doing the right things. 2 trillion dollars later, (from the Bush administration), the mess continues. Watch for yourself! This is unedited and uncut out of the horses mouth, or maybe some other end!
President Obama has the Bernanke mentality to overcome. It is obvious that these people intended to redistribute our wealth to the rich bankers. They are the true Socialists. Privatize the gains, socialize the losses. Be sure to remember that statement and also remember it was Phil Gramm Senator from Texas, and the rest of the Bush Republican cronies that did away with the Glass Steagel act, causing this banking mess, and the hell the country is living through. Be sure to call your Republican Congresspeople, and your Republican Senators and let them know, that you know, what happened. Better yet vote their asses to kingdom come.
The Glass-Steagel Act was put in place in 1933 to keep another depression from happening.
The Republicans took it out to make themselves and their cronies rich. What has happened?
Here is the Glass-Steagel Act
I’ll start off with one of my rules of being a steward-
The More Things Change, The More They Stay the Same!
Telematics is simply an extension of the company’s desire to maintain complete control over a drivers thoughts and actions through fear. They used to do it by having a million screaming stupidvisors harassing, and bullying you face to face, with a work report in their back pocket. They would get in your face, (usually without a steward present), and tell you what a worthless piece of crap you were, and that they were personally going to make you their project, then go home and screw your wife because you were such a piece of garbage and she would like the stupidvisor more than you. (Yes, really!) The whole idea is to induce fear among the drivers in order to get them to perform at the highest levels possible.
The more things change! Today the screaming stupidvisor has been replaced by Telematics. Remember I told you that their Technology is designed to replace management, not the driver. For most of us Telematics just represents another harassment tool. Most of us simply report to work on time, and do our jobs that we are paid to do. Ironically the biggest casualty of Telematics will be the running, jumping, freakazoid, we all have in our centers that thinks it’s OK to run the company like a paper route. Keep in mind that many of your supervisors were just such people as drivers. PAS had much the same fear factor attached to it. Mostly it is the fear of the unknown. None of you need to worry about the system. They will not be able to use it against you out of the box. You simply need to perform your job as trained. They must do direct observation in order to discipline. That doesn’t mean they won’t use it for harassment. I’m sure they already find reasons to harass you anyway, right?
The more they stay the same! My recommendation to you all is the same recommendation I have made for 30 years as a steward. Go out and do the job you are being paid to do. Work safely, drive safely, make safe deliveries, come in when you are done. Our job is not a social event, or a time to go shopping, or a chance to get your car fixed, or a yard sale excursion. The company asks you to have contact with the customer to further sales leads etc. Other than that you need to keep your relationships to your own time. Most of you know these rules, and most of you follow them. You all know who are the real screwup drivers around you. Now with the advent of Telematics you get to watch them squirm. The rest of you can go in peace.
I’ve had about enough of the struggle by the repubs. to find an identity. They obviously want a kingdom, not a democracy. Really the only reason I’m putting this video up is because it’s funny, and gels down the battle over the kingdom.
The UPS National Grievance Committee settles national disputes and grievances that have been deadlocked at both the local and regional levels.
The decisions from the February meeting of the National Grievance panel in Ft. Lauderdale are now available online.
Click here to download the decisions from the national grievance panel.
The panel will meet two other times this year: June 8-11 in Philadelphia and Oct. 12-15 at the Hilton San Diego Resort and Spa.
This information provided by the Teamsters for a Democratic Union.
The last time I got bit by a dog was about 5 years ago. I had a residential stop, it was a fenced yard and I knew the people had two dogs. I secured the truck and as I exited, I whistled and yelled UPS. Opening the gate, I listened for any sounds of the dogs and hearing none, I started for the front porch. I could see that the front door was open and just the full length glass storm door was closed. As I got up on the porch I could see people inside so I waved and put the package down.
The dogs started barking inside the house and I beelined it back towards the gate. But when the first dog hit the stormdoor, the door popped open and out he came. It was an overweight Black Lab and he was barking furiously. The door slammed shut but didn’t latch and out came the German Shepherd right behind him. I knew they would reach me before I got to the gate so I yelled at the homeowners who were stlll nowhere in sight.
I turned to face the approaching dogs and held my DIAD as a shield in front of my legs. The Lab ran right up to me, still barking wildly. He had his nose right up against my leg, thank God the DIAD was between us. But the Shepherd circled around behind me. I yelled again for help. I couldn’t protect both my front and back at the same time. As I tried to walk backwards towards the street, the German Shepherd grabbed me right above the ankle.
He pulled me as he bit and I lost my balance and fell on my right side. I remember the thought flashing through my mind, “Roll, don’t just lay there or they’ll eat you alive!”. So I rolled and got back on my feet as fast as I could. I guess the dogs must have backed off as soon as I hit the ground and the home owners came out on the front porch. My DIAD was on the driveway and I must have looked like a crazed madman, shocked and injured, too scared to run and too excited to stand still.
The owners came up the drive and the dogs retreated. “Did he bite you?”, the wife asked. We all looked at my leg at the same time. I was already bleeding from the punctures. My leg felt like it was on fire. We went back up on the porch and they put the dogs inside. “Did Sugar bite you?”, the lady asked again. I think I showed a lot of composure when I simply answered “Yes” and collapsed into a chair. I wanted to kill someone. Or something.
The folks bandaged me up and I told them I was OK, even though I wasn’t so sure. I messaged in that I had been bit and got the message back, “Can you finish your route?”. Foolishly I replied that I thought I could. That night my wife made me go to the emergency room. Thank goodness she did because not only did I need antibiotics for the dog bite but it turned out I had broken a bone in my hand when I fell down. I was off for over 7 weeks and eventually retained a lawyer and sued the homeowners for lost wages abouve what Workers Comp would pay. We were asking for $5000. The lawyer said his cut would be a 30% of the settlement.
About a week later, the lawyer called and said that Workers Comp had called him and asked if they could just join our lawsuit to recover their costs from the homeowner’s insurance too. They were asking for $2000. I said sure. Why not?
We won $7000 and the lawyer took this 30% then gave Workers Comp their $2000. I was expecting $3500, or 70% of $5000. He gave me a check for $2900.
I must have sounded like that dog coming through the screen door. I was furious. He tried to explain it this way. His fee was 30% of the settlement. That’s what our contract said. Workers Comp had not contracted with him for fees he said and he had in fact asked me if I wanted to do them a favor by letting them sign on and I had said yes. I didn’t know the favor would cost me $600. The settlement was $7000. His fee was 30%. They were entitled to $2000. That left $2900 for me.
Now I was ready to bite. My wife was with me and we started circling, just like those dogs had done before they bit me. He started to look a little panicked, I’m sure much like I had looked on those peoples’ driveway. We were snarling out things like “unfair” and “misleading”” and the “Lawyers’ Board of Ethics”. He called for help by offering to split the difference. We only barked louder. Just as I lunged at his flesh, he conceded and forked over the rest of my money. If he hadn’t, I think I would have bit him.
Here is another good story about a UPS driver who had a close encounter with a dog and now is on the verge of getting bit by the legal system. People don’t realize how dangerous this delivery job is. Trial March 25 for UPS driver.
One of the best things about retirement is being home every night at supper time. The hours that a UPS driver works are just crazy. Being out on the route til 7:00 every night and missing supper with the family, being gone from the house for 11 to 12 hours every day, not being able to plan even the smallest event after work; that’s nuts. UPS pays well and the check looks oh so good with all that OT on it, but it’s really living to work, not working to live.
UPS has their hands all over you when you work there. They direct you, they schedule your life, they rip at your flesh. We get little tastes of what a real life is like when we are on vacation. We can plan our own day. We can do our own thing. You can’t do that when you’re working.
Retirement is hard on some people because they don’t know what to do with themselves. No schedule. No 5 day grind and overloaded weekends. You don’t have to push to finish a job on Sunday night because you know it will be a week before you can get back to it. It’s not an easy adjustment at first. It’s not easy to lose that feeling that you aren’t getting enough done. For some of us, our self worth has been set by our ability to produce for a long time. When you don’t produce, you feel guilty.
I went through a phase where I got up everyday and put on a brown shirt just so I would feel motivated. Then I’d wolf down some breakfast and lauch into a project. When I needed a break, I’d have to justify it to myself. I’d catch myself looking at my watch. I’d be counting whatever I was handling. I was doing my UPS thing.
As the months have gone by though, I’ve learned to relax a little. Sometimes I purposely sit and do nothing. While gazing up at the passing clouds, I have a little argument with myself. “It’s not a bad thing, I’m not wasting time. Time is not money. I’m living my life.”
But the biggest change has been eating supper between 5 and 6 o’clock every night. It feels so natural. It feels “normal”. Does that mean that life at UPS where you eat supper every night at 8 is not normal? Yes, I thnk that ‘s what that means.
It’s just amazing to me that these corporate whores just don’t get it. They continue to play the music that foriegn jobs, and foriegn companies are somehow good for America. Yes we will have a worldwide trade policy, but we say American jobs First! These guys just want to hang on to their overseas interest. They beg and bang for the bailouts only to wave the Chinese flag in our face. What these jerks don’t get is the American worker won the last election! This is about the American worker, and the middle class of the United States. I just don’t see what part of that victory these d–kwads don’t get. Read the attached article and write the Kiplinger report and thank them for being so American. While your at it write your local republican and let them know you understand how truley American they are, by supporting the American worker.
Here’s how they feel about working Americans!
Contact the Republicans Tell them how American You Think They Are!
It looks like the rift between the AFL-CIO and the Change To Win factions within the union may be mended. Take a look at the attached article for more information.
AFL-CIO and Change To Win Rejoin?