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  • Independent Drivers’ Guild Solidarity Results In Uber CEO Ditching Trump Panel

    Uber CEO Travis Kalanick has stepped down from President Trump’s economic advisory council after a petition started by the Independent Drivers Guild (IDG) that represents Uber drivers garnered huge support.

    The growing pressure from customers and employees led to an email from Kalanick explaining to employees he had advised the president that due to the “immigration executive order and its issues for our community,” he would be unable to serve on the committee.

    “This is an important show of solidarity with the immigrant drivers who helped build Uber and number over 40,000 in New York City alone,” said IDG Founder and IAM District 15 Assistant Directing Business Representative Jim Conigliaro, Jr. “We are heartened that Uber has listened to the drivers and the community on this important issue that is so integral to the promise of the American dream.”

    “As a company whose success is built on a foundation of hard work by immigrant workers, Uber can and should do better to stand up for immigrants and their workers,” added Conigliaro in a recent New York Times article.

    The post Independent Drivers’ Guild Solidarity Results In Uber CEO Ditching Trump Panel appeared first on IAMAW.


  • Puzder Hearing Thursday: Tell Your Senator to Say No to the Anti-Labor Secretary

    After multiple delays due to his ethics review, labor secretary nominee Andrew Puzder’s confirmation hearing is set for Thursday, February 16.

    Click here to call or dial 1-866-829-3298 to tell your senator to oppose Andrew Puzder.

    The fast food CEO has a long history of being no friend of labor:

    • He’s railed against increasing the minimum wage and expanding overtime.
    • He’s shortchanged workers at his Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s restaurants and even refused to pay managers overtime they earned.
    • He’s talked about replacing working people with machines.
    • He’s admitted to hiring an undocumented immigrant to work as a housekeeper while avoiding paying taxes to the IRS and the state of California on the workers behalf.

    Read IAM shipbuilder’s op-ed urging Maine Senators to vote against a Puzder confirmation.

    The Department of Labor directly touches the lives of all working people. It impacts our paychecks, safety in the workplace and our ability to exercise our legal rights on the job. With so much on the line, it’s vitally important that we make our voices heard.

    The post Puzder Hearing Thursday: Tell Your Senator to Say No to the Anti-Labor Secretary appeared first on IAMAW.


  • Veterans are Feeling Brunt of Federal Hiring Freeze

    The haphazard federal hiring freeze is not only deteriorating the government’s efficiency, but it’s especially ominous for America’s veterans, who are among the group’s most harmed by the policy.

    Former service members make up 32.5 percent—nearly one-third—of all newly hired veterans. In the Department of Defense, approximately 31 percent of its 690,000 employees are veterans.

    “Positions that would normally be filled by veterans—doctors and nurses at veteran’s hospitals; welders, mechanics, electricians at Army depots and Naval centers across the country—will go unfilled,” said IAM Government Employees Director Jim Price. “This freeze will impact not only our retiring veterans, but could also affect our military readiness and our active military men and women in the performance of their duties.”

    The freeze won’t just affect veterans in Washington, DC. More than 85 percent of the federal workforce is outside the DC area.

    “It is clear that the freeze prohibits subcontracting,” said Price. “However, agencies may seek variances from this order to subcontract as the only way to achieve their mission, which would eliminate these jobs completely. This ill-advised policy should be reversed as soon as possible.”

    The IAM and its sister union, the National Federation of Federal Employees, NFFE-IAM, represent more than 100,000 federal workers at agencies across the United States.                

    The post Veterans are Feeling Brunt of Federal Hiring Freeze appeared first on IAMAW.


  • IAM Objects to Voice Calls on Airplanes

    The International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM) submitted comments regarding the DOT’s Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) concerning the “protection of passengers from being unwillingly exposed to inflight voice calls.” The DOT seeks comment on whether to prohibit airlines from allowing passengers to make voice calls from wireless mobile devices on domestic and/or international flights and its proposal to require the sellers of air transportation to provide adequate advance notice to passengers if the carrier operating the flight allows voice calls on wireless mobile devices.

    “Flight attendants already have the great responsibility of securing the safety of the flying public,” said General Vice President Sito Pantoja. “They are the last line of security onboard an aircraft, making their jobs harder is dangerous and wrongheaded.”

    The IAM asked the DOT to consider the stress and distractions flight attendants would undoubtedly encounter by permitting inflight voice calls. It’s inevitable that flight attendants will have to neutralize cabin situations caused by hostility between passengers stemming from inflight voice calls. The use of inflight cell phones may also pose additional security risks. Potentially, terrorists aboard a single or multiple aircrafts could use this new capability to communicate with each other about the movement and vulnerability of crewmembers or to even initiate a coordinated attack.

    Click here to read

    The post IAM Objects to Voice Calls on Airplanes appeared first on IAMAW.


  • IAM Joins with Thousands to Protest Government’s Anti-Worker Labor Reforms in Puerto Rico

    IAM Local 2725 Business Rep. Jose Rodriguez Baez, pictured being interviewed by a Puerto Rican news crew, was among the several thousand union members who marched in protest to express their opposition to recent government-led measures to reform labor laws.

    A vocal group of more than 5,000 union members marched through parts of San Juan, PR to protest outside a meeting of the Puerto Rico Industrialists Association (AIPR).

    Protest participants included IAM members, and members of more than a dozen other unions. Workers marched to express their opposition to recent government-led measures to reform labor laws, as well as the intervention by the federal government to control the public finances of Puerto Rico.

    “Union members need to have their voices heard – both inside the workplace and on the streets when it’s needed,” said IAM Southern Territory General Vice President Mark Blondin. “IAM members know the power of standing in solidarity when it comes to stopping those who want to take away from workers.”

    Inside the closed AIPR meeting, Puerto Rico Gov. Ricardo Rosselló Nevares gave a presentation on the measures being taken to confront the island’s economic crisis. One action involves reductions in coverage on the employees’ “health card,” the government health insurance plan.

    On a portable stage located 200 yards from the hotel where AIPR met, union leaders attacked the government’s attempt to pay off the Puerto Rico’s estimated $70 billion debt on the backs of island workers while giving massive tax cuts to businesses. Protestors wanted their voices to be heard that they are opposed to workers suffering the cost of fixing the debt caused by poor government administration. Thanks to a large presence of press and television reporters at the protest, workers voices were heard.

    IAM Local 2725 Business Rep. Jose Rodriguez-Baez gave interviews to local news agencies and Univision news.

    “In Puerto Rico, the government, big business, and the Fiscal Control Board, appointed by Congress, are conspiring to approve laws that eliminate labor rights, with especially strong negative effects for young workers, retirees, and other less protected sectors,” said Rodriguez-Baez. “Workers and their unions are united in the struggle to defend these rights and combat the government austerity program which is impoverishing our people in order to pay the debt owed to bondholders.”

    The post IAM Joins with Thousands to Protest Government’s Anti-Worker Labor Reforms in Puerto Rico appeared first on IAMAW.


  • Indiana Local 153 Ratifies Two-Year Contract with Grote Industries

    Prior to entering negotiations with Grote Industries, members of IAM Local Lodge 153 Bargaining Committee received negotiation preparation training at the William W. Winpisinger Center in Hollywood, MD.

    Members of IAM Local Lodge 153 recently approved a new two-year contract with Grote Industries, an LED light and lighting company located in Madison, IN.

    The committee fought a hard battle to keep harmful changes from being implemented in the contract. They were faced with topics ranging from job combinations, to the company having the ability to bring in temporary workers while members are on layoff status.

    Although successful in maintaining seniority rights and the assurance that no temporary worker will replace members on layoff, the company managed to keep job combinations on the table.

    At first vote, the membership voted to strike, said IAM District 90 Directing Business Representative Tony Wickersham.

    “The committee and membership stood together and rejected the company’s initial offer and followed the rejection with an overwhelming strike vote,” said Wickersham. “But with the voices of the people being heard, the company and union came back to the table in order to try and resolve the more contentious issues affecting the membership. After more discussion, a package was accepted and taken to the membership. The contract was accepted by a large majority, without having to force a work stoppage.”

    The two-year contract includes a three-percent raise for the operator and material handler classifications, a new classification was created at a higher rate, and skill trades received a significant increase in wages in order to attract more hires. The deal also includes a new adjustment to layoff language that would enhance seniority, an improved streamlined grievance procedure, very minimal increases to insurance rates, and more bereavement time.

    “I would like to acknowledge the IAM Local 153 Bargaining Committee and the commitment they put into the negotiation process,” said Wickersham. “I believe the knowledge they gained at the William W. Winpisinger Center really helped them to focus and communicate with the membership. It seems communication was key to our efforts in knowing what the people truly wanted. This would not have been the case if not for the committee and the Midwest Territory. The stand made by the membership will be remembered and will set the tone in future negotiations.”

    “Congratulations to the members of IAM Local 153,” said IAM Midwest Territory General Vice President Philip J. Gruber. “I know this was a long, hard-fought battle. You should be very proud of the solidarity and strength you showed, both at the bargaining table and each time it came to time make your voices heard through your vote. Thank you for all your hard work and for continuing to fight the good fight on behalf of union families.”

    The Local 153 bargaining unit is composed of approximately 200 members who manufacture LED lights and lighting products for heavy duty trucks, trailers, vocational and passenger vehicles.

    The post Indiana Local 153 Ratifies Two-Year Contract with Grote Industries appeared first on IAMAW.


  • ‘Solidarity Lunch Walks’ Help Milwaukee Members Secure New Contract

    It took six long weeks for Milwaukee IAM Local 66 and Boilermakers Local 1503 to hammer out a joint agreement with the Perlick Corporation. The membership’s creative show of solidarity is what finally got the company talking.

    Read their story in the latest edition of the Local 66 Badger Lodge News.

    Leading up to negotiations the membership made it clear they would not accept unreasonable demands and concessions from management. The committee deployed “Solidarity Stewards” to keep members on the shop floor informed on its progress.

    A member proposed an idea that workers could show solidarity by taking lunchtime “walks” in front of the company’s facility. Without strike signs or fanfare, members were able to show Perlick management that the bargaining committee had the member’s support.

    The company was unable to ignore the show of solidarity and a fair three-year contract was reached. The bargaining committee acknowledged they would not have been able to achieve the success without the members’ show of solidarity.

    “This victory shows once again that the real power at the bargaining table comes from the support, solidarity and collective action of our great members,” said IAM District 10 Directing Business Representative Alex Hoekstra.

    READ: When the members started walking, the company started talking

    Local 66 members employed at Perlick manufacture bar and beverage systems, including custom refrigeration equipment, under bar units, beer dispensing equipment and brewery fittings.

    The post ‘Solidarity Lunch Walks’ Help Milwaukee Members Secure New Contract appeared first on IAMAW.


  • Snowstorm Be Damned; California Army Depot Workers Vote IAM

    The IAM is proud to welcome 216 new members who overwhelmingly voted “union yes” at the Sierra Army Depot in Herlong, CA. The AECOM employees handle the storage and repair of equipment for the U.S. Army.

    Western Territory General Vice President Gary Allen congratulated the new members for standing up to a ruthless anti-union campaign.

    “These workers came together; stayed focused on the issues that really matter, and were able to see through company scare tactics,” said Allen. “They have my utmost respect for not backing down in the face of adversity.”

    The win for District 725 came amidst several frustrating outside factors which included record snowfall for the area and company threats of layoffs and reduced wages and benefits if the workers were to vote to be represented by the IAM.

    “I congratulate and welcome our newest brothers and sisters,” said District 725 President and Directing Business Representative Larry Olinger. “The fact that they overcome such harsh conditions and ultimately voted for union representation by a three-to-one margin shows that this group knows and understands the value of collectively negotiating the terms and conditions of their employment.”

    The team was led by Olinger, Grand Lodge Representatives Joe Solis and Don Gresham, and District 725 Organizers Edwin Marroquin Jr. and Ryan Carrillo.

    District 725 represents over 7,300 members in the aerospace, defense and manufacturing industries throughout California. They have already welcomed almost 900 new members in 2017.

    The post Snowstorm Be Damned; California Army Depot Workers Vote IAM appeared first on IAMAW.


  • Don’t Believe Anti-Union Hype, Cadence Workers Say

    IAM 751 Union Steward Gary Naple, Business Rep Greg Campos and Union Steward Mike Powell.

    After one year of membership in the Machinists Union, union stewards at Cadence Aerospace-Giddens have this advice for workers at companies in the midst of union votes:

    Don’t believe what the company’s anti-union consultants say.

    About anything.

    “None of it came true,” said Union Steward Gary Naple. “Nobody lost their job. The company’s still here. Our wages went up – they didn’t go down. We were told that we wouldn’t have an open line of communication with management, but it’s 100 times better than it was.”

    Feb. 16 will mark the one-year anniversary of the date Cadence-Giddens workers ratified their first union contract as members of Machinists Union District Lodge 751. They approved the agreement with a 72-percent “yes” vote.

    Western Territory General Vice President Gary Allen praised District 751 and the members at Cadence Aerospace.

    “This is a group of intelligent aerospace workers who could see through the company’s anti-union tactics and as result they have seen the benefits of sticking together to obtain better workplace standards,” said Allen.

    The contract covers about 240 workers who produce precision-machined aerospace components, subassemblies and kits, and do sheet-metal forming for parts that go on Boeing, Airbus and Gulfstream jets.

    This month, they’ll get their first general wage increases specified under the contract, of 2.5 percent.

    For Union Steward John Combs, it will be the second-biggest raise he’s received in his nine years at the company. The biggest raise was the 85 cents an hour all Cadence-Giddens workers got when they ratified the contract a year ago.

    “A lot of people had gone a couple of years with no raises at all,” he said. “Now they realize they’ve got raises coming, and they’re starting to get excited.”

    In addition, the stewards say they‘ve gained from locking in health care cost shares for three years. A new pay schedule raised entry-level wages $1.50 an hour, plus workers got back a 401(k) match that management had taken away.

    That combination means each Cadence-Giddens worker will take home thousands of dollars they wouldn’t have had without a union contract, the stewards said.

    Besides the better pay, all of the workers are enjoying a bit more job security, because they are “just-cause” employees instead of “at-will” workers who can be fired at any time.

    “Arbitrary firings and write-ups have stopped,” Naple said.

    Union Steward Mike Powell said communication with all levels of management has improved. “They actually come and get me and let me know when changes are coming.”

    Instead of knocking heads, union stewards have been working with Human Resources and managers to reduce workplace conflicts, Naple said.

    Perhaps the greatest testament to the improved relationship is the fact that our union did not file a single grievance in the first year.

    “We do have a form for it,” joked Business Rep Greg Campos, who represents the Cadence-Giddens workers.

    That doesn’t mean stewards aren’t fighting for their members. Naple said he went to a manager about a safety issue that had been ignored for years – and it got fixed within a week. Combs said he recently worked with a manager to get an overtime issue resolved on the spot.

    It wasn’t always this way. Before unionizing, Combs said certain managers would pick on workers. Nobody complained, Naple said, because “if you spoke out, you were treated as someone who needed to be walked out of the building.”

    When workers decided to unionize, management didn’t play nice.

    Anti-union consultants tried to scare Cadence-Giddens workers out of voting for the union, saying the plant would lose work and might just close.

    “They started clearing out a space in the shipping department,” Naple said. “They said ‘When you guys unionize, all this work is going away.’”

    But the stewards said hourly employment at Cadence-Giddens is virtually unchanged since February 2016, and the company has been able to win new work.

    All in all, the situation is “completely opposite” of what the anti-union consultants said would happen if Cadence-Giddens workers unionized, said Campos.

    “It’s been very good,” he said. “Together, we’re fostering better communication. We want to work together with management so that the company is profitable, while we make sure it does the right thing for the employees.”

    Naple agreed. “I can’t think of one thing that went sour because we unionized, and I can’t think of one thing that came true that the union-busters said would happen.”

    Originally formed in 1935 by hourly workers at the Boeing Co., District Lodge 751 of the International Association of Machinists & Aerospace Workers now represents more than 31,000 working men and women at 53 employers across Washington and California.

    Reposted from IAM District 751 Blog

    The post Don’t Believe Anti-Union Hype, Cadence Workers Say appeared first on IAMAW.


  • South Carolina Boeing Workers Vote Wednesday

    After weeks of Boeing management scare tactics, intimidation and television and radio propaganda ads, 3,000 workers at the South Carolina 787 assembly plants will have their chance to join the IAM on Wednesday. A “Vote Yes” rally was held yesterday to give supporters a chance to come together and get factual answers to the lies Boeing management has been spreading.

    A dozen U.S. Senators weighed in today with a joint statement of support IAM representation for the South Carolina workers.

    READ: Brown Leads Statement in Support of Boeing Workers.

    Watch yesterday’s Boeing SC Vote Yes Rally

    Not only are the workers in the plant tired of Boeing’s anti-union television and radio ads, so are North Charleston residents. Read what they’ve had to say on social media.

    Voice your support on the Boeing Workers at South Carolina – BSC Facebook page.

    The workers’ effort to join the IAM has garnered national attention. Read what is being said around the country:

    Go to the Boeing Workers at South Carolina Facebook page and let them know you support them in their fight for union representation.

    The post South Carolina Boeing Workers Vote Wednesday appeared first on IAMAW.