Saturday, March 14, 2009

Union Update

March E-Board Meeting

The e-Board met last week to discuss myriad of topics concerning our shops, grievances filed with the company and board charges filed with the N.L.R.B. as well as our new Local's Constitution and By-Laws. The Board was in favor of having another Rally at the Downtown L.A. Times Headquarters in response to the company's decision to withhold severance for 63 pressroom employees. The company's decision to lay off 63 long time employees without any severance is a blatant act of retaliation for exercising our right to form a Union.

March 30, 2009 Rally

We said we'd be back at the conclusion of the February 23rd Rally and as a result of the company's unwillingness to offer severance to 63 soon to be former pressroom employees. We have multiple Board charges filed with the N.L.R.B. regarding the company's "Bad Faith Bargaining over severance. We hope to have a decision soon.

We will once again meet on the corner of 1st and Spring at 11:30 am on Monday March 30th. If you are one of the 63 employees being sent away without any severance, come and make your voice heard. Our contributions over the decades will not be ignored simply because we fought to prevent these same types of mistreatment from our soon to be former employer.

Board Charges

As I state there are multiple board charges relative to the severance negotiations as well as charges against the changes that were immediately imposed after ratification of the contract.
I will upload the actual documents detailing the current charges that were filed on behalf of our shops and members.

Grievances

Most of the grievances filed with the company have emanated from our L.A. Shop and Executive Vice President, Keith Denson has presented them in the 1st and 2nd steps. Keith has requested information from the company to prepare our grievances to which the company has been extremely illusive in fulfilling our requests for info. We have a right to the information we request or the company is in violation of our rights. A board charge will be filed regarding this matter should we continue to have our requests for information denied. I also filed grievances which pertain to Hours and Overtime. Specifically, there are no 6 &1/2 nor 8 hour shifts anywhere in the contract yet the schedules do. The contract describes a shift as 7 hours (eg. 35 hours a week). The other grievance I filed pertains to 6th day overtime. In negotiations, it was stated that ONLY if you call in sick would you be ineligible for overtime pay on the sixth day worked.

De-Authorization Drive

Once again, certain individuals are soliciting signatures to de-authorize the union security and dues checkoff language of the contract. These individuals have obtained the signatures in violation of the law. Supervision was notified on several occassions that these individuals were approaching bargaining unit employees during work hours, on the floor, during the runs. There have been numerous accounts from members in which complaints of being exposed to potential safety hazards when signatures were being sought from them while performing work on the press equiptment.

The consequences of de-authorization would cripple the union's ability to defend its members. The company is very aware of this fact and would love nothing more than for this to occur. It would allow them to trample all over the remaining employees and the union would be financially unable to retain legal counsel. The Local would also be financially effected and unable to operate effectively enough to serve the membership. This is to the benefit of the company and not the employees. Don't support this campaign against the union.

Constitution & By Laws Meeting

Members of Local 140-N are requested to attend this meeting to review and adopt our constitution and by-laws that were approved by the constitution and by-laws commitee. The Committee was chaired by Exec. Vice President Keith Denson and the committee members are Mark Austin, Denise Kolm, Dan Beruman, Ed Padgett and Gary Bunch.

The meeting will be held on Saturday March 28, 2009 at the Crown Plaza Hotel, Commerce Casino at 2:30 pm. This meeting is restricted to members that submitted a fully completed Teamster Membership Application and Dues Check off Authorization.

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