Leaders from our eight unions of the Red Cross Union Coalition met with National Red Cross in Washington DC and reached an agreement to formally enter into national negotiations on some joint issues. This has been an involved process to begin negotiations because this is a significant step and we want to cover all details of what this means for every local union at the table.
Who will bargain the National Agreement? Local and national leaders of the national unions covered by ARC will form the Union Coalition National Bargaining Committee. Local leaders and members from each union will also form the Bargaining Council and Delegates Council to give local input at negotiations.
What Issues Will be Negotiated? The National Bargaining Committee will advocate for important issues that impact all of us. We will come to an agreement with ARC to identify which issues to negotiate on a national level. At this time, we have identified some issues including healthcare & benefits, wages, staffing, and scheduling to negotiate on a national level.
Who will ratify a National Agreement? If the National Bargaining Committee reaches a National Tentative Agreement, we will bring it back to our local union for a ratification vote consistent with applicable local and national bylaws / constitution. We may need a certain number of other local unions to ratify the National Agreement in order for it to go into effect.
What will happen to our local Agreement? If our local and a certain number of other locals vote to ratify the National Agreement, we will adopt all the terms of the national agreement as an addendum or addition to our local contract. If issues are not covered in the National Agreement, we will keep the terms of our local contract.
What Happens If We Do Not Reach a National Agreement? If the National Bargaining Committee does not reach an Agreement, we will go back to local contract negotiations. We will continue to work with other Red Cross unions to support each other and fight for strong local contracts.
Red Cross Union Coalition
We are committed to standing together to bargain a strong contract that will improve our wages and working conditions for all union Red Cross workers across the country. We need every member to stay engaged and involved to make these negotiations successful. Together we represent about 4,000 Red Cross union workers across the country:
American Federation of State and County Municipal Employees (AFSCME)
CWA District One has notified us that Verizon has declared a surplus in our force adjustment area six (6). The job classifications and the number declared surplus is as follows:
Administrative Assistant 10
Driver A 1
Facilities Assistant 24
Field Technician 44
To alleviate the surplus condition the Company will invoke the Force Adjustment Plan (article 55) of our current collective bargaining agreement. This surplus condition has been determined by the Company to be due to process change. The provisions of the respective Force Adjustment Plan articles 8(b) and 10 will not apply in this case (meaning NO Layoff). If the surplus condition requires the use of the Enhanced Income Protection Plan under step three (3) of the Force Adjustment Plan article 55, EIPP offers will be tendered to those employees in the surplus titles and force adjustment areas involved by Tuesday, May 19th. An employee's election to leave the service of the Company and receive EIPP payments must be in writing and transmitted to the Company by Tuesday, June 2nd. The off the payroll date for those employees who accept this offer will be Sunday June 14th.
CWA and Verizon Communications will begin
contract negotiations on Monday June 22nd
Our contract with Verizon Communications expires in eighty-seven (87) days on Saturday August 1st.
We have been down this road many times in the past. We accept and understand that we must stand in solidarity with one another and engage ourselves in this contract fight with resiliency, resolve and collective action. Collective action designed to protect our collective group tomorrow by securing a fair and just contract labor agreement with our employer Verizon Communications.
Let us not forget that we get what we earn.
We ask that you click on the link below and move forward with us....
When you contract someone to complete home repairs, or mow your lawn, or plow your driveway, you expect to get a return on your investment. Similarly, Union dues are part of a contract, and why wouldn’t you expect to get a return on that investment?
Do you let your Union know if and when your workplace rights have been violated? Do you contact your Union steward? It’s management’s responsibility to provide a good working environment. It’s the Union’s responsibility to uphold the working contract that you created. .
Letting your steward know about your concerns is the first step so he or she can advise you whether to converse with your manager, to find a solution, or to file a grievance. Remember, unless the issue could result in disciplinary action, you are encouraged to discuss the matter with your manager. But if the concern that arises is against contract language, or could result in disciplinary action, your steward will ask you to write a summary of the incident or issue. At this point, whether out of fear of the process itself, or a disinclination to take the time to see the process through, most people back down. But here is why you should persist: 1) it eliminates the egregious behavior toward you and your co-workers; 2) it promotes an acceptable culture for employee treatment; 3) When multiple violations are grieved against one manager, it establishes patterns of behaviors that can lead to corrective measures to benefit an entire team.
The process can take weeks or even months to come to resolution. During this time, mangers are not allowed to discuss the situation or seek retribution against the employee. If there is such evidence against the employer, there is further recourse by the Union to escalate the grievance.
Some employees have felt that the EAP (Employee Assistance Program) gave them the confidence to initiate the grievance process, as it can be difficult to stand up to a person in power. Employees who have gone through the grievance process, reported an improved work situation, reported feeling empowered to stand up for themselves, and ultimately, would do it again, as the process was worth the end result.
Then, on Thursday, April 9th, informational picketing will begin throughout the Verizon East footprint.
On that day, check your email to join your coworkers for a virtual Facebook picket line. To get our message out to as many people as possible, we will send you an image to share on Facebook. It matches the signs we’ll be holding at pickets in real life, demanding good jobs at Verizon.
Together, we will create our first virtual picket!
Let’s get ready for August 1, 2015.
District 2-13 Mobilization Coordinator
District 1 Digital Media Technician
TO: All Verizon NY, NE and NJ Locals
FROM: Chris Shelton, Vice President
DATE: November 24, 2014
SUBJECT: Verizon’s Double Standard
As we gear up for Contract Mobilization, Verizon has been saying some nasty stuff about us when they try and convince our Verizon Wireless brothers and sisters not to join our union.
Verizon management has been having dozens of forced, mandatory meetings with Verizon Wireless workers to try and keep them out of our union. Amongst the things they are saying about us is
1) We are a business that just wants dues money;
2) We are corrupt;
3) We just want to strike;
4) We don’t care about our customers;
5) We fine members anytime we want;
6.) We are an outside third party that is a business rather than a union.
As they attack us with one face, they tell us to our face that they want to get along and work together.
We have developed this attached flyer that we are asking every shop steward to present to management at every chance they get, and ask them to check off which kind of relationship they want with our union as we face them at the bargaining table once again.
Hey Verizon, Can You
In meetings, Verizon claims they want to work with our Union and have a respectful relationship. But when VZW employees try to organize into CWA, the very same company accuses us of corruption, violence, only wanting dues money, and being an outside “third party”
Verizon can’t have it both ways.
Every member should ask their managers to choose what kind of relationship they want. Ask them to check only ONE of the following statements.
Verizon Management: Please Check only ONE answer.
1) As a company, Verizon would like a respectful relationship with our employees. We pledge not to accuse your union of being violent, corrupt, or a “third party” when non-union employees want to join your union.
. 2) As a company, Verizon has no respect for your union, we do not want to work with your union, and we will continue to accuse your union of being corrupt, and of being violent.
STOPFAST TRACK .... STOP the TRANS-PACIFIC PARTNERSHIP
The Trans-Pacific Partnership is another trade deal that will outsource even more American jobs, and it’s being called “NAFTA on steroids” because of the devastating effects it will have.
Right now in Congress there is fast tack legislation being pushed that will allow this bad trade deal to sail through congress. The CWA along with several unions and other allied groups are fighting this legislation and are targeting several members of Congress that we need to oppose fast track and the TPP.
In WNY we are targeting Congressman Chris Collins, and this week is CWA’s week to get calls into his office. Attached is a flyer with information to call Congressman Collins; it is a very easy call to make, it only takes 30 seconds, and everything you need to say is on the flyer.
Please make your call today, and be sure to have friends, family, neighbors, and co-workers call too. This effects everyone just like NAFTA did, and everyone knows someone who lost their job to NAFTA, so lets stop TPP from having the same devastating effects on our communities and nation.
Call Congressman Collins: Urge Him to
Say NO to Fast-Track for TPP
Congress is set to vote on a massive outsourcing trade bill in the next 75 days. This deal, called the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) will directly impact our ability to negotiate fair contracts this year. All jobs are tradable – including call center work – and this deal will move jobs to Vietnam & Malaysia.
Congress MUST hear from us – not just from corporate CEOs.
CALL HIM NOW!
.Dial 1-855-980-2352 and use the script below (leave a voicemail, if necessary!)
“I live in New York’s 27th Congressional District, and I strongly urge Congressman Collins to oppose Fast-Track for TPP. It’s a corporate trade deal that will outsource American jobs and further exploit workers overseas. I urge the Congressman to
This article was written by Bruce Kushnick, Executive Director of New Networks Institute, and appeared in the Huffington Post on January 15, 2015
Did Verizon Commit Perjury in the Net Neutrality Proceeding About the Use of Title II?
New Networks Institute has filed a Petition for Investigation with the FCC to examine Verizon's use of Title II and whether the company has committed perjury in the current Net Neutrality, Open Internet Proceeding, (Docket number 14-28).
Click Here to Send a Note to the FCC: Request the FCC Investigate Verizon's use of Title II and mention "Open Internet", use "Proceeding Number 14-28" and add "New Networks Institute's Petition".
Let Me Summarize Our Petition for Investigation.
Simply Put: Verizon has told the FCC, the courts and the public that applying Title II would harm investment if it is reinstated in the current Net Neutrality proceeding. In fact, Verizon has gotten their 'friends', corporate-paid think tanks, 'academics', astroturf groups, and even co-opted non-profits to parrot this statement as if it was true.
The Problem? Verizon's entire fiber optic deployment (including FiOS) and financial plan is based on using Title II and this has not changed since Net Neutrality became an issue about a decade ago.
This is an Open and Shut Case: Verizon Communications, Inc. and its affiliates, including Verizon Wireless, have violated Section 1.17 of the Communications Act of 1934, by "intentionally omit[ting] material information that is necessary to prevent any material factual statement that is made from being incorrect or misleading".
Simple to Prove: Compare these two statements by Verizon Communications, Inc., and the company's affiliates.
"Imposing a Title II common carriage regime on broadband providers would be a radical change in course that would only chill, not spur innovation. Title II is a regulatory dinosaur, crafted eighty years ago - and based on 19th-Century laws regulating railroads - to address the one-wire world of rotary telephones."
Title II is a Cash Machine: Verizon's entire business plan is the based on using Title II as it allows the company to not only to use the utility rights-of-way, but as we discuss in the Petition, it also allows the company to get local phone customers to fund these investments of the fiber optic networks. In New York State, Verizon received at least three rate increases for "massive deployment of fiber optics" (and "losses", which we will be addressing in future petitions).
NOTE: The phrase "massive deployment of fiber optics" is taken directly from Verizon New York's filings and the NY Public Service Commission's orders. We did not need to 'make it up'.
If you have been reading the past articles, you know that we have been documenting all of this for years. Our research reports, based on Verizon's own financial reporting and other Verizon-authored documents have uncovered that Verizon's entire investment in the fiber optic networks, including the wires to the cell towers for Verizon Wireless or the "special access" wires, are based on the use of Title II.
Verizon Told the FCC Over and Over that Title II Harms Investment
Reclassification would create a major drag on new and improved broadband infrastructure, even though substantial investment in such infrastructure is precisely what is needed to keep pace with exponentially increasing consumer demands for bandwidth.
By chilling such investment and discouraging innovation, Title II and related proposals would only impede, not advance, the public's access to and enjoyment of the Internet.
The prospect of 19th-Century price regulation and Title II's other arcane requirements would stifle investment in and development of the Internet.
This is Misrepresentation on a Massive Level, Not Some Trivial Point.
This massively deceptive practice of getting Title II benefits on the state level while impaling it on the federal level has nothing to do with either the multiple classifications of services over the wire or some miss-matching 'investor tale' with that of the companies' reports to the FCC.
We are well aware of the use of multiple classifications, i.e., that the Title VI cable service, combined with a Title I Internet information service, can use a Title II network, but it is the flows of money that is at the crux of the issue here.
The "Title II" Issue is about the Flows of Money and the Use of Title II as a Cash Machine.
Verizon uses Title II to fund the infrastructure as "Title II", which means it is part of the state-based utilities as a telecommunications network and therefore fuels the financial perks including charging utility customers for the 'massive deployment of fiber optics'. Verizon also gets the rights-of-way from the state-based utility as Title II.
There are those who will argue that the networks can have multiple classifications of service over the same wire. While true, the issue of investment is about the flows of money. In at least New York State, Verizon's Title VI cable networks were built as part of the existing telecommunications network and therefore the cable division paid little or no construction costs for the FTTP networks it uses to deliver its cable programming. Similarly, it appears that the fiber optic wires to the cell towers and the wires used for Internet service, were all installed as Title II facilities -- i.e., the affiliate companies are getting a free ride on the backs of local phone customers who were charged multiple rate increases in New York for "massive deployment of fiber optics".
I note that these 'pundits' for Verizon or the ill-informed have not bothered to actually go through the financials of Verizon's state-based utilities or read the actual primary Verizon and NY State commission documents we quote, much less what we uncovered.
The "Janus" of Telecom
Janus was the two-faced Roman mythology figure. While the name in the 21st Century can have multiple implications, the simplest is when a person is "two-faced" or duplicitous.
The facts reveal, then, a massive duplicity on the part of Verizon Communications that continues to violate Section § 1.17 of the Communications Act, which requires "Truthful and accurate statements to the Commission".
(1) In any written or oral statement of fact, intentionally provide material factual information that is incorrect or intentionally omit material information that is necessary to prevent any material factual statement that is made from being incorrect or misleading...
The omission in every document of any statement that Title II is used for investments and that the fiber-to-the-premises networks are already Title II, which is then used to charge local phone customers as 'defacto investors', requires immediate investigation. It is at the very heart of the current Net Neutrality/Open Internet proceeding, and other proceedings related to network infrastructure policy and practices.
Verizon has deceived the FCC, the courts and the public over and over, and it is time for the FCC not only to acknowledge this fact but to start investigations into the failure of Verizon to disclose critical, material facts.
The FCC needs to examine the extent of the use of Title II today by Verizon for deployment of infrastructure used for broadband, Internet, phone and cable service.
The FCC needs to examine the role of customers as 'de-facto' investors; how Verizon has used Title II to get rate increases on basic POTS (plain old telephone service) customers and tax perks.
The FCC must examine the role of Title II and the other classifications ('titles') in allowing the manipulation of the flows of money between and among Verizon New York, the state-based utility, and Verizon Communications and Verizon's other affiliate companies, including Verizon Online, Verizon Business, Verizon Services and most of all Verizon Wireless
And this must be done with a focus on Verizon's own statements, information, comments, reply comments, etc, made to the FCC, as well as to the courts and the public. The FCC must examine whether Verizon intentionally provided factual information that is incorrect, or intentionally omitted material information, in an effort to mislead the Commission concerning Verizon's claim that Title II harms investments.
Unsworn declarations under penalty of perjury in lieu of affidavits.
Any document to be filed with the Federal Communications Commission and which is required by any law, rule or other regulation of the United States to be supported, evidenced, established or proved by a written sworn declaration, verification, certificate, statement, oath or affidavit by the person making the same, may be supported, evidenced, established or proved by the unsworn declaration, certification, verification, or statement in writing of such person...
We ask the FCC to start an immediate investigation into the fact that Verizon has not once disclosed, as far as we can ascertain, any of the documents and information about their use of Title II, which we have uncovered and detail in the Petition.
Where are the Investigations and Oversight?
Finally, I find it incredible that the leading government agency that is in charge of all of America's communications in the United States had no clue that Verizon gamed the system. But this points to a more serious question -- Where are the other government agencies, advocate offices, politicians, state commissions, or Internet advocate groups who claim that they care about 'reclassification' to Title II? Where are the investigating reporters in the US? Why wasn't this deception exposed years ago?
NOTE: This Petition was created by New Networks Institute's independent team of lawyers, auditors, and communications experts and we received no funding from any group, organization, company or political party.
We did it because it is the right thing to do.
When it comes to calling out and breaking down the Republican Party’s calculated “war on the poor and working families,” nobody does it quite like former US Labor Secretary, Robert Reich.
In this powerful video courtesy of MoveOn.org, Reich neatly summarizes the Republican Party’s 7-prongued approach to exacerbating socioeconomic inequality and relegating America’s poor and working families to a life of poverty. Think he’s exaggerating? Watch the 135-second video and you will agree that the ‘War on the poor and working families” isn’t a figment of his imagination, it is real and impacting Americans all across the nation.
Members of CWA Local 1122 have Weingarten rights during investigatory interviews. An investigatory interview occurs when a Company representative questions a member to obtain information that could lead to discipline OR asks a member to defend his or her conduct.
If you reasonably believe that discipline or other adverse consequences may result from a meeting with a Company representative, you have a right to Union representation at that meeting. But, you must request it.
As a member of the Local, you are the reason the Union exists.
The Unions responsibility is to protect your rights as a worker and see to it that the steady flow of changes in our workplace does not violate our contract with our employer, other non-contractual issues can be dealt with accordingly when the group of members come together and support each other as equals rather than a ME FIRST ATTITUDE....
... This all started some years ago at a CWA District One Conference in NY City. The Local Presidents passed a motion to put forth a Resolution at the CWA National Convention that year. This resolution was first to honor our fallen brother Gerry, and second to show our SOLIDARITY and strength ....