The San Francisco Region Sentinel April 2019 Issue # 5
FRIENDS, FAMILIES, COMMUNITIES…..LEND ME YOUR EARS
FROM THE DESK OF: JAMES SCOGGINS
In January of this year Sonia and I had the pleasure and honor to participate in the Los Angeles Teacher’s strike, which resulted from the Los Angeles Unified School District’s failure to negotiated a much-deserved collective bargaining agreement. Within a week or so after the teachers went on strike a negotiated collective bargaining agreement was reached. However, as important as this event was, that is not the subject of this article.
To get to this event we took the gold-line light rail from Pasadena to the Union Train Station in downtown Los Angeles where we had to transfer
and take the red-line light rail to our destination. While we were waiting on the platform proudly wearing our APWU gear, we were approached by a
young man who appeared to be in his mid-thirties and he told us that his father retired from the USPS and was a member of the San Diego Area Local. The gentleman went to tell us that while his dad was still employed and when he was a senior in high school that he applied for one of the APWU Scholarship Funds and he got it. He went on to say how that made such a positive impression on his life, which is why he was out supporting the striking teachers in their efforts. Oh yeah and let me back up a little bit, this young man is now a psychologist with the Los Angeles Unified School District and on this particular day it was raining cats and dogs, yet he took the time to come out and support the teacher’s union and their efforts.
For the complete article and other important news & opinions, click here.
Notes On Oakland Teachers Strike
Notes on Oakland Teachers Strike
By Peter Shapiro
1. The Oakland Education Association (OEA) demands: 12% pay hike over 3 years, more support staff (nurses, counselors, speech pathologists & resource specialists), smaller classes & no more school closures.
2. The Oakland Unified School District (OUSD) teachers are so badly paid that many can’t afford to live here. Class size is also an issue. As a result, teacher turnover is extremely high — 500 out of 3000 left the district last year. This is a sore spot with students, who have several organized one-day sympathy strikes in recent weeks. They’re sick of seeing good teachers leave.
3. District has a lot of high needs kids — special ed, kids in foster care, immigrant kids who are still learning English (“newcomers”). Proliferation of charter schools (which enroll a far smaller proportion of these kids) has increased the burden on regular schools. More support staff badly needed, for the kids and their teachers.
For the remaining Notes (#4 through #10), click here for the complete document.
Issue #4, October 2018, San Francisco Clerk NBAs Newsletter. Sentinal
WHY IN THE HELL DO WE VOTE AGAINST OURSELVES?
FROM THE DESK OF: SHIRLEY TAYLOR
We are Union!
We do not lay down!
We stand up and organize!
Our government was founded on check and balances and in today’s society, it seems as if Labor has to be who supplies the will to perform this task.
We must build a multifarious coalition to save the social conscience of democracy.
What we seem to forget is that we all have passed this way before. For instance, all people considered “white” today, were not that long ago included in that category. A review of our history, finds the following nauseous information: “Irish need not apply”, “Italians need not apply”, “Polish need not apply”, “Jews need not apply”.
What I have never understood, is anyone who has ever been discriminated against because of their race, color, creed, religion, national origin, sex, age or marital status would not jump in and fight to keep others from suffering the indignities they suffered. Why are we so happy and eager to have someone to look down on? Why do we determine our worth based upon someone else’s flawed opinion of us? I suppose that everyone wants to be loved, but if receiving said “love” requires that we forego our humanity, is it really worth anything.
We have to join the fight, because if we don’t, we are going down for the count. We have to call these people out when they cage our children, when they separate juveniles from their families, when they move children with no intent to reunite them with their families, and when they do these despicable actions against the least of us.
How do we navigate the daily drama? How do we swim through the emotional bullshit? We cannot be blind and unconcerned to what happens around us…. We are not an island unto ourselves. What we do in our daily lives has an effect on others.
WE HAVE TO VOTE!
[For the entire newsletter, click here]
Tell a Friend: Join the Union
Tell a Friend: Join the Union
Susan Robison, Assistant Managing Editor, Oakland Postal Worker News Media
Most new clerk hires and PSEs have signed up with the APWU, yet there are still hold-outs among long-term Oakland employees. Here is why those people should reconsider.
While the Union must represent all craft employees in grievances and contract negotiations, only members may attend membership meetings and vote in Union elections for the candidates who are going to represent them. Members run the Union! Local 78 has an excellent record of communicating with members through the Local’s website, the news Briefs, and workshops on topics like retirement planning, injured employees’ rights, and current legislation that affects postal workers. Our website, www.oakapwu78.org, has recently been redesigned for greater ease of use.
There are monetary benefits to Union membership. The APWU health plan immediately comes to mind. Members are also eligible for the Union+ credit card, several forms of supplemental insurance such as pet insurance and dental coverage, and a mortgage lending program through Wells Fargo. A complete description of available discounts can be found on the national APWU website under “get benefits”. And let’s not forget the Word Find contest the Local just introduced, with a cash prize for members only.
On the subject of money, keep in mind that representation comes with expenses at both the local and national levels. Renting or buying office space and maintaining office space and maintaining office staff and representatives, contract negotiation, and taking cases to arbitration all cost money. Dues income pays for all that; if we fail to increase membership, our ability to cover those costs is restricted.
These days we are going up against not only management, but political forces who want to privatize the agency. Everyone’s job is on the line. Everyone should join the Union.
Waiting for Seniority List 2.0
During the last few weeks, a U.S. Postal Service event was about to reach its conclusion. While this action was taking place, there had been at least several inquiries from bargaining-unit employees asking APWU stewards and the Oakland Local about seniority lists, where each stand on such lists. [More in the full article as a PDF document below.]