CWA Assaults Members

In the summer of 2007, a CWA Local 1011 union manager told a Verizon work crew that they only needed to perform 3 “fiber to premises” jobs each day, and they could file for a full work day no matter how much time it actually took. Two employees, Salvatore DiStefano and Sebastian Taravell, refused to participate in the rip-off scheme, and informed other workers, supervisors and union management that the scheme was illegal.

The reward for good business ethics? The two men were bombarded by a physical and psychological campaign of abuse. Union officials encouraged other union members to “do whatever you want with those two guys,” and allegedly announced that company corporate security was never to be called about such issues. “I don’t care if somebody comes to work with a gun saying they’re going to shoot people,

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EFCA Update

The union-friendly administration is not sitting still. This month, the NLRB invited amicus briefs in two groups of pending cases. One group relates to penalties assessed against businesses (no mention of penalties against unions, of course), and whether those penalties should be increased via the addition of compound interest.

Over at the Office of Labor-Management Standards (OLMS), a public meeting was held to discuss possible changes to attorney and consultant reporting under section 203 of the Labor-Management Reporting and Disclosure Act (LMRDA).  More significant perhaps than the impact on consultants and labor attorneys is a change being considered that would impact “regular officers, supervisors and employees.” Imagine the reporting nightmare if any company officer or employee were required to report when they spoke about unions during organizing campaigns, orientation meetings or even casual conversation.

An LRI representative

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The Big Union Bailout

Unions are back at the government trough. But now we’re talking REAL money (not just hundreds of millions of dollars at stake in the auto bailout or healthcare bill). Now unions are asking taxpayers to bailout union pension funds. The article by Vinnie Vernuccio and Jeremy Lott outlines the massive scope of this unprecedented union bailout. They probably explained it best when they wrote:

“Flanked by representatives from the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, YRC Transportation and ABF Freight Systems, Sen. Bob Casey, Pennsylvania Democrat, proposed a massive bailout for the Teamsters’ and other union pension funds on March 22. The deceptively named Create Jobs and Save Benefits Act of 2010 (the Save Adorable Fluffy Bunnies Act was taken, apparently) should really be called the Bail Out Irresponsible Unions Act. That is exactly what the bill would do.”

And the massive numbers today will only get worse

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Third Time a Charm?

The recently closed Nummi auto plant in Fremont Ca, will open again (for a third time) under the name of Tesla Motors and this time they will be building electric cars in a partnership with Toyota. When the plant closed recently it was the last of its kind in California, and the blame was squarely on the shoulders on the United Auto Workers. The cost of operation was too much for Toyota to endure with the union demands. At this point it looks like the plant will open non-union, although it looks like they’ll be hiring some former Nummi employees so we’ll see how long that lasts.

Breaking: DOL Meeting to Squelch Employer Free Speech

Earlier today the Department of Labor (DOL) held an “open forum” to discuss proposed rule changes to consultant, attorney and now employer reporting of “persuasion and advice” activities regarding unions.  The changes will require Law Firms and Consulting Firms to report many so-called “advice” activities as “persuasion” under section 203(c) of the Labor Management Reporting Disclosure Act of 1959 (LMRDA).

In addition the DOL wants to change section 203(e) of the LMRDA to require employers to report when supervisors and managers speak about union issues to employees. That was part of the DOL presentation and remains a real possibility. It is important to note that failure to report these activities is a crime punishable by both fine and imprisonment.

We made the point that the employer requirement will be impossible to monitor in most companies and that there is no reason for the rule. The main reason

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YouTube Video: Is The Employee Free Choice Act Bad For Women?

Check out this YouTube video covering: Is The Employee Free Choice Act Bad For Women?

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Watch this and others on our union video YouTube channel.

Rhode Island Students = 1, Teachers Union = 0

Remember the Rhode Island school district that fired an entire school of teachers due to horrible school performance and the union’s unwillingness to agree to changes to improve the school? Well, it turns out you can teach an old union new tricks. The teachers union decided to cave to school district’s requests – you know, things like spending more time in the classroom and interacting more with students. It’s a start.

Restaurants Under Attack from SEIU?

This week we issued a press release on a recently leaked memo that outlines a plan for the SEIU to attack fast food restaurants. I did a little additional research and noticed that unions are organizing restaurants (technically the “food services and drinking establishments” sector) at an incredible pace this year. Right now they are on pace to more than double their organizing activity over 2009. Take a look:

Union Organizing in Restaurants and Bars

By the way, the release got picked up on more than 50 news outlets, including:

Forbes.com CNBC.com The Street StreetInsider The Journal Record Pizza Marketplace

Teachers’ Unions’ Last Stand

“You don’t understand. Teachers are just different.” That’s the money line from the new head of the United Federation of Teachers in a great New York Times Magazine article The Teachers’ Unions’ Last Stand. The basic point is that when school districts and states start competing based on results (for a large cash prize) you quickly see just how upside-down the teachers unions are. Highly recommended.

Positive Employee Relations: What Should I Say to My Employees About Health Care Reform?

Most provisions of the new healthcare reform law don’t go into effect until 2014, and many of the provisions are poorly understood without further explanation in the regulation process. Most employers will simply choose to say nothing about healthcare reform until these uncertainties are resolved, but that is a mistake and misses a big opportunity.
Time of uncertainty are not times for withdrawal. That shows a lack of leadership. Employees will fill in the blanks in these uncertain times, and that usually makes things worse. A strong leader will address these concerns, even if he or she is confused too.
Unskilled managers believe they look weak if they don’t have all the answers. Strong leaders know that what employees want to know most is that the leader understands their concerns, is empathetic and will confidently plot a course as things become clear, even if at this moment

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