iMail for Thursday March 22, 2007

Lou Dobbs Examines China’s Aircraft Ambitions

IP Tom Buffenbarger is scheduled to appear Thursday, March 22, on CNN’s Lou Dobbs Tonight as part of a news segment about China’s entry into the global commercial aircraft market.

“The recent announcement that China will be entering the large commercial aircraft market comes as no surprise to the IAM,” said Buffenbarger. “ China developed its capacity in large part due to U.S. policy that allowed the transfer of U.S. technology and production—technology that was often developed by U.S. aerospace workers and paid for by U.S. taxpayers.”

The Emmy-award winning Lou Dobbs Tonight airs from 6 to 7 p.m. Eastern Time, 7 days a week. Check your local listings to confirm time and channel.

GVP Roach Testifies on Aviation Safety

Transportation GVP Robert Roach, Jr. testified today before the Aviation Sub-Committee of the U.S. House of Representatives’ Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure on the subject of Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) operational and safety programs.

Roach urged the Committee to resolve jurisdictional conflicts between the National Mediation Board and the National Labor Relations Board; address Flight Attendant fatigue and self-defense training issues and correct lax enforcement of workplace health and safety regulations. Roach also called for improved oversight of overseas aircraft repair stations and urged lawmakers to reject proposals to allow increased foreign ownership and control of U.S. airlines.

“Since 9-11, airline workers have sacrificed their wages, pensions, work rules and thousands of jobs in order to rescue the airline industry,” said GVP Roach. “Industry conditions have imposed great burdens on workers as carriers compete to reduce costs. Such an extraordinary focus on the bottom line demands more, not less, government oversight.”

Shipyard Strike Draws Local Business Support

The Ingalls Shipyard strike in Pascagoula, MS moved into its second week, with local business donating food and supplies to union members walking picket lines outside the sprawling Northrop Grumman facility. More than 350 Machinists are among nearly 6,500 union workers from the Pascagoula Metal Trades Council on strike at Ingalls.

“Our community is showing a great deal of support for the workers,” said District Lodge 73 Directing Business Representative Benny Wallace. “We are getting lots of donations from the area businesses.”

One local KFC manager refused to donate anything to the strikers, saying the restaurant was in the business of selling chicken, not giving it away. After word of the refusal reached area KFC franchise owner Bill West, he and his brother drove four hours to deliver buckets of chicken for the strikers, feeding around 200 picketers.

Mr. West apologized to DBR Wallace, saying that he grew up in a union household, and that he understood and supported the strikers. He said that the local KFC would continue donating food to the strike.

Settlement Reached at Dana Corp

Under a tentative settlement between the IAM and bankrupt auto parts maker Dana Corp., the company will distribute $2.25 million to approximately 150 IAM retirees in Churubusco, IN, and Corinth, MS., to help cover future health care and life insurance costs.

The IAM represents workers at four Dana Corp. plants in the U.S., but three of those plants, including the one in Churubusco, were recently sold to a German company. The German firm will assume the existing benefit package for employees who retire during the current collective bargaining agreement. In addition, the IAM negotiated a new contract for about 215 employees at a Dana Corp. plant in Robinson, IL, that includes modifications to health care and pensions and wages.

Dana, one of the largest auto parts makers in the world, filed for bankruptcy protection on March 3, 2006, claiming it needs to reduce costs and move its manufacturing capabilities overseas to emerge as a competitive, viable company.

Enroll Now for Spanish Leadership Class

Spaces are still available in the Spanish Leadership I program scheduled for May 20-25, 2007 at the William W. Winpisinger Center in Hollywood, Maryland. The Spanish Leadership I program covers the subjects included in the regular Leadership I program, but with all classroom instruction and materials in Spanish.

Lodges are encouraged to take action as soon as possible to enroll participants in this new program. The deadline for submitting completed enrollment forms for the May Spanish Leadership I program is April 15. Enrollments in the Spanish Leadership I program do not count against a lodge’s regular leadership program allotment.

Click here for the Spanish Leadership I enrollment form or call Pam Kinney at 301-373-8820.

Matricúlese Ahora para el Programa de Liderazgo 1 en Español

Todavía hay espacio disponible para el programa Liderazgo en español 1 programado para el 20-25 de mayo del 2007 en el Centro educacional William W. Winpisinger en Hollywood, Maryland. El programa Liderazgo 1 en Español cubre las mismas áreas que el programa de Liderazgo 1 en Ingles pero con todos los materiales e instrucción traducidos al español.

Se les pide a todas las Logias Locales a que tomen acción lo más pronto posible a que matriculen participantes en este nuevo programa. La fecha tope para someter las formas de matriculación para el programa de Liderazgo 1 en Español de Mayo es; abril 15. Las matriculaciones en el programa de Liderazgo 1 en Español no cuentan en su matriculación regular para los programas de Liderazgo 1 en Ingles para los Locales.

Para la forma de matriculación para el Programa de Liderazgo 1 en Español Presione aquí o llame a Pam Kinney al 301-373-8820.

Derek Ferguson Wins Canadian Labour Award

Long-time Canadian IAM member Derek Ferguson is the proud recipient of the 2006 Max Saltzman Award for outstanding contributions to labour and the community. The award is presented annually by the Waterloo Region Labour Council, in honor of Max Saltzman, the former public school board trustee and long serving federal NDP member for Cambridge, ON.

Ferguson was presented with the award by Council Vice President Jason Rees on March 13, 2007. A resident of Cambridge Ontario, Ferguson serves as the Secretary-Treasurer of Local 2330 and as a Vice President of the Ontario Provincial Council of Machinists as well as a member of the shop committee for his local at Dana Long Manufacturing where he is employed as a Tool and Die Maker.

2006 Newsletter and Website Contest Winners Announced

The results of the 2006 IAM Newsletter and Website Contest are in, and this year’s winners include District Lodge 141 and Local Lodge 1781 who took top honors in General Excellence for newsletters and District Lodge 143 and Local Lodge 1782 who won top honors for General Excellence for websites. Click here for a list of all winners and comments by the independent panel of contest judges.

“These winners represent just a few of the many hard-working and talented newsletter editors and web stewards who help get the IAM’s message out to our thousands of members on shop floors across North America,” said IAM Communications Director Rick Sloan. “The IAM’s editors and web stewards are a dedicated and indispensable part of what makes the IAM a strong and diverse union.”

Newsletter and Website Contest awards will be presented to the winners at the IAM Communications Conference set for May 14 —18 at the Sheraton Baltimore City Center (formerly the Wyndham Baltimore Inner Harbor) in Baltimore, MD.

The cutoff date for the special room rate of $172 for a single or double is April 13. If you plan to attend, please complete and return the registration form included in the official call letter. Click here for the French version of the official call.