trade unionists in South Korea face who severe repression.
Use the IMF digital postcard feature to
send a letter of
protest to the South Korean government.
The IAM is holding a
members-only photography contest this year and if your photo wins, you
could win a cash prize and your picture could appear in the 2003 IAM
Calendar. The deadline is June 30, 2002. For complete contest
information and an entry form,
NewsHour with Jim Lehrer
interviewed Amtrak president David Gunn, who recently took over the
troubled rail service. Gunn talks about Amtrak's financial situation,
the proposal to break up Amtrak, and the role Congress played in
creating the crisis at the nation’s passenger rail carrier.
Get Your Convention Gear
Check out gear for the
Friday, June 28, 2002
White House and IAM
Discuss Amtrak, US Airways
IAM leaders met with White House
officials this week to discuss the state of the transportation industry.
Transportation GVP Robert Roach, Jr. led the delegation in wide-ranging
talks on the fate of Amtrak, federal loan guarantees in the airline
industry and negotiation procedures under the Railway Labor Act.
“We discussed the
need for the continued funding of Amtrak,” Roach said. “The Machinists
Union is committed to achieving a long-term solution to the problems
faced by our nation’s rail passenger service.”
In a similar vein,
US Airways claims it will need to restructure its operation in
bankruptcy if it doesn’t receive federal loan guarantees. United
Airlines also filed for hefty federal loan guarantees, citing the need
to address financial problems made more acute by the aftermath of
September 11. Both airlines are awaiting decisions from the Air
Transportation Stabilization Board. For a more complete report, visit
Department’s web page at
Stonewalled in P & W Cancer Study
Despite earlier pledges, Pratt & Whitney
workers and the families of cancer victims who worked at the firm’s
sprawling facilities in Connecticut slammed into a stone wall when they
sought information on a study group’s initial proposals to probe the
high number of brain cancer deaths among Pratt workers.
The proposals from a
scientific team hired by P&W to investigate the cancer deaths “are
confidential,” both the company and the scientists said. Once company
officials and the investigators agree on all the details, they’ll let
families and the workers know what’s going on, they said.
“That’s not good
enough,” according to Rich Gross, an attorney who filed workers
compensation claims on behalf of relatives of Pratt brain tumor victims.
The workers want a voice in the investigation. Earlier this year, both
Pratt and the state’s health department promised to form a “working
group” that would include both family members and union representatives.
After more than four
months, that group has yet to meet.
“We know of at least
60 people who have died from brain tumors,” reports Debra Belancik,
chief safety representative for IAM Local 707, North Haven, CT. Most of
them died from glioblastoma multiforma, a rare and aggressive cancer
that strikes fewer than three in 100,000, according to medical studies.
Yet Belancik and other IAM safety representatives say nearly 70 people
have been diagnosed with the malady, all of who worked at Pratt
localities in the area.
The summer issue of
IAM Journal has a more detailed account of the disturbing events
at the aerospace firm.
Bush Plan Zings
A New York Times column
graphically outlined the “fuzzy math” in President Bush’s plan to
privatize Social Security. Author Paul Krugman points out that Social
Security is a system “in which each generation’s payroll taxes are
mainly used to support the previous generation’s retirement.”
contributions from younger workers go into personal accounts, who will
pay benefits to today’s retirees and older workers? “Privatization”,
Krugman contends, creates a financial hole that must be filled by
slashing benefits, by massive infusions from other federal funds, or
Even Republicans are
sidling away from the term “privatization”, Krugman notes “Do not be
complicit in Democratic demagoguery,” says one party memo cited in the
article. “So it looks like a duck and walks like a duck, but it isn’t a
duck—not until after the next election,” Krugman said.
“But…it is a duck.
And the Administration economists who claim that privatization will
strengthen Social Security are, more than ever, quacks,” Krugman
Drug Firms, GOP
Among its other skills, the
pharmaceutical industry has mastered the art of political timing. Just
hours after the House Ways and Means Committee approved a prescription
drug plan backed by the industry and the White House, many of those drug
firms forked over $250,000 each to hear President Bush speak at a
Republican fundraising dinner
prescription drug plan would force seniors into HMO-type plans and
provides those with average drug bills virtually no benefits at all. A
study by the Congressional Research service found the Republican bill’s
drug coverage is 40 percent less generous than the Democratic
IAM Partners with
Aviation High School
Aviation High school Principal Eileen Taylor, GVP Roach,
and banner contest winner Kevin Deeble.
The IAM took an active part in recent graduation ceremonies at New York
City’s Aviation High School. The IAM has been working with Aviation High
School and US Airways taking students out of the classroom and into the
hangars at LaGuardia Airport to spend a day interacting with experienced
“The IAM is the
first union willing to partner with our school,” said Eileen Taylor, the
school’s principal. Aviation is the only high school in the United
States that is designed to prepare students for careers in
aviation-related fields. The school’s 1,600 students can specialize in
aviation mechanics and engineering while obtaining a strong academic
The school has an
on-site hangar with various aircraft and aviation equipment, providing
intensive exposure to the aviation industry as well as hands-on
The IAM also sponsored a contest in which students
competed to design a banner demonstrating the Union’s new partnership
with Aviation High School. The banner hangs in the schools own on-campus
hangar. Transportation GVP Robert Roach, Jr. presented the winners with
toolboxes at the graduation ceremony.
Last Call for IAM
Photo Contest Entries
Get those contest entries into the mails ASAP. The deadline for entering
the IAM Photo Contest is June 30. Winning photos may be included in 2003
IAM calendar and may even qualify for a cash prize.
This year’s theme is
“North America’s Might” and our panel of independent judges will
be looking for photos that show IAM members at work doing what they do
best. The contest is absolutely free and open to all IAM members. You
can obtain a complete contest entry form at
www.iamaw.org/publications/2002photocontest/index.htm or by
contacting the IAM Communications Department, 301-967-4520.