iMail Tuesday July 6, 2004
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Job Growth Slows
Despite the Bush Administration's repeated claims of an economic recovery, job growth took a sharp dive last month.

Kerry Chooses Edwards As Running Mate
Democratic Presidential candidate John Kerry announced July 6th that he has chosen North Carolina Senator John Edwards to be his running mate.

Kerry Stands Up for Organizing Rights
Presidential hopeful John Kerry has received thousands of postcards and faxes from union activists thanking him for his support of the American worker.

US Chamber of Commerce President Promotes Outsourcing
US Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Thomas Donohue is promoting outsourcing of America's jobs to boost the economy.

Cheney's Misdirected Obscenity
Vice President Dick Cheney lost his temper last week...

Labor 2004:
Get Out the Vote

Thousands of Union volunteers are going door to door and talking to members about where the presidential candidates stand on the key issues of good jobs and affordable health care.

Officers & Territories

R. Thomas Buffenbarger
International President

Warren L. Mart

Lee Pearson
GVP Western Territory

Dave Ritchie
GVP Canada

Robert V. Thayer
GVP Headquarters

Robert Roach, Jr.
GVP Transportation

Lynn Tucker
GVP Eastern Territory

Robert Martinez
GVP Southern Territory

James Brown
GVP Midwest Territory

John Kerry named Sen. John Edwards (D-NC) to be his vice presidential running mate today, bringing a charismatic campaigner with working class roots to the Democrat’s effort to win back the White House.

Edwards Tapped as VP Candidate

John Kerry named Sen. John Edwards (D-NC) to be his vice presidential running mate today, bringing a charismatic campaigner with working class roots to the Democrat’s effort to win back the White House.

The trial lawyer turned Senator electrified crowds during his brief run for the Democratic nomination with passionate recollections of life in a small mill town where union contracts provided working families with the keys to a middle-class lifestyle.

Edwards, an outspoken opponent of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), made trade, jobs and optimism the centerpieces of his presidential bid, coming in a surprising second to Sen. Kerry in Iowa. The near-win in Iowa was followed by a victory in South Carolina, where his bootstrap biography and sympathy for working families and union members is well known.

Sen. Kerry welcomed his former rival to his team, calling Edwards “a champion for middle-class Americans and those struggling to reach the middle class.” Click here to read Sen. Kerry’s announcement and here to read Edward’s acceptance.

Defend Your Right to Organize

Thousands of union members are hitting the streets this month to distribute leaflets contrasting the positions of President George W. Bush and Sen. John Kerry (D-MA) on the freedom to join unions.

Kerry is a co-sponsor of the Employee Free Choice Act, (H.R. 3619), a bill that would lift many of the unfair obstacles workers confront when they try to join unions. According to Human Rights Watch , “Freedom of association is a right under severe, often buckling pressure when workers in the United States try to exercise it.”

 The Employee Free Choice Act would allow employees to authorize unions through card check and provide mediation and arbitration for first contract disputes. The bill would also establish strong penalties for employers who violate employee rights during organizing drives and first contract negotiations.

Click here for more information about the attack on union organizing rights. Click here to take the IAM survey on organizing rights and click here to view the IAM Video.

Chamber of Commerce Lauds Outsourcing

Echoing widely criticized comments by Bush administration officials, the president of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce (USCC) declared his support for outsourcing American jobs as a means of boosting the U.S. economy.

In a speech last week, USCC president Thomas Donohue suggested exporting high-paid tech jobs to low-cost countries such as India, China and Russia saves companies money that they may use to create new jobs for Americans. Donohue did not say what kind of jobs outsourcing would create.

Donohue’s remarks rekindled outrage over remarks in February by Gregory Mankiw, Chairman of Bush's Council of Economic Advisors. "Outsourcing is just a new way of doing international trade," said Mankiw.

In contrast, Democratic candidate John Kerry announced a six-point plan to reduce the offshoring of U.S. jobs, including tax reforms that would erase some financial incentives for companies to export high-paying jobs.

IAM Members Ratify New Contract with DynCorp

IAM members of Local 2515 in New Mexico, Missouri and California voted by an 82 percent margin on July 1, 2004 to ratify a new 3-year agreement with DynCorp Technical Services.

The accord covers members at the Holloman Support Division for the facilities at Holloman AFB in New Mexico, Beale AFB in California and Whiteman AFB in Missouri. Beale and Whiteman AFB's are offsite locations of the primary unit at Holloman AFB in New Mexico.

Key features of the new 3-year contract include a 4 percent General Wage Increase in the first year and 3.5 percent in the second and third years; increased company contributions to the IAM Pension Plan and “wage supplements” for Aircrafts Mechanic at Holloman and Whiteman. Additional features include continuation of Machinists Custom Choices Worksite Benefits Program and a new agreement to supply current “Core” medical plan at no cost to employees.

Dental and Vision plans for members will also continue to be paid for by the company. IAM negotiators also won an increase in recall rights from 24 to 36 months, an additional paid holiday and severely restricted non-bargaining unit employees from performing unit work.

“Negotiating Committee members Rick Padilla, Jay Jaramillo and Dave Hatcher performed an excellent service in behalf of their membership during these negotiations,” said IAM Aerospace Coordinator John Crowdis. “Local Lodge 2515 DBR Bud Duryea and District 778 DBR Joe Capra also provided outstanding assistance and experience during these negotiations.”

Job Growth Slows

Job growth took a sharp dive this month, with employers adding only 112,000 new jobs to the economy, less than half the number economists had forecasted.

The U.S. Labor Department, which released the economic numbers on Friday, also reported that the average workweek fell to 33.6 hours last month, another sign that the very modest economic growth the U.S. saw in the first half of the year may be coming to a halt.

U.S. manufacturing growth also fell to its lowest level since October last week, according to The Institute for Supply Management’s Index. The group also reported that 9 percent of manufacturing firms surveyed expect their workforce to shrink, up from 7 percent in May.

The noticeably low growth numbers this month could hinder President Bush as he continues to run his campaign behind an economic recovery that may be over before it even started.

Members and friends of Local 2297 and District 110 raised over $1400 last week in the Second Annual Carolina Hogs for Dogs run to benefit the IAM’s favorite charity, Guide Dogs of America.

District 110 Hosts Guide Dogs MC Run

Members and friends of Local 2297 and District 110 raised over $1400 last week in the Second Annual Carolina Hogs for Dogs run to benefit the IAM’s favorite charity, Guide Dogs of America.

More than 100 riders and guests took part in event festivities held at The Crash Bar in Haverlock, NC. The storied watering hole is owned by Local 2297 member Peggy Sidley, and is run by retired Shop Steward Frank Ercolanese.

Members of Local 2297 in Havelock, NC recently presented Guide Dog President Jay Borman with a check for $10,000, which was raised over the last two years from donations and various fundraisers.

IAM Mourns Organizer David Leibeck

The Southern Territory regrets to announce the untimely death of District Lodge 166 Organizer David Leibeck, 46, who died suddenly on Friday, July 2, 2004.

Leibeck, a plumber/pipefitter for Pratt & Whitney, was a 25-year member of Local Lodge 971, District Lodge 166. He became the District Lodge 166 Organizer 4 years ago.

"David had a way with people, getting to know someone right away," said Southern Territory GVP Bob Martinez. "He loved people, and it made him a great organizer. He knew what he was doing made a difference in people's lives.  He was a person of perseverance, dedication and commitment. I will miss him, and I know his friends, family, and fellow unionists will miss him. He was a great Trade Unionist."

Click here for more information about funeral services for David Leibeck.

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