IAM Supports Striking
The IAM represents more than 70,000 members in California, 35,500 members in Missouri and nearly 25,000 members in Ohio.
“I want members of the Machinists Union to drive right on by Safeway and Kroger,” said Buffenbarger. “Not just in Southern California, but everywhere that store owners are using this strike and lockout to squeeze more than a billion dollars in benefits out of their employees.”
Buffenbarger spoke alongside AFL-CIO President John Sweeney and UFCW President Doug Dority, Andrew Stern, president of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) and Kim Gandy, president of the National Organization for Women.
“These companies don’t care about competition from Wal-Mart and they don’t really care about health care for their employees,” said Buffenbarger. “This lock out is really over wealth care costs – the cost of increasing the price to earning ratio of Kroger and Safeway stock.”
Combined profits at
Von’s (Safeway), Ralph’s (Kroger) and Albertson’s are 91 percent higher
than four years ago and corporate profits have risen ten times faster than
the employers’ contribution for worker health benefits since 1993. Safeway
CEO Steve Burd, widely seen as the driving force behind the lockout, said
he views the strike as “an investment in our future.”
IAM Local 1746 Thumps
IAM member Paul Longo crossed an IAM picket line and returned to his job at a Pratt & Whitney facility during a strike in late 2001, Stone explained. When the union fined Longo, the Right-to-Work (for less) legal crew rushed to his defense and filed NLRB charges against the IAM. The NLRB’s regional office dismissed those charges and the RTW appealed to the entire Board.
They lost again. The full Board dismissed the claims. The state’s small claims court ordered Longo to pay $900 in damages to Local 1746, as well as an additional $35 in court costs, Stone said.
“We had more than
5,000 IAM members on strike for fairness,” Stone said.” Only a handful
crossed the lines. Our members know the meaning of solidarity.”
US Airways Appeals
District Court Ruling
"US Airways should be
working with the IAM-represented Mechanic and Related employees to
expedite the performance of heavy maintenance checks on the Airbus
aircraft," said GVP Robert Roach, Jr. in a letter to US Airways CEO David
Siegel. "I urge you to stop this unnecessary and frivolous litigation and
to move forward with the business of running a successful US Airways and
rallying your employees, our members, to accomplish this goal." The full
letter to Siegel is available at:
IAM Sets Per Cap Rates
The amount is based on information provided from local lodges that is used to calculate annual weighted average hourly earnings as of August 31. 2003.
Based on information
submitted by 883 local lodges, the Grand Lodge monthly per capita tax for
2004 will be $20.00. The IAM Constitution mandates that the minimum per
capita tax for district lodges shall be equal to forty percent (40%) of
the Grand Lodge per capita tax rounded to the nearest five cents.
Therefore, based on the 2004 Grand Lodge per capita tax of $20.00, the
minimum District Lodge per capita tax for 2004 will be $8.00.
African Americans Hold
While all candidates have expressed support for affirmative action, the NAACP has voiced frustration with the candidate's failure to address specific issues facing African-Americans, including deteriorating urban schools and inner city joblessness
The NAACP recently registered 471,459 new voters in 21 states, however, the tendency of African-Americans to vote for Democratic candidates may be changing. Many voters in the Black Community are tired, in the words of Rev. Al Sharpton, of being treated like "the mistress of the Democratic Party." In 2002, only 63 percent of African-Americans identified themselves as Democrats, down from 74 percent in 2000, according to the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies.
Candidates will likely gear up their appeals to Black voters
as key primaries in
southern states draw closer.
South Carolina, where half of the voters are expected to be
African-American, could be a critical turning point for the field of nine
Wage Means Meager Moolah
Congress would have to
pass legislation lifting the minimum to $7.40 an hour to restore it to its
1979 level, EPI found.
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