Labor unions are trendy right now. And I am not going to address the topic of the Employee Free Choice Act, which is the real headline grabber these days.
They are all over the media:
- helping Barack Obama get elected President
- trying to influence the Georgia runoff election to help achieve 60 Senate seats for the Democrats
- walking picket lines at Boeing
- re-opening a national agreement to discuss concessions needed help keep a huge trucking/logistics company afloat
- Getting ready for a union certification election at the Smithfield Foods plant in Tarheel, North Carolina on December 10th.
- Testifying in Washington trying to help secure a bridge loan for their automotive partners
- Less enthusiastically, granting economic concessions to keep the Big 3 afloat:
At a news conference in Detroit, the U.A.W.’s president, Ron Gettelfinger, said that his members were willing to sacrifice job security provisions and financing for retiree health care to keep the two most troubled car companies of the Big Three, General Motors and Chrysler, out of bankruptcy. "Concessions, I used to cringe at that word,” Mr. Gettelfinger said. “But now, why hide it? That’s what we did.”
Workers also protested at the Chicago offices of Bank of America, which closed the line of credit that had been keeping Republic open.
The workers say the company is cheating them out of paid vacation time, insurance benefits and severance they are due under the law. The business reportedly told the workers Tuesday it was shutting its doors because Bank of America cut off the company's line of credit. Dozens of the ex-employees began occupying the factory Friday.How is the relationship with YOUR union?
"The situation is just outrageous," union representative Leah Fried said. "It's shameful. Bank of America got $25 billion in bailout money."
"And then on top of it," she added, "they don't want to authorize the company to pay peoples' vacation and severance they're owed under law? I mean, these are just what they're owed under law. We're not asking for anything extra."