From the Desk of the President (February, 2016)
Moore, Nominations Chair, will take nominations for open Executive Board officer
and Trustee position seats and Minneapolis & St Paul Regional Labor
Federation delegates at both the February 3rd and March 2nd General Assembly
meetings. You should have received your notice of the open seats via US mail on
or near January 19th. If interested in putting your name forward for any of the
open seats, please plan to attend the meetings or contact Vicki via email at
firstname.lastname@example.org or her phone at 612-348-6051. Both meetings are held
in Room 110 of the Health Services Building, 525 Portland Ave (corner of 6th St
and Portland Ave) at 5:30 PM.
Nellie Stone Johnson Scholarship Dinner is held Thurs-day, March 31, 2016 at the
Prom Center in Oakdale. Local 34 has moved to purchase a table for eight to
support the scholar-ship event and to send eight of our members to the event.
The election for that event will be held at the March 3nd General Assembly.
is that time of the year for your local political caucus. Locals 34, 552 and
2822 will hold a phone bank at the Minneapolis Labor Center at 5:30 PM on
February 9th. The purpose of the phone bank will be to encourage members to
attend their precinct caucus. By attending your precinct caucus, you are
participating in the political process from the ground level. You can bring
resolutions to be adopted by the caucus to be included in the platform of your
party of choice. In previous years, we have asked members to bring resolutions
to support our pensions, support funding for better transportation, etc.
Minnesotans have a history of good turn-out which indicates our dedication to
being part of the process. This year the precinct caucuses will be held on
Tues-day, March 1st.
have several job duty changes for our executive Board officers. Laura Ross,
Andrea Lazo-Rice and Jacqueline Poole have been designated as the point people
for Social Worker issues and concerns. If you are in a Social Work job class,
they are the officers to contact.
Kenneth W. Garnier, Media Committee Chair, will serve as the acting newsletter editor until we find someone to fill that spot. Please send any articles, comments, etc., to Kenneth.
If you have not heard anything about the
Friedrichs Supreme Court case, it would be because you have not watched the news
or read a newspaper in the past month. In my humble opinion, after reading as
much as I could about this lawsuit over the past six months, it seems to me that
the premise of this case boils down to this: Rebecca Friedrichs feels that that
all of the collective bargaining that her union does has a political basis as it
implicates and directs public policy so all dues money is spent on political
actions, therefore she feels she should not have to pay anything to her union as
she does not agree with the direction her union took on an issue.
Again, in my humble opinion, the reality
is that public policy determines our work and the funding for that work. Yes we,
as individuals, do support candidates from whatever political party we choose
and, yes, we ask them to support issues important to us. And yes we, as engaged
and concerned citizens, ask that our respective school, city, state and federal
representatives support funding for the programs and services we provide in
order for us to better provide those programs and services to our communities.
But our collective bargaining process does not involve politics. It is the nuts
& bolts of our ability to improve our working conditions, our benefits and
our wages. We have the right to achieve those goals and it is only by having the
might (that would be all of us) of our collective union that we are able to do
The outcome of the Supreme Court case
will be interesting but it will not stop us from standing strong, from standing
with each other, from being concerned about the work that we do and our
community we serve.