January 2019 Business Agents' Report

February is Black History Month: Union Rights and Civil Rights Link

The following is a piece on this relationship from the IBT:

Since 1903, the Teamsters Union has been at the forefront of the struggle for workers’ rights in North America. During Black History Month, Teamsters honor the contributions of African-Americans in our nation’s history and their important place in the union today.

Early on in the union’s history, Teamsters advocated for “no color lines” within the labor movement and would not hold with the practice of separate unions for black members. Women and minorities were part of the membership from the beginning, with black Teamsters attending at the founding convention. Teamster contracts included provisions for equal pay as early as 1917. That year, the union won a clause in a contract for women laundry workers that employees would be paid the same regardless of race.

Over the years, the Teamsters Union has been privileged to both lead and support civil rights struggles that helped build the foundation of our great union and helped make North America a better place for all of us.

“Today’s Teamsters work in almost every imaginable occupation and hail from a multitude of backgrounds and ethnicities,” said Jim Hoffa, Teamsters General President. “While our heritage and tasks may differ, we share a common commitment to guaranteeing a safe and fair workplace, a secure retirement and a decent standard of living for ourselves, our families and our fellow workers.”

This Black History Month, be thankful for the contributions of those who have helped make our union what it is: a diverse, ever-growing organization that fights for justice, equality and fair treatment in the workplace.

2019 Scholarship Application Periods are now Open

It is that time of year again folks. The Teamsters Local 856/986 Scholarship Fund and the James R Hoffa Memorial Scholarship Fund will be accepting applications until March 31st.

If your son or daughter is a graduating high school senior with a GPA of 3.0 or better, who will be attending a college/university or vocational/trade School in the fall, then you want to apply for both scholarships.

You can find out more information by going to the TeamstersSFO website and clicking on the Scholarships & Discounts link under the Member Resources tab.

You can download the 856/986 Scholarship application directly from there or you can contact your Chief Steward or Shop Steward to get a copy.

All applicants for the James R. Hoffa Scholarship must submit applications online at the James R Hoffa Memorial Scholarship Fund website at www.jrhmsf.org. Please do not wait until the last minute as there is a verification of member ‘good standing’ with your Local that must take place before final approval of each online application. 

Kin Care Issues

As was mentioned in the SFO Grievance Committee letter to the membership dated January 7, 2019, United Airlines initiated several administrative changes to their Kin Care Policy, as of December 1, 2018, including a two-hour minimum usage provision as well as auto-designation of sick time taken for one’s self as Kin Care. Additionally, the Company indicated in their communication that any sick time taken to care for an ill qualifying family member on a trade day was ineligible for use as Kincare.

The union has taken several steps to protect your rights. First, there were two grievances filed with the company. The first deals with the issue of trade days and was filed to make certain that the Company is not trying to reinterpret the language in the CBA that allows a member to utilize the sick time, and hence Kin Care, for a Trade Day/Shift. The second grievance is against the two-hour minimum usage and auto-designation provisions of the new policy.

Additionally, the Union filed a complaint with the State of California Office of Labor Standards Enforcement on the basis that the company is violating the California Labor Code with these modifications of its policy.

We will be sure to keep you informed of any developments along both of these fronts moving forward. Thanks for your patience while we work to resolve these issues on your behalf. 

Pre-Retirement Seminar on Saturday, February 9th at Local 856

TeamstersSFO will host our annual Pre-Retirement Seminar this coming Saturday, February 9th, at Local 856. The address is 453 San Mateo Avenue in San Bruno. The event will be held from 9 a.m. until 12 noon. Light refreshments will be provided and there is plenty of convenient parking nearby.

Please note also that an updated Survivor Benefits Guide for 2019 has been posted on the TeamstersSFO website. You should read the guide beforehand so you can get any questions you have answered at the event.

We look forward to seeing you on Saturday! 

Grievance Update

There are eight grievances at the Arbitration (4th) Step of the grievance process. Of those, two are termination cases. One has been heard and is awaiting a decision and one is awaiting an arbitrator/date assignment. Of the other six arbitration cases, one has been heard (MealP-post DOR) and is awaiting the decision which was delayed by the arbitrator and is now expected by Mid-March. Two grievances are scheduled for February 20th in Miami (HRA/RHA cap for 2017) and April 4th in Chicago (SFOLX EFS Bypass). Two grievances are in a holding pattern, one pending discussions with the Company (PCL Closing Columns) and the other pending an arbitration decision for a related grievance (GSE Lead Calculation).  We are actively trying to schedule the remaining grievance (SFOMM EFS Bypass) with the Company at this time.

There are a total of twenty-four 3rd Step Grievances in the pipeline. The next SBA dates are March 26th and 27th. We anticipate presenting a total of six to eight grievances at the System Board. We will be entering into discussions this coming week with Labor Relations to determine which grievances, if any, are candidates for discussion/settlement after which we will select the cases for March dates. We will be sure to keep you posted, either through the next BA Report or through your Shop Stewards.

The remaining SBA dates at SFO for 2019 have been tentatively assigned and are as follows: May 14th and 15th; August 21st and 22nd; November 12th and 13th.

The End of an Era: Bruce Rollin Retires!

Top Row L to R: Mark DesAngles; Javier Lectora; Fred Wood
Bottom Row: Bruce Rollin and Debbie Crummey

Bruce started his career as a machinist in 1964 and spent nearly 54 years with United Airlines! He was a fixture in the metrology lab for many years where he was responsible for calibrating equipment used to make precision parts for the airline; a job that is instrumental in providing the airline with reliable components. Bruce was also awarded the Charles Taylor “Master Mechanic” Award in 2014, which recognizes a lifetime of accomplishments for senior aircraft technicians and is the highest honor that the FAA can bestow upon those in this field.

Just as important, Bruce was a true Union man at his core and served as a Shop Steward dating back as far as anyone can remember. He rarely missed a Craft Meeting and he was always game for a good union rally. His dedication to his Craft and to the Labor Movement will be greatly missed.

Thank you for your service, Brother Bruce! We wish you many happy years of joyful retirement!

Labor History for the Month of January

January 4, 1965: Eight thousand social workers represented by two different unions in New York City go on strike over workload and wages. Mayor Robert Wagner fired all of the strikers and threw nineteen leaders in jail for two weeks, but the workers won the strike within a month. Supported by organized labor, the civil rights movement, and a community coalition, it was the longest labor action by public employees in the history of New York City.

November 7, 1945: Machinists in Stamford, Connecticut, go on strike when the Yale and Towne lock company terminates its contractual obligations and withdraws recognition of their union. The company’s union-busting effort was met with a city-wide general strike on January 3 in which 10,000 people marched and rallied in support of the workers. By early April, the company conceded.

We must never forget!

Labor Quotes

In our glorious fight for civil rights, we must guard against being fooled by false slogans, as 'right-to-work.' It provides no 'rights' and no 'works.' Its purpose is to destroy labor unions and the freedom of collective bargaining... We demand this fraud be stopped - Martin Luther King, Jr.

Those who profess to favor freedom, and yet deprecate agitation, are men who want crops without plowing up the ground. They want rain without thunder and lightning - Frederick Douglass

Those who expect to reap the blessings of freedom must, like men, undergo the fatigue of supporting it -Thomas Paine

Our Commitment to Communication

The communication process is an extremely important part of what we do to represent our folks here at SFO and, as we have been outlining for quite some time, we have been blasting out the BA Report along with any other communication we get from the Airline Division or the International to anyone who registers at the TeamstersSFO website. We feel that it is essential for all of our members to be engaged and informed at all times. Therefore, we encourage all of you to spread the word to your fellow technicians to go to the TeamstersSFO website and click on the ‘email signup’ tab to get on the list.  

Additionally, the Chief Stewards hold weekly meetings with the Shop Stewards to pass on any important informational items that may come up during the month. It is crucial to our process that every work area on every shift have Shop Steward representation and that the Shop Steward give, at a minimum, weekly briefings to his/her crew so that all the information gets to our members and members have the opportunity to ask questions.

Most importantly, we urge you to also consider getting more involved. Every month, on the last Thursday, we hold Craft Meetings at Local 856. At these meetings, the membership hears reports from the Business Agents and other members of the SFO Committee on Grievances, Safety, Member Assistance, and the TSAP program. Additionally, all members have an opportunity to ask questions and to bring up topics for discussion. Check your IBT Bulletin Board for dates and times and make it a point to stop by whenever you can.

As always, stay informed!

In Solidarity

Mark DesAngles                    Javier Lectora
Business Agent                      Business Agent
Local 986                               Local 856