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International Union, United Automobile, Aerospace and Agricultural Implement Workers of America
Updated: 1 min 27 sec ago

Have a Black Lake Wedding

6 hours 1 min ago
Non-Members Struck by our Beauty Up North

After they became engaged, Karl Moses and his fiancée, Kiera, visited the Walter and May Reuther UAW Family Education Center to consider it for the location of their September 2017 wedding.

As soon as they entered the grounds, Kiera was struck with this thought:

“This is it.”

Black Lake would be the place where they would begin their lives together as husband and wife. More and more non-UAW members are discovering Black Lake as an exceptional place to host their wedding, company function, family reunion or other event.

“They made us feel like part of the family,” Karl Moses said. “It’s an amazing gem that you guys have. We plan on taking the whole family back.”

Shiny and Bobby Abraham tied the knot on the shores of Black Lake in the
summer. PHOTO COURTESY OF SHINY AND BOBBY ABRAHAM.

The 200-plus family and guests of the Macomb County, Michigan, couple had at Black Lake Labor Day weekend came away impressed, too, he added. From the natural splendor of the grounds, to the hospitality shown by the staff, the willingness to work out last-minute changes and challenges by “every single staff member,” Moses said Black Lake made their wedding fantastic. The couple had originally intended to spend a couple days after the wedding on a “mini-honeymoon” in Traverse City, Michigan, about an hour west.

But after five days at Black Lake, it wasn’t necessary.

“We just felt like there was no other place we wanted to spend a few days,” Moses said. “We couldn’t imagine going anywhere else.”

Moses said Kiera always dreamed of “getting married in a forest, surrounded by nature.” The logistics of such a wedding were difficult; they looked at some ski lodges and other places, but most were too close to commercial centers and not equipped to handle a wedding.

“We needed something less specialized and challenging to find,” Moses, a commercial photographer, said.

Then, as luck would have it, Moses had an assignment on a book detailing Michigan architectural gems. Black Lake was on the list of the places he was to be flown by helicopter over to photograph. He did a little bit of investigating with Black Lake, and discovered Black Lake indeed would host a private function like a wedding.

“When she said the word ‘wedding,’ I was like, Wow, I’ve found the place,’’ he said.

They were married the Saturday before Labor Day close to the monuments area adjacent to the Japanese Bridge, which is behind the main lodge. It was logistically chal-lenging because they had to get the 200 guests in a tight area, but the Black Lake staff pulled it off. And they could get their guests who needed help getting to the area there by use of one of the shuttles.

“We were thoroughly impressed by the little details they paid attention to,” he said.

Shiny and Bobby Abraham had their wedding at Black Lake on July 15. They heard about Black Lake from their parents. Bobby’s mother, Mary, is a retired member of Local 5960, and worked in quality control at the General Motors Lake Orion plant. Shiny’s father, Moody, was a group leader at the GM Service and Parts Operation in Pontiac and a member of Local 653.

“After a visit there, we knew that’s where we wanted to get married,” Shiny Abraham said. “We actually visited in January, in the middle of winter, and even then the loca-tion was beyond spectacular.”

The Clarkston, Michigan, couple was married outside the Old Lodge and had their reception at the dining hall.

“We didn’t need to add many decorations due to the stunning architecture and views,” she said. “Most of our guests were from the Metro Detroit area, so it was really awesome for our friends and family to have a getaway at Black Lake. The staff at Black Lake made our event such a success and were so accommodating to our party of nearly 300. On the day, the weather was perfect, we were surrounded by friends and family, and couldn’t have asked for anything more.”

Book your wedding today

The post Have a Black Lake Wedding appeared first on UAW.

Categories: News By Union

Legislative Update – The Fight for Working Families Continues

Fri, 10/20/2017 - 05:00

Your Calls Made a Difference in Effort to Save the ACA

The first nine months of the Trump administration and the 115th Congress have been a roller coaster for working families. With conservatives in firm control, we have had notable setbacks with harmful long-term consequences. Justice Neil Gorsuch was confirmed, despite our opposition, to a lifetime appointment to the Supreme Court, giving the right wing a 5-to-4 majority. Throughout his career, Justice Gorsuch consistently ruled in favor of the well-connected. He sided with employers who cheated their employees out of wages and with companies that were penalized for unsafe working conditions that, in one case, led to a death.

In another setback, workplace safety standards were gutted as companies can now get away with keeping their records of accidents and fatalities for a mere six months instead of five years. It will now be harder to prevent injuries and keep a safe workplace as some dangers go undetected.

Fortunately, legislation to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and gut Medicaid failed in the Senate after passing the House of Representatives in May. The House bill passed despite all Democrats and 20 Republicans voting against it. That bill would make us pay more for less coverage to give billions in tax breaks to corporations and millionaires. According to nonpartisan experts, it would have forced 22 million Americans to lose health care coverage and caused premiums to rise by 20 percent.

Thankfully, the Senate defeated it by one vote in July as millions spoke out against it. We strongly opposed it, with tens of thousands of UAW members and retirees telling their members of Congress to reject the bill. Governors from both parties and a wide range of groups including AARP, the American Cancer Society and several organizations representing doctors and hospitals were against it. All 48 Democrats and three Republicans voted no.

When Congress returned in September, there was yet another attempt to drastically cut health care coverage and undermine hard-fought victories made over the past several decades. But that attempt failed in late September as at least three GOP senators said they would vote against it, and all Democrats held firm in their opposition. The administration has also held back on making payments to insurers that allow people to have affordable coverage. They have little interest in enforcing the law. In fact, they have gone out of their way to sabotage it by making it harder to enroll and receive affordable care.

Medicaid and Medicare will remain prime targets for radical cuts by the far right, which does not believe in ensuring that all people have affordable, comprehensive health care. Medicaid matters to us all because it is the single largest payer for nursing home and long-term care. It covers nearly 70 million Americans, including 33 million children. Forty percent of veterans and their families solely rely on it for health care and could lose coverage.

House Speaker Paul Ryan has put forward proposals to cut Medicare benefits and raise the eligibility age from 65 to 67. These bad ideas would harm working families with coverage and lead to seniors not receiving care when they need it the most.

The debate over health care will continue as Congress votes on a 2018 budget and must pass legislation to keep the government running, pay our debts, and continue the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). CHIP provides medical coverage for people under age 19 whose parents earn too much income to qualify for Medicaid but not enough to pay for private coverage. Millions of children could lose health care coverage if the program isn’t extended this fall.

The right wing is also planning on passing trillions in tax cuts with roughly half going to the top 1 percent, according to draft plans put forward by President Trump and the Republicans in Congress. The top 0.1 percent (whose annual incomes exceed $3.8 million) would get tax cuts totaling more than $800,000 a year on average. The right wing’s tax plan would also make it easier for corporations to keep overseas profits, giving corporations even more tax incentives to offshore our jobs.

These proposed tax cuts for the rich impact all of us because the result is a budget shortfall that would likely be filled by spending cuts that hurt our most vulnerable citizens, working families and retirees. According to the Tax Policy Center, when expected cuts in programs are accounted for at least 75 percent of households would be net losers.

While the future is unknown, one thing remains clear: We must continue to raise our voices and demand that politicians in Washington vote for policies that are good for all of us and not just the most powerful.

Source: UAW Legislative Department

 

Photo by Calleamanecer (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

The post Legislative Update – The Fight for Working Families Continues appeared first on UAW.

Categories: News By Union

UAW Members at Baltimore Horseshoe Casino Ratify First-Ever Contract

Thu, 10/19/2017 - 11:05

UAW table games, poker dealers and dual-rate dealers at the Horseshoe Casino in Baltimore have ratified their first-ever contract, winning significant wage increases and greatly improving their benefits, job security and health and safety.

The UAW, which represents more than 13,000 gaming workers in nine states, is the largest member of a coalition of five unions that bargained with Caesars Entertainment Corporation, the casino’s owners.

“We’ve improved our working conditions across the board with this contract,” said Aaron Carter, bargaining committee chairman of UAW Local 17. “This contract will help our members to have jobs that can support a family. They deserve no less.”

The 570 workers represented by the UAW won raises that brings pay up to $6.30 per hour, as well as raises retroactive to 2015. Table games dealers may also receive an additional $1.75 an hour based on their knowledge of games. The bargaining committee also won protection for dealers’ tips, also known as “tokes” in the gaming industry, as well as contractual changes that will improve the toke rate in table games. Health care was improved with no deductibles and a small co-pay for prescription medications. Workers also won a formal grievance procedure.

The agreement, which went into effect earlier this month, is the byproduct of a long campaign spearheaded by the UAW and other groups to expand gaming in Maryland and bring a casino to downtown Baltimore. In 2012, voters approved Question 7, that led to the opening of the Horseshoe in 2014. Table games and poker room workers voted to join the UAW in 2015.

“We knew about the UAW’s long history of success in representing gaming workers, so it was a natural fit for Horseshoe dealers and dual rates,” Carter said.

“This agreement greatly benefits our members and their families, the casino, and the greater Baltimore area.” said Ray Curry, director of UAW Region 8, which includes Maryland. “We commend the members of the UAW bargaining committee at the Horseshoe, which worked tirelessly for more than a year on this agreement.”

The UAW represents gaming workers in Connecticut, Florida, Indiana, Maryland, Michigan, Nevada, New Jersey, Ohio and Rhode Island.

The post UAW Members at Baltimore Horseshoe Casino Ratify First-Ever Contract appeared first on UAW.

Categories: News By Union

AMMO – It’s a Fact: Economic Policy Institute Study Shows Unions Give Working People the Power to Make Changes

Thu, 10/19/2017 - 05:00

It’s easy for some people to forget the value of a union card. There’s a persistent anti-union campaign being run by right-wing forces that seeks to destroy the labor movement for their own gain. Some will even say that unions “are not necessary” in this day and age. But we know better. Your union card means much more than better pay, benefits and working conditions. It means you have the right to negotiate the terms of your employment. It means you cannot be fired for unjustified reasons. It means you have the right to a safe and healthy workplace. And so much more.

It’s power that cannot be gained by standing up alone. Together, we can make a difference at our workplace. If banding together wasn’t successful, pro-business groups like the U.S. Chamber of Commerce or the Business Roundtable wouldn’t do it. Even as they fight your right to freely associate with your co-workers, they know they are stronger together. They just don’t want the average American to have that kind of power.

The Economic Policy Institute (EPI), a Washington-based think tank that seeks to include low-and middle-income Americans in economic policy discussions, recently studied the ways unions help working people. Here’s a look at their findings.

Union Workers are Diverse and Educated

According to EPI’s research — and what we know about our UAW membership — unions cover just about every industry and workplace. As of 2016, 10.6 million (65.4 percent) of the 16.3 million workers covered under a union contract are women and/or people of color.

• Almost half of all union workers are women (46.3 percent).

• More than a third are African-American, Hispanic, Asian or otherwise not Caucasian.

• African-American workers are most likely to be represented by unions. About 14.5 of African-American workers age 18 to 64 are covered by a collective bargaining agreement (CBA). Just 12.5 percent of Caucasian workers and 10.1 percent of Hispanic workers are covered by a CBA.

• More than half of all union members (54.5 percent) have an associate degree or more education; two out of five have a bachelor’s degree or better.

Unions Strengthen Democracy

Stronger together isn’t just a slogan. Unions provide the average working person the opportunity to have their voices heard just like the CEO. Having our collective voice heard in policy debates strengthens democracy by adding more perspectives in policy debates.

Think about some of the laws that unions have successfully advocated for:

  • Child labor.
  • Anti-discrimination.
  • Health and safety.
  • 40-hour work week.
  • Workers Compensation.
  • Federal minimum wage.

And many more — but these can all be taken away by an act of Congress and/or the stroke of the president’s pen. As union power decreases, so does the ability to protect these crucial laws, let alone advocate for more advances for workers.

Diversity and education are important to unions.

Union Membership Rate and the Share of Income going to the middle 60% of families, 1917-2013 Unions are Essential to all Workers’ Economic Well-Being

When unions are strong, middle-class working people see economic progress. EPI’s research shows what happens when union density drops: Those at the top mostly benefit — and greatly. For the average worker, hourly pay growth has been sluggish for decades. There’s a correlation between those sluggish wages and union density and it ain’t pretty.

Union Membership and share of income going to the top 10%, 1917-2015 Unions Raise the Wages for Both Union Workers and Nonunion Workers

You’ve probably heard something like this from a nonunion worker. “I don’t need a union. I make decent wages and benefits and we have good health and safety programs.”

In auto, some nonunion workers do make a decent wage and have health and safety programs. But does anyone really believe without the influence the UAW has on their wages in the industry that these workers would be getting as much as they do? Corporations will always seek to provide the minimum compensation they can get away with, as well as the minimum in health and safety. Let’s hope our nonunion autoworker friend never has to find out what his job is like without the UAW and other unions, because collective bargaining means:

  • Union workers earn more. According to EPI, a worker covered by a union contract earned 13.2 percent more in wages than a peer with a similar education, occupation and experience in a nonunion workplace. And when unions had more density, this pay boost was even greater.
  • Weekly wages of nonunion men in the private sector would be 5 percent higher ($2,704 more annually) had union density remained at 1979 levels. For nonunion men in the private sector without a college education, the figure is 8 percent higher or $3,016 annually, according to EPI.
  • Unions raise pay because they enforce labor standards, like fighting wage theft. In a union, you are half as likely to be a victim of minimum wage violations, which cost workers over $15 billion a year and keep many people in poverty.
Women and Minorities Fare Better

Unions add transparency to pay scales so everyone knows what all workers earn. This ensures that all workers are paid the same, regardless of race or gender. Unions also establish clearer terms for internal processes so that raises and promotions are awarded fairly. If not, there’s a grievance process where a worker can challenge possible discrimination.

  • Women union members earn 9.2 more when compared with nonunion women with similar characteristics.
  • Unions narrow racial wage gaps. Black workers are more likely to be in a union than their white counterparts. They get a bigger pay boost from being in a union, which is important because the decline in wage growth has hit black workers harder than white workers.
Unions Provide Stronger Health and Safety

The UAW has always been at the forefront of the battle for safe workplaces. That’s important because government health and safety standards are being weakened. If you are in a union, you generally have the right to involve a union representative in injury and fatality investigations. More important, unions like the UAW take a pro-active approach to health and safety with the goal of preventing ALL workplace health and safety accidents and incidents. Health and safety education actually happens. “Near misses” get investigated and corrected. Tragedies like the one in the Upper Big Branch Mine in West Virginia, where 29 miners died in 2010 after an explosion, might have been prevented. Sixty-five percent of the miners had signed union cards but Massey Energy CEO Don Blankenship delayed the election for months and intimidated the workforce by threatening to close the mine if they organized.

  • More than 4,800 American workers are killed on the job every year.
  • Another 50,000 to 60,000 die from occupational diseases each year.
  • Workplace injuries and illnesses exceed 7 million cases per year.
Photo by Denn Pietro Retirements are More Secure

The switch from a defined benefit pension to a defined contribution plan such as a 401(k) plan forces workers to bear more investment risk. This shift has also made wage inequality worse because many workers live paycheck to paycheck, unable to save anything for retirement. Nearly half of all families headed by a working-age adult have zero retirement savings. But union workers fare better, whether they have a defined benefit or a defined contribution plan. There are union contracts with both.

  • 90 percent of union workers participate in a retirement plan, compared with 75 percent for nonunion workers.
  • 74 percent of union workers who have pensions participate in a traditional defined benefit pension, compared with 15 percent of nonunion workers.
  • Union employers are 22 percent more likely to offer an employer-provided pension plan and, on average, spend 56 percent more on retirement for their employees than nonunion employers.
Labor Lifts All of Us

Better wages, health care, retirement security, vacations and paid time off, due process, control over scheduling, overtime rules, diversity and many other advantages come from that union card. These are the things we stand to lose unless ALL union members are willing to do the hard work of ensuring that our lawmakers hear us loudly and clearly on what is at stake.

The post AMMO – It’s a Fact: Economic Policy Institute Study Shows Unions Give Working People the Power to Make Changes appeared first on UAW.

Categories: News By Union

EPI: How today’s unions help working people

Wed, 10/18/2017 - 05:00

Today is #EndPoverty day. One of the best ways to eliminate poverty is making sure all workers are unionized. The facts show that unions consistently bring down poverty rates. Decreased poverty raises wages for all, including minorities and women who are most affected by low wages.

This study from the Economic Policy Institute has more >>>

 

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Categories: News By Union

Fuyao workers file for union election with National Labor Relations Board

Tue, 10/17/2017 - 05:00

Workers are fighting for fair polices, equal treatment and workplace safety

MORAINE, Ohio — Citing a pattern of unsafe workplace conditions, arbitrary policies and unfair and unequal treatment on the job, employees at Fuyao Glass America Inc. today filed a request with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) for a representation election at the Ohio plant.

Fuyao employees, whose worries about workplace safety have led to complaints and fines against Fuyao by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), say they now are ready for a voice in their workplace and have filed to form their own union with legal and technical assistance from the UAW.

“It has been hard because we are all working so hard for the company,” said Fuyao worker Jeremy Grant, who works in Pre- Process ARG. “In return, we come to work facing constantly changing rules, communication barriers with our supervisors and no way to be heard about changes that will help us all win,” Grant said.

“When I heard about the tax breaks Fuyao received for opening this plant, I thought that would be great for the community, and I wanted to be part of that,” said Teodore Searcy, who works the third shift in the Tempering OEM Department. “Now my concern is that this company can’t help the community if it can’t help its workers and that jeopardizes me, my family and everyone who is depending on Fuyao to be a good citizen,” said Searcy.

Since late 2015, complaints about conditions at the plant have led workers to pursue forming their own union. They are fighting for continued improvements to health and safety; fair policies that apply equally to everyone; fair wages that recognize worker’s roles in the company’s success; and a reduction in the high turnover rate.

“It’s been like a revolving door here,” said Fuyao worker Roberto Martinez. “There is a very high turnover rate here. Folks are hired and then, poof, they’re gone. It happens over and over again. It can’t be good for the community and the economy when a company can’t retain a stable workforce,” said Martinez, who works in the company’s Tempering Assembly OEM Department.

“Fuyao employees have expressed over and over that they chose Fuyao because they wanted job security. Community leaders have told us that their hopes are for Fuyao to bring stability to the Dayton community,” said UAW Region 2B Director Rich Rankin. “We all want the company to be successful and want that measure to include quality, stable jobs so that everyone wins.”

More information about Fuyao workers and their fight for a fair workplace can be found at fuyaoforward.org.

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Categories: News By Union