Feb 13, 2014
*New Jersey Child Care Providers Ratify New Contract*
|Home child care workers in New Jersey ratify new contract with CWA Local 1037 and AFSME.|
Home child care providers in New Jersey, represented by the Child Care Workers Union, a partnership between CWA local 1037 and AFSCME, ratified a new contract this week, following tough negotiations.
Home child care providers escalated their grassroots power to win a cost of living increase, and successfully negotiated gains in other areas. Driven in large part by the Child Care Provider Bill of Rights developed by providers, the new contract compensates providers for mandatory trainings, defines an eight-hour day as a legal day's work and provides additional pay for providers caring for children with special needs. The contract covers more than 2,000 workers.
"We worked hard at the negotiating table to make sure providers caring for children with special needs were properly compensated for the important work they do," said Ken McNamara, president of CWA Local 1037. "We're most proud that now providers can use their union contract and the dispute resolution procedure to advocate for the children in their care. The contract broadly defines special needs to include factors such as poverty."
CWA Local 1037 partnered with NJ Communities United to work with child care providers to increase the grassroots organizing work needed to negotiate a strong second contract.
Shanita Hargrove, a child care provider in Newark, said, "We knocked on doors in counties across the state. We engaged the working parents we provide services for. We circulated a petition of support that generated more than 500 signatures. We packed buses filled with supporters to attend rallies in Trenton. We built a real movement. But this is just the beginning of what we can accomplish together moving forward."
*AFA-CWA Mitigates Involuntary Furloughs at United Airlines*
AFA-CWA announced an agreement with United Airlines management on Friday that averts involuntary furloughs at the world's leading airline through improved voluntary options. The mutual agreement between AFA-CWA and management also provides employment for Flight Attendants originally slated to lose their jobs by offering an enhanced crossover agreement to pre-merger Continental Airlines.
"Through collaborative efforts, AFA-CWA was able to engage management in meaningful discussions on how to ensure that no Flight Attendant is forced out on the street without a paycheck. By focusing on feasible, timely solutions, AFA-CWA was able to negotiate continued options for all Flight Attendants while recognizing the value and seniority of those affected," said Veda Shook, AFA-CWA International President.
AFA-CWA represents more than 25,000 Flight Attendants at United.
*Fed Up and Pumped Up: Rallying For Fairness in Manchester*
|Above is TNG-CWA Local 3117 President Norm Welsch leading about 60 TNG mebers and supporters in fair contract demonstration. Below, picketers protest outside the newspaper's annual sports banquet at the Radisson Center.|
Manchester Newspaper Guild members and allies turned out in force Sunday morning to show Union Leader Publisher Joe McQuaid that his callous contract "final offer" is beneath contempt.
About 60 picketers, 40 of them Guild members, marched and leafleted outside the newspaper's annual sports banquet at the Radisson Center of New Hampshire in downtown Manchester.
"It was awesome," said Norm Welsh, president of the local. "I'm not sure we've ever had a better turnout, even when we had twice the membership. We know we got the publisher's attention because he detoured on his way to the event to come over to our group. He talked to several members and their families. My guess is he was trying to see if the group was members or 'outsiders.' I think he was shocked at the number of our people and who they were. Lots of folks whom I doubt he expected to ever see on a picket line."
He said members were grateful to be joined by so many allies, including Mark MacKenzie, president of the state AFL-CIO, state Rep. Tim Smith (D-Manchester), and supporters from the IBEW, AFT and the Postal Workers.
The Manchester Guild has called the Union Leader's final offer "the worst contract proposal ever seen." In addition to steep benefit cuts, getting rid of job security language and changes that would badly weaken the union, the publisher wants an 18 percent retroactive pay cut.
The local is in the middle of a 10-day byline strike by reporters and photographers to help draw the public's attention to the company's ruthless demands.