UE NEWS Updates

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UE Leader Urges Repeal Of Taft-Hartley Act

September 5, 2002

Bruce J. Klipple, UE General Secretary-Treasurer, joined with Ralph Nader and others in calling for repeal of the Taft-Hartley Act "as one important step in restoring workers’ right to organize into unions and in revitalizing American democracy."

In a letter released on Labor Day, Klipple and other labor leaders pointed out that 2002 marks the 55th anniversary of the labor law which dramatically curtailed rights gained by organized workers.

"The Act

"Save Manufacturing Jobs," UE Members Tell Wisconsin Governor

May 21, 2002

With a large state budget deficit and political scandals compromising both parties, the Wisconsin Capitol is not a place most state legislators would like to be these days.

On April 30, the Capitol became even more interesting as UE members came to town to demand action to save manufacturing jobs.

Those attending the fourth annual Wisconsin UE Political Action Day met with Gov. Scott McCallum and with at least one of their lawmakers.

James Kane, Retired UE President, Dies at 78

April 3, 2002

In Memoriam ...

James M. Kane, who served as president of UE during the Reagan years, died April 1 at age 78. A militant leader of Vermont machine workers, Kane was also president of UE’s northeastern region for many years.

Despite many years in union office, Kane had difficulty with the notion of being a "professional" labor leader. "It’s hard for me to get over the idea that I’m a worker," he told a reporter in 1981.

UE Members at Graham Packaging Still Don't Pay for Health Insurance!

March 28, 2002

The UE Local 1421 members at Graham Packaging take satisfaction from knowing that under the terms of their new agreement health insurance will continue to be a company-paid benefit – without a cent coming out of their pockets towards the cost of the premium.

Also, the contract sets doctor-visit co-payments at $5, so that the cost to Graham workers can’t be raised by health care providers.

Negotiations took five days, concluding March 1. UE members ratified the contract on March 6.

Local 264 Meets Goals In EIS Bargaining

March 12, 2002

As EIS Wire and Cable emerged from three years of bankruptcy under new ownership, the members of amalgamated UE Local 264 employed at the South Hadley plant faced tough challenges. The venture capitalist group that bought EIS recognized the union but not the contract.

UE members entered negotiations with three goals: get as much money up front as possible; because ground had been lost in previous negotiations, restore as much contract language as possible; get health insurance costs under some control. All three goals were met.

University of Vermont Shuttle Drivers Will Keep Their Jobs

February 22, 2002

The University of Vermont shuttle service will remain in-house, saving the jobs of shuttle drivers represented by UE Local 267. The university administration informed the union of its decision on Feb. 15.

The UE local and students had launched a campaign that demonstrated wide campus and community support for the drivers. More than 1,100 students, staff, faculty and community members signed a petition supporting retention of the shuttle service.

The administration concluded that the shuttle service provided by UE members was the best product for the best price.

Attack on Brazilian Federation Condemned by UE President

February 14, 2002

UE Genl. Pres. John Hovis has called on Brazilian authorities to thoroughly investigate the burglary of the offices of the Central Unica dos Trabalhadores (CUT), Brazil’s largest labor federation. The break-in – by men wearing police uniforms – occurred hours following approval of a national strike to protest regressive labor legislation. This raid also follows a series of assassinations of labor movement leaders.

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