Business Manager’s Report June 2014

On Monday, May 19th, the New England Work and Family Committee Hosted their third health fair in Local 2323. Over the last decade many of these events have been hosted in our call centers, and the Union is very excited to have been successful in getting this negotiated benefit extended to the technicians who make up such a large part of our membership. Many vendors were on hand to give free screenings ranging from blood sugar and cholesterol levels to blood pressure and BMI readings. Verizon EAP was also present with many pamphlets that cover the wide array of issues that they are prepared to help our membership with. The Local was pleased to see so many members participate and believe that this was a great way to not only help our people get a quick “check-up” but also inform them about the many benefits that the Work and Family Committee have to offer, such as summer camp, daycare, and gym reimbursements that, again, are a negotiated benefit to us all. I would be remiss not to include our Locals own MAP program that has been an excellent source of help to so many members, and that if any member is in need of help they can contact the hall for information on a wide array of resources that are accessible to them.

As of Tuesday, May 27th, Verizon Services Corp has taken civil action against the T-6 Council of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers and Local 2322. A member of Local 2322 has brought charges against another member for going to management about a steward. This led to the steward getting suspended for 10 days for harassment in the workplace according to the Return to Work letter. Verizon Services Corp believes that we are interfering with their management rights clause and therefore has filed suit against us. Verizon is also pointing to a letter of agreement signed by the T-6 Chairman and the Business Manager of Local 2324 Brother John Rowley, which they believe, helps in the in their case.
The company has notified the Union that they are declaring a surplus under the provisions of Article G25 of our collective bargaining agreement. The company will offer the provisions of an Enhanced Income Protection Plan to regular employees in the surplus job titles at the work locations involved.

EIPP offers will be distributed to the affect employees by June 2. An employee’s election to accept the offer must be in writing and transmitted to the company within fifteen days from the date of the offer which is June 16th. The decision is irrevocable after such fifteen day period. The final date of employment in this case for those accepted volunteers will be June 28th.

The total surplus for the T-6 is 381 with 26 in Rhode Island including:
3 COT’s at 1 Greene St in the Rodriguez organization
5 OPT’s – 3 in Smithfield, 1 in Warwick, and 1 in Towerhill
18 SST’s – 6 in Smithfield, 7 in Warwick, 2 in Towerhill and 3 in Newport

On Monday, May 19th the IBEW and CWA met with Verizon management to discuss the call sharing numbers. It appears that the company is making progress in the routing of calls to our bargained for members prior to utilizing vendors. In March of 2013, we took 37% of the calls and in March of 2014 we took 56% of the calls and as of May 19th we were at 74% for the month. Our collective bargaining agreement states that we must take 60%.
We continue, in the SST job title, to have an ongoing problem with the DU schedule and vacation selection. Recently, management has given a hand-out to our SST’s regarding the V Force Administration Processes and Rules. There are many things in this hand-out that we don’t agree with and we are in the process of setting up a meeting to resolve these problems. Also, we have fielded numerous calls from members who are having difficulty in using their left-over days from 2013. This has prompted me to request a list of any and all members who carried over days, as well as, how many times they were denied the ability to use these days. It appears that the very basic concept of getting our entitled vacation and EWD days off is becoming extremely complex for no apparent reasons.

In the FSC, we continue to make progress in making the fiber center a better place to work. However, there is always work that can be done. The tremendous growth in the FSC is coming to a close, the last external class expected to start June 16th. Final head count in the FCSA title is expected to reach 316 members:
236 on the floor now
40 in training currently
40 more slated (20 – June 2nd & 20 – June 16th)

With the additional staffing, a new canvas of hours is expected to be conducted in the FSC sometime in June, with an effective date of July 8th. Management is currently looking at the possibility of having start times on the half hour increments (IE – 7:00, 7:30, 8:00, 8:30 etc.). Details are still being worked on with management and will be communicated to the members as they develop.
W@H Trial is set to end in July. Many questions from members currently assigned to this project center around what will take place at that time? The Union has asked management repeatedly about the viability of extending this program, and is currently waiting on the company for a reply and is prepared to meet with management once they’re prepared to discuss.
Monthly informational meetings continue to be held @ 234 Washington St for our members to attend. With half the membership now located at 234 Washington St.
and many new members it is critical that the Union have a strong presence and we reach these members.
On the Sales front, one of our Service Rep’s that was displaced from the LPC has been recalled. The Union was pleased to learn Michelle Belliard was recalled from the Taunton CSSC and will report to the Warwick LPC effective June 2.

In the MCO, we continue to wait for additional information regarding the move from Boston to Providence. We are also waiting for information surrounding the canvass of our members from COT’s to FNT’s. Verizon Labor Relations has notified me that they intend on moving the last portion of work out of the MCO to complete the regionalization of the HSI work in accordance with the Transfer of Jobs agreement.

The first semester of the Pathway to a College Degree is about to conclude. Local 2323 and Local 99 have opened up the program to other IBEW Locals who have members that live in Rhode Island but may work in Connecticut or Massachusetts. We also opened the degree program to all affiliated Locals of the AFL-CIO. Currently, we are in the process of gathering portfolios of our current students to determine the avenue each member will need to travel towards obtaining a degree.
While the Pathway to a College Degree program was established for our members to participate in college level courses classes and remove any anxiety or apprehension with applying to and attending a college, as well as, to utilize our Union Hall to its maximum capabilities. There is also a program called NACTEL, for our members who would like to further their education online. This program is set-up as a partnership with Verizon, AT&T, Frontier, the CWA and IBEW. NACTEL provides a path for our members to earn an Associates, Bachelors, and Master’s Degree as well as certificates in the Telecom field. For more information please contact the Union office or go to their website www.nactel.org.
The Unions primary job aside from organizing the unorganized is to elevate the standard of living for all working men and women. One of the many ways we attempt to do this, for our members, is through education. Every contract the Union fights for tuition assistance for our members in an attempt to help with the inflated cost of earning a college degree. Our current collective bargaining agreement provides up to $8000 a year in tuition assistance. Please take the opportunity to utilize your negotiated benefit, either through our Pathway to College Degree program, NACTEL, or any other avenue that works for you.

Business Manager’s Report February 2014

The IBEW and CWA met with the company yesterday to discuss the Call Sharing numbers for second half of 2013. The Call Sharing Agreement states if the aggregate regional call volume percentage is less than 59% during the last six months of 2013 there shall be no layoffs during the first six months of 2014 of New York/New England footprint Tech Support Center associates. The company has informed us that the aggregate number of calls for the second half was 55%. Therefore, our members who work in the FSC and EVRC will have job security for the first six months of 2014.
Verizon management has notified the System Council T-6 that they intend on putting cameras in the motor vehicles department. According to management their reason is due to a change in vendor, policy and overall shrinkage of inventory. This change in policy has increased the amount of supplies from 2.5 to 5.8 million dollars of inventory on hand. The T-6 has requested bargaining regarding the camera installation and at this point have met with Verizon once on January 29th. We have requested information from the company and are awaiting another meeting.
Verizon notified the union that they would be changing the long standing policy regarding the treatment of employees who lose their license while assigned in a job requiring a driver’s license. The Union has requested bargaining on this issue with the hopes of reaching an agreement that will protect our members who lose their license. We continue to negotiate this issue and as information becomes available we will put it on the tape, website and share it at the meetings.
Verizon has also notified the Union that they plan on recording the calls made in and out of the Dispatch centers. The T-6 has requested bargaining on this issue and has had a series of meetings to date with the hope of reaching an agreement. If an agreement is reached on the recording of calls, our intent is to have the language cover all call centers in the Plant section of the collective bargaining agreement.

The negotiated CPS award will be paid to you in your regular paycheck/direct deposit on March 14.
The Solidarity Committee has put together an IBEW Local 2323, family, and friends night with the Providence Bruins on April 6th at 3:05 p.m. Tickets are $17 each please contact Ray Silvestri (401)413-8937 the deadline for tickets will be March 6th.

The political season has begun and we are looking for our members to get actively involved politically. If you are interested in getting involved in our Political Action Committee please call the Union office. Also, if you have a candidate that you would like to endorse or attend a fundraiser for please contact the Union office.

Lastly, we are looking for help from our membership (specifically the OPT’s). Verizon has made a conscious decision to stop the placement of 50’ and 55’ poles in our set areas. It is our understanding they will have National Grid perform this work citing safety reasons. Our OPT’s have set numerous 55’ foot poles, safely and we believe they have the ability to continue to do so in the future. If any member knows of a 50’ or 55’ pole that has been set by National Grid in our set area, please call the Union office immediately.

Success on the field requires dedication, study, and preparation
Success in your chosen field requires the same thing

“The quality of a person’s life is in direct proportion to their commitment to excellence, regardless of their chosen field of endeavor.” – Vince Lombardi

Advance your studies by enrolling for Fall courses now!

NACTEL give you choices for your technical education

A.S. Degrees
• Telecom
• Video
• Mobile Technology
• Networking
• Wireless Networking
• CyberSecurity (coming soon) B.S. Degrees
• Telecommunications
• Technology Leadership (coming soon) M.S. Degree
• Internet Technology

NACTEL’s Telecommunications education is designed specifically for working adults like you.
These credentials are stackable and aligned to technical career paths in your industry, so there are no wasted courses when moving up the educational ladder with NACTEL.
Take the first step and attend a Virtual Open House on September 16 to hear from and ask questions of the university staff. It is quick and easy! Register at www.nactel.org/ibew/voh
To learn more about these NACTEL programs, visit www.nactel.org/ibew

The normal order of business has been suspended for the summer months of July and August 2014. With permission from the 2nd District we will be conducting 1 – consolidated meeting per month in the Union office – 22 Amflex Drive, Cranston RI 02921.

We will be holding a Member Appreciation breakfast at 9:00am and a Member Appreciation Dinner at 5:00pm

July 16th, 2014
9:00am Breakfast
10:00am Meeting

5:00pm Dinner
6:00pm Meeting


August 20, 2014

9:00am Breakfast
10:00am Meeting

5:00pm Dinner
6:00pm Meeting

June22rev
IBEW Local 2323 & IBEW Local 99 invite our members and familes to come join us for a solidarity family day.

Hotdogs, Hamburgers, Sausage & Peppers and more…

Bouncy Boot camp obstacle course for the kids, games and more…

Sunday June 22, 2014
12:00 – 5:00pm

22 Amflex Drive
Cranston RI 02921

logo contest

The Union is holding a contest for our memmbers to create a new logo for use on our Union shirts. The winning entry will win a $100.00 VISA gift card.

Entries can be submitted via email IBEW2323@verizon.net or dropped off / mailed to the Union office: 22 Amflex Drive, Cranston RI 02921

Deadline for entries is Aug 19th, 2014
Winner will be selected at the Aug 20, 2014 Metro meeting.

2014 Scholarship
May 30, 2014

To All IBEW Local 2323 members:

IBEW Local 2323 is pleased to announce the renewal of our annual scholarship in the amount of $1000.00 per year for sons & daughters active dues paying members. In order for you to understand the for eligibility and selection of the scholarship for 2014. the Executive Board of the Local has drawn up the following guidelines.

Eligibility

1.) The applicant shall be the natural or legally adopted child up to the age of 25 of an active dues paying member in good standing of Local 2323 for six months at the time of this application or a retired dues paying member in good standing of Local 2323.

2.) Graduate of any public, private, or parochial high school or the equivalent who plan to attend a school of higher education.

3.) Acceptance at an accredited college or school of higher education.

4.) Verification of union membership of Local 2323 of a parent and address of employment, if applicable.

5.) The deadline for applications will be the executive board meeting June 26, 2014.

Committee Rules

1.) The scholarship Committee appointed by the President of the Executive Board.

2.) The winner will be selected at the union meeting in July 2014.

3.) There will be three names drawn.
(a) The first name drawn will be the winner of the 2014 Scholarship in the amount of $1000.00
(b) The second name drawn will be the 1st runner-up
(c) The third name drawn will be the 2nd runner-up

4.) The scholarship will not be confined to academic programs, but will be granted to students planning on post-graduate or vocational studies.

5.)Should the winner of the scholarship transfer to another college or school of higher education during the term of the scholarship, the scholarship committee must be notified and will review if the scholarship should continue.

6.) The award will be paid to the parent of the $1000.00 scholarship recipient upon proof of receipt or proof of payment to the institution of higher learning for the past semester not to exceed $1000.00

7.)The scholarship for 2014 will be terminated when the recipient:
(a) has received a total of $1000.00 from the Scholarship fund.
(b) has completed the course of study for an undergraduate degree or post graduate degree.

8.) It is expected that the scholarship program will continue indefinitely, however, conditions may require changes or modifications. The right to modify or terminate the program, in whole or in part is reserved by the committee. In the event such changes, scholarships in effect will continue for their duration.

If you wish to make an application, fill out the attached application form and submit it to:

IBEW Local 2323
2014 Scholarship
22 Amflex Drive, Cranston RI 02921

or fax the application to (401) 946-2323 where they will be reviewed.

Fraternally yous,

Dan Musard
President
IBEW Local 2323