So far, this year has been very unpredictable. We have won some very important and vital arbitrations and yet the company chooses not to accept a long-standing practice of honoring the awards of those arbitrations. The Aircraft Cleaning grievance was hugely important to our Local in protecting the jobs and duties of our members. We should never relinquish anything that we have negotiated, especially job duties. We as a board remain committed to protecting those duties. The support of the membership is needed greatly, now more than ever.
In the meantime, we need to work on grieving the violations that occur daily at the stations. I hear all the time about what the company is doing wrong and they wish it would stop, but it will not, unless we put things on paper just like they do and go through the grievance process. Your local representatives can only do so much. They need you to write the grievances up so they can fight for your rights and stop these continuing violations. The perception that the union can just tell the company to stop and they will is outdated such as (state leave laws in California, Washington and Maryland). We have to push these things forward through our process and other means if necessary.
We should never give up and we need to continue to fight. Just because we aren’t voting on a contract doesn’t mean we don’t have reasons to unite and stand together. This fight is a daily one, and not once the contract becomes amendable. I implore you to keep the faith and to keep fighting. Each of us pay union dues and have a vested interest in the success of this Local, so let’s all play our part and contribute when we can.
Spring and summer are upon us and you will see events popping up union-wise that I encourage all to attend. In our District, there will be a union picnic in Denver and Oakland as well as Portland. For the smaller cities in our district, I will be doing something at the station for the members. We need to do more together with our families, and get them involved in what we go through each day. I will hope to see people from each station at each of these as we are all one big family. There was also a 20th anniversary celebration for our local on May 12th at TWU Local 513 in Southlake, TX. It doesn’t matter which station you are from, please make an effort to attend these events.
In closing, let us put aside the station and the seniority differences and support each other. Senior agent or junior agent, we are all in this together and we have the numbers to fight anything that comes our way. We should never give up what is ours. We stand tall and we stand proud and we support each other.
We are 555!
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