Monday, October 15, 2007

Benefits Go Up, Your Wages Go Down ...

Cliff Armstrong Says,

FedEx is at it again. I guess their 2.02 Billion dollar proffit last year wasn't enough. Now they want to cut your wages by charging you more for your benifits, co-pays and prescriptions without giving any raises on Jan. 1, 2008. It's just more corporate greed to make more money off their employees. Wake up everyone, it's time to organize! Your yearly raises won't come until June 1, 2008, and that's supposed to be for cost of living, not for paying more for benifits so FedEx can increase their proffits.

7 comments:

By Joshua Holland, AlterNet. said...

More and more working Americans are realizing that the game is rigged against them.
Tools
Healthcare and retirement security are both key issues for working people that the business class in D.C. dance around but never address. Two-thirds of those surveyed said that they are either now or have recently been without health insurance, and more than half believe that they will retire at a later age than they had planned just five years ago.

Working America doesn't buy the idea that these are the "natural" consequences of economic modernization -- innate rules of an economy created by God and untouchable by man -- and they don't believe that they're to blame for their eroding economic security. More than nine out of ten respondents -- including self-identified conservatives -- said that in America, hard, full-time work should lead to economic security for working families. They see run-away corporate power, the greed of upper management and a short-term fixation on the bottom line as the primary obstacles to the American dream. Two-thirds agreed with the statement: "When corporations are profitable, the benefits are not shared with workers but go only to the top," and a similar number believed that "the government doesn't do enough to rein in greedy and unethical behavior by corporations and CEOs."

Finally, the survey showed that the death of activist government intervention has been greatly exaggerated. More than four in five workers want their government to "make sure employers keep their promises to employees, including protecting their pensions and health care," and to "create a more progressive tax system that is fair to workers and makes billionaires pay their fair share in taxes." More than three in four said that it should "hold large, global, multinational corporations accountable to pay their fair share for the problems they create in the world, such as environmental pollution and low wages" and "make it less profitable for companies to outsource jobs by removing tax breaks for sending jobs overseas."

Intuitively, that should leave the country ready to embrace progressive economic policies, but they remain ambivalent to notions of class. One worker in an Illinois plant told researchers, "It's America not England you know. We don't have that class system," and another said: "I don't see myself as, I don't, I'm not referring to high class, middle class, or low class. It's just us -- it relates to work." It's the result of the great triumph of the corporate class -- the notion that we are all in the same boat and that it's somehow crass to note that the game is rigged against ordinary working people.

The real takeaway is for Democrats and the corporatocracy's legion of Beltway supporters: Overwhelming majorities of working Americans -- self-identified swing voters and conservatives, as well as liberals and progressives -- are fed up, aren't buying the narrative the Chamber of Commerce is selling and are ripe for the picking. But they're not being given a real choice in terms of economic models -- there's only one that's acceptable to Big Business, and it has unflagging bipartisan support within the Beltway. As long as people have no alternatives to choose from, they'll make their decisions based on which candidates look better or worship at the same church or hate the same people they do or would be fun to share a beer.

JOE NUNO said...

How can having a union possibly benefit me here at FedEx?

A. As a group we can have things in writing in the form of a contract. It will enable us to secure things so that they cannot be changed at will like the system we currently have. Matters concerning our jobs will be negotiated with the company and put in writing.

Virtually every important decision you make in your lifetime involves utilizing some form of written agreement, from your house, car, boat, to loans and insurance - they all are contracts. Why should you not be entitled to the same piece of mind for yourself regarding your future with your employer?

JOE NUNO said...

How is this union drive any different from the ones we have seen here in prior years at FedEx?

A. This is definitely different from previous drives or interest we have seen in the past. The Teamsters have dedicated an incredible amount of time and effort to this union drive unlike the prior ones. We have full support from our FedEx pilots, the International division, and others in the FedEx network. This is an incredible opportunity for us to be a part of a very large and powerful group.

JOE NUNO said...

What can I do as an employee to help this union drive and get this to a vote?

A. You can also help this thing get moving by volunteering just a small amount of free time to helping this drive along. Time is of the essence even more so now that so many changes are happening at all FedEx corp and many more changes are sure to follow. Your only hope to secure what you have as an employee and have a say in what your future holds is to get it in writing with a contract!

JOE NUNO said...

We need not fear unions. Yes, we will pay union dues, in the region of $40 to 50 a month. That goes to pay for the expenses of having a union ready and able to fight for our interest. But the argument of management leaves out the fact that a union contract will include a far greater improvement in our wages and conditions. The idea that we will be worse off with the union, because we would have to pay dues, is an attempt by management to confuse us, and has no truth in it.

Of course, FedEx management matched this argument with their other assertion that they could not pay higher wages. We have already shown that FedEx is quite capable of doing this if it is pressured to do so. That’s exactly why we are organizing.

But the advantages of a union go far beyond that. A union contract would spell out our rights as workers on issues such as discipline, seniority, job security and other issues on the job. As members of the bargaining unit representing FedEx workers we would vote on issues that were in our contract that affect us in our workplace. Once voted on, the union contract would set out the rights and privileges we have gained, and establish a grievance procedure to hold management to this agreement. We will set up a steward system where we have an elected representative on the job to deal with management when they attempted to break the contract.

Think about it. At present we have no rights on the job. We have no defense against arbitrary and retaliatory actions by management. The union will be an instrument we can use to stand up to management to ensure they comply with the contract. That's what management really fears - control of the workplace. That's why they so ferociously oppose unions.

JOE NUNO said...

“Unions are outsiders. They will create an atmosphere of conflict between management and worker”.

It’s funny how management calls the union the ‘outsider.’ It is us, as FedEx workers, who are organizing the union. We are the organizing committee; we have discussions with our fellow workers and distribute our own material, not some outsider.

Yes, we know we need help from the union to negotiate with management. However, that union is made up of elected representatives from other workers in the freight industry who face situations similar to our own.

Our success in building a powerful union will depend on the willingness of workers to support and participate in this campaign. It is a myth that some ‘outside force’ will be injected into the situation. We are the only “force” at work, not some ‘outsider’.

As for the argument that a union will spoil the relationship between management and workers, it’s exactly because management’s actions are hurting us that we are organizing a union in the first place! We have been forced to form a union to defend ourselves from management.

JOE NUNO said...

“We are your friends, come to us to talk about your concerns, you don’t need a union to represent you”.

Yes, management has become friendlier in the last couple of months. But, we have to ask the question: why? If they are friendly now, but were not before, what does that tell us about their motives? The answer is that management is trying to get savvy. It is part of the “carrot and stick” strategy. They have become better trained by anti-union companies in ‘how to confuse workers by calling them team members’. We shouldn’t buy it.