How The Union Failed Me.

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I’ve been Pro Union my entire life, my dad, grandfather, great grandfather were all Teamsters. For many years, I have heard “Union is the way to go” or “Unions are for the working people” this is not quite as true as it used to be. When Unions began they were great collective bargaining, safety, and fairness for all workers. Today it is as corrupt as our Government. The Union leaders all have their hands out but when it comes to the workers they don’t seem to care. The Mafia did a better job at running the Unions, they actually gave a shit about the working people. These “suit” fucks give a shit about their pay, bottom line. Police and firemen, some with their wives and children, assemble on Philadelphia’s Rayburn Plaza, Nov. 13, 1956 to carry their wages and hours demand to City Council. The police and firemen are demanding an increase of $1,000 a year and a 40-hour week. (AP Photo/Sam Myers)

I won’t deny The Union has done great things for this country, but I see all come to an end for the most part. Not only are most states getting rid of Unions, many people are fed up.  Below is a list of great things the Union has done. I know it can go back to being just as great as it once was.


  1. Weekends without work

  2. All breaks at work, including your lunch breaks

  3. Paid vacation

  4. Family & Medical Leave Act (FMLA)

  5. Sick leave

  6. Social Security

  7. Minimum wage

  8. Civil Rights Act/Title VII – prohibits employer discrimination

  9. 8-hour work day

  10. Overtime pay

  11. Child labor laws

  12. Occupational Safety & Health Act (OSHA)

  13. 40-hour work week

  14. Workers’ compensation (workers’ comp)

  15. Unemployment insurance

  16. Pensions

  17. Workplace safety standards and regulations

  18. Employer health care insurance

  19. Collective bargaining rights for employees

  20. Wrongful termination laws

  21. Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (ADEA)

  22. Whistleblower protection laws

  23. Employee Polygraph Protection Act (EPPA) – prohibits employers from using a lie detector test on an employee

  24. Veteran’s Employment and Training Services (VETS)

  25. Compensation increases and evaluations (i.e. raises)

  26. Sexual harassment laws

  27. Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA)

  28. Holiday pay

  29. Employer dental, life, and vision insurance

  30. Privacy rights

  31. Pregnancy and parental leave

  32. Military leave

  33. The right to strike

  34. Public education for children

  35. Equal Pay Acts of 1963 & 2011 – requires employers pay men and women equally for the same amount of work

  36. Laws ending sweatshops in the United States

    Union Website

Like I said, the Unions can be awesome and great at times. The corruption is what killed the Unions for me, if it weren’t for corruption everything would be perfect. Seeing as how everything is not this is what we get.

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My husband joined the Union right out of High School, he was a Carpenter in Chicago. He went to the Chicago District Council of Carpenters school and was eventually vested in the Union. The only good thing about the Carpenters Union was the pay. His hourly pay was great! The benefits were laughable, no sick time, no vacation pay or time, health insurance sucked (as I will explain), dental & vision minimal.

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The insurance was absolutely terrible, the plan covered $300.00 per person per year. I had two of my three children when my husband was in the Union. They literally covered nothing, everything was out of pocket because of this terrible coverage. When my daughters were infants and needed immunization or a well-check, I paid out of pocket, oh I’m sorry the Union paid $300.00. The joke here is the union dues cost more per year than we were getting for our health care. That’s not really a joke, it was disgusting.  In 2007, my husband was laid off after 7 years with the same company. Although he was one of the last employees laid off by this particular company, it  hurt. We became a statistic during the financial crisis in 2007-2008.

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The Carpenters Union in Chicago is a joke! After 9 years of service they have done nothing at all to help my family. Getting a Union carpenter job is not like getting any other job. You can’t submit your resume, you have to do leg work and lots of it. They told my husband when you’re looking for a job to sit at your local office and see if any jobs come along. When you go to the Union office and tell them you’re looking for work, they not only tell you there is no work but give you an attitude. To get a job in the industry you need to go to multiple job sites, beg for work, and hope some poor asshole called in sick so you can take his job.

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The Union was quick to collect our dues, but not so quick to help you in any real way. The employees that work at the local office looks at the members as a pain in the ass. They’ll do anything they can to get you out of there quickly, being pleasant is not usually a part of it. So now he’s laid off The Union isn’t helping in fact, they still want money to do absolutely nothing. My husband did what any normal person would do,  did sidework (carpentry) and got a job in a completely different industry. Sure, he had no benefits but it worked and was something to pay the bills until the economy improved. Unfortunately, the economy did not improve enough to get him steady Union work. Which eventually brought my family to Texas many years later. We still have the pleasure of dealing with the Union after all these years.

Periodically we will get mail from the Union, it never seems to be good news.  Every few years we receive a letter from The Union saying how much the pension fund decreased and how much less of a pension he will get. Basically they “lost” our money and fuck you for caring. We are taking a trip back home sometime to move the pension into our 401k. Either way, it’s ridiculousand has me losing faith in everything. CorruptionNew2-275mgg0

Anything that is good and helps the people seems to become corrupt. If they want Unions to work they need to get rid of some of the excess and cut or eliminate these salaries all together. They may need a few people full time and a handful of people part-time. Their salaries are way too high for what they’re doing. Seems the worker is getting screwed and the asshole behind the desk is making all the money.  You can see for yourself, this link will show you all salaries from top to bottom of the Chicago Carpenters Union. Employee Salary Union

As much as I believe in a workers union I can not get behind the corruption it represents. I have seen it with my own eyes. I will back Union workers. I will not back the Union “executives” and anyone just in it for the money and power. That is what it has become, we need to get rid of those in power and get back to what a Union is supposed to be.

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I do want to point out that we do no belong to a Union any longer. We are in Texas, it’s a right to work state. Our income is signifigantly higher, paid time off, paid sick time, insurance is 100% covered and paid by employer, full dental and vision, we have stocks, and a 401k.  It just goes to show what corruption will do to anything.

 

Why You Should Back Wisconsin

The Tea Party is at it again, screwing the working class. Wisconsin workers continue their fight and I am with them! If this bill passes in Wisconsin that is the end to bargaining across the country. When was it bad to be in a Union? A Union makes sure the corporations or our bosses do not in fact screw us. We have rights as employees. No matter what your favorite host of Fox News says Unions are the backbone to the working people. The middle class needs Unions or these people will be working for pennies.

 

Lets do some thinking as to how this has happened. The Tea Party has been going on and on about how the Unions are bad. Let us look at this logically. When the Tea Party first began their terror on the American people they were all for jobs and budget cuts. That was their main goal that and the Constitution, Declaration of Independence, Bill of Rights, and the Federalist Papers, that’s almost laughable! Now how can you want freedom and have people breaking their backs for minimum wage? The Unions make that possible. Lets start with the Tea Parties favorite candidates, most of all won the last election. Shocking isn’t it? The funding for these slime balls were from the Tea Party one would think, no think again. Actually, BP was a major contributor to the Tea Party candidates, as well as several other big business corporations such as Koch, Bayer, BASF, Solvay. Other contributors include the Chamber of Commerce that received funding from several Middle Eastern Oil Companies, these companies have an interest in lying about global warming to save them loads of money. The environment is fine, didn’t you know that, the Tea Party and Oil Companies say it is, so that must be right! So, in the best interest of these Tea Party elected officials to get rid of Unions as well. keeping the Unions in tact will put a damper on their own funding and political gain.

It is crazy to think that the REAL Tea Party in Boston was completely against things like big corporations. Their whole issue was becoming free, not giving in to England. The current Tea Party is apparently using the name to their advantage, against Big Corporations they are not. They tell people that the corporations are what give you jobs. They may be right to a point, but if they dis-ban the unions how safe are your jobs? When you ask for a raise, they’ll say forget you there are 20 people in line for this job and we can pay them less. That is what the union does, it makes it fair and for helps you feel safe in your job. Why would any self-respecting American not want that for our public workers, or any hard working American? So the rich get richer, this is history in the making. The working man is stepping up and saying not today jerk off. It is inspiring and it should be done all over the United States. We should be marching in front of every government building, ever major corporation, and at every Tea Party rally until things get done! This is becoming ridiculous. We are losing here and no one except Wisconsin and Ohio seem to give a crap. Do something take the time to watch the news, read a newspaper, figure it out or the wealthy corporations are going to walk all over us and we will be lost forever.

Think about this, if Wisconsin law makers pass this bill, what do you think will happen in your state? Do you think the Unions will continue? Do you think you’ll be paid what you should be paid? Another question is, do you think it wont happen to you? It’s happening watch what the House of Representatives are doing instead of their jobs on the budget. Abortion, Patriot Act, the list goes on it is ridiculous. We need jobs! Even if you’re pro-life and you do not have a job do you really give a damn that the government funds women to get birth control? Correct me if I am wrong, but is that not a good thing? Do you want a bunch of bastard children running around and no one to take care of them? Oh, wait, that is where our tax dollars will go, paying for all the unwanted pregnancies of the world and the children that are a result. Please people wake up and do something, get off your couch and make a difference, before the corporations take more of our freedoms away from us.

Check out this website it’s an amazing article:
http://www.workers.org/2010/us/billionaires_tea_party_0930/