FRONT PAGE CONTRIBUTOR
EFCA, Union Call Centers & the Con Job of Today’s Command & Control Unions
Title: Grievance/Contract Enforcement Representative (also known as a Service Center Organizer)
Purpose: To assist the leadership of Local 615 in building a powerful rank and file union, through organizing and representing workers within the Union’s jurisdiction. Specifically, the role of the Service Center is to enforce the terms of the collective bargaining agreement on behalf of members. Equally important, the Service Center’s role is to increase the capacity of the internal organizing staff to identify, recruit and train member leaders by assuming a larger share of member representation. [Emphasis added.]
By posting this ad, the SEIU apparently failed to see the irony of talking about a “rank and file union” while attempting to hire from outside the union. Nor does the union apparently see the irony of having a so-called “service center,” which is nothing more than a non-rank-and-file-run call center run by union bosses to deal with union members’ problems (no face-to-face member contact is necessary).
Another example of a union that apparently feels that grooming rank-and-file union members to build their own union would be this ad for Organizers-in-Training, Organizers, and Journey Organizers from the American Federation of State County & Municipal Employees (AFSCME):
Organizers-in Training, the ad states, “learn the nuts and bolts of an organizing campaign from home calling unorganized workers, to organizing direct actions, to preparing for a first contract campaign.” For this, OiTs are offered a starting salary of $36,648 with free single or family health coverage, car allowance, paid travel, 12 paid holidays, 401k, pension plan and more. Journey Organizers (organizers with at least 3 years of organizing experience) start at $52,670 but often, according to AFSCME’s reports with the US Department of Labor, take in more than $100k.
As 2010 begins and politicians return to Washington to put the final nails in the health care reform coffin, union bosses are salivating to see EFCA return to the spotlight. It is important to know as EFCA returns that the job-destroying bill has nothing to do with workers forming their own unions and everything to do with union bosses raking in more money.
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“I bring reason to your ears, and, in language as plain as ABC, hold up truth to your eyes.” Thomas Paine, December 23, 1776