I know—everyone is waiting for updates, and you haven’t heard from me since the General Membership Meeting. Unfortunately, I traveled the day after the meeting and returned home sick. I was out all of last week, but I’m back, better, and ready to go!
Exit Program Update
We still have not seen a lot of activity in this regard. These are not firm figures, but to date we have about 11 or 12 NEASO participants and about 7 participants from NEAMAC. I expect that there will be more activity next week.
As you know, NEASO submitted a proposal to offer Phase 2 of the Exit Program, extending through the end of 2012-13 fiscal year (August 31, 2013). To date, there has been no response to our proposal. We may not get a response until after March 16.
After posting the current seniority list on neaso.org, many of you let me know that your hire dates were wrong. For the most part, the errors occurred with members who started as temps or temps. As you know, our contract recognizes such service if the temporary or term employee is subsequently hired into a permanent position. Well, NEA does not agree with NEASO’s interpretation of the language in Article 21 of our collective bargaining agreement (CBA). It has been their practice to “terminate” the service of a temporary employee and “rehire” the same employee in a permanent position—thus recognizing the “new” hire date as the “last date of hire.”
So, what do we do about this? For the first time since I’ve been president, we filed a grievance! As this is a very serious matter, we went straight to Step II and asked for expedited arbitration around this issue. Article 36, Part B, Section 9 (of our CBA) speaks to the timelines around a request for expedited arbitration. We will inform you of any movement on this grievance.
Bargaining—Impact and Contract
With the possibility of impact bargaining around layoffs and involuntary transfers, NEASO submitted a proposal to extend the term of our current collective bargaining agreement for one year. To date, we have received no response to our proposal. Therefore, the Bargaining Team is proceeding with bargaining prep. You’ll hear more from our Organizing and Communications Committees in the near future. We want to make sure we are able to communicate with you however you wish to receive communication—that could be by phone (robo call), text, Twitter, Facebook, etc.
At long last, the member survey will go out next week! The Stewards will begin their “one-on-one” interviews next week as well. The information that you provide is crucial to our success at the table. Please make time to take the online survey and speak with the Stewards.
What Have You Done for Me Lately?
Lastly, as you can see, there is much work to do, NEASO! If you didn’t sign up to serve on a committee at the General Membership Meeting, please take some time to think about where to put your talents to use! This is truly an “All Hands on Deck” moment!!