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Thread: USIC MSP District voting on union

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    Default USIC MSP District voting on union

    I work in the minneapolis region for USIC. Since the 1 month notice of health benefits changing, and the new compensation/ no raise bs of 2012, our employees have decided to vote on the labor union. Immediately USIC scheduled a meeting with every area to "discuss frustrations" within the company. They handed out 2 sheets with stats on how horrible it would be if we went Union. They said it would not be in our best interest to join. The regional manager, our district manager and the HR lady were all there, and were clearly nervous that majority would vote union.

    My question is, is there any other districts at USIC that currently are UNION? And what are the pro's and con's. I think they said a majority vote is 70 percent, and that 70 percent is based upon people who actually show up and vote. Not the total employee number.

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    Default Re: USIC MSP District voting on union

    I am interested in seeing what you get out of it! The company has it coming, since they started treating us like shit! Still have no idea what our target is for the so called bonus. I guess our DM did not think it necessary to share that info. So in the end they can just say you almost made it, you were this close! What a load of crap. Today I find out that a CUS sup has fallen behind by 20 tickets. A whole 20? At one time? OMG! What will we do? Send help of course. Don't worry about me, I can carry 200 tickets by myself. No problem. I have been noticing a trend. Help out the CUS sups but could care less about the USIC guy's. Just fend for yourself. They must have got one of those books called "Managing for Dummies" !!!!

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    Member KaineF's Avatar
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    Default Re: USIC MSP District voting on union

    If I was voting and "people" showed up with stats and papers to show me how bad it was and demonizing unions from usic id just vote union on principal. They sound shady
    Last edited by KaineF; April 18th, 2012 at 08:08 PM. Reason: felt like it... aka wife nagged me

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    Default Re: USIC MSP District voting on union

    I for one can not fathom the idea that U.S.I.C would not want union representation for their employees, After throwing them under the bus for all these years.And treating them as they are commie workers in a thrid world country that have no right to complain about anything that takes financial gain away from all the worker bee's.I say they have it coming ,People are fed up and are not going to take it anymore.I say bring on the union for representation for all that make this tyrant successful. It is about time....

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    Senior Member sauroke's Avatar
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    Default Re: USIC MSP District voting on union

    I know there area few areas that have unions, I am not sure what they are. What union are you getting into? I find it interesting that they were trying propaganda, a common tactic among unions to scare you out of it. Oh, and Foster, I am right there with ya.

    Always great to watch the tickets get handed out, and know that the biggest stack is all yours.

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    Default Re: USIC MSP District voting on union

    Shady is a polite assertion,They are so greedy and so self rightious that they think they have pulled the wool over everyones eyes by insinuating that times are so tough and they just can not afford the luxury of compensating the people that make their jobs possible. Well it is time to pay the piper USIC . And now when the union does come in, it will make upper mngt. jobs so tough that you would have wished you should have loosened the purse strings when you had the chance.Typical corporate mindset's at work.GREED GREED GREED............

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    Default Re: USIC MSP District voting on union

    Quote Originally Posted by KaineF View Post
    If I was voting and "people" showed up with stats and papers to show me how bad it was and demonizing unions from usic id just vote union on principal. They sound shady
    They will be showing up, they are paid to do this.

    There are companies that publish this material , all for a fee. Their job is to make the very idea of a union sound bad.
    They are paid to do this by the employers, these are not public service announcements.

    Of course the unions also produce pro-union material but I have never seen any pro-union material that fights a dirty as these anti-union workers do.

    In addition they produce anti-union films, propaganda as strong as anything the Nazis put out.
    I remember one that portrayed the fellow employees who were attempting to organize as a scheming bunch bent on harassing the fellow workers into signing a union card. It was poor acting but many were led by the nose by that thing. The organizing employees were presented as scheming and maliciously harassing fellow workers. The truth is a singed union card is only good if enough are signed, more than 30 percent of the workers, for the NLRB, National Labor Relations Board, to order an election. Except if more than 50 percent of the employees have signed a card and the NLRB finds the employer engaged in unfair labor practices making a fair election unlikely, then the NLRB can order that the union won the election without holding one.

    None of the the signed union cards are permitted to be shown to the employer, the same for the individual voting ballots. One the NLRB determines that their appears to be enough cards signed they order the employer to turn over their list of employees and the NLRB confirms or deny the union has enough signed cards for a vote. If there is a vote the employer never knows how any of the employees voted.

    It is common once the NLRB orders the list of union employees that qualify to organize for the company to add to the list as many management employees they can in an attempt to skew the count for 30% of the employees. They also figure that if an election goes through these management employees can now vote against the union. Actually I have talked with some of these managers at other places and most will vote union. They know that if a union contract insures the non-exempt employees wages and benefits, similar to the contract the CEOs and other top management get, theirs will get better protection just becasue the company has to make it worth their while to work those management jobs. In general if the rank and file employee does better than the bosses above then also do better.

    Anyway once you open that can of worms it becomes a though fight, often vicious. Nothing like things were back in the '20s and '30s when beatings, murders and open warfare occurred.

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    Senior Member locator00566's Avatar
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    Default Re: USIC MSP District voting on union

    I work in a union area and it SUCKS! Our union reps are stupid, period. Havent seen a raise in 3 years! The union tried to negotiate raises and a few other things for a new contract 3 years ago and the company denied it all. No one went on strike, no one tried to renegotiate, we cannot be a part of any bonus plans, employee A doing 50 tickets a day gets paid the same as employee B doing 1 ticket per day and its nothing no one can do about it. The union members in my district are lazy plain and simple.

    The way I see it, the company is going to screw you either way so just save your $40 a month union fee and use it to keep a steady supply of lube.

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    Senior Member sauroke's Avatar
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    Default Re: USIC MSP District voting on union

    Quote Originally Posted by locator00566 View Post
    I work in a union area and it SUCKS! Our union reps are stupid, period. Havent seen a raise in 3 years! The union tried to negotiate raises and a few other things for a new contract 3 years ago and the company denied it all. No one went on strike, no one tried to renegotiate, we cannot be a part of any bonus plans, employee A doing 50 tickets a day gets paid the same as employee B doing 1 ticket per day and its nothing no one can do about it. The union members in my district are lazy plain and simple.

    The way I see it, the company is going to screw you either way so just save your $40 a month union fee and use it to keep a steady supply of lube.

    If your union rep isn't doing their job, you can take it higher up. Just because the company isn't giving in to your demands, does not mean everyone needs to strike. If it were me, I would start putting the screws to the union, telling them of the things going on in the state. It would be up to them to try to talk people into striking. Don't back down from the fight, it probably will get hairy, but in order for change to happen, chaos must ensue.

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    Default Re: USIC MSP District voting on union

    Quote Originally Posted by sauroke View Post
    I know there area few areas that have unions, I am not sure what they are. What union are you getting into? I find it interesting that they were trying propaganda, a common tactic among unions to scare you out of it. Oh, and Foster, I am right there with ya.

    Always great to watch the tickets get handed out, and know that the biggest stack is all yours.
    International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers. Couple guys worked for them with Quality locating here in minnesota. Auto overtime after 8 hours no matter what. Overtime on weekends and double time on sundays. 75 cent raise after 1500 hours. I would be down with that

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    Default Re: USIC MSP District voting on union

    O.K. here's the deal s21 cal. I was a sup for CLS back in late 90's until 2004 in Wisconsin. Currently I am employed with USIC. We had the IBEW come in and try and organize our labor force. The vote, after many tense months went for the union. We would'nt give in to their demands and the much of the labor force went on strike during our busiest month of the year(MAY)..We broke the strike after 2 weeks or so, given my memory...We ended up a union workforce anyway beacause WE Energies thought it would be a good idea. We gave in after beating the strike to accomodate We energies wishes.
    ..It went fine for several years and the guys were happy and making more money with a voice for them with the union..It made managing the team a bit more difficult but we made it work. After 2 yrs or so the locating contract came up for bids and we as management had to bid it higher than the compettion due to our union workforce and their wage necessities. WE Energies sold us out giving the contract to SMP because their bid was considerably lower, screwing us all and putting CLS out of business in Wisconsin..Many of the locators went to SMP, took lower wages, and wound up non union again..If there are competing locating firms in your region, be aware this too may be your fate...

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    Administrator TheCableVine's Avatar
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    Default Re: USIC MSP District voting on union

    Quote Originally Posted by radar o reily View Post
    ...After 2 yrs or so the locating contract came up for bids and we as management had to bid it higher than the compettion due to our union workforce and their wage necessities. WE Energies sold us out giving the contract to SMP because their bid was considerably lower, screwing us all and putting CLS out of business in Wisconsin..Many of the locators went to SMP, took lower wages, and wound up non union again..If there are competing locating firms in your region, be aware this too may be your fate...
    I have been beating the drums on this union thing. This is exactly what I've been saying. Go union and you may lose your jobs for the very reason you just stated. Unions add to the overhead of business costs and you end up losing out in the end.
    "Change does not always equal progress."

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    Senior Member Turk182's Avatar
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    Default Re: USIC MSP District voting on union

    Quote Originally Posted by s21cal View Post
    International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers. Couple guys worked for them with Quality locating here in minnesota. Auto overtime after 8 hours no matter what. Overtime on weekends and double time on sundays. 75 cent raise after 1500 hours. I would be down with that
    That is what they are going to demand if the vote goes their way, that may not be what they actually get through the contract agreement. Trade unions get OT after 8, but they also don't get paid if they don't work, no PTO, no holidays, no vacation, nothing.

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    Default Re: USIC MSP District voting on union

    Quote Originally Posted by Turk182 View Post
    That is what they are going to demand if the vote goes their way, that may not be what they actually get through the contract agreement. Trade unions get OT after 8, but they also don't get paid if they don't work, no PTO, no holidays, no vacation, nothing.
    Those trade unions are electricians, carpenters, etc. that work out of a hiring hall / union hall and are not direct employees of the firm. They are hired on through the union and they are not considered employees of the hiring firm. Usually the employer sends in an order to the union for X number of people and the union sends them over, the employer does not get to choose who does the work. Often they are listed like hired subcontractors and are given a 1099 instead of a W2. Their paycheck usually goes to the union which then sends it on to the union member minus any tax withholding, health insurance, etc. if they are set up that way.

    Locate firms don't / cannot work this way.

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    Default Re: USIC MSP District voting on union

    I would think long and hard about voting union in a locate shop ANYWHERE. There are lots of promises that the union can make (and the company can't even discuss changes) during a union voting process. Seriously, the company needs you as an employee. What does the union need? Consider that before talking unions.

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