The second meeting of the new UAW 2865 Executive Board was held at UC Santa Cruz on June 24th. The entire E-board was present along with a number of members from several different campuses. The meeting was extremely productive and a lot of great discussions were had. Below is a summary of some of the key issues that were discussed. If you’d like to see the full minutes, email email@example.com.
The E-board campaigned on a platform of building stronger links with the rest of the labor movement, both nationally and internationally, based on the belief that solidarity amongst worker is our most effective weapon. At the E-board meeting a number of different solidarity proposals were put forward and passed. These were:
- A resolution in defense of ILWU Local 10. The Local is being sued by the Pacific Maritime Association (PMA) following their April solidarity protest in support of workers in Wisconsin and other US states who are facing severe threats to their right to organize. The E-board passed a resolution calling on the PMA to drop the lawsuit, and for other unions and community groups to support Local 10 in their fight with the employers. Check out the resolution here.
- The Los Angeles Alliance for a New Economy (LAANE) is facing vicious attacks from a rightwing law firm with ties to Karl Rove and Sarah Palin. The E-board approved a resolution to send a letter of support to LAANE and to put together an online petition to gather signatures supporting their fight.
- A letter of support to students and teachers in Chile who are protesting austerity measures was also approved. You can read the letter here. The letter is already circulating in Chile and has been received by the CUT and leaders of the university student associations, who have started to send us their thanks!
- The E-board agreed to help support the contract campaign of AFSCME Local 3299, which represents some of the lowest paid workers on campus, and to encourage members to turn out to their protests and pickets scheduled in July. We will be organizing solidarity delegations to actions in LA and SF, and will send out information on how to get involved in these actions.
- Finally, the E-board agreed to improve our local’s links with the Central Labor Councils (CLCs) in the areas where UC campuses are located, and to ensure we have delegates representing us at their meetings. As a first step, we’ll be sending information to Unit Chairs to find temporary delegates for the remainder of the summer. This fall, we’ll give units information on their local CLC and ask them to select delegates at a monthly unit meeting.
Building Member Participation in the Union
At the statewide membership meeting (SMM) held at UC Berkeley on May 21st, a number of break-out groups were organized to work on various union campaigns, including the fight against the budget cuts at the UC and statewide, the campaign to organize Graduate Student Researchers, internal reform initiatives within our local and so forth. The E-board passed a proposal to try and develop these break-outs into more formal member-led committees, operating at the campus and statewide level . Different members of the E-board will act as point people for each committee, to help them get off the ground and coordinate at the statewide level, though the committees will be autonomous from the E-board. A message will be sent to members detailing the different committees, explaining their purpose and encouraging participation. So far, the committees include; Budget Cuts, Solidarity, Anti-Oppression, GSR Organizing, Union Democracy; Communications and Media; and Transparency, and Save Our Students (which will work on issues such as class sizes, workload, affordable housing etc.). Look out for an email soon with more information on how to get involved.
A number of other issues were discussed by the E-board:
- A proposal was passed to fund 8 members to attend the Coalition of Graduation Employee Unions annual conference in New York in August.
- A proposal was passed to fund one person to attend the Northeast Institute for Union Women at Rutgers University, New Jersey in July.
- A proposal was passed to put between 2 and 4 E-board members on payroll for the remainder of the summer, at up to 50% time, in order to tackle the administrative and financial work that needs to be done to get the union ready for the new academic year. More information on these positions will be available to members soon.
- The E-board agreed to form a working group comprised of E-board and Joint Council (JC) members to plan logistics for the next JC meeting, to be held at UCLA on July 23rd.
- Representatives from Rescue Education California (www.rescueeducationcalifornia.org) gave a presentation on Prop 1481, a ballot initiative to tax oil corporations to fund public education. The E-board passed a resolution in support of this campaign.
- The E-board also approved a donation of $100 to Pride at Work’s fundraising drive (www.prideatwork.org), with the possibility of further donations following a systematic review of the local’s finances.
Next E-Board Meeting
The next E-board meeting has been scheduled for July 22nd at UCLA, the day before the next meeting of the Joint Council. Meeting time, location, and agenda will be made available to the membership a week before that meeting–as always, members are encouraged to attend the E-board and the Joint Council meetings.