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  1. #1
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    Default I. A. F. F.

    I posted a thread similar to this in the general forum, but I thought this may be a more appropriate place. Some of the members of my department are have trouble sending their money to the AFL-CIO because of their politics. I live in a liberal area of the country so I'm sure this is not a problem that is ours alone. If you know of a solution please let me know.
    Last edited by shasco; 09-25-2003 at 01:45 AM.


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    MembersZone Subscriber Duffman's Avatar
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    Could you explain in more detail exactly what you mean? My assumption is that some of your members do not agree with the unions political endorsements or agenda.
    "We shouldn't be opening firehouses in Baghdad and closing them in New York City."

    IACOJ

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    Forum Member DeputyChiefGonzo's Avatar
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    Sometimes you have to look at the "entire album" instead of the individual photos that make it up.

    Do I agree with every endorsement the IAFF makes? No.

    Do I enjoy the benefits that the IAFF have worked hard for? Yes.

    The IAFF can endorse, but it cannot make contributions..that's what FIREPAC is all about.

    Remember, the IAFF has endorsed Democrats, Republicans, Independents in the past. They have also encouraged their members to get involved with the politics on the local level.
    ‎"The education of a firefighter and the continued education of a firefighter is what makes "real" firefighters. Continuous skill development is the core of progressive firefighting. We learn by doing and doing it again and again, both on the training ground and the fireground."
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    FIREMAN 1st GRADE E40FDNYL35's Avatar
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    Default Re: I. A. F. F.

    Originally posted by shasco
    ..... I live in a liberal area of the country....
    shasco are you from TEXAS ???
    Last edited by E40FDNYL35; 10-01-2003 at 01:25 PM.
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    Truckie SPFDRum's Avatar
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    shasco, I understand completely what you are saying, as I come from the socialist republic of Minnesota. I wonder at times if our local would endorse a mangy dog if was running under the DFL ticket.
    The International has endorsed a wider variety of candidates that our local to their credit. So in that sense you can make a statement with firepac monies. It is also up to us at the local level to screen the candidates thoroughly and objectively. Not just by party.
    My posts reflect my views and opinions, not the organization I work for or my IAFF local. Some of which they may not agree. I.A.C.O.J. member
    "I ask, Sir, what is the militia? It is the whole people. To disarm the people is the best and most effectual way to enslave them."
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    during Virginia's Convention to Ratify the Constitution, 1788
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  6. #6
    Rabble rouser Kobersteen's Avatar
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    This is an e-mail exchange I had with another member after I e-berated people about not stepping up to put campaign signs up in our county.
    ---------------------------


    > Just because the local endorses a specific candidate
    > (or should I say, the leadership of the local, yet again in the name of "a
    > majority of the membership" -- funny, I don't remember being canvassed to see
    > what my views were on were our money is being spent in the political arena ---
    > endorses a specific candidate) does not mean that the rest of us are "on
    > board" with the endorsement.

    Do you believe we (the membership) should be consulted on the endorsements as a survey? What do we elect the executive board to do? At the last executive board meeting (an open meeting) there was a woman running for a supervisors seat who came by the meeting for a third time to answer concerns of the union in order to get our coveted endorsement. There were several non-board members there who were also solicited for questions of the candidate.


    > Single-issue voting is a dangerous bent, and
    > just because these politicians say that they support us doesn't mean that when
    > it comes to nut-cutting time that they will do that.

    So what do you recommend? We support no one because they can't be trusted?


    > Most often, the rest of the candidate's platform doesn't appeal to us.

    I can't swallow the fact that there is not one candidate that Local 2068 supports that an individual also supports. Don't pound signs for the ones you disagree with. But don't let that hurt the ones that you do agree with.


    > Further, when most of the membership resides well outside of the county, a lot
    > of people don't want to make the additional sacrifice of giving up yet another
    > day with the family to pound signs into the ground for a candidate whose
    > commitment to our cause is only as strong as the political winds.

    You are right. It is all about priorities. That is why I brought my family with me. My health, safety, pay and retirement are important to me *and* my family. Residing outside the county isn't a good enough reason. I have worked in a department that has adversarial relationships with the city council and I don't care to again. Working without a contract stinks.


    > I would say you are right: more people care about who leads the local and
    > represents us to the department and county leadership than about who leads the
    > county. Perhaps that is not all so wrong.

    No, not completely wrong. But, we can have the greatest executive board on the planet but unless we have politicians we can work with, we have a great potential of not getting squat.


    > And, just out of curiousity, will
    > there be as much pressure to have people come out and take down the unsightly
    > campaign signs as there was to put them up??

    I'll sign you up. We can go out together.
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  7. #7
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    Default Re: I. A. F. F.

    Originally posted by shasco
    Some of the members of my department are have trouble sending their money to the AFL-CIO because of their politics.
    Originally posted by shasco If you know of a solution please let me know. [/B]
    Shasco,

    With the exception of the dues you are required to send to the IAFF, any monies sent by your local to any organization must be approved by the membership. So if these members really have an issue with supporting the AFL-CIO, then show up at a meeting and vote to change it. Just remember, you'll be voting to end support to an organization that will lobby for your health and safety, hours and overtime, and every other benefit you currently recieve. Ok, maybe the AFL-CIO doesn't have a direct hand in all of those, but when the IAFF is lobbying for something, bet your boots that they ask for help and support from the AFL-CIO.

    Another question. Do any of these members regularly go to Union meetings? Do they speak their minds on the issues? Did they vote is your last elections?(Union elections) As in any Political organization, majority rules. So go and try and convince the majority, and if that fails accept that you did your best and the majority decided.

    But remember one thing, the issues that you are concerned about affect you personally, the issues the IAFF is concerned about affect all of us the same.

    Dave

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    MembersZone Subscriber Duffman's Avatar
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    Default

    Do any of these members regularly go to Union meetings? Do they speak their minds on the issues? Did they vote is your last elections?(Union elections) As in any Political organization, majority rules. So go and try and convince the majority, and if that fails accept that you did your best and the majority decided.

    Excellent points Dave,

    It is my personal experience that those who complain about the executive board and their decisions are the members who participate the least.
    "We shouldn't be opening firehouses in Baghdad and closing them in New York City."

    IACOJ

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    You hit the nail on the head Duff.

    In the nine years I was on the E-board, we barely met our quorum for the majority of our meetings. Our quorum is 7, and we had an E-board of 4. pretty pitiful showing huh. Yet I would constantly get harassed by the no-shows about what we were doing wrong. Finally we adopted an un-official rule, you want to know what happened at the meeting, show up. Otherwise, find out next month. Slowly peer pressure influenced our attendence. People have to remember that there is a "U" in Union. Show up and have your say, otherwise.... sit down, shut up, and hang on.....

    Dave

  10. #10
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    Unhappy love to join a union

    I always dreamed of being in the union. But our chief here in n.c said if we did we will be fired. n.c. has a law on unions. I work at a vol. fire dept. that went paid. can i join on my own to be a member of the union. If so email me back at ocusart1@aol.com

  11. #11
    MembersZone Subscriber tfdmedic's Avatar
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    Politics is always a delicate topic around the firehouse. No matter the political affiliation, there are always a variety of issues on hand. The best thing anyone can do is determine which issues effect YOU the most and vote for the candidates that will take care of YOU.
    That is what the IAFF does... Issues like gun control and abortion are not as big of a priority as issues like overtime compensation. Therefore, the IAFF must focus on candidates that support their views on compensation (because it effects their cause more than gun control).

    Did I mention that politics is a delicate topic? The best way to get educated is to join a Political Action Commitee. It is a great way to learn more about the politics, issues, and candidates.

  12. #12
    Forum Member MOTOWN88's Avatar
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    ocusart1,


    How wrong both you and your chief are. I have a Homeboy next door to you in Cary. They have a local as does Raleigh, Durham, and a host of others in NC. You can not be fired if you form a union the laws simply state that the city cannot enter into a contract with a local union because you are in a right to work state. If you need help with forming or defending a union and to find out all of the legal issues with forming one in the hot bed of the union hating south you need to contact the PFFPNC who will refer you to Travis Payne who is a Labor Lawer in Raleigh.
    I.A.C.O.J IRISH TATTOOED-HOOLIGAN

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  13. #13
    Member Mongoose772's Avatar
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    Ocusart1:

    A little late with this reply, but Motown is right. The National Labor Relations Act guarantees your right to form, attempt to form, associate with, pay dues to, affiliate with a labor union. You have the right to sign a union card, participate in union organization or information drives etc, etc. I'm sure you probably have already by now, but go to the AFL-CIO.org website, and the IAFF website. There are a lot of union savy folks avalible to you that will help you unionize your department.

    Fraternally,
    Dan-
    IAFF #772
    You could learn alot from a dummy

  14. #14
    MembersZone Subscriber fieldseng2's Avatar
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    I have been on my locals executive board 8 of my 10 years on the job here. I was elected the 1st of the year as president of the local when the former left our FD for another...

    It is also general election time in our city like many others. In the past, the executive board has made decisions on their own as who we are supporting in the general elction. Thats why we elected them, to represent us and do whats best for us, right? SURE ! The membership would gripe when the wrong pony was picked, and come up with some colorful new names for the e-board.

    This year, as the new president, I thought I'd try something new and let the membership decide who to endorse and where PAC money should go. In fact, I made pain staking strides to let the membership have more of a voice (special meetings, going enginehouse to enginehouse and the like). Well, NO ONE showed up to any of the meetings and when I went house to house to talk to the membership they said, "thats what we elected YOU for!" I tried to give them execatly what they wanted and they looked at me like I was an idiot!!

    No matter if it's at the International, state, or local level there has to be a plan, and I agree candidates shouldnt be endorsed on 1 single issued. YOU HAVE TO LOOK AT THE WHOLE PACKAGE.

    It is not easy being an e-board member. Anyone who thinks it's a cakewalk should walk a mile in the shoes of their e-board. You can't please everyone all the time. Sometimes you won't please ANYONE. We sure dont do it for the pay (wait....some guys get pay for doing this??)

    Sometimes business just has to be done, and if the membership won't step up to the plate then it is the e-board's DUTY to do so. Right or wrong, they have to make a decision. Hopefully, its in the best interest of the membership. If they do something like pick the wrong pony, then all you can do is dig in and make the best of it.

    The local choose NOT to back anyone even though they are really fed up with the current mayor. I myself live on a major artery in town and have a huge sign of the incumbant opponant in my yard. I support ALL of his issues and even though the local is not involved and its a persoanl choice, the current mayor knows who I am and where I live, and what sign is in my yard. Just like what they really wanted me too in the 1st place, I stuck my neck out alone. The FOP is so sure she will win agian they endorsed her to stay on her good side.

    My whole point is, if you aren't happy with the way things are then YOU gotta get involved. Thats what I did. Then, stand up for what you believe in, don't let ANYONE make you ashamed of your principles or beliefs.

    Our general election is tomorrow. Hopefully we will have a new mayor. If not, then maybey 4 more years of agony my membership will realize, just liking fighting fire, union and politics is a team effort.

    As President Schaitberger says, "We can bargain collectively, or beg seperately!"

    STAY SAFE ALL!

    Fraternally,

    Robert H. Fields
    President
    L-1641 Hobart, Indiana

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