Sunday, May 15, 2011

Visits Are Complete - Meetings Next Week

This past Thursday and Friday nights we completed our crew meetings during the breaks. I met with each crew - everybody was covered. It was good to see everybody and I believe that we have solidified and jelled this thing together even stronger now.

I have said it numerous times but I will say it again - You guys are really a great group of people. I hope that you can all understand a little bit better just where we stand in our negotiations. If this was a ball game, I would say that we are in the fourth quarter right now.

This was also a great opportunity for me to observe the bargaining unit as a whole in regard to interest in the process. I am happy to report back that the overwhelming majority of you ARE interested in the process and support the efforts of the union and your reps.

I can tell you this good news from every crew: YOU WILL HAVE IBEW Local 363 in the Newburgh plant for many years to come. My visits proved to me that MORE people support the union NOW than when we had the vote. So many people came up to me and said they didn't vote for the union but they see that having the union was the right choice all along.

I was really happy to hear that over and over. It means that we have done the most important part of our job - to educate the people to the fact that TOGETHER they are STRONGER than if they act separately. Case closed on that one.

Over the FOUR VISITS - I was greeted cordially, spoken to in confidence and I could see that everyone was very interested in where we were going and how we were going to get there. All combined, I got a total of three cold shoulders out of all crews - so that was pretty good.

To the few cold shoulder people: I'm Sorry for whatever makes you react like that. I would love to have it explained to me someday why trying to help you and your co-workers to be treated fairly (and giving up my own personal time to do it) is something repulsive to you and something that I should not be offering to do. Love to hear that sometime. Maybe I am doing something wrong and don't realize it and it could be a very educational conversation to me. Really, let me have it.

Next week we have our meetings on Tuesday May 17 and Friday May 20 at 1pm in Harriman at the IBEW Local 363 Building - 67 Commerce Drive South, Harriman, NY 10946. Hope to see you all there to discuss your thoughts on bargaining going forward.


We are getting there. Come be part of it and come give your input.

Stay solid, stay strong

55 comments:

  1. Thank you Sam. The cold shoulders are unexplainable. Sorry.

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  2. you could give those same people a check for what ever amount and they wouldnt be happy. Its also called insecurity. when you as an individual person does not want to here both sides of a story which this is not a story this is real life. why you as a person would not want to here or get all the information that you could possibly get to be as informed a person as you could be is still amazing to me. I remember for years we had what was called pay for knowledge where you would learn the equipment and believe me you didn't need to know it well . you could get a raise. if you completed all of them or even most. you would get a couple of dollars worth of raises. And would you believe that there was still a lot of people who would not get involved. that was there choice of course. but to me it was practically free money. sorry didnt mean to go on a rant but you get the picture. you can lead a horse to water. = but??? i guess thats what makes the world go around. i guess they would still have someone or several others TELL THEM WHAT THEY CAN OR CANNOT DO ,SAY OR HAVE. I myself would rather have some input no matter how small or trivual that say may be, at least i had a say.

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  3. p.s. just wanted to say thank you for your great effort time spent to keep us informed and in the loop sam.

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  4. thomas jefferson the VIIIMay 15, 2011 at 3:00 PM

    I am so excited to be at this stage of the process. we all will be meeting in harriman this week to discuss our future some more. I really hope the very few who are not interested show up any way just to be apart of there contract..

    to not want to be apart of what happens or what is said and not rebuttled or agreed upon in your future is almost sad. I feel sad for people who let others do the work for them or allow others to speak for them. this is the first time in over 20 years folks that your voice actually matters. It is known that some have to work but others that don't we all hope you the few will make it. just wanted to add thanks to all that are involved in this historic event. thank you.

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  5. Geez Sam......Someday those cold shoulders will come looking for help and then you can ask them face to face.....and then you will help them because that's who you are.......Thank you everyone involved.

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  6. I can see us evolving into us if that makes any sense.

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  7. Now that every one is up to speed on where we are we can have these all important meetings this week to find out as a group where we are going. I have canvassed every B Crew team member and have the priorities and wishlists for those who can't attend. Everyone has a voice whether they are present or not. There is some interesting commentary. Most of it is positive, and people expressing their desires for our contract. It is kind of like an absentee ballot. Sam thanks for your face to face with the crews. Positive reinforcement and the latest info on where we are and where we're going. The basic fact we want get it right the first time.
    Tuesday $$$$ meetings, it should be very productive.
    Thanks for the input from the absentee ballots great participation!
    See you there Tuesday, 363 Hall, Harriman.
    Dave C

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  8. hey cant wait for what we deserve, A FAIR SAY AND FAIR CONTRACT ! THANKS ALL

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  9. This isnt over yet everyone. Lots of work still to be done. Tomorrow please bring your input. Dont sit quietly and follow. Speak your mind and help set the direction. Now is our time for our input to be heard. Great isnt it!

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  10. It is a sad sad day. When all is said and done your eyes will finally open on whose pockets we are truly filling with our hard earned money. Wake up

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  11. Great Meeting today, nice to see all the support!

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  12. I was at the meeting today and was glad to see everyone taking and asking the real questions. I think what we need to take from these meetings and future meetings and negotiations is that we are negotiating our futures. I remember how it was before the merger and things were pretty good, that is in the past. The company keeps talking about and coming to us saying they want to invest in innovations and the plant. They keep telling us how profits look good and the forcast for the future is good, all the while our medical cost are rising and they only offer one insurance plan, changing the 401(k) plan and rumors are that they want to take our pension as well, and all this without a pay increase. We need to take the time to thank Sam and his team of shop stewarts and negotiators for everything they have done and are doing. Remember our futures are on the line.

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  13. Our union has no control over medical costs. Look at our economy - everyones medical costs are going up. Obamacare.... need I say more. Go 363

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  14. great meeting today thank you everybody for showing up.Obama kicks ass.

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  15. we need this contract we needed this contract years ago BRING IT ON HOME

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  16. I would like to thank sam and all the reps. i learned a lot about our union today. and how things work.it was a great meeting and nice to see the new faces at this event.a lot of our concerns were covered.i think there should be 1 meeting a month for sam to update us on how things are going and to voice our concerns about contract negotiations.i no we have our reps and shop stewards to talk to about our concerns but as a group and listening to all the other comments and questions i also had input. so i hope we can keep up these meetings for our family and future at mcc, THANK YOU SAM AND THE LOCAL 363.

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  17. great meeting today guys. well this is rolling like a freight train. keep it going c and d crews. looks like we are all looking for the same things. we just wanted to be treated fairly. want our piece of the pie. we are the supposed "BENCHMARK" in the can industry. so lets get compensated for that. we are tired of no raises , no more choices on health plans take it or leave it approach,hosing on the 401k , oh i forgot also paying more for less. last i looked our utilities, taxes cost of living etc.. has not decreased so why has our total package at MCC the last few years. we are producing record profits.. HMMM tell me that St. Louis. be ready to play ball guys. Sam and the 363 are our pitchers and they are bringin the heat. thanks guys and go get them. also thanks for the shirts, will be wearing mine proudly thursday night.. go 363..

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  18. Its been a long time coming. I can't wait to say yes to that big fat raise and a nice guaranteed bump each year instead of waiting and wondering how low can they go. We have the best pitcher in the world. After what I saw, we'll be hitting some home runs too. The wait will be worth it. We will share the wealth. Thanks team!

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  19. Glad to hear the meeting went well, cant wait for ours. Sounds like it will be a big turn out asking around who is attending.Its great to know we have lots of momentum going in to this ever so important part of negotiations. There has been quite a buzz in the plant in anticipation of finally getting our fair share. It was definitely felt last night on C crew, we are on the door step of making history guys. Stay strong and keep pumping those cans out,UNION CANS see you at the meeting. go 363....

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  20. Yes-we had a good meeting yesterday. A good turnout and Sam was very informative. I hope the company realizes the hard work we put in day and night, weekends and holidays. Hopefully they take care of us like we take care of them. I know we have not been taken care of as much as Britto--But maybe now things will change...Thank you sam and all the Reps for your hard work and dedication.

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  21. Im impressed with how everyone has come alive at the plant with interest on negotiations Policies dont seem to important to everyone until its their turn in the barrel. Everyone will have their turn. The next steps are obviously the highest priority to everyone.Now is the best time to support our cause. On our next negotiations on june 6th,If you are going to attend the negotiations. Please coordinate through your reps on your crew. We have to make sure we have room at the hotel and we are utilizing you all in the most effective way for all of us. We still have to decide how we are going to handle support for those days. Lets show the company we are serious about who and what we are.

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  22. Also, I have to say good job to everyone on their efforts to make our plant run. We have shown the company we dont give up, and never will. The entire hourly staff has pulled this plant through some hard problems,from the front door to the shipping dock. Sure there are problems, but nothing we cant resolve. As a matter of fact thats what makes us better at what we do. Everytime an issue arises and gets resolved. We get better. Just think of how many issues over the years we have resolved. How do you quantify that? A Dam good contract. Thats how. Issue resolved. We will all be better.

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  23. Nice to see the ball still rolling. Good turnout at the meeting. Hey C and D crew, make sure you make your meeting! The only way we have input is when we give our input.

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  24. BOILER ROOM ATTENDENTMay 19, 2011 at 1:31 PM

    hate to jump in on the good stuff but this needs to be said.
    The boiler room talk has it that a particular manager up front wants to slide another inexperienced team member into the team leader spot. It is rumored that most of the managers that are more involved with the process on the floor would very much prefer to have the other more experienced team member step into the team leader position. After all this effects there jobs as well.This team member has proven over and over again that he can handle the job with ease. a very well rounded individual that has preformed the job consistently on and off over this past year. In this plant you need to have at least floated or have been involved with many break downs over the course of a period of time not a month or so. You just can't plop anybody in that position that has NOT BEEN INVOLVED DOING BREAK DOWN WORK IN THIS PLANT. PERIOD!!! they need to have had experience in THIS PLANT. Being a team leader in newburgh is much harder then a few think it is.
    I'm not sure what they think about that but it seems like they think if they give them the answers they want to hear then that makes them team leader qualified. NEWS FLASH TO THOSE FEW WHO THINK THAT. ASK YOUR SELF WHY NO ONE WANTS TO DO THAT JOB ANYMORE!!! It's not about having the right answer you want to hear in a nice quite atmosphere with nothing else going on.
    you need to have a team leader that wants to get involved,that likes to help out, not stand back and give orders and watch everyone else work.

    It would again be shameful if that one manager goes against what the rest of the management team on the floor recommends.

    lots and lots of people on the floor is asking what kind of game is going on with this team leader position.
    To the management team you wonder why NOBODY TRUST YOU AT ALL!
    There seems to have been all kinds of funny stuff going on during these last two team leader postings.


    maybe there's nothing going on but just the way everything is handled and being done just sends out stinky vibes to the members on the floor. you should know by now that everyone sees everything on the floor. they talk to each other a lot 12 hours is a long day and night. we talk a lot.
    your transparency is terrible. just look at the survey.
    If you want better marks on survey's start doing the right things.
    Not being negative here.

    CALLING IT JUST LIKE EVERYONE'S TALKING ABOUT IT.

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  25. BOILER ROOM ATTENDENTMay 19, 2011 at 1:34 PM

    P.S.

    THERE'S MANY SPECIFICS ABOUT THIS BUT WILL NOT POST IT, BECAUSE I DON'T WANT TO BRING THE MANY ISSUES OR PEOPLE THAT HAVE BEEN INVOLVED IN THIS OUT IN THE OPEN. THE FEW THAT MAKE THE DECISION KNOW WHAT THOSE ISSUES ARE AND HOW TO CORRECT THEM IF THEY CHOSE TO DO SO.

    ON PURPOSE OR BY ACCIDENT MOST WILL HAVE TO ADMIT THESE LAST FEW POSITIONS HAVE NOT BEEN HANDLED VERY PROFESSIONALLY!

    I SPEAK FOR MANY PEOPLE HERE.
    didnt mean to cut in on all the good news stuff but like i said this needs to be brought out.

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  26. Boiler room attendant. I hear you loud and clear. This blog was designed for just this purpose. Not to degrade an individual ,but to bring to light the wrong things and keep the individual safe from reprocussion.

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  27. hopefully we will have a easy night tonight.stay focused on what your doing and not on what everybody else is doing.

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  28. well sorry 3.18 poster i have to agree with boiler man. sometimes you don't have to be focused in on what others are doing, especially when it's thrown in everyone's face. AS a fellow team member i see it too. And i'm sorry if you go through life closing you eyes and ears and turning you head when something goes down like it is and you don't say anything about it, or try to change it than your just as much of the problem.
    Now i'm not saying you have to get people into trouble. obviously neither did the boiler man by the way he\she was careful not to say too much about it. were all on the same team but lets try to make the team selections fair and open i think is all he\shes trying to say.

    The days of turning your heads and closing off communication with management hopefully are over soon.
    REMEMBER IF YOU STAY FOCUSED AND THINGS WERE AND ARE DONE FAIRLY ( YOU WILL HAVE A GOOD NIGHT)

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  29. Good morning fellow team members. C&D crews meet today ; after our discussions , our reps and 363 will finish getting ready for talks in June. So , put it all out on the table [ meaning issues ,problems , concerns [LET'S HEAR THEM AND HOPEFULLY PUT THEM TO REST]. IF WE [meaning team members and management] are going to survive ,then we must act in our own best interest and management should at least be aware of what is best for the plant NOT what keeps the CLICK together. JEEZ, I loved this company and my job ,now it's becoming a job to go to work.MANAGEMENT [please think about the problems you create by letting your self-interest's rule your mind's.[[ ENOUGH ]] ///PLEASE BE SAFE // THINK ACT RESPONDSABLE // BE 363 //RESPECTFULLY DAKOTA

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  30. CONCERNED ABOUT THE FUTUREMay 20, 2011 at 10:40 AM

    I'M NOT SO SURE ABOUT LOVING THE COMPANY, THEY SEEM TO BE ALL ABOUT THEM SELVES. BUT TIME WILL TELL WE WILL SEE WITH THIS CONTRACT AND HOW THEY (THE COMPANY) REWARD US FOR MAKING MCC THE PLANT THAT IT IS AND HAS BEEN FOR OVER 20 YEARS. THE COMPANY HAS MADE MANY YEARS OF PROFITS BECAUSE OF US. IF A COMPANY WANTS TO CONTINUE TO SURVIVE AND PROSPER YOU WOULD THINK THEY WOULD WANT TO REWARD THE HARD WORKERS. BUT SOMEWHERE ALONG THE HARD ROAD THAT IDEA HAS SLOWLY SLIPPED AWAY. WE HAVE TO GET BACK TO THAT OLD TIME WAY OF TAKING CARE OF THE EMPLOYEES. I'M NOT TALKING GREED FOR US EITHER, I'M NOT TALKING ABOUT A WINFALL OF WAGES BUT WHEN YOU CONSISTENTLY SEE PROFITS FOR THE COMPANY AND CUT BACKS FOR THE EMPLOYEES. WELL WE ALL KNOW WHAT HAPPENS NEXT!!! I ALSO LOVE AND HAVE LOVED MY JOB SENSE DAY ONE. DO WE HAVE HARD DAYS AND NIGHTS , YES OF COARSE WE DO. BUT WE ALWAYS SURVIVE AND THRIVE.
    SO COMPANY AND MANAGEMENT PLEASE BE KIND TO US EMPLOYEES THAT LOVE OUR JOBS AND LOVE WHAT WE DO AND WOULD LOVE TO LOVE THE COMPANY AGAIN!!

    THANK YOU.

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  31. boiler man is right..in the past years, there was alot of interest in these team leader positions, also alot of experience. i have said it before, and i'll say it again..it really appears that they do not really care what is going on in the plant...they are only concerned when the damage is done, like the missed shipments,'their call'---using broken fork trucks 'their call'---sending junk to our customers, over and over again 'their call' playing rediculous games 'his call'....we are all adults, and we know how this plant is supposed to be run...management better open their eyes NOW and start making the right decisions about moving people around, and filling teamleader positions with properly trained people...and basically start acting like adult themselves, or this place will be out of business.

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  32. Dan Conklin has been an asset to the crew as team leader and and would be a great choice to be selected as a permanent team leader. Just my 2 cents. Too bad managemnet stopped listening to us a long time ago.

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  33. Thanks for setting us straight today Sam. We do need to step up and support our own cause.I'm here now and after 20+ years with this job I expect our management to compensate us for our efforts and expertise they SAY we have. You management always talk about investing into the plant if so then START with the work force you have !!!!!!!!

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  34. I agree with the comment above. Sam you were right in everything you said. I want to be treated like part of the company. When the company does good, I want to be doing good. When the company profit tanks, I'll take my share of the burden. Thanks Sam for making us see the light today. I felt the change.

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  35. Great meeting today. We hit on alot of good stuff. It's true WE all need to step up to the plate now. This movement has always been about us ,and now is the time to help us get what we deserve. We need to show the company that we are strong and will stick together.So lets show our support like Sam said,and show up to the next round of negotiations in June. See you there

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  36. Thank You Sam the meeting was great.....Now we all need too come together again it is our future lets give the support that is needed.

    I AM PROUD TO SAY WE ARE IBEW!! The turn out was great.

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  37. I hope everyone was listening today we are a union without a contract without a union we have a blank sheet of paper nonething is in writing,so lets support the IBEW..

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  38. Excellent meeting, lots of good points made- glad that we chose to go down this road, hopeful that the company will avoid taking the bargaining negative- WE CAN be world-class if they will work with us!

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  39. GREAT MEETING FOR C&D & MAINTAINANCE PEOPLE. I believe that everyone now understands the importantance of our contract.Great questions and great responses.We are ONE and we need to act and respond as ONE.We are the best in our industry , we may have those who would tear us apart or create Havoc to deter us, but wer'e better than that.BE as #1 the best , make the plant hum ,be attenative ,be responable meaning we are the best and WE will do what is nessasry to remain #1.Most of all be RESPECTFUL of each other , someone needs help [[BE THERE //HELP //IT WILL COME BACK TO HELP YOU SOMEDAY , MAYBE NOT EQUAL MAYBE TEN-FOLD BETTER.]] Remember your STEWARDS are the key to problems , use them always. BE SAFE // BE UNION// BE 363 //BE RESPECTFUL// [[RESPECTFULLY DAKOTA

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  40. Great meeting today! entire room was full. Good job everyone!

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  41. I cant wait for the burgers for the most improved plant. We all earned it.

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  42. I think we are all willing to work hard for the good of the company. I hope the company realizes that it is in THEIR best interest to negotiate a contract thats fair to us. Respect is a two way street. The greatest motivator we have is an hourly work force that is compensated fairly and respected for the work we do day in and day out, 24/7.

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  43. We have shown our intentions time after time. We have not disrupted anything, we have actually improved how we deal with each other and management.
    I wish we could have had this years ago. I feel more secure with the union here than at anyother time that I have worked here.
    I dont want to go back to the way it used to be before we became a union. The Breweries have all been unions forever and have created the number one beer business in the world.
    There is no reason why we should ever go back to random changes in policies, benefits and wages. We had no say. We had no way to fix any injustices, and there was many.
    We now have a chance to make people feel secure again and feel like concentrating on doing there jobs and not worry about what else is going to be happen that degrades our jobs and incomes.
    I am glad I know my rights under unionization. I had none before.

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  44. In regards to picking a team leader position. Something does seem fishy to me about how this is unfolding. We have experienced people who already know OUR processes and are excellant workers, and have proven themselves ,time after time doing the job already. Why wouldnt we give that individual the chance as he has been stepping up doing the job and proven himself more than adequit to do the job ,or else wy are we make him do it. I hear that the notion of bring in someone who is refuses to interact with people on a daily basis and has very little knowledge as a team leader is absurd. That will only lead to putting the customer at risk, just because the individual is only concerned about himself and truly not the best interests of the plant or the people in it. I can see it coming a mile away. I hope that this decision is really thought through by the people that make the decisions. Sooner or later they will have to account for the decisions they make. I just hope it doesnt hurt the customer, or the plant, or the people in it.

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  45. STEVE WHAT ABOUT THOSE METS !!!!!!!! WE ARE 363 AND PROUD

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  46. Great meeting lets support this contract.We will be at the negotiation to show our support.

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  47. 7:50 I agree Dan would make a great team leader he has a lot of skill we need that on the floor he cares who would think that of him he wants to do the best job he can we want him to be team leader on our crew.

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  48. one who wants a say in MY LIFE.May 21, 2011 at 1:26 PM

    nice meeting yesterday in harriman. great turn out it's what is should have been. it's your life you should care and be involved as the many are.

    would like to thank sam and steve for there continued support. great questions and debates.

    love how everyone wanted to and did get involved. It's INFECTIOUS if you can see that your opinion does matter and people really do care what you have to say and what your cares and concerns are.
    have any of you every had a survey like that. that asks your opinion on several issues and you won't have it turned around and used against you???

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  49. Dancing on the CeilingMay 21, 2011 at 3:49 PM

    I can't wait to celebrate Lunch for being the most improved Plant in the country. I'll also be celebrating the hard work by all in getting a Fair Contract negotiated. I think I'll wear my IBEW Shirt to Lunch.....How bout the rest of you?

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  50. Put on a happy faceMay 21, 2011 at 10:14 PM

    I'm psyched. I am so glad I went to that meeting. It is really great having time to ourselves to talk about our stuff. I actually had fun. I hope the company sees fit to give us a fair contract with a decent raise. It is in their best interest to just treat us fair. I don't mind Brito and company getting millons in bonuses as long as I can wet my little beak too. I know our union is doing everything they can for us in those negotiations. I hope the company does everything they can too. If that happens we will break records like never before. I know now with Sam and 363 we can make that happen.

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  51. I have to agree with happy face. It is entirely up to the company now to do the RIGHT THING FOR IT'S WORKERS. they talk a big talk about family and professionalism. NOW PLEASE WALK THE WALK.

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  52. MAD MOPPER - HE CARED TOOMay 22, 2011 at 1:30 PM

    I also would definitely have to agree with boilerman and the others. some times you just go about your jobs and don't really pay attention. but this does seem some what suspicious with the amount of time taking to get this done. It most certainly looks like there taking more time so they can try to train the other individual get him up to speed, with things like coming off of nights to do maint on days so he can get pro-sert done they say but funny they don't do that for all of the people. It was also rumored boiler man dont know if you knew this. that the team mem. in question put his name in after the posting came down not sure if that's true or not. now he's also floating when others wanted to do it. He's floating under the guy who should be team leader right now on another crew, but that selection wasn't handled very professionally either or the way it's supposed to be handled according to policy - -
    what ever that maybe this time around.

    Maybe that's what there looking for a guy who only speaks a few words now and then,
    Don't forget a while back like at the anti- union meetings speaking out only to make himself look like a team player.
    one who knew nothing about what we where going through here at newburgh at that time,

    He didn't really talk to anyone but yet felt compelled to voice his opinion in front of the managers of what we need or don't need at newburgh.
    so maybe they feel the time is now to reward him for that UNWANTED 2 CENT INJECTION.

    Here mister -C- fill in for us as team leader on 'b' crew for a while cause we know you won't or can't say no to us right now, and train our guy to be a team leader so we can pick him instead. I mean really? HOW INSULTING IS THAT.

    you can say it's only rumor\negativity or what ever but most everyone called how the last two would go down.
    so please do the right thing and prove us wrong for a change.

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  53. Ok. You got it. Thanks for making the call mopper.

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  54. hey mad mopper. the mad mopper ruled the floor.

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  55. 2 more cents..Ihaven't worked with Dan for that long, but my experiences have been positive. Good communication, desire to find the
    root cause, no ego about the position....we'd be very fortunate to have him as a team leader in our plant, and now, rather than later- remember, peole who make mistakes aren't the danger, it's that people who don't believe they ever make a mistake who are!

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