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Tuesday, November 14, 2017

ATU757 changes the voting rules

If you attended  the March 2016 union meeting you already knew this. 
Union meetings usually get between 50-100 people. 
There are  approximately 2500 union employees at Trimet so meetings have attendance by 4% of union members.
 That means 96% of Trimet union members were unaware of this change..

What has happened is that the bylaws were changed (by the 4%) to split the Trimet members into 3 distinct sectors. 
Transportation-Maintenance-Salaried.
 When a contract is presented to the members each sector must vote yes or the contract is not approved. 
The VAST majority of the members are drivers but there is no longer majority rule at our union. 

We have our very own version of the American Electoral  College. 
As we all know the electoral college was created to subvert the popular vote in our presidential elections.

Why has this happened? 
It appears the maintenance division was threatening to split from ATU757 so the leadership gave them veto power instead.

 As a retiree I don't get to vote on these contracts, even though the contracts affect me (and other retirees) directly. 
Now, my retirement as a Trimet bus driver can be controlled by a sub group of Trimet employees.

Its getting harder and harder to find reasons to continue paying dues to a union that doesn't allow me representation and subjects the majority to minority rule
  • Transportation, Maintenance, and Salaried divisions vote separately using ballots of different colors; Transportation’s ballots will be PINK, Maintenance’s ballots will be GREEN, and Salaried’s ballots will be BLUE.
  • To approve the contract proposal, a majority of members casting ballots in each of those groups must vote to ratify.

6 comments:

LillyAnn said...

We are feeling the same way

gary h said...

This gets voted down I will never pay my dues again. Ever

Jason McHuff said...

The divide between the mechanics and the operators is nothing new: http://web.archive.org/web/20050227053302/http://www.wweek.com/html/leada110800.html

Jason McHuff said...

Also, I wonder how much it helps that mechanics are closer together and aren't all dispersed like operators are.

Chris Day said...

Hey Al,
Now you already know that I tend to be a numbers guy so after reading this post I thought I would point out the numbers a little bit better because the numbers you are giving are much better than the actual numbers. You state that about 50 – 100 members tend our union monthly meetings and that we have about 2,500 TriMet members giving us about 4% of our TriMet members participating.

Each month our union has 11 meetings (a charter and 10 continuation meetings). The Charter tends to have the largest attendance of about 25 – 100 members attending that meeting depending on what is taking place at the time. Not all of those who attend that Charter meeting are TriMet members. As for the continuation meetings I think the range is from 5 – 30 attending each meeting. This gives us a range of attendance to be about 75 – 400 members each month. I would say the majority of TriMet members that do attend our union meetings each month typically attend the charter meeting or the following morning continuation meeting. On average I think it would be safe to say that TriMet members average attendance each month could be around 70 members attending. That works out to be about 2.8% of TriMet members attend our union meetings. That is 1.57% of all active members in ATU757.

This bylaw change was voted on by the entire membership not just TriMet members. Our union requires that at least 2.5% of the active members attend the month’s meetings for quorum to be met. We have 4,431 active members so that means at least 111 members total must attend each month’s meeting for quorum to be met. As you can see we are nowhere close to the 4% that you projected. We are actually close to about 1.5% of TriMet members using their voices in our union while the other 1% of voices come from the other properties. Typically if our officers want something to pass they are able to get the other properties to attend more than normal so that the percentage would be higher than our TriMet members.

Keep in mind that if TriMet members is about 2,500 of our unions membership that means that all the other locations total about 1,931. TriMet member is about 56% of our entire membership yet tends to be the lowest attending group in our meetings.

So this actually means that 97.2% of TriMet members did not have any active role in this bylaw change and was most likely not really aware that the change took place until it was too late.

Al M said...

Wow, just wow chris.
Thanks for the corrected numbers