Dear Brothers and Sisters,
COVID-19 pandemic has changed our workplace forever. While GKN has made strides in keeping IAM members safe, the implementation of safety practices, supplies, and policies has been chaotic. Frankly, we have elements of management who still can’t even adhere to the most basic contract language, much less treat IAM members with the respect they deserve.
In only 6 months, we will begin negotiations for a new collective bargaining agreement with the company. The experience of a worldwide pandemic has revealed many more contract issues that will need to be addressed.
Now is the time all of us should be preparing to stand united, as we will soon be heading to the bargaining table. As a result of COVID-19, the Negotiation Prep Strategy class scheduled at our union training center in Maryland has been canceled. We are working to schedule this class at our union hall in the near future instead.
Thank you to all members who returned their negotiations surveys. The completed surveys have been sent to the IAM Headquarters for analysis and results. Your bargaining committee will use these surveys as guidance to prepare proposals. Look for more surveys soon on the shop floor.
I want to thank Brother Rick Bach for accepting the position of Plant Chairman in the vacancy left by Brother Brian Adams retirement. Rick has hit the ground running, and is doing a great job representing our members.
Note: The Annual Guide Dogs Golf Tournament scheduled for June 21st has been canceled. It will be rescheduled at a later date when it can be safely conducted.
As a reminder; due to COVID-19, many of the Guide Dogs Events have been canceled throughout the country, but the necessity for donations is still there for those in need of their resources. We are requesting that our members sign up for payroll deductions for Guide Dogs of America. Please see your shop steward or plant chairman for an enrollment form.
On behalf of your union leadership, I wish everyone a Happy Memorial Day. Please be safe.
Earl Schuessler, PDBR IAM District 837