Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Vote NO on "Contracts"

As you have probably been notified, the NYC District Council of Carpenters is submitting tentative collective bargaining agreements for ratification by affected members of the Union. The vote will be by mail-in ballot, conducted by the American Arbitration Association.

NYC Carpenters Rank-and-File Organized is strongly urging members to vote and vote ‘NO!’on ratification of all tentative agreements (T.A.) and send a message for the bosses to renegotiate.

First and most importantly, if ratified, the tentative agreements will bring five (5) years of labor strife and volatility. The bosses froze our wage-and-benefit package during the last two (2) years, and this freeze continues through the first year (1) of the T.A. With ‘contractually guaranteed’ wage-and-benefit package cost-of-living raises taken over by the employers in the past, we stand to give back in the future as well.The increases for each of the tentative agreement’s final (4) years are not guaranteed! Additionally, the‘most favored nation’ clause in the T.A. grant bosses the power to, upon signing, renegotiate terms for an individual Company, then allow all contractors in on the deal, with 20%+ pay-cuts and work rule changes.

Other major problems in the T.A. include elimination of requirement for specific hiring and manning ratios for those employers who become ‘Full Mobility Employers.’ It is expected that while all employer members of Associations enjoy this privilege, the Union will lose presence in the workplace and ability to enforce agreements. That means hardworking, conscientious Union members shall enjoy less and diminished work opportunities. Part of this provision allows the Company to staff two person projects with only Company employees, absent a Steward dispatched from the Union to protect Carpenter rights.

The T.A. include establishment of a Labor Management Corporation (law enforcement division within the Union) to provide anti-corruption measures allowing the bosses to restructure our Union, and implement Full Mobility. This entity will utilize scanners, surveillance cameras, and a team of private investigators;the total cost to members in assessment is not disclosed, but estimated to be over $10 million a year.

We believe the Tentative Agreements to be a negative and self-destructive step for labor, our Union and our industry. If the T.A. are voted down, both parties will be required to return to the bargaining table to negotiate new agreements. It has taken almost one year to get to this point. There is no indication howling renegotiation would take; but it is evident that the expired contracts we work under now are more preferable than the T.A. we are to vote on. The resulting continued uncertainty, as bargained, is not good for labor, or management of the industry. Stable and certain agreements are good for our industry and Union; they provide more work, and well-being for Members and our families. Vote ‘NO!’and renegotiate!

Please note that NYC Carpenters Rank-and-File Organized is expressing its objective views and beliefs and is conveying its opinion regarding the new tentative collective bargaining agreements. Regardless of whether or not you agree with our recommendation for a ‘no’ vote, please inform yourself and vote; you will be subject to the terms of whatever agreements are ultimately ratified.


  1. I dont understand your opposition??The contractor associations have announced that their employees agree to the new contract and agree to be bound by its terms and conditions.The association"has provided the Union with a list of its members who have designated the Trade Association as its bargaining agent, and who has agreed to be bound by the terms and conditions of this collective bargaining agreement...



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