By my count each of the election slates has three people who spoke in favor of the 2010-2015 CBA. And that is not a problem for me because the 2010-2015 CBA has laid the foundation for EVERY APWU success over the past six years. This is what the officers had to say at the time about the new CBA:
So why do so many people attack the 2010-2015 CBA? It was great campaign rhetoric in the first Dimondstein election and it worked. President Burrus came out against the CBA and against many of those who negotiated the CBA. But on October 26, 2010 in News Service 09-20, Burrus stated this about PMG Potter’s retirement and the upcoming negotiations:
Contract negotiations must now be viewed in a different light: It is highly unlikely that Potter will commit the next PMG to contractual provisions that are acceptable to the union. As I have said in many forums, in 2010 a negotiated agreement will require innovation and new ideas. I am very disappointed that Jack Potter will not have the freedom to join Cliff Guffey in finding the pieces that can lead to such an agreement.
President Burrus knew that the 2010 negotiations would require some out of the box thinking. In fact it was Burrus himself that had made it known that he would consider taking members out of the FEHBP (Federal Employees Health Benefits Plan) if he could parlay that into greater benefits for the members.
So why did President Burrus sour on the officers in the first Dimondstein election? He felt betrayed by the officers who had served with him for many years at APWU HQ, some were good friends.
The Convention News Bulletin 05-2010 September 1, 2010, reported the following:
On the fifth and final day of the convention, delegates reaffirmed their commitment to the Federal Employees Health Benefits Plan (FEHBP) by voting “yes” to a resolution that would make retaining union members’ right to participate in the plan a “top priority” for negotiators during 2010 bargaining.
You see word had gotten out that President Burrus was considering a move away from FEHBP and a Resolution was presented and adopted on the last day of the convention that was intended to stop Burrus from continuing on that path. You have to remember that this was the same convention we all stood together and recognized President Burrus for his many valuable years to the APWU. We showered him with praise and honors and everyone in the hall showed much love and respect for Burrus as he was about to retire.
The vote on the Resolution was close, very close. Unfortunately, to achieve its passage many national officers went to the floor and microphones and urged the members to support the Resolution. I voted against the Resolution as I believe that everything should be on the table and the Rank & File Committee and membership were safety nets against a CBA that wasn’t worthy of adoption. I believed we should take no option off the table and I believe that to this day. (The safety net worked just a few months ago)
It was so close we went to a teller count and still national officers were running through the hall encouraging people to support the Resolution. I often thought that had President Burrus not been retiring, that those same national officers would have sat on their hands in fear of being singled out by Burrus. There is no doubt in my mind that on that day, during that convention President Burrus had been defeated, not just by the passage of the Resolution, but by people he thought were his friends.
And that was the beginning of the end and it didn’t take much for Dimondstein to convince Burrus to come out against those who had wronged him and to publicly attack them and the CBA they negotiated. My intent isn’t to place blame with President Burrus for where we are today or his actions throughout the process, it was to share the history that so many want to ignore.
I have written on this site that the 2010-2015 CBA was a good contract and that every gain achieved by the current administration is directly related to the 2010-2015 CBA. I have heard the 2010-2015 was shoved down the member’s throats, so I went back and started looking at what occurred back then. The following was put out by the R&F Committee:
The following News Service articles discuss the new CBA, outlines the meetings that were held and show the results of the voting. The 2010-2015 CBA was unanimously adopted by the R&F Committee, unanimously adopted by the National Executive Board and adopted by 75% of the voting membership. The turnout for the vote was at around 52% which was 12% higher than the vote the last time we voted for a CBA.
We will know in a few months the results of the current election. I wrote this article to help fill in the blanks and provide some insight to members who may not have been involved in 2010. I still challenge folks to point to any significant gain for this union in the past six year that doesn’t directly relate to the 2010-2015 CBA, either through negotiations or arbitration. That is not intended to be a knock on the current administration; they would be crazy not to build on the achievements of the 2010-2015 CBA. If you’re a candidate for national officer this time around and you were part of the success of the 2010-2015, please run toward the good work you achieved. Those who knocked the 2010-2015 CBA did so for political and personal reasons.
First Name: LeRoy
Last Name: Moyer
Union/Local: Charlotte Area Local
Office held if any: Past President PPWU, Charlotte Area Local, Co-Chair NPC