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Company Trying to Force Mandatory Overtime!!!
The company did not get 'Mandatory Call-Out Overtime' during the 2014 negotiations, so now they have decided to unilaterally force it upon us.
Yesterday, July 1st, the company told the union they are planning to unilaterally implement their 'Mandatory Call-Out Plan' unless we sit down and agree to a settlement. The company did not get the mandatory language they wanted during the 2014 negotiations because they could not provide statistical facts to prove their case. The company still refuses to deal with the real issue: insufficient staffing levels and inefficient training and work procedures. Our contract has several provisions to serve our customers without resorting to these underhanded, draconian tactics.
The bottom line, in my opinion, they do not want to spend the money to hire the appropriate amount of staffing and spend the money and time to properly improve and train employees (management & union alike), because it will eventually affect the stock price. I have heard it too many times in the last couple years, "It cost money to update our training programs and scheduling procedures." "There is a legacy cost to hiring new employees", and "We have our budgets to worry about." Yes, budgets are important. But, there is a cost to running any business, especially a premier business. Do you believe that their training programs, work procedures, staffing levels, and scheduling procedures are premier? Management's solution to all of these issues are for you to work more hours. Stock prices are more important than your time off and family life.
It was the first day of the 'New' company after the split and it already looks like they are looking for trouble.
-Vern Beck-
Is the boss hassling you about Inclement Weather?

Brothers and Sisters,

Some in management are once again attempting to eliminate some of our contractual rights. Your right to health and safety, of not working outside in inclement weather, has been a long-standing and established right for which this Union has fought. Inclement weather rules have been agreed to since before the 1951 contract. The Union has been victorious in arbitration cases that back our contract. In January, 1979, the Union went to Federal Court in Hammond to keep this right. The result of this was an agreement hammered out ‘on the court house steps’.

At that time, the company agreed to the attached procedure for handling borderline disputes. It is signed by Robert Zeldenrust, former Nipsco Manager of Industrial Relations. Follow the rules. Follow the contract on which both the Union and the company have already agreed. Do not give up a 57-year right!

Note to meter readers: This right, contrary to what Nipsco management may tell you, is shared by everyone covered by our contract. The only exception, of course, is emergency work (outages, gas leaks, dangers to the community, etc.), not routine work. "Must-reads" in the meter reading departments are not emergencies! This has already been established by binding arbitration awards.

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