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Showing posts from September, 2010

The Union Steward

When are these of lowly payWith haggard look and hair of gray?They get no rest by day or night.They’re always wrong. They’re never rightThey do not have a law degreeBut go to bat for you and meThough seldom have they been to collegeThey must have the widest knowledgeOf labor grades and when to grieveVacation pay and sickness leaveOf overtime and who’s to do itOf coffee breaks and who’s to brew itThe how and which and why and whenAnd the problems of women and menIf, with forepersons they agreeThen they’re rats who’ve got weak kneesIf, to workers they try to cater,They’re branded as agitatorsThose who have to take this jobAre called STEWARDS of your shop.
Thank Your
Union RepresentativeFor their hard work

Please do this for your country - and me

Please copy and print the letter below, sign it and mail it to your congressman. Then let me know you did that by phoning me at 574-772-3332 or email me at If I can get enough of them mailed, my SOAR Chapter will get a free banner and I'll be very appreciative.


Charlie Averill

Here's the letter:

U. S. House of Representatives

Washington, D.C. 20515

Dear Representative ________________________

I am writing to inform you of the callous disregard David Cote, CEO of Honeywell and a member of the National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform has for working families and urge you to demand his resignation from this Presidential Commission.

On June 28, Honeywell locked out 230 union workers at its hexafluoride plant in Metropolis, Illinois, even though they offered to continue working under the terms of their expired labor agreement. Under Cote’s leadership, Honeywell had proposed eliminating retiree health care and increasing workers’ out-of-po…


Do you have the program iTunes on your computer?
If not, you should get it.
Every computer should have iTunes.
It's free and you can get it here.

Once the program is downloaded. Open it.
Then go to the iTunes Store.
In the upper right hand corner, search for The Voice of SOAR.
Then, look for the SOAR logo and click on Subscribe.
The podcast will downloaded to iTunes.
You can then click on the words Get All and all of the episodes for that podcast will be downloaded to your computer.
Podcasts are free and there are podcasts for any interest you may have.
They can either be heard right on your computer or if you have an iPod you can plug it into your computer and have them transferred to your iPod so you can listen to them later.
Give it a try.

Premium Reductions

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASECONTACT:September 21, 2010 Jim Centner (412) 562-2575Medicare and Medicaid Announce Premium Reductions in Medicare Advantage Program(Pittsburgh) --The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced today that seniors in the Medicare Advantage program would see an average one percent reduction in annual premiums in 2011, while benefits will remain similar to what was offered in 2010. "This flies in the face of some of the lies being spread," said USW SOAR Director Jim Centner. "Critics from the right have claimed that the healthcare overhaul law would lead to companies abandoning the Medicare Advantage program in significant numbers and seniors facing higher premiums and reduced benefits."SOAR says that this is another example of how the Affordable Care Act benefits seniors because it provides the CMS with ability to negotiate health plans in competitive marketplace."…

Help Do Away With Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Tomorrow afternoon, September 21, the U.S. Senate is to take up the defense authorization bill which contains language to overturn the military policy of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell which discriminates against gay and lesbian soldiers.As I understand it, this issue has been festering for at least 17 years. Senator John McCain from Arizona said at one point that if the military brass agreed with doing away with the policy, then he would consider going along with that. Well, the military brass now agrees that to do away with Don’t Ask Don’t Tell is the right thing to do. However, tomorrow, Senator McCain is expected to lead the Republicans in a filibuster of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell.Isn’t it time that we do away with this discriminatory policy in our military? Why must Americans always find someone to feel superior to? We’ve done it because of skin color. We’ve done it to women in the workplace. We do it with people who want to form unions. We do it with those of a different re…

Killer Coke

A September 11th Memory

September 11th, 2001 A September 11th Memory - by Charlie Averill
In September, 2001, a legislative internship program was developed for members of the Steelworkers Organization of Active Retirees (SOAR). The program was put together by the United Steelworkers Legislative office in Washington, D.C.I, along with about ten other retirees took advantage of the program and checked into our motel in Arlington Virginia. On September 10, 2001, we reported to the legislative office for our orientation. The program was to begin the following day.On the morning of Tuesday, September 11, while enjoying our coffee and listening to our first instructor, one of the workers came into the room, turned on the television, and told us to watch. As we saw the two planes crash into the World Trade Center and soon collapse, we also heard sirens outside our building as fire trucks, emergency vehicles and police headed towards Arlington where another plane crashed into the Pentagon.Our building…

Employee Rights

Employee RightsThe National Labor Relations Act extends rights to many private-sector employees including the right to organize and bargain with their employer collectively. Employees covered by the Act are protected from certain types of employer and union misconduct and have the right to attempt to form a union where none currently exists.Examples of Your Rights As An Employee Under the NLRA Are: Forming, or attempting to form, a union among the employees of your employer. Joining a union whether the union is recognized by your employer or not. Assisting a union in organizing your fellow employees. Engaging in protected concerted activities. Generally, "protected concerted activity" is group activity which seeks to modify wages or working conditions. Refusing to do any or all of these things. However, the union and employer, in a State where such agreements are permitted, ma…

The Toll of War - Howard Zinn

The Toll of WarDemocracy flies out the window as soon as war comes along. So when officials in Washington talk about democracy, either here or abroad, as they take this country to war, they don't mean it. They don't want democracy; they want to run things themselves. They want to decide whether we go to war. They want to decide the lives and deaths of people in this country, and they certainly want to decide the lives and deaths of people in Iraq and all over the Middle East.Faced with this attitude, our job is just a simple one: to stop them.I am not going to go into the Bush arguments, if that's what they are. No, don't make me do that.Don't make me point out the U.S. violations of international law.Don't make me point out that even if Saddam Hussein has not gone along with this resolution or that resolution of the U.N. Security Council, the United States is about to violate the fundamental charter of the United Nations, which declares that nations may not in…