Wednesday, December 13, 2006


UPTE-CWA LANL Bulletin, December 2006

What's in store for LANS employees.

UPTE-CWA LANL Bulletin, December 2006

§ LANS Moves to Limit Employee Representation

§ Layoff of Contractors

§ Pension Protections Thanks to UPTE-CWA

§ Salary Date Now Secret

§ Lawrence Livermore Organizing

§ Join UPTE-CWA Today!

§ UPTE-CWA Open Forum

LANS Moves to Limit Employee Representation

UPTE-CWA stewards have successfully represented many lab employees, including saving peoples’ jobs and getting well-deserved raises. Because LANS (Los Alamos National Security) is no longer a public employer, it is no longer covered by the public labor law that gave employees the right to union representation. LANS has decided to change this policy, even though it previously committed to making no substantive changes.

Currently, LANS is only allowing an employee’s “peers” as representatives. LANS wants to define “peer” very narrowly. UPTE-CWA believes we should have the very basic right to representation, and will continue to pressure LANS to consider any other LANS employee as a “peer.”

In the mean time, we will continue to counsel individuals through workplace issues. We will meet with you and give you advice, and then be a phone call or conference room away when you meet with management so that you are still supported. We will continue our policy to represent only current UPTE-CWA members, so we encourage you to join.

Layoff of Contractors

While legislative pressure from UPTE-CWA helped guarantee a one-year moratorium on layoffs for former UC employees, about 500 contractors are being laid off and hundreds more will not be replaced. Just last week, KSL laid off 50 skilled trades employees. The layoffs would not have been necessary if the lab had remained public because the budget shortfalls are due to taxes and management fees that were not previously foreseen. We will have to remain vigilant about additional changes that were not planned or previously announced. Now that LANS has the contract, it will seek to change the terms to make them more favorable for its owners, and most importantly, Bechtel. Please contact UPTE-CWA if you know of any other changes that we should address.

Pension Protections Thanks to UPTE-CWA

During the transition, UPTE-CWA members pressured UC managers and federal legislators to add the words “substantially equivalent” into the requirements for the benefits plans to be offered by the new contractor. For this reason, LANS set up TCP1 to allow UC employees to continue with a real pension plan, rather than only a 401k-style plan with much less value.

At this time all LANS employees also have the same retiree health benefits as UC employees. We do not know if LANS plans to change this benefit or not. UPTE-CWA will seek to protect these benefits for future and current employees.

Salary Data Now Secret

LANS is using the cover of being a private company to no longer release employee salary data, claiming this is proprietary information. The availability of salary data allows us to hold management more accountable when it has unfair pay policies. Making the data secret allows LANS to give whatever bonuses and raises to management, or provide even discriminatory raises in departments, without anyone being able to check.

Because the resources continue to come from taxpayers, UPTE-CWA believes that salary information should remain available to the public. We will work with legislators and others to push for transparency in LANS’ pay practices.

Lawrence Livermore Organizing

Motivated by the negative changes for Los Alamos employees, UPTE-CWA members at Lawrence Livermore have begun to sign cards to achieve exclusive bargaining rights. We encourage you to speak with any of your acquaintances at Lawrence Livermore, and tell them they need the protection of union to avoid what has happened atLos Alamos.

Join UPTE-CWA Today!

Working together we have a stronger voice to improve our working conditions. Sign up for payroll deduction today to help build a more effective union at Los Alamos.

UPTE-CWA Open Forum

Questions or just want to find out more? Come to our monthly public meeting at the Mesa Public Library on the 3rd Thursday. That is December 21 this month. We meet at 5:15 PM. All employees are welcome -- bring your friends.

You Lab Rats Bitched and Moaned about UC Management ... and now you Rats get what you deserve, private management. I hope you morons are happy now!

You are now learning what it's like for everyone one else in our society who work for the man and don't suck the tit of government. Notice anything different? Welcome to the private sector.

You guys didn't even know how good you had it and now you have pissed it away. How does it feel smarty-pants?
Actually it hardly feels any different, and that's what hurts. If anything, we are in a bigger bureaucratic mess than before. (Form 1927, anyone?) But make no mistake, we are still sucking the government teat just like always.
UC is still firmly entranced at LANL. UC created the mess that led to the LANS takeover. UC then, couldn't just leave gracefully. Instead UC did what it could to shove the military-industrial complex down the collective throats of its once-loyal LANL workforce. UC not only got it's pound of flesh in the process, it cannibalized what little was left of a once great research institution. So much for UC's benevolent oversight.
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