The UE Local 124 committee
at Genicom included Bob Holbert, Eddie Jones and Joe Gilliam. Not pictured
is Patty Marshall.
In July, members of amalgamated UE Local 124 employed by
Genicom unanimously ratified a one-year agreement calling for an immediate 3
percent wage increase. Historically, wage increases are not implemented until
January 1 of the following year. Combined with the 4 percent that employees
already received earlier this year, that yields a combined increase of 7
In addition Local 124 was able to modify current contract
language to finally receive benefits previously denied due to loopholes in
Laid-off Genicom workers have long been entitled to a maximum
of 10 weeks Unemployment Supplement Income (USI); when unemployment
compensation pays 40 percent of a weekly wage, USI adds another 20 percent to
reach a workers maximum permissible earnings. In the event of a plant
closing, workers would receive an additional 10 weeks of USI. Although the
workforce has been decimated due to product line movement and resulting
layoffs, Genicom refuses to announce a plant closing the necessary trigger
for plant closing benefits. Over the last few years Genicom has laid off all
but 20 of its former employees.
The new agreement eliminates the plant closing provision and
transfers eight of the 10 additional weeks directly into the layoff language.
Now, if an employee gets laid off, he or she will receive 18 weeks of USI
benefits. Once the 26 weeks of unemployment runs out, the full 60 percent USI
benefit continues to be paid until all funds have been exhausted.
The contract was negotiated by Local Pres. Maken Dodge,
Vice Pres. Bob Holbert, Chief Steward Eddie Jones, Second Shift
Chief Steward Joe Gilliam and Rec. Sec. Patty Marshall. They
were assisted by UE Field Org. George Waksmunski.