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District 10 Leaders
School Themselves
In Fighting Back
Against Abusive Bosses



District 10 leaders who received certificates of recognition for their organizing work pose with Genl. Pres. John Hovis. From left, Hugo Marroquin, Jose Reyes, Eva Rios, Hovis, Marianne Hart, Mike Rivera, Judy Hice and Bryan Martindale.

UE leaders from around California gathered here Oct. 19-20 to consider methods of fighting back against abusive bosses in and out of the workplace. Santa Clarita is the home of new UE Local 1004, representing staff at Henry Mayo Newhall Memorial Hospital.

Delegates condemned outrageous management practices, such as the installation of new presses at Kraco, the car accessories manufacturer, that force workers to reach too high and burn themselves, and the order of Graham Packaging supervisors to keep operating a machine with blood on it.

In response to management attacks, UE leaders discussed concrete methods of fighting back. During an "action seminar" led by UE Intl. Rep. Leanna Noble and Field Org. Robin Ellis, UE members discussed the kind of issue that demands action, and actions that can be taken with the protection of a contract, and those that can be taken without. From wearing buttons to placing posters on cars for an automobile demonstration, workers can show their unity to their boss and force change to occur.

UE Genl. Pres. John Hovis observed the key in taking action is that "you’ve got to build up to it; don’t get ahead of the members."


Delegates also reported on the UE National Convention. Bryan Martindale, Local 1421, said he came out of the convention with "more eagerness and enthusiasm to organize new people." Eva Ríos, Local 1421, attending her first convention said it was a beautiful experience meeting UE members from around the country. Pres. Hovis, reporting on the Convention’s adoption of a financial plan for the union’s future, commended the membership’s willingness to devote "their money, their time, and their energy to keep organizing."

Mike Rivera, Local 1421, UE District 10-South legislative director, reported on the FTAA. The biggest problem with Free Trade Area of the Americas is that like NAFTA it will create more poverty and job loss in the countries it covers. The lack of democracy is also a problem with FTAA. Mike Rivera noted, "If big businesses are the only ones making the opinions, then who’s going to take it in the shorts? The working person."

District 10 delegates re-elected some officers while also electing new leadership. Marianne Hart of Local 1421(Graham Packaging) was returned to the office of president. Also elected were Hugo Marroquin, Local 1421 (Industrial Alloys), vice president; Judy Hice, Local 1004, secretary-treasurer; Maria Gonzalez, Local 1014, recording secretary; Mike Rivera, Local 1421 (Graham Packaging), South legislative director; Mark Falcon, Local 1014, North legislative director; and Bryan Martindale, Local 1421 (Stepan Chemical), sergeant-at-arms. Annie Adler, Local 1004, joined Eva Rios, Local 1421 (Kraco), and Jose Reyes, Local 1421 (Kraco), as district trustees.

UE News - 11/01

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