Nov. 5, 2016 General Membership Meeting

  • Membership approved a new collective bargaining agreement at the Solidarity Center. The three-year contract covering 22 Guild members expires Sept. 25, 2019.
  • Executive Director Cet Parks reported that UFCW management and Guild have agreed to a contract extension. The previous agreement expired Oct. 6.
  • Pattison reported that his Guild unit, Catholic News Service, had been offered a one-year contract extension with a 3 percent raise and no changes to healthcare coverage. Current pact at CNS expires Dec. 31.
  • Discretionary authority to arbitrate was granted in the discharge of the unit chair at Change to Win.
  • Nominations were opened for officers and for at-large council seats for the 2017-18 WBNG Executive Board. Sheila Lindsay (American Nurses Association) and Mark Gruenberg (at large) were nominated to continue to serve as president and secretary, respectively. Treasurer Amy Lampkin (AFL-CIO) was nominated for the vice president position, and the current VP, Tim Fitzgerald (American Postal Workers Union), was nominated to be the new treasurer. All four nominees accepted their nominations.
  • At-Large Delegate nominations were made for Gabe Gonzalez (AFL-CIO), Mark Pattison (Catholic News Service), Matt Losak (at large), Elise Bryant (at large), and Jazmin Gargoum (Working America). Gonzalez, Pattison, and Losak were present at the meeting and accepted their nominations. Byrant and Gargoum were to be immediately notified, and had until Nov. 11 to acknowledge their nominations.
  • It was noted that no other board nominations were received
  • An Elections & Referendums Committee was named: Steve Cook (Bloomberg-BNA) was named chair, and Pattison and Gonzalez were named as committee members. Pattison and Gonzalez agreed to step down if there is a contested election for the At-Large Delegate seats for which they have been nominated.
  • Unit chairs present at the meeting were asked to remind their members that in order to be eligible to vote they must be current on their dues as of the end of November.
  • An election timeline was adopted:
    • 7: Letters to nominees to accept/reject (Email responses will be accepted)
    • 11: Deadline for receipt of responses in writing and/or email to accept/reject.
    • 14-18: Preparation time, printing and for mailing notice.
    • 18: Notice goes out to membership announcing nominees.
    • 19: Petition Period begins
    • 3: Petition Period ends.
  • Matt Losak, chair of localwide “small units” unit said that he will set a January date for that unit’s meeting to select its allotted six members to the WBNG board.
  • Local Representative Rick Ehrmann reported that the Washington Post is adding staff to the newsroom, but is “bleeding the commercial side.”
  • Ehrmann discussed bargaining for a first contract at the Center for Popular Democracy (45 members). He said that an agreement is likely to be modeled on the Guild collective bargaining agreement at CASA de Maryland – Ehrmann said “CPD is a member organization.”
  • Board member Chris Stergalas (Working America) introduced the redone WBNG website. Suggestion was made to include short bios, with photos, of officers and council members.
  • In response to a query regarding the monthly report on dues-paying membership at the local’s 27 individual shops, WBNG President Sheila Lindsay (American Nurses Association) said that “cultural transformation and manager’s bullying led to mass exodus” from the ANA Guild unit.
  • The next General Membership meeting was set for Jan. 31 in the Local 32035 Washington office.