Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Third Lionbridge's propaganda session: more of the same.


Today we learned where the vote will take place and that we'll get paid for it. That goes with LB's desire to have as many people as possible voting: we certainly agree on that. Here is the message from NLRB: 

We will hold the election at the Extended Stay Suites located at 15805 NE 28th St., which is about a 12 minute walk from Microsoft Building 3.
I have reserved an extra large ground floor suite which employees can park in front of.  I will provide the room number once I receive it form the hotel. The hotel should be able to remove the bed from the room but has not promised that yet.
I propose polling from 11 AM to 1:30 PM and 2:30 to 4:30 PM.

Remember the vote is anonymous and secret.

We completely disagree with LB's assertion that a union is a business and their other claims about what is needed and how costly it's going to be. 

In Washington State a union is incorporated under Chapter 24.06 RCW, the non profit miscellaneous and mutual corporations act. 

There is no need to incorporate before a positive vote takes place as you can check with the NLRB (as we did). 

Our union, if we vote to create one, is going to operate on a voluntary basis as it has until now and because of our small size we don't anticipate any complex reporting, nor any need for high fees, that will be decided together. 

We had mentioned $2 per month as a possibility. 

Even when already existing unions ask for a fee, their members only pay once the contract has been approved with a pay increase that covers the fees. 

In any case that's not how we plan to operate but it was interesting to see how LB wanted to paint such a dark and negative picture of a union that will be formed by the very people who were in the room and are doing such a good job but cannot obtain any raise or real benefits (not legal obligations) because that would put LB's competitiveness in danger.

Of course they cannot tell us anything about how much they are paid by Microsoft and they cannot afford a cost of living increase.

We should mostly be thankful they did not reduce our hours to 30 per week.

They continue hammering the union could not promise or guarantee anything as if we had done any of that while LB itself does not promise or guarantee anything either.

You can reread the answers to the FAQ posted on the blog as they provide more information on those issues.

It was interesting to hear that Microsoft does not tell them how much to pay their employees because in the late 90s when the class action was taking place Microsoft did require it's contractors to provide benefits, some health insurance and up to $500 worth of training.

Who is to say they could not do it again while the WA legislature has considered mandatory paid sick leave (like in Seattle) and some paid time off. Nothing passed because of the Republican control of the Senate but this could change in the next elections.

In any case we can ask for those changes that are supported by many very active organizations like Momsrising.org.

But we are not there yet.

I realize I forgot to mention the lie about annual performance reviews but we all know there was none.

As for the few people (4) who used to be Tier2, now working as Tier1 but who kept their full time regular classification and benefits it is now clear they should not vote as Richard told us Tier1 status could only be temporary flexible without benefits.

To finish on a more positive  note our friend Wei (who was fired despite her seniority) has found another job she likes.

I hope all this propaganda did not impact you negatively while we prepare ourselves for an unpaid Labor Day.

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