992 Days Without a Contract:
Time for Change!

News

One Battle’s Over, But the Struggle Continues!

Dear Supporters of Change at Local 100: Thank you all for your hard work on this campaign. Congratulations to the winners. We are not going away.  We fought the right fight for the right reasons.  Even though we weren’t successful this time in convincing enough voting members that the Samuelsen team wasn’t right for them, […]

Letter to the Chief: Helping Samuelsen Hide

Posted: Sunday, October 28, 2012 5:00 pm JOSEPH CAMPBELL Given that you are John Samuelsen’s “Chief” ally in his re-election bid, it’s no surprise that your editorial “Height of Hypocrisy” (Oct. 26 issue) tried to help him run and hide from the Wall Street Journal expose that showed he is trying to delay the bad […]

Joe Campbell and the Transport Workers United Slate: A Vision for Rebuilding Local 100, a Strategy to Get There, and the Experience to Make it Happen.

Our Principles:  Organizing and Mobilizing.  Smoke and mirrors don’t cut it. The only way to show management we mean business is for our leaders to stop hiding in their fancy offices and come out into the field to organize and mobilize the united power of our 38,000 members.  We will reclaim and rebuild that proud […]

Samuelsen Loses Again, Angering Powerful Allies. Brace for Political Impact.

At a time when we need all the political support we can get in Albany for our contract fight, Samuelsen foolishly went up against powerful Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver and threw Local 100’s rapidly diminishing political weight behind the primary challenger to pro-labor Assembly Democrat Rhoda Jacobs.  He lost big.  It wasn’t even close.  Jacobs […]

Secret Samuelsen Solidarity Fund Deal with TA Exposed! Potential to Bankrupt Local 100!

Through a Freedom of Information demand to the TA, Transport Workers United has uncovered a secret Solidarity Fund agreement between the Samuelsen Administration and the TA which had the potential to bankrupt Local 100, and was kept hidden from the Local 100 Executive Board, the International Union and all 38,000 Local 100 members. How did […]

Samuelsen’s Lawsuit Thrown Out, But He Keeps Using the Union’s Lawyers to Sue Members to Shut Them Up.

A Judge just threw out Samuelsen’s $4 million “defamation” suit against his political opponents in the last election. The judge found the suit had no merit, and ordered Samuelsen to pay the court costs of the members he sued. Click here to read the decision. Samuelsen used Larry Cary to represent him in this action […]

The MTA’s Business Services Center and our health benefits: Just the Facts.

The MTA’s Business Services Center and our health benefits: Just the Facts. Samuelsen failed to even schedule 10 quarterly meetings of the senior Labor/Management Health Benefits committee that were required to be held, while management was busy changing our benefits. He failed to attend, or even send anyone, to over 20 meetings that were held […]

Local 100 Bylaws Amendments: Why the Delay?

Why did it take two-and-a-half years in office? Samuelsen campaigned against changes the members voted for anyway. Once he took office, he became “confused” about the Bylaws changes he had opposed,  making up his own rules, picking and choosing what favored him and ignoring the rest.  Samuelsen has suddenly decided to publish the amended by […]

Why did it take two-and-a-half years in office?

Samuelsen campaigned against changes the members voted for anyway.

Once he took office, he became “confused” about the Bylaws changes he had opposed,

 making up his own rules, picking and choosing what favored him and ignoring the rest.

 Samuelsen has suddenly decided to publish the amended by laws that the members voted for in 2008.

Why now?

Samuelsen has spent the last two-and-a-half years

ignoring amendments he didn’t like, such as Bylaws that

  •  forbid him from putting staff on payroll on the Judicial Panel that hears charges,
  • require quarterly Section meetings (so he could deprive members of a voice and prevent people from running for office),
  • forbid current and ex-supervisors and people in bad standing from being reps. and officers, and
  •  forbid reps. from collecting money from members without strict controls,

and implementing amendments he liked, such as Bylaws that created

the new Administrative VP and Division Chairs, and a Judicial Panel (but with his paid staff in charge).

 Why now? Is it because he figured he couldn’t get away with it anymore with the 2012 elections quickly approaching?  After all, the amended by laws set rules that govern not only these elections but determine who attends the 2013 TWU International convention. So he had to do it.

That’s the kind of ethics and leadership that John Samuelsen stands for. Forget the members and how they voted! Do what he wants, how he wants and when he wants. That’s why Samuelsen Has Got To Go!

Vote the Transport Workers United Slate/

Joe Campbell for President of TWU Local 100

347-642-4535 /646-807-5736  transportworkersunited@gmail.com

One Battle’s Over, But the Struggle Continues!

Dear Supporters of Change at Local 100:

Thank you all for your hard work on this campaign. Congratulations to the winners.

We are not going away.  We fought the right fight for the right reasons.  Even though we weren’t successful this time in convincing enough voting members that the Samuelsen team wasn’t right for them, we have built an organization that will continue to put out the truth that Samuelsen and his spin doctors are hiding from the membership. We are going to keep fighting for the members of this great union, and keep working to build an organization that is worthy of the proud history of Local 100.

There is good news to report: Transport Workers United won 12 Executive Board seats. We have the majority of Divisional officers in 3 of 7 Divisions. We elected Division Chairs in 4 Divisions.  We elected 30 delegates to the International Convention.  We swept every seat we ran for in School Bus-Paratransit. And we swept every single seat in the Car Maintenance Division, from Vice President to executive Board to Divisional Officers to Convention Delegates.

The best news of all is that we have created a new team of dynamic young leaders in Local 100, many of whom made their first foray into union activism with this election.

What we must remain mindful of is that the Stand United officers are basically the same people who drove this Union into the ground. I know that a leopard never changes its spots. And now that they feel even more confident than they did three years ago, now that they believe (falsely) that they have no opposition, they will move deeper into mediocrity and apathy. We must remain focused and pay close attention to what is happening. And we must hold them accountable for this disaster of a contract coming soon.

In Solidarity,

Joe Campbell

 

Letter to the Chief: Helping Samuelsen Hide

Posted: Sunday, October 28, 2012 5:00 pm

JOSEPH CAMPBELL

Given that you are John Samuelsen’s “Chief” ally in his re-election bid, it’s no surprise that your editorial “Height of Hypocrisy” (Oct. 26 issue) tried to help him run and hide from the Wall Street Journal expose that showed he is trying to delay the bad news about a bad contract until after the Local 100 election in December. The Pulitzer Prize-winning Journal, which (unlike the Chief) has no dog in this election fight, confirmed the sad news we have been broadcasting all along: Samuelsen has no contract strategy; only an election strategy.

To try to protect Samuelsen you dredged up the 2005 strike again, pretending that 7-year-old strike, not Samuelsen’s own failures, is the reason Local 100 members are now near the end of a full year of no wage increases, a Tier 6 pension and, worst of all, no contract.

What you conveniently left out is that in 2009, the first negotiations after the 2005 strike, Local 100 negotiated a contract with an 11.23% raise, in the midst of the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression.

The only difference between 2009 and 2012 is that in 2012 John Samuelsen is the president of Local 100.

The outcome of the 2009 negotiations suggests a politically powerful, well-organized union—not the weak one that Samuelsen claims he inherited.

As for the union’s post-strike finances, the union had already done its own belt-tightening before its dues income was fully restored by the courts in November 2008. It carried no debts into 2009. If anything, in the immediate aftermath of dues revocation, the 2008-2009 round of contract negotiations took place under a more difficult situation for the union’s finances.

Among the other gains from the 2005 strike, Local 100 members won retiree health benefits for the first time ever, and bought a seven-year reprieve from the same Tier 6 pension that Samuelsen allowed in without a fight. He even called it a victory!

You also “forgot” to mention that the International Labor Organization (basically PERB for the whole world) ruled last year that the politicians and the courts violated our human rights when they took away the local’s dues checkoff, fined the members and the union and put its President in jail. The ILO said that the government should give us back those fines and compensate the local for the loss of checkoff. Maybe you “forgot” the ILO decision because the Samuelsen administration has done nothing with it. They’ve done nothing because it will take major organizing and mobilizing to implement it, and that’s just not what they’re about.

As for Roger Toussaint, he has no intention whatsoever of coming back and, luckily, it is up to transit workers to choose their leaders, not the press.

Contrary to the Chief’s biased “reporting,” our slate includes people from all factions and no faction at all. I value our members for their ability, experience and character. I don’t care who they may or may not have supported in the past. Now it’s time to make the future.

The Chief should stop serving as the mouthpiece for Mr. Samuelsen’s continuing efforts to blame others for his own failures.

JOSEPH CAMPBELL

Candidate for President, TWU Local 100, Transport Workers United Slate

 

Joe Campbell and the Transport Workers United Slate: A Vision for Rebuilding Local 100, a Strategy to Get There, and the Experience to Make it Happen.

Our Principles:

 Organizing and MobilizingSmoke and mirrors don’t cut it. The only way to show management we mean business is for our leaders to stop hiding in their fancy offices and come out into the field to organize and mobilize the united power of our 38,000 members.  We will reclaim and rebuild that proud Local 100 tradition.

Education and ParticipationLeaving the members in the dark doesn’t cut it.  We will shoulder the responsibility to enlighten and engage the members.  You have a right to real information, not P.R. spin, and to be a part of the decisions and actions that impact your life.

Hard Work.   No-Show Trade Unionism Doesn’t Cut it.  You won’t find us skipping negotiation sessions and critical meetings of top decision-makers. The best insight into how leaders lead is not what they promise to do in the future but what they ARE doing and how they live and operate in the here and now.

Unity. Infighting doesn’t cut it.  Our team is committed to working together to build better lives with and for our members, not fighting each other over perks and privileges.

Honest Trade Unionism. Financial scandals among the top leadership of Local 100 don’t cut it. We are committed to being honest stewards of the union’s resources.  And Liz Rodriguez, our Secretary-Treasurer candidate, has the financial expertise to make sure of it.

AccountabilityBlaming others for your failures doesn’t cut it.  We will hold ourselves to the highest standards.  We expect the members to hold us responsible.  We will not run and hide from accountability.

 Transparency.   Hiding the truth doesn’t cut it.  We will tell you what the contract, organizing and financial challenges the Local faces are, and how we plan to address them.

Time for Change!

We cant’ take 3 more of the last 3 years!

 

Vote the Transport Workers United Slate/

Joe Campbell for President of TWU Local 100

www.transportworkersunited.org  347-642-4535/646-807-5736 transportworkersunited@gmail.com

Samuelsen Loses Again, Angering Powerful Allies. Brace for Political Impact.

At a time when we need all the political support we can get in Albany for our contract fight, Samuelsen foolishly went up against powerful Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver and threw Local 100’s rapidly diminishing political weight behind the primary challenger to pro-labor Assembly Democrat Rhoda Jacobs.  He lost big.  It wasn’t even close.  Jacobs crushed Samuelsen’s choice with 68 percent of the vote.

Now who can Local 100 count on in Albany to support our contract fight?  Samuelsen didn’t take on just any old Democrat.  He foolishly backed a challenger against Rhoda Jacobs, who is Assistant Speaker and is close to Speaker Silver.  Samuelsen already angered a lot of allies by backing the losing primary challenger against Congressman Rangel.  This latest bone-headed move threatens to completely cut us off from the Assembly.   Are they smoking something funny up in those gold-plated offices at 1700 Broadway???  Or is Samuelsen covertly working for the Republicans and against the interests of Local 100 members?

Samuelsen’s decision to back the wrong horse was so unpopular among HIS OWN PEOPLE that he had to threaten and order paid union staff to go out and campaign for the challenger on the union’s dime.  Isn’t that illegal??

This is just the latest in an unbroken series of DEFEATS for Local 100’s political operation and mobilization machine under Samuelsen’s failed leadership. The most stunning of these was the creation of an inferior Tier 6 pension on his watch, which the Local had successfully fought off for decades. And he had the gall to call that a victory!

But there’s more:  The Rangel race.  Backing Elizabeth Crowley, who lost a Congressional race in Queens to Grace Meng. The loss of the MTA payroll tax, thanks to Samuelsen’s Republican buddy Martin Golden and his allies.  The loss of the Transit lock box.   And on and on and on.

We can’t take 3 more years of the last 3 years.

Vote the Transport Workers United Slate/

Joe Campbell for President of TWU Local 100

www.transportworkersunited.org  347-642-4535/646-807-5736 transportworkersunited@gmail.com

Secret Samuelsen Solidarity Fund Deal with TA Exposed! Potential to Bankrupt Local 100!

Through a Freedom of Information demand to the TA, Transport Workers United has uncovered a secret Solidarity Fund agreement between the Samuelsen Administration and the TA which had the potential to bankrupt Local 100, and was kept hidden from the Local 100 Executive Board, the International Union and all 38,000 Local 100 members.

How did it happen?  First Samuelsen lied to the International and said the deductions from our paychecks to pay for the Solidarity Fund were an “assessment” not “dues.”  He did this to get around the TWU Constitution, which would have required a “per capita” payment and a Bylaws amendment if the deductions were dues.   But since both the law and the TA require members’ signed authorizations prior to deducting anything other than dues from our paychecks, Samuelsen told the TA it was dues.”  Why? Because members had already signed an authorization that the TA could deduct “dues” from their paychecks when they were first hired.

See the deceit and underhanded trickery? See how they deal with members and what they think of us?

But the MTA knew that what Samuelsen was doing was either outright illegal or fishy at best. The whole world, including the MTA, knew that Samuelsen got an assessment against his members and that this was not really a dues increase. So the MTA demanded an insurance policy (Local 100′s bank roll) and Samuelsen gave it to them.

Documents obtained by Transport Workers United in response to our FOIL demand prove that Samuelsen had a member of his staff, Arthur Schwartz, sign a letter to “indemnify” the MTA from any legal liability in event that members sued over this illegal deduction. In other words if the MTA got sued, win or lose, Local 100 would bear the MTA’s full costs. Since the MTA has deep pockets, liability could run into the millions.

That reckless act alone could have completely bankrupted Local 100!   No wonder they improperly kept this “indemnification” agreement a secret from the Local 100 Executive Board and the membership.  The cover-up became complete on March 31st, 2012, when Samuelsen and Secretary-Treasurer Earl Philips potentially lied to the federal government by signing the Union’s 2011 LM2, after answering “NO” to the question whether the Local had closed out the year with any outstanding liabilities.

Now John Samuelsen wants our praise and a reward for his actions! What nerve!

We can’t take 3 more of the last 3 years!

Vote the Transport Workers United Slate/

Joe Campbell for President of TWU Local 100

www.transportworkersunited.org 347-642-4535/646-807-5736 transportworkersunited@gmail.com

 

Samuelsen’s Lawsuit Thrown Out, But He Keeps Using the Union’s Lawyers to Sue Members to Shut Them Up.

A Judge just threw out Samuelsen’s $4 million “defamation” suit against his political opponents in the last election. The judge found the suit had no merit, and ordered Samuelsen to pay the court costs of the members he sued. Click here to read the decision.

Samuelsen used Larry Cary to represent him in this action to get $4 million into his own personal wallet, and continued to use Larry Cary’s firm to pursue this action even after Cary was appointed the Union’s General Counsel.   We believe getting personal legal representation from the union’s law firm (an employer) to pursue a political opponent is not only bullying, it’s illegal.

Yet Samuelsen currently has another multimillion dollar personal defamation lawsuit going against another member (who also happens to be a political opponent) in which he is also being represented by the Cary Kane law firm. When asked by shop stewards to explain himself once that came out, he claimed that Cary Kane was doing it in a contingency basis.  Of course that kind of free personal representation is not available to any other transit worker, and Samuelsen is refusing to disclose any records on the terms or when this “contingency” work on his behalf began.

Misuse of resources is called cheating.  Trying to silence members’ voices and questions is what a bully does. Misusing your office and power is what tyrants do.

We can’t take 3 more years of the last 3 years.

Vote the Transport Workers United Slate/Joe Campbell for President of TWU Local 100

www.transportworkersunited.org 347-642-4535/646-807-5736 transportworkersunited@gmail.com

The MTA’s Business Services Center and our health benefits: Just the Facts.

The MTA’s Business Services Center and our health benefits: Just the Facts.

  • Samuelsen failed to even schedule 10 quarterly meetings of the senior Labor/Management Health Benefits committee that were required to be held, while management was busy changing our benefits.
  • He failed to attend, or even send anyone, to over 20 meetings that were held about changes to our health benefits.
  • He also failed to even schedule 30 monthly President’s meetings that were required to be held during his period in office.

He is a NO Show, Do Nothing president!

As for changes in the administration of health benefits:

  • That was in the 2002 contract, which the membership voted on and approved.  The benefits were in a huge $40 million deficit and we got a guarantee that our health benefits could not be changed.
  • In 2002, John Samuelsen  helped lead the campaign to Vote Yes on that contract.
  • For the last three years, Samuelsen has sat back and neglected us but never missed a photo opportunity and even travelled the world … while we were headed down the tubes.

Now the BSC is taking over Health Benefits AND our payroll with more to come later.

Those are the facts.  Stop the excuses and the alibis.

The MTA is being allowed to just “have its way” with us under John Samuelsen.  He’s their man and has got to go!

Vote the Transport Workers United Slate/

Joe Campbell for President of TWU Local 100

646-807-5736   transportworkersunited@gmail.com

Local 100 Bylaws Amendments: Why the Delay?

Why did it take two-and-a-half years in office?

Samuelsen campaigned against changes the members voted for anyway.

Once he took office, he became “confused” about the Bylaws changes he had opposed,

 making up his own rules, picking and choosing what favored him and ignoring the rest.

 Samuelsen has suddenly decided to publish the amended by laws that the members voted for in 2008.

Why now?

Samuelsen has spent the last two-and-a-half years

ignoring amendments he didn’t like, such as Bylaws that

  •  forbid him from putting staff on payroll on the Judicial Panel that hears charges,
  • require quarterly Section meetings (so he could deprive members of a voice and prevent people from running for office),
  • forbid current and ex-supervisors and people in bad standing from being reps. and officers, and
  •  forbid reps. from collecting money from members without strict controls,

and implementing amendments he liked, such as Bylaws that created

the new Administrative VP and Division Chairs, and a Judicial Panel (but with his paid staff in charge).

 Why now? Is it because he figured he couldn’t get away with it anymore with the 2012 elections quickly approaching?  After all, the amended by laws set rules that govern not only these elections but determine who attends the 2013 TWU International convention. So he had to do it.

That’s the kind of ethics and leadership that John Samuelsen stands for. Forget the members and how they voted! Do what he wants, how he wants and when he wants. That’s why Samuelsen Has Got To Go!

Vote the Transport Workers United Slate/

Joe Campbell for President of TWU Local 100

347-642-4535 /646-807-5736  transportworkersunited@gmail.com

Vote the Transport Workers United Slate/
Joe Campbell for President of TWU Local 100

347-642-4535 /646-807-5736 transportworkersunited@gmail.com