OSA Newsline - May 31, 2004

Last week's meeting was attended by a total of 135 members, which is something of a record for OSA. Thanks to all of you who did turn out to attend.

Our first collective bargaining for the main OSA contract is now set for June 9th. Meanwhile, completion of the details on the remaining old contracts is still not yet complete. Our City does not move fast. The union actually does, but the City does not.
OSA Newsline - May 24, 2004

This week's general membership meeting is set for Wednesday evening at 125 Worth Street, 2nd Floor auditorium. There are two main attractions for Wednesday. First, will be our discussion of our contract and what it will mean to us, but equally important will be a presentation by Gifford Miller, current leader of the New York City Council and a leading candidate for Mayor.

This is an important meeting. Members should try to be there by 6pm and meetings are generally concluded before 8pm. You have to bring photo identification since the Department of Health building is a secure facility.

We had some good news last week. Two of our members from the Department of Transportation obtained justice from the Department through the grievance process. OSA grievance rep Tom Gorse was able to win them an agreement that they are to be restored to the agency promotional list, appointed permanently to the position of Associate Staff Analyst and awarded retroactive pay back to June 22, 2002. Excellent work Tom.
OSA Newsline - May 17, 2004

The executive board will be considering our non-economic contract demands at this evening's meeting. Results will be reported at next week's membership meeting.

Members should be receiving the mailing sent out last week by now. If you don't get it by Friday, please call Noreen at the union office. We will check your address and send you another copy. The same content is on this website as the May News From OSA.

The membership meeting set for Wednesday the 26th of May will be at 125 Worth Street this month, 2nd floor auditorium at 6pm sharp.

Incidentally, last week's Chief, still on sale until Tuesday, had nice coverage of OSA's efforts at the City Council on the 1 in 3 rule. A copy of the article can be downloaded from our May 2004 News From OSA page.
OSA Newsline - May 10, 2004

Last Tuesday's testimony before Councilman Addabbo went very well. Eight disappointed candidates were heard and there was, as well, a union presentation. The City Council committee chairperson showed considerable interest and expressed his desire to do something to cure the wrong being carried out by a few agencies.

The total number of members submitting contract demands reached 300 before the final deadline. The results will be reported at this month's membership meeting.

One of our representatives will be meeting with the Municipal Labor Committee's subcommittee on health this week to try to find ways to slow the soaring cost of GHI and Aetna drug rider premiums. To do so, increased co-pays for members who are actually purchasing drugs will have to be considered and that is bad. Worse yet, however, would be if the cost of the soaring premiums drove healthy members to drop the riders entirely. Should that occur, the program costs would go up even faster.

A mailing will be sent out this week and may be received as early as this coming weekend or more likely in the week to follow. It is already up on this website as the May News From OSA.
OSA Newsline - May 3, 2004

The deadline has passed for submission of contract demands to the OSA bargaining team. Before Friday's deadline, over 200 demands were received. The demands are being sorted by type and will be presented to the executive board as soon as possible.

A request has gone in to the City to begin bargaining for the 2002-2005 contract, as soon as possible. While we are waiting on their availability, we made some progress on the last outstanding contract for 2000 through 2002. The Traffic and School Safety dispute may have been resolved with a small, mostly symbolic, victory for our side. As fast as those details are printed up, they will be presented to our uniformed chapter.

Our union and a number of candidates from the Associate Staff Analyst list will be testifying before the City Council this Tuesday. Executive Director Sheila Gorsky and personnel expert Mike Schady have put together a large volume documenting the abuse of the "one-in-three" rule by the Departments of Health, Transportation and others. About 40 agencies did the right thing. A half dozen were somewhat at fault and three or four have turned their agencies into patronage mills for friends and relations. They should be ashamed and we hope to make them ashamed.

Another problem that has recently arisen in one agency is mostly absurd. It turns out that the folks who work at the 311 Call Center are being forbidden to arrive wearing jeans. Since, at least until video phones become common, callers can't even see the person answering their questions, the agency rule seems inexplicable, indefensible and strange. More on this story as it develops.

Finally, a bit of good news. In the past month, regular army paratrooper Tony Sanchez and active reserve military policeman Steven Cleary have come home from Iraq. Both young men had worked at OSA when they were in school. We are very glad to have them safely back home.