OSA Newsline - September 28, 2009

At the membership meeting last week, OSAís executive director Sheila Gorsky talked about the challenge of the upcoming Staff and Associate Staff Analyst exams. Filing is due to open in December with the tests in late February.

The first problem that is obvious is that it will be hard giving a training course within a six week period.

Second, February is probably New York Cityís coldest month. Candidates may be frozen stiff while waiting to get into the schools for the test, and heaven forbid any schoolís heating being defective on the day of the test.

Sheila is appealing to the Personnel Division of DCAS for a spring date for the exam. Making the matter more serious, there is an open competitive ASA exam as well as an open competitive SA exam and many thousands may apply.

A discussion was also held on the flu shots now mandated for our Health and Hospitals Corporation members. DC37, as the citywide representative on the issue, will be meeting this week to negotiate the impact and OSA Vice-Chair Tom Anderson will represent us. There is a law saying the injections should go forward, so we are negotiating the impact rather than HHCís decision to mandate the shots.

Finally, after the meeting, OSA Chair Bob Croghan reported on his just-completed vacation, an archeological tour covering Greek and Pontic sites in Russia, Turkey, Bulgaria, Greece, Malta and Italy. The tour was great, but usually uphill since the temples and theaters were almost always built on mountains or at least a hilltop. It was worth doing.

OSA Newsline - September 21, 2009

This is a very fast and brief update. There is a membership meeting this Thursday night at the union office, 220 East 23 Street Suite 707, between 2nd and 3rd Avenues, starting promptly at 6pm. You will be very welcome.

For those OSA members and retirees whose health may have been affected by the World Trade Center attacks and their aftermath, there is a World Trade Center health forum on Tuesday night, the 22nd of September, from 4:30 to 7:30pm at Bellevue Hospital Center, C/D Building, in the Old Library, on First Avenue between 27th and 28th Streets. This may be especially valuable for those who were unable to attend the forum OSA held at the union office in the fall of 2008. You can download a flyer by clicking here.

And now, some photos from the Labor Day Parade taken by Rob Spencer (except for the two with him in it, the second of which was taken by member Sam Sills).

OSA Newsline - September 14, 2009

OSA was at the Labor Day Parade this past Saturday, sporting OSA helium balloons in white and green and a fine crowd of activists. We looked great! A lot of people need recognition. Of course, there were the parade organizers from the NYC Central Labor Council who did a fine job and the weather angel who did not send us more than a couple of wet drops, but what you want to hear about is OSA.

First of all in the recognition parade, there is Rob Spencer, OSAís media man, who handled all the committee work and publicity and organization. He was ably assisted by Paul Tighe, who pitched in really well. Great job, gentlemen! Next, there is captain Marvin Lutenberg who navigated the OSA flagship. He didnít fall asleep at the helm or run over anyone! We are glad he was there. Organizers Joe Sperling, Ida Chin and Mike Spector did the cheerleading and provided morale. And then, there were our members and their family and friends, who braved the elements and marched up Fifth Avenue.

Here is the list of those who marched (in alphabetical order): Kazi Ahmed, Annis Ambris, Tom Anderson, Rafiu Balogun, Regina Berry, Jackie Campbell, Ida Chin, Joyce Cleveland, Esther Davis, Tina Donadelle Edwards, Andrew Edwards, Noreen Fabre Stahl, Marciano Florentino, Serena Freeman, John Harper, Esther John, DíAndre John, Alidryese John, Betty Lee, Marvin Lutenberg, Octavio Martinez, Alfred Milton, Stephen Parker, Dolores Parson, Charles Parson, Sam Sills, Michael Spector, Rob Spencer, Joseph Sperling, Earlene Sperling, Christina Stahl, Paul Tighe, Hsui Tsui-Ching, and someone with an illegible name.

If you were there but didnít sign our guest sheet, or if your name was illegible, arenít you sorry. Thank you very much one and all. We had OSA well-represented. Photos will appear here shortly.

Looking ahead to this week. The fruits of unionism will be tasted by our members in the mayoral agencies. The August 25th raises will be in the paychecks.

Following behind are those on the alternate pay cycle the following week (such as NYCHA) and HHC the week after that. The raises for the DOE employees will be retroactive to May 25, but we donít have a paydate and there are other titles and agencies currently being negotiated.

A reminder that a membership meeting has been set for September 24th.

There will be an update next Monday.

OSA Newsline - September 7, 2009

Happy Labor Day.

The last couple of weeks around the union office have been quiet, as they usually are this time of year.

The summer mailing should have reached you. If it hasn't, please call the union office since we probably have a bad address for you. The content can be found on this website as the August edition of News From OSA.

The contractual increases started on August 25th in most agencies, and will be reflected in the paychecks shortly. Specifically, the September 18th paycheck for most members will show the increase. The people who are on the alternate pay cycle, like NYCHA, will see the change effective on September 24th and those checks will have a tiny retroactive amount for the increment and a full two weeks of the new rate. The HHC payroll change lags even farther behind, and will start on October 2, with the retroactive change and the new rate.

The DOE (Dept. of Education) settlement will be retroactive to May 25th, but the payroll date is not certain at this time.

Several titles are still in negotiation, so their dates are also not set at this point.

As in most recent years, the Labor Day Parade is scheduled for the Saturday after Labor Day, this year on Saturday, September 12, 2009.

OSA has proudly participated in the Labor Day Parade for nearly a decade. OSA will be fielding a contingent in this year's parade and we invite you to join us. We will be assembling at 11:15am on 46th Street mid-block between Fifth and Sixth Avenues. Look for your OSA brothers and sisters and the OSA banner.

It is important for a unified labor movement to show its strength and voice its concerns. This year the labor movement is especially concerned with the Employee Free Choice Act and healthcare reform. For more on the history of Labor Day, click here.

We've had a great turnout in prior years and would like to do even better this year. You can download a flyer about the parade by clicking here. Keep it as a reminder of the date and time and share it with your OSA brothers and sisters. OSA tee shirts and caps will be provided to all who march with us. After the parade, the union will provide lunch to all who march with our contingent. Friends and family are welcome. If you are able to join us, please call Rob Spencer or Paul Tighe at the union office at (212)686-1229 and let them know you are planning to attend and whether family and friends will be joining you.

The next update will be from the parade or on Monday morning.