George Orwell was an optimist

Scott's picture

Ethics signpostBack in October 2008, SEIU International appointed members to the SEIU Commission on Standards and Ethics. They touted this group as an, "independent panel of academics, clergy, ethicists, and union leaders." The fifteen members were supposed to deliver a "comprehensive package of recommendations to the International to ensure that the Union's leadership is held accountable to the members at all levels."

At the March SEIU Local 503 Board of Directors meeting, Alice Dale presented the new ethics policy that the International intends to adopt. This is the period where they solicit feedback from Union leaders. Then the International intends to rubber stamp this at their May meeting. Did I mention that this policy affects all union leaders? Including the Locals? Without any say or vote in the matter!?!

Sure, they're talking to some of the Locals. But they're only soliciting feedback. There's absolutely no guarantee that any changes will be made to the policy. There's also no guarantee that the leaders in the Locals have any idea what the impacts can be. I'd be glad to give them an analysis, but none of this is put out for PUBLIC review by the membership.

And what about this "independent panel?" You have to question their motives and integrity. I don't care if they're judges, clergy, or my own mother. Half of the members are SEIU Internation Vice Presidents. You know, the ones we voted for. Oh wait, that's right, we don't get to vote for International officers. The other half were paid to participate! They call it a stipend. That's one of those words you use when you want to imply that only a little money was received. Too bad we don't know how little it actually was. It's only our membership dues!

So, Andy Stern and the International want a code of ethics to apply to Union leaders. So they can be held accountable to the members. I'm sure that it will give Andy a much stronger platform to stand on when he attacks another Local like he did SEIU-UHW. Now we've got some official documentation saying why the Local leaders are scum-of-the-earth and the Local has to be put into trusteeship under a well-paid International Vice President appointed by Andy Stern!

Just remember, as members, we're not very bright. We'll have to ignore the double-standard that is sure to be applied. We can't have a pesky policy interfere with Andy himself, or his chosen elite. The ones he appoints to office. The ones he appoints to take over Locals in trusteeship. The ones that the International funds heavily to be sure they are elected "fairly" in an open election by the members. The same people who are being linked to scandal-after-scandal.

It's not hard to imagine how this will be used as a weapon against those who oppose the corruption at the International level. Just ask our Brothers and Sisters at the Department of Moral Superiority (DHS) about how the DHS Core Values are used to spread fear, uncertainty and doubt . How they are used to punish represented staff; which is not allowed by the Contract, but is a daily occurence. Or how the sheer hypocracy of the highest management levels means that the same standards are not applied to management.

Pope Andy Stern I

Say hello to the SEIU New Order. And let me present our illustrious leader...His Holiness, Pope Andy Stern the First!!!

__________________

Scott
—————
"An intractable problem can only be resolved by stepping beyond conventional solutions." — Ozymandias

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Re: George Orwell was an optimist

My uneducated understanding of the "Standards for Ethical Conduct" is that locals are encouraged to adopted the new code ASAP. I actually corresponded with one of the board members (VP Linda?)who is from SEIU local 49 which represents health care workers in the Portland area and is associated with local 503. The Standards for Ethical Conduct deal with fiduciary (monetary) malpractice and conflict of interest by SEIU officers. The Standards for Ethical Conduct between Union officers and members wasn't addressed and may only exist in the LMRDA of 1959 and its applicable federal codes.

If you visit SEIU 49's homepage, you will see that they have a very nice member/steward mission statement and link prominently displayed.

Scott's picture

Re: George Orwell was an optimist

The push to adopt was for the previous version. They are still working to finalize this latest go-round. I am absolutely a proponent of transparency and accountability. If I wasn't, I wouldn't be spending time to bring information to the masses.

This time, they aren't pushing for adoption however. They are mandating it! So much for representation.

While such a code sounds good, I have serious, serious concerns that it will be handled like a blunt instrument. It will be a convenient weapon against those not in Stern's good graces. And ignored for those who are. Ask the thousands of members in Sub-local 200 who live with the burden of perfection known as the Core Values.

 

__________________

Scott
—————
"An intractable problem can only be resolved by stepping beyond conventional solutions." — Ozymandias

Re: George Orwell was an optimist

The actual "code", (last time I read it in Sept. '08) is very brief and isn't strenuous to read. You could probably post it on your web page for inspection.

Scott's picture

Re: George Orwell was an optimist

The previous code you saw last September is not the same as the current recommendation. The Committee wasn't even formed until October 2008. I'm sure the new-and-improved code builds off of the previous work. If the new version was public, I'd certainly post it for review by the masses; something they seem to be avoiding.

__________________

Scott
—————
"An intractable problem can only be resolved by stepping beyond conventional solutions." — Ozymandias

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