February 4, 2011 Volume 112 Number 3

Conciliator has TriMet and ATU talking after threat of strike
Amid threats of a wildcat transit strike, a state conciliator on Jan. 28 persuaded union leaders and TriMet to take a step back and try to resolve their differences.

[Left: Outside a Jan. 26 TriMet board meeting, Steve Fung, last year�s Part-Time Operator of the Year, protests the agency�s unilateral change to health insurance.]

Carpenters dissolve 15 locals, charter four new locals
Effective Jan. 24, United Brotherhood of Carpenters dissolved 15 Oregon and Washington locals with a total of 7,000 members, and replaced them with four newly-chartered locals, one each for general carpenters, millwrights, pile drivers, and drywall carpenters. The changes also include dues reductions and a shift to a centralized dispatch system.
For Valentine’s Day, choose union-made, and shun sweat-shop products
Not all Valentine’s Day gifts are created equal. The good news is that consumers who care about humane working conditions can buy candies and chocolates made by union workers.
Single-payer summit draws 400
The Oregon Single Payer Conference, held at a church in downtown Portland, drew 400 attendees from around the state — twice as many as organizers expected. And 50 attended a workshop on the special role organized labor could play in bringing about a single payer system.
Bill proposes to add bereavement to Family Leave Act
A member of Bakers Union Local 114 is behind a bill in the Oregon Legislature that would expand the Oregon Family Leave Act to allow up to eight weeks leave to mourn the death of a family member.
Union spy finds kidnap ring in second mystery novel
Union attorney Susan Stoner has published the second in her series of historical mystery novels. Drawing on meticulously researched local history, the books follow a fictional trade union spy as he meets up with actual historic individuals in early 1900s Portland.
Book depicts mid-century millworkers at Crown Zellerbach
A new limited edition book tells stories of unionism, strikes, and dangerous working conditions at Crown Zellerbach in West Linn. Based on an oral history project, it tells the story of paper mill work in the 1930s-1990s through the voices of 17 Crown Zellerbach workers.
AFSCME 189 elects Hussey president
By 189 votes, Debbie Hussey, a union steward at Portland’s 911 call center, outpolled fellow state board member Carol Justice to win election as president of AFSCME Local 189. The union represents just under 900 city workers in Portland and Cornelius.

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