Bad Union Stewards

Discussion in 'UPS Union Issues' started by hyena, Sep 22, 2008.

  1. hyena

    hyena Well-Known Member

    I was wondering if any other people out there have had bad Union Stewards who dont stick up for the contract, and who always side with management. I am always willing to work problems out but my steward always seems to push me to change my mind about a grievance with management right by his side. I would appreciate any comments you may have or stories. I really would like for him to go on his way and let someone else get in there and stick up for the people instead of blowing everyone off. Whenever anyone files he complains saying hes about to give up being Steward but he still stays. Its funny because im a newbie only been here a couple years and im learning the contract and ill quote articles and then hell go look them up. Also when are reelections held?
  2. DS

    DS Fenderbender

    I think ....It happens a lot in smaller centers when you have nobody else that wants to be a steward.Maybe you should step up.
    hyena for steward!
  3. soberups

    soberups Pees in the brown Koolaid

    I dont know anything about your situation, so I cant speak to it specifially.

    What I can say, as a steward myself, is that there is a common misconception about the role of a shop steward. Our role is to be neutral, be a witness, and make sure the contract is upheld. I am not a defense attorney. I dont have a magic shop steward wand that I can wave about to solve problems with. I cant force management to do something they have decided not to do.

    A lot of times, being a shop steward also means giving the employee the bad news that the company is right.

    I have also dealt with a lot of employees who are ignorant of the contract and have never been to a union meeting. The first time I tell them something they dont want to hear, they accuse me of being "on managements side" when all I am doing is explaining to them what their rights are and what the company's rights are. The moment that they dont get their way, they choose to become a victim and blame the union for their problems. I had one employee blame "the union" because his manager couldnt give him the day off due to higher seniority drivers having scheduled optional holidays for that date.

    If you feel that you are not being adequately represented by your steward, then you need to talk to him about it. You also need to attend union meetings, get a copy of the labor agreement, and educate yourself about the contract and the grievance procedure.
  4. over9five

    over9five Moderator Staff Member

    Never, unless someone wants to run against him. If you or someone else wants the job, all you have to do is request an election from your BA. The BA will set a date, let everyone in your center know, and you will all vote by secret ballot before your start time. You could have a new steward that fast!

    Soberups is right in his description of the stewards duty, but I like a steward who likes to 'get into it' with the management team!
  5. hyena

    hyena Well-Known Member

    I understand what your saying Soberups and Im not expecting him to wave a magic wand. All I want is to know that my union steward is there for his people not just me but for everyone. I find it funny that everytime we have a conversation with my management team that im having a problem with, he has to put in there well Ive been here forever and this is the best manager that this center has ever had.If this is UPS best then were all screwed but I dont believe that. I bet there are alot of better managers out there. All im saying is enough with kissing managements backside.
    As far as Union meetings go I just started attending Im learning everything in this contract that I can, ive been educating myself in it, and have also had help from several members on here, Thanx to all who have helped!!
    Ds as far as hyena running for Steward not yet. Im young and I havnt been there long enough. I do feel that one day I will make a great one...
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2008
  6. hyena

    hyena Well-Known Member

    Oh and I also wanted to address what you said about people blaming the Union when things dont go there way. Im a human I understand that sometimes things wont go my way. Weather it be my fault or someone elses. The Union has done nothing but help me so far (except my shop Steward). With my situation ive won and lost without actually doing either. Hopefully you understand what I mean. The outcome wasnt what I wanted, but I was still thankful my Union had my back, and ive never blamed them because I may not have gotten what I wanted but they fought for me! So in a sence I did win!
  7. speedbug

    speedbug Member

    Great response Soberups, as a stewrd myself I can relate to all your points. What gets people :censored2: off is when another steward lies to them and tells them what they want to hear just to make them happy and then they come to you and you tell them the truth.
  8. hyena

    hyena Well-Known Member

  9. 705red

    705red Browncafe Steward

    As a steward you have to take the people out of the mix. Its my job to look at the contract language and explain the grievants/union side of it to management. The biggest complaint i hear is how can ups do this the contract says this. Ups agrees to a contract in principle but will violate it at will hoping that no one will make a beef about it. This is were the steward steps in and attempts to fix the problem. If not than a grievance will be filed.

    Being a steward is a thank less job, some people love you when they are in trouble, some people say that you cause the trouble, and if your a good steward the company dislikes you, so its a no win situation.

    We will be cleaning house in the next couple of weeks in my building, we have close to 25 stewards with only a handful worth anything and alot of new blood that plans on steeping up. The members decide in an election who will be there steward, and god sometimes do i pray that i would lose.
  10. hyena

    hyena Well-Known Member

    Great response Red! This I can I agree with, you dont sell your emplyees out. To me this is what a steward should be. I knew you guys were out there! You know maybe it is time for the youngblood to step up. If your not willing to make a stand against what is wrong then maybe you shouldnt be...
  11. tieguy

    tieguy Banned

    Hyena at this point you have gotten some great responses from some stewards here. I think Sober gave an awesome response to your questions. Red I respect a lot for the passion he brings to the job. Perhaps you could give us an actual example of an issue where you felt the steward did not represent. your reason for saying so and the stewards reason for feeling your case was not a winner.
  12. hyena

    hyena Well-Known Member

    Ok how about everything ive filed against. Its funny my stewards against it all but my BA has backed me on everything. I really would like to explain it to you Tieguy but right now I cant. I told you before what im about and of a couple situations. Right now theres a process im going through. When its all said and done I will gladly give you some examples and see what you think. And I understand you are a manager but I really believe that you will see it my way when its done. Although you piss me off for taking my rep points(lol). I believe there may be some good in you.
    And I do agree soberups gave a good response too. I know it is hard for you guys to understand what im going through with little info. For that I apologize but nothing I can do at this time.
  13. What'dyabringmetoday???

    What'dyabringmetoday??? Well-Known Member

    I wish I was in your local. It is nice to see some people that still believe in the union. I am not saying going around threatening people and all that, but actually taking a proactive approach. You guys seem to have it together out there.
  14. IDoLessWorkThanMost

    IDoLessWorkThanMost New Member

    Depending on the building, a few smaller centers I worked in had knowledgable and helpful stewards - up here in the hub, if you run against a stiff steward (theres more than a few), management would encourage unknowing and unfounded teamsters to vote for the management guy. That's how bad it is.
  15. hyena

    hyena Well-Known Member

    That should tell you something right there. If a managers telling you to vote for someone you should be doing the opposite. Thats how my steward got in management helped. The other guy would have been alot better I really dont know him all that well but from what Ive heard he wouldve been the kind that over95 likes!
  16. 705red

    705red Browncafe Steward

    I agree somewhat, we have stewards that only worry about their center/drivers and are very good at it. They have a good relationship with management and represent the members 100% when they are in the office. However they will walk past a supervisor working without even calling them on it. They wont go out of the way to get involved with what is not brought to them by a member, which isnt a horrible thing (i guess).

    Right now as you know we are in the process of voting on our new contract, management is holding pcms asking hem to vote yes on it. Im holding meetings with the employees and informing them on the new proposal and holding question and answer meetings. I have members tell me they are voting no just because management is pushing a yes vote.

    I dont really care how anyone votes, i explained that i approve of the new contract and i am voting yes on it and all that i am concerned with is the members voting. If it gets voted down back to the table we will go, but i would love to see close to 100% particpation, and 12000 plus votes mailed back.
  17. hyena

    hyena Well-Known Member

    I understand there are good managers out there and I have no problem working with them or getting along with them. Some people may view me as anti-management and think I have a "us vs them" outlook but I dont. Everyone has to remember I say what I see and what I see at my center is a huge problem. Ive had jobs where Ive gotten along great with my managers at my center they just want to bully people. Most people at my center complain about alot thats going wrong but dont file. Its all violations of the contract but for some reason management has it to where people dont file. Alot of that comes from the steward to because hes the "leader" of the people in a sence so they convince you together not to file. There were a few I had let go because they convinced me not too. Its hard when you think the stewards on your side, then you go into the office and he starts agreeing with everything management is saying when you know your 100% correct. I know this feeling it sucks because I have experienced it firsthand and ive also seen my steward tell other people stuff thats not right so they dont file. I dont believe this is right to me theres alot of responsibility thats comes with being a steward, and sometimes management will be right and in that case so be it. I dont know maybe im rambaling on... but I have former Stewards telling me im doing the right thing!
    I hope your contract gets worked out for the best. I feel from your responses that you are a good Steward. I think your doing the right thing by having the questions and answers meeting and imforming the people. Thats Great! I wish I could have learned a different way then what I have but I guess you play the hand your dealt. Those guys shouldnt not vote just because management is pushing yes they should learn the facts first and see if it is a good deal. I mean no matter what your not going to get everything you want and theyre not going to get everything they want, you have to compromise and meet in the middle. Good luck with everything Red!
  18. Thekid25

    Thekid25 Member

    I as do I 9five :happy-very: all the stewards I deal with get into it but still professional.