I thought I would start a thread where those of us that are stewards can offer our advice to others for certain circunstances. All stewards welcome no matter your beliefs. My hopes are we can teach and learn various ways of enforcing our contract, and issues at work etc... I would like to keep this only as a discussion on issues at work, so please let's not discuss the Teamsters vs the APWA in this thread. Thanks in advance! Without writing my Autobiography, I'll give a brief history of my time at UPS, or brief as I can. I started part-time in 1987 on the preload sort loading the feeders in what we called the doghouse, and did that for quite awhile. After those first couple of nights, I was wondering what the hell I had gotten myself into. One funny thing, I was loading in the trailor with a guy studying to be a preacher, so I would try to taper my language to be respectful of him. Anyway, this guy would lay some serious curse words out, so I didn't have to. Things like GD it!! A few F bombs here and there. LOL So I would say, "man I thought you're going to be a preacher" his response "F_ _ K YOU'! LOL So it can truley be said, that UPS can make a preacher cuss! The first year I didn't know what a Union was, or what I was paying them for. After about a year, they hired people off the street and skipped right over alot of us, and not even seeing the contract, or knowing anything about it, we did start asking questions, but the full time steward at the time, wanted to play head games and act like he didn't know what we were talking about when we asked to see a union book, after quite a while we finally got the union book aka the contract book. The got away with alot when we/I was ignorant, but times changed quickly as knowledge when used is power. I started being a steward sometime in 1988, and stayed on it for the rest of the time I was part time, which was until 93. I didn't want to go straight into driving and be a steward, due to the trial period and not knowing that much about the full time portion of the contract, but the drivers said they were writing my name in, in the election for stewards etc...They did and I won one of the Steward posts, and have been going at it since then. One issue I would like to discuss in getting started on to the purpose of this thread is one that is tough to defend to some degree, and that's attendance. The reason I am opening with this is because though I have only seen a couple of people fired attendance got a couple of them. Things they can't use against you are: (1) paid sick days, approved /vacation days personals. they are negotiated benefits. Please always request to see which days they are using if you are in the office for attendance. Also FMLA, (Family Medical Leave) which is a Federal Law. They like to tell you you have to be cleared by HR, but notice is to be given as soon as you know, and if you are the primary care taker of the individual you are taking to the hospital. I'll post more extensively if anyone wants more on the FMLA later. Various Supplements will differ, so I can only speak from mine. (Atlantic Area Supplement) Tardiness and absentee rules mandatorily must be bargained under the NLRA (National Labor Relations Act), under my supplement it says at least 1 hour notice for absences, and for tardiness it says "where an employee does not report at the scheduled starting time, the dailey guarantee shall be reduced by the amount of lateness, if allowed to work by the employer." I have never seen them reduce the dailey guarantee for that. Everyone would be late everyday if they did. The problem comes when people call in over and over and it makes the union and you and especially the worker involved look bad, so please be careful and know when you're crossing the line. If you've been written up, and given a warning letter, you know if you're getting out of hand with it. Also make sure the company has follwed the progressive discipline, as outlined in your supplement etc... All comments and suggestions welcome. When filing a grievance once it comes to the putting it in writing, I suggest you look for an article under the national master where applicable, unless your supplement etc...is stronger. Another issuse I think people should be made aware of is change is start time because often they will just change someone's start time without proper notice, and when done improperly, you can get time an 1/2 for all unscheduled hours if your supplement allows it. "When the starting time of 50% o more of a shift is changed, one weeks notice shall be given, except in the event of an act of God. When the starting time of less than 50% is changed, reasonable notice of 48hrs is to be given. If the company changes an employees start time, the employee will be compensated at time and one-half for all unscheduled hours worked in any one day. I bring this up because I notice that they give not even 24hrs notice to drivers to come in and take the 10 point check list test, so you can make e'm pay you (1-1/2) if you so desire. Check your supplements etc...to be sure. It's under "Paid for Time" in my Supplement, which is different than the Paid for Time in the National. I suggest to anyone and everyone to always keep up with your hours of work. Write them down, make them put a time clock you can punch up, if neccessary. I know especially with part-timers, they have alot of "payroll errors". Article 17 under the National Master deals with the back pay issues. Don't back down if you're due penalty pay and stay on your ba's behind about it. That's all for tonight, but please feel free to add to, and or make suggestions for other defenses for these any issues you wish to.