Each member of the Office and Professional Employees
International Union will receive two new
benefits—life insurance and accidental death and
dismemberment—as the result of action taken at the
union’s convention earlier this month.
Upon the recommendation of the executive board,
delegates to the union’s triennial convention held June
3-6 in San Diego, approved providing each of the
union’s 105,000 members with $2,000 life insurance
and $2,000 AD&D.
OPEIU spokeswoman Nicole Korkolis told BNA June
18 that these benefits are provided by the union and
paid for out of the general fund. ‘‘It’s a benefit of OPEIU
membership,’’ she added.
OPEIU members already receive a free towing benefit
that was approved at the previous convention in
2010. That benefit provides for two free tows or service
calls per year, up to $100 per call, Korkolis said. ‘‘This
is a huge benefit for our members, when you consider
the cost of AAA [American Automobile Association],’’
According to Korkolis, ‘‘this is how we are different
from many unions, in that we provide these benefits
free of charge to the members. It’s a great organizing
tool as well.’’
Increase for Strike Benefit/Finance Fund. In other action
at the convention, delegates approved an increase
in the amount local unions contribute to the strike benefit
and finance fund.
According to Korkolis, the union paid out $2.5 million
in strike benefits to taxi drivers during an eight-week
strike at Yellow Checker Star Transportation in Las Vegas
(85 DLR A-8, 5/2/13). In order to shore up the fund,
the amount local unions contribute to the strike fund
will increase from the current $1.75 per member per
month to $2.00 effective Oct. 1, to $2.15 on Oct. 1, 2014,
and to $2.25 on Oct. 1, 2015, Korkolis told BNA June 19.
These increases will generate $2.5 million this year,
$2.7 million effective in 2014, and $2.8 million in 2015,
with contributions to the strike fund totalling $8 million
over the three years.
In addition to shoring up the fund, delegates voted to
increase strike benefits from $275 per week to $290 per
week after a seven-day waiting period.
In other action, delegates elected Michael Goodwin
to his seventh term as president of the union, and Mary
Mahoney to her second term as secretary-treasurer.
OPEIU represents workers in a wide range of industries
including banking, insurance, higher education,
shipping, hospitals, medical clinics, utilities, transportation,
hotels, and administrative offices. In addition, professional
organizations and guilds affiliated with
OPEIU include nurses, podiatrists, insurance agents.
appraisers, clinical social workers, Minor League Baseball
umpires, teachers, and helicopter pilots.
BY MICHELLE AMBER
Daily Labor Report ® | Bloomberg BNA
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