January 24, 2009: UHW members assembled in meeting halls throughout California to plan the future in response to SEIU Trusteeship Hearing Officer Ray Marshall's recommendations for UHW.

  UHW members from the Bay Area and elsewhere in Northern California met at the ILWU hall in Oakland to assess SEIU's plans for UHW. The International Longshore & Warehouse Union has a long history of fighting for union members' rights, and their hall was a fitting place to contemplate UHW's future.

  Inside the hall, it was standing room only as UHW members listened to UHW Administrative VP John Borsos summarize Hearing Officer Marshall's recommendations for UHW in regard to SEIU's charges of financial malfeasance. Marshall did NOT recommend trusteeship for UHW on the basis of the charges, but set unreasonable conditions which, if unmet by UHW, would result in trusteeship of our union.

  "How can I go back to my workplace and educate members about the Employee Free Choice Act , when I don't have free choice in my own union?!!!!!" --Angela Glaspar, responding to SEIU President Andy Stern's plan to place his appointed (and unelected) trustees in charge of our soon-to-be disenfranchised union. As long as UHW is affiliated with SEIU, John Borsos (seated) is forbidden by SEIU regulations to propose the obvious solution to UHW's problems, though rank and file members are free to suggest decertification or whatever else seems reasonable at this time.


"If SEIU can't put together an organization that attracts people, they don't deserve to represent them."

There was no shortage of free speech during the meeting. Members lined up to speak, some worried about life under trusteeship, all of them angry about SEIU's attempt to destroy UHW by cutting and merging its members with other SEIU locals.

  "It's time to set the captain free!" was one of many suggestions made in support of ousting SEIU President Andy Stern. UHW members voiced resentment at paying a large percentage of dues and COPE to SEIU under current circumstances.

  "We're a member-driven, not a boss-driven union!" was a statement heard many times during the morning. SEIU is perceived as boss-driven.
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