Posts Tagged ‘Service Employees International Union’

[original post 11/21/2010]

It’s one of the most beautiful times of the year in the lovely Pocono Mountains of Pennsylvania, when the trees are gorgeous hues of crimson and gold, and the sweet smell of hot apple cider is in the brisk autumn air.  As you walk in and out of little village colonials and saltbox houses donning  fall mums and pumpkins on their porches, you’re hit with that waft of burning fireplace aroma – the sort of scene that gives you that comfy feeling of peace and contentment.

But turn the corner and that picturesque scene is disrupted by a tiny sea of purple t-shirts and angry faces.  Yep, you got it – it’s the SEIU!   And they’re not in the holiday spirit, apparently.

Pocono Medical Center, a mid-sized, not-for-profit community hospital nestled in the Pocono Mountains near East Stroudsburg University, has been in SEIU’s crosshairs for months.  The union has been demanding a closed shop at the hospital, despite the desires of other workers, and has since made it the crux of its contract negotiations. They were out protesting last week, making their demands known.  (Not many from Pocono Medical Center participated in the protest, so they resorted to recruiting some nearby friends to join them).

For those not familiar with what a “closed shop” is in union terms, this means that all of those employees would be required to be a member of the union and to pay union dues as a condition of employment.

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stern-dunn-corzine

An April 30th Press Release issued by Leading Authorities, Inc., announces Andy Stern’s latest move:

“Leading Authorities, Inc. has signed Andrew (Andy) L. Stern, the former president of the 2.2 million-member Service Employees International Union (SEIU), the fastest-growing union in North America. Stern turned SEIU into a powerful political force, and Stern and SEIU were widely credited for helping elect Barack Obama in 2008.

“We are extremely proud and privileged to be representing Andy Stern,” said Leading Authorities founder and CEO Mark French. “He is a major force in Washington politics. He transformed the labor movement, raised huge sums for President Obama’s election, and exerted monumental influence on the health care debate. Everyone at LAI is thrilled to be working with Andy.”   The release goes on to state,  “Stern will be addressing audiences about politics and issues such as fiscal policy, entitlements, immigration, healthcare, and the future of the labor movement.  He will speak independently, and also be matched with leading Republican thinkers.”

About the company:

Leading Authorities, Inc. is one of the nation’s most progressive event design firms as well as a renowned lecture agency and production house. LAI represents thought leaders in business, politics and contemporary life as well as nationally-recognized entertainment acts. Our award-winning video and production departments provide professionally managed events and cutting-edge media products. Our experiential event design experts conduct workshops to improve attendance, engagement, and return on investment. With tools such as our Strategic Event Evaluation and our Event Design Workshops, Leading Authorities is setting the standard in customized, fully integrated event design.”

Aw, Andy’s got himself an agent.  Show him the money.

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[original post 4/28/2010]

I’m thinking SEIU may need to hire itself a new communications consulting firm.  Am I the only one confused by this messaging conflict?

To protest Illinois state budget cuts, thousands (which in lefty stats must mean 10, as in ten people) took to the steps of Illinois’ state capitol building, demanding the Governor shut down the state house.  They chanted, “Shut it Down Now. Shut it Down Now”.

Then, at the same protest, they marched and chanted outside, “Save Our State.  Save Our Schools.”

I don’t know which it is they’d like the Governor to do – shut down the state, or save it?

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[original post 4/24/2010]

“After a great amount of my own thought, hearing opinions from many of you, and holding them up against my own criteria—I recommend that Anna Burger not only temporarily—but then permanently—become the 10th President and first woman to lead our union.”

henry-burger

That’s what outgoing SEIU President Andy Stern requested in his April 16th letter to the International Executive Board of SEIU, as he named Anna Burger as his preferred successor.

But locals from New York, Los Angeles, Oregon, and Washington State, as well as Canada, all lined up behind Mary Kay Henry tonight to commit their votes.  According to Politico’s Ben Smith,

“It’s done,” an SEIU insider emailed moments ago.

Tonight’s development comes only days after Anna Burger’s plea to the International Executive Board:

“During my 38 years in SEIU, I’ve held every position but one and now I’m asking for your support… to be the next International President.”

However, building tensions between locals across the country that saw Stern as a divisive figure, too politically entrenched and connected to the DC complex, have left the union itself divided.  Some have seen Mary Kay Henry as a more uniting force that might break the national union away from the chains of the DC operations and bring the power of the locals back to the members again and keep the peace amongst other locals. Others (including me) speculate that she’ll infuse new life into those very DC operations and could possibly even accelerate some activities; she apparently has fewer enemies than Stern or Burger did.  As Politico reports,

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[original post 4/22/2010]

As you know, we’ve been writing for some time about The Center for Community Self-Help and its financing affiliates Self-Help Credit Union, Self-Help Federal Credit Union, and Self-Help Ventures Fund.  As of late, the organization has been under increased scrutiny for its questionable lobbying activities, its former leader and soon to be CFPA Czar Eric Stein, and  its $15 million donation from disgraced hedge fund billionaire John Paulson.

According to the Self Help website, the organizations “provide financing, technical support, consumer financial services, and advocacy for those left out of the economic mainstream.”  Within that complex web of entities under the Self-Help umbrella exists about forty or so real estate development projects.  I thought it might be a productive exercise to start looking into some of Self-Help’s individual properties.

So, I started with Barr Building, LLC, a Self-Help investment registered under its affiliate Self Help Ventures Fund.  The property is located at 910 17th Street NW, Washington, DC.

And wouldn’t you know, it happens to be home to one of our most frequent subjects:

The Service Employees International Union (SEIU).

SH-seiu-office

This seemed especially curious, because it was only recently I’d discovered that SEIU, together with the AARP, is also the proud funder and agitator for one of the Center for Responsible Lending’s other advocacy projects – its state-specific lobbying websites targeted at regulating short-term loans in an effort to insulate its own predatory practices from any private industry competition.  For example, take a look at this site, from Arizonans for Responsible Lending.  It’s chock filled with all of the usual SEIU corporate campaign elements:  the menacing title and domain name, the array of photos depicting abused consumers who simply could not have known any better, the manufactured headlines, and of course – the staple of their strategy – the studies and the research (all funded and conducted by their own organization allies).

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[original post 4/12/2010]

stern

According to Ben Smith of Politico, Andy Stern, longtime President of the Service Employees International Union, is rumored to be resigning from his position. From the Politico post:

Service Employees International Union President Andrew Stern, one of America’s most prominent labor leaders, is set to resign, according to a member of the union’s board and another SEIU official.

The President of an SEIU local based in Seattle, Diane Sosne, broke the news to her staffers at 11:35 this morning, local time.

“Last night I received confirmation that Andy Stern is resigning as President of SEIU. He has not yet made a public announcement; we will share the details as we become aware of them,” Sosne wrote in an email obtained by POLITICO.

Sosne offered no explanation for the move, but another SEIU official speculated that Stern had finally tired of the draining job.

Read the entire Politico post here.

Hmmmm…I’d speculate differently. Here are my top guesses:

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