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Independent Corrections Unions? Anyone?

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  • Independent Corrections Unions? Anyone?

    I am looking for officers who have Unions that are not affiliated with any other organization (PBA / FOP / ETC). I am exploring bringing to our officers the option of being our own entity, and using all union dues for our officers, and not some state lodge covering street cops. Any information would be greatly appreciated. Also, if it is not too much to ask, I would like to see a copy of by laws just to see how they run it. Preferably, I am looking for a Union that is tight, unified, and can get what they want when they want it. Thanks!
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  • #2
    I am not a CO and I do not know anything about this union, but New York State Correction Officers are represented by the New York State Correction Officer and Police Benevolent Association (NYSCOPBA). I believe NYSCOPBA is an independent law enforcement union. Here is a link to their web site . . .

    http://www.nyscopba.org/

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    • #3
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      • #4
        An "Independent Union" no matter how well organized, will not have enough clout to go up against a big government.

        It takes some pretty major resources to hire the staff to negotiate against the experienced labor attorneys that are hired by the state.

        The way you have a union that gets what they want, when they want is to be affiliated with a national union that has some experience in labor relations. It also helps that your staff support the union by being active in the local/council leadership.

        I know many departments have problems with AFSCME International, but they have been very good for Iowa. The problems that I have seen come from the local and state council level, and having power-hungry idiots running for office.

        We have a problem, and that is that when we negotiate our contract every two years--------we have to be lumped with the secretaries at the State Capitol., DOT workers, and maintenance at the State Hospitals. All they ever want is more $$$$$ as salary (I totally understand where they are coming from). We in Corrections are already VERY well paid for our areas, and would like a better benefit package ------but numbers count and our reps always get out voted in pre-negotiation meetings.
        Since some people need to be told by notes in crayon .......Don't PM me with without prior permission. If you can't discuss the situation in the open forum ----it must not be that important

        My new word for the day is FOCUS, when someone irritates you tell them to FOCUS

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        • #5
          I am thinking 6000+ officers putting $12.00 a paycheck to union dues would add up to a nice chunk of change at the end of the year. We were talking about it and all I could think of was "What if all that money went to the direct benefit of corrections officers" and not every street cop fighting for his job for profiling or excessive force?
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          • #6
            there are plusses and minuses on both i work for nysdocs and we have a independent union because we were not well represented by unions that were looking out for secretaries and bookkeepers.now we are represented by folks that have walked in our shoes and know what we need but we dont have the numbers of the big unions. fortunately we did get binding arbitration so on the whole it has worked.

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            • #7
              Here in Michigan we have our own union for Corrections Officers, its called MCO (Michigan Corrections Orginization) but we are backed by SEIU which is sometimes a bad thing. I particulary dont care for the union but I have to pay a fee ether way so I guess i'll be in the union. But I do think the union is getting better.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by NJPrisonCop View Post
                I am thinking 6000+ officers putting $12.00 a paycheck to union dues would add up to a nice chunk of change at the end of the year.
                That comes up to about 1.8 million dollars a year.
                Rent an office
                Hire an executive director
                Hire a labor attorney
                Divide your state into districts and hire staff reps for each distirct
                Hire secretaries to handle the paperwork
                Train stewards
                Train local officers
                Pay for the time loss for your negotiation team during contract negotiations.
                Each arbitration costs our union $2500 (and the state pays $2500) and that is just for grievances not contract negotiation arbitration.

                And do it all with no backup from the international .

                California has an independent Corrections union that is quite effective most of the time.............................but they have 30,000 membership. Their dues are 1.3% their salary . Or about 1 hours wage per paycheck.

                6000 members at $12 a paycheck dosen't quite support the needs.


                Originally posted by NJPrisonCop View Post
                I am thinking 6000+ officers putting $12.00 a paycheck to union dues would add up to a nice chunk of change at the end of the year. We were talking about it and all I could think of was "What if all that money went to the direct benefit of corrections officers" and not every street cop fighting for his job for profiling or excessive force?

                Although monetary resources are important those resources do not equal clout.
                I understand what you are saying. It would be nice to be the ONLY agenda at the bargaining table, but the numbers just don't give a separate union enough weight to be viable when dealing with the state management.

                6000 people against a total statewide workforce of probably 50,000 is roughly what 8.5 % of the total workforce. That isn't much weight.

                If you are aligned with a national union (doesn't matter what flavor ---FOP-PBA-Teamsters-AFSCME etc) you then have the added weight of the total membership. I don't know the numbers for the others but AFSCME currently has about 1.6 MILLION members nationwide.

                Originally posted by redstoy View Post
                there are plusses and minuses on both i work for nysdocs and we have a independent union because we were not well represented by unions that were looking out for secretaries and bookkeepers.now we are represented by folks that have walked in our shoes and know what we need but we dont have the numbers of the big unions. fortunately we did get binding arbitration so on the whole it has worked.


                Originally posted by MI_CO View Post
                Here in Michigan we have our own union for Corrections Officers, its called MCO (Michigan Corrections Orginization) but we are backed by SEIU which is sometimes a bad thing. I particulary dont care for the union but I have to pay a fee ether way so I guess i'll be in the union. But I do think the union is getting better.
                Both of the above postings give some insight to problems/advantages of the question-------


                The IDOC deals with AFSCME, SEIU and UPI (United Professionals International) and none of them are Corrections specific.......................but they have always served the employees well.

                The membership gripes about issues, but there has never been a real concern over the 30 some years we have had collective bargaining. There was one attempt to have the Teamsters take over about 25 yrs ago----but it was quickly squashed
                .
                The Iowa council president has a seat on the AFSCME International Board-------and that person is usually a Corrections person even tho we are a minority in the council. Corrections is pretty well organized in the state----------------but that is something you have to work on .



                It's kinda funny, me talking up the union since I am management. But I was a steward, eboard member and a long time member for many years before promoting.

                I spent some time in a Sheriff's Department that had an independent union while the rest of the county employees had a "national union". We always took second place.

                I guess my concerns really come back to a simple equation ------------ numbers = clout.
                Last edited by Iowa #1603; 09-04-2009, 03:31 PM.
                Since some people need to be told by notes in crayon .......Don't PM me with without prior permission. If you can't discuss the situation in the open forum ----it must not be that important

                My new word for the day is FOCUS, when someone irritates you tell them to FOCUS

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                • #9
                  Just be prepared for some infighting, As anyone from NYSDOCS that was around for us going from C-82 to NYSCOPBA will remember.

                  My jail was about 50/50 on the challenge and it took a few years for all the resentment to die down.

                  Good luck to you, being independent can be a great thing but takes alot of work and responsability

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                  • #10
                    In Pennsylvania we have the PSCOA, Pennsylvania State Corrections Officer Association. We decertified from AFSCME 8 years ago. We have done better in our contracts that AFSCME got for their people. But we have also lost some big issues because of poor lawyers (lawyers who obviously didn't fully understand labor law lanquage), and officials that put their personal gain before its members. The later of course is my personal opinion. I think we made the right decision to decertify, but only time will be the judge of that. Our non-strike clause will always take the bite out of union power.

                    I can ask permission to post our bi-laws, but I'm not sure if that would be granted. Not to metion there are some major flaws in our original bi-laws, and fixing them is a major part of our up coming election.

                    My union dues add up to about $56 a month.

                    Here is our website
                    http://www.pscoa.org/
                    much of it is probably member only, but you could always email one of our officials, I'm sure they would probably be able to provide you with info.
                    Last edited by PADOC CO1; 09-06-2009, 02:54 PM. Reason: added a part

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