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Thursday, September 06, 2007

Clarification on Union 101


I would like to clarify my comments from the last post.

When I said:

The other day at at a Union Meeting, I had the pleasure of answering a question that boggled my mind. A firefighter stopped by to borrow some items from the Union. Items which the Union owns and regularly allows members to borrow. It just so happens that the member stopped by minutes before a Union meeting. He asked what we were doing there. I told him we were there for a meeting. Then he asked "What do you guys do at the meeting?". In which I responded we are planning out his career. He had no comment.

I meant this as an ambiguous example to drive home my point that the members need to be informed because obviously some of them aren't. I did not bring this up as a personal attack on anyone and I realize that the member who asked the question did not mean any harm by it. I do not expect all 250 of you to know everything that is going on all the time. I just wanted to show the degree of communication that needs to occur, which doesn't.

On the other hand, if you have an issue with what I write then you can do one of many things. You can call me, page me, meet me in person, email me, leave a comment (to which I usually answer), or just let it be. I prefer the communication, especially if you take issue with my words.


Anonymous said...

Did he stay for the meeting? Rhett, can you post meeting dates on here? Just to remind us. I dont know where the hell my pager is and know alot of guys who dont carry them at all? Just an idea.

Anonymous said...

as an officer of the union what do you plan to do about the communication problem in the union?

FireFleitz said...

That is a great question.

Here are some of the things we have tried and/or still use.


calendars for meeting dates


posting information at stations


phone calls


word of mouth

I can tell you that the meetings are probably the most effective of informing our members. Basically, we pick up several members with each communication type, but we still don't get them all. I guess if all of the members sought the information they would have an easy time finding it.

I believe that the Local plans on putting the minutes on the website soon in order to allow all members to view them. However, currently only about 30 members have signed up on the new website so only 30 could actually view them. So I don't know how effective that way to communicate with our members would be either.

There also is a message board under the new website that you can get to once you register and login. I have been pretty good about confirming registration within a couple of hours.

As far as meetings go, I don't see a problem with posting the meeting dates on here.

Thanks for the feedback guys.

Jebadiah said...

Those who do have email address established with the union and wished to reieve minutes could have them electonically sent to them each week. That is how I currently get mine, at my current job.

Anonymous said...

Who updates the information on our union boards in the station, because it seems every stations has out of date postings on them?

FireFleitz said...

A couple of things...

Todd, it is good to hear from you. I hope that all is well over in Iraq or wherever you are stationed.

Thanks for mentioning some of the stuff the union members do. So many people are quick to point out that the union members don't do anything, yet the list is long and distinguished and could be more if we had more participation.

We have had 2 or 3 people successfully get heart/lung bill related disability that I know of. Someone made a comment on the other post that no one had.

As for updating the Union boards. There should be a brand new message posted on all of the Union boards related to when the next meeting is and that we are holding elections for B-shift Vice President.

Nominations for the elected officials up for next year will begin at the same meeting. In case you are wondering, the meeting will be on September 24th.

I will have to look, but I believe that the Secretary/Treasurer and Vice Presidents are up for elections. I think some of the other offices are as well, but I don't have it in front of me right now.

As for updating the Local website, currently I am the only one doing it. I don't have a lot of time to give towards this effort and continue to look for anyone interested in updating the site.

Anonymous said...

I know of a few who received the heart and lung.

Johnny Lester (just recently)
Curtis Roberts
Porky Morris
Slim Hamblin
Johnny Guilliams

Anonymous said...

Yippy Ki-Yay! A cookout at the union hall....anyone have a bullet proof vest I can borrow? What a great venue for families to get together and dodge bullets, I mean eat hot dogs.
Why dont we sell the union house and just rent a space for the union meetings?? We could use the money from the sale of the building for better things that help US, the firefighters. The union hasnt done anything I've ever brough up. Always wanting to pass on the smaller issues and fight "the bigger fight". The smaller issues is what we care about most locally and those issues are always overlooked because the union officers dont want to get passed over at promotion time. What an oxymoron...union officials trying to get promoted?

Anonymous said...

If you think you can do a better for a position..Nominations are being held the next couple of months. So put your money where your mouth is.

Anonymous said...

This business of telling folks if they want change, get's that working out for you? Good for debate, doesn't get butts in seats. Yes you may stand proud at the next meeting and proclaim how you are the rightest man in Roanoke...and both people there may agree.
It seems that if the issue is getting people more involved, then you must do to what works to accomplish that goal. It may be time for creative marketing without high minded appeals to social responsibility.

You know who

FireFleitz said...

You are right as the rain.

You had me until:

creative marketing without high minded appeals to social responsibility.

I feel like shit now.