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Unions Are Giving Back This Thanksgiving (and Every Thanksgiving)

Unions spending time giving back to their communities

by Liz Iacobucci for the NH Labor News

The “union-avoidance” industry isn’t taking the election results lying down.  The Andrew Breitbarts of the world are already busy spinning the Hostess Brands liquidation and Wednesday’s planned protest in Los Angeles.  (If you’re wondering: there may be delays on surface streets around LAX – but the protest is not expected to impact any air travel.)

In these days leading up to Thanksgiving, you’re probably going to hear a lot of other anti-union stories in the media.  (The union-busters have a lot of money to spend on PR.)

What you’re probably not going to hear is how union members nationwide are celebrating the holiday.  A quick sampling:

  • In Palm Beach, Florida, labor unions are part of “The Big Heart Brigade”.  Last Thanksgiving, the Brigade fed 100,000 people – and they are hoping to feed even more, this year.   “Several local unions have already donated time and funds to help, including Plumbers and Pipe Fitters (UA) Local 630, Ironworkers Local 402, Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 728, Communications Workers of America (CWA) Local 3181 and Machinists (IAM) Local 971.”
  • Feed The Community Day

    Near Los Angeles, ILWU Local 13 is holding their 15th annual “Feed the Community Day”.  They will be distributing 1,500 turkey baskets with all the trimmings to help feed low-income families in surrounding communities.

  • Throughout the country, IAFF Locals are giving coats to kids through “Operation Warm”. IAFF Local 157 is distributing more than 2,000 coats to needy children in Oklahoma City, OK.  IAFF Local 215 is giving away almost 1,000 coats in Milwaukee, WI.  In New Jersey, IAFF Local 2657 is donating 350 coats.  In Pennsylvania, IAFF Local 10 plans to give a new coat to every single child who attends George Washington Elementary School, after firefighters noticed that most students didn’t have anything warmer than a hooded sweatshirt (87% of the school’s families live at or below the poverty line).
  • And of course, Hurricane Sandy relief efforts will continue through the holiday.  Nationwide, union members are contributing to various Hurricane Sandy Relief Funds.  Union members in the hardest-hit areas will continue to do what they have been doing for weeks: cleaning up, fixing up, and taking care of the people around them.

This Thanksgiving, let’s give thanks for our union brothers and sisters.  Our union family is not just standing behind us in our workplaces – unions are giving back to our communities, making things better for families in need.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Ray Guarino November 23, 2012 at 11:50 PM
Stop targeting elderly home owners and instead shift the tax burden to those who have money. Unions haven't stolen anything.
Jack W November 24, 2012 at 02:02 AM
Unions have taken what percent of the real estate tax increases in NH over the last ten years. They have exorbitant pensions, salaries and benefits. Unions should stop their greedy grubby grabbing of all that tax money. Give the money back or be called a thief, not only from the elderly but from children as well.
Reggie November 24, 2012 at 02:43 AM
There's the rub. Lets see if hassan and norelli keep their word or are they going to do a 180 on us. Good luck to all democrats if they do.
Ray Guarino November 24, 2012 at 03:51 PM
Jack W's proof that public unions in NH have taken exorbitant pensions and ripped off the tax paying homeowner is what? ................................. Just as I thought, he has no proof. Retired public workers in NH are using their "exorbitant" pensions to pay for such luxuries as: a roof over their heads, (hopefully they can afford a house in the neighborhoods in which they worked) food, clothing, medical expenses, maybe a college education for their kids if they are lucky.
Jack W November 24, 2012 at 03:58 PM
How many public employee pensions are above $50,000 per year? How about $70,000 per year?, Wait a minute try $80,000. Hold the phone, how many public employees are getting a pension above $100,000 per year. They did not EARN THAT MONEY and they DO NOT DESERVE THAT MONEY. Public employee UNIONS are ripping off the taxpayers, 100% of the taxpayers.
Ray Guarino November 24, 2012 at 05:17 PM
Tell us Jack, how many are above 50K, 80K etc? And what do you mean they didn't earn it? Anyone who goes to work each day for 25 or 30 years with the potential of being shot at, has earned it. Anyone who goes to their job each day for 30 years and has to deal with 31 teenagers from all walks of life, has certainly earned it.
NH Labor News November 24, 2012 at 05:29 PM
You are quick to point out 15 out of 50,000 retires who make that kind of money. They are also police chiefs and fire chiefs after 30 years on the job. Also the retirement system is self funded. Employer puts in a retirement amount while the people work then the money is invested and paid out after the employee retires. The problem is that legislature cannot keep their hands off all that money
NH Labor News November 24, 2012 at 05:30 PM
What is the total average of NHRS pensions ? A lot less than you think.
Jack W November 24, 2012 at 05:40 PM
Saying taxpayers do not fund these pensions is a joke.
Super Fun Size November 24, 2012 at 06:06 PM
The average annual pension for a police officer in the New Hampshire Retirement System is $33,876
Super Fun Size November 24, 2012 at 06:07 PM
The average annual pension for a police officer in the New Hampshire Retirement System is $33,876
Super Fun Size November 24, 2012 at 06:07 PM
The average annual pension for a police officer in the New Hampshire Retirement System is $33,876
snsakulu November 24, 2012 at 07:17 PM
as Frank answered I am dazzled that a student can get paid $5770 in 4 weeks on the internet. did you look at this link Cloud65.com
salemvoter November 24, 2012 at 07:35 PM
Union work rules contributed to the demise of Hostess. As well as the DEMOCRAT Hedge Fund managers of Ripplewood and former Congressman Dick Gephardt. Gepharts son was appointed to the Board Of Directors and made 100k a year. The snack giant endured $52 million in workers' comp claims in 2011, according to its bankruptcy filing this January. Hostess's 372 collective-bargaining agreements required the company to maintain 80 different health and benefit plans, 40 pension plans and mandated a $31 million increase in wages and health care and other benefits for 2012. Union work rules usually required cake and bread products to be delivered to a single retail location using two separate trucks. Drivers weren't allowed to load their own vehicles, and the workers who loaded bread weren't allowed to load cake. On most delivery routes, another "pull up" employee moved products from back rooms to shelves. http://management.fortune.cnn.com/2012/07/26/hostess-twinkies-bankrupt/
Super Fun Size November 24, 2012 at 07:44 PM
$33,876 is lavish?
Jack W November 24, 2012 at 08:42 PM
Someone on SS at 1200 bucks a month can no longer afford their real estate tax bill. In that regard $33,876 is enough that the elderly lose their homes as they are forced out. How inconvenient is that.
Proud Conservative November 24, 2012 at 08:52 PM
We can all give a big round of thanks to the unions for all the jobs they sent to foreign countries. Excessive wage demands and outrageous benefit demands did the trick. China, Japan, Mexico, Guatemala, Vietnam, Bangladesh, India, Turkey and the Dominican Republic send their special thanks!
Proud Conservative November 24, 2012 at 08:58 PM
Unions have outlived their usefulness.
I'm anonymous2 November 24, 2012 at 09:01 PM
Evidence, please.
I'm anonymous2 November 24, 2012 at 09:04 PM
And so has Conservatism.
Ray Guarino November 24, 2012 at 09:29 PM
Imagine the workers in Bangladesh now living the lavish lifestyles once enjoyed by American workers, because, as we know, multi-nationals pay workers so well in Third World countries.
Ray Guarino November 24, 2012 at 09:31 PM
As long as corporate greed exists, unions remain useful.
Jack W November 24, 2012 at 09:57 PM
When govt unions force the elderly to loose their homes because of Union Greed they are USELESS. Obviously Ray Guarino considers the elderly and retired seniors expendable. Ray, you as a democrat are very very confused and very very wrong.
LJoel Hackbart November 25, 2012 at 06:48 AM
Except that Jack W picked up this nonsense from some far right crazy blog. I don't know what right wing crazy blog you have been hiding behind but for your poor souls information the Big Banks caused Seniors and everyone else to lose their homes and trying to blame unions in your right wing crazies race to the bottom shows you are very confused and very very very wrong .
Watts November 25, 2012 at 08:22 AM
Look for the union label... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Lg4gGk53iY
Jack W November 25, 2012 at 11:04 AM
Yes 35k is too much. Don’t forget free FAMILY medical and drug benefits. Healy is the most ill informed poster on Patch. Gee ya think he does it on purpose.
Harry Obnrian December 01, 2012 at 04:15 PM
"the family" oh please, give me a break. Unions were conceived and created by progressives aka communists and communists care nothing about family values. Your own political administration is owned by the unions and look at the perverted family values they portray,... abortion, death panels, adultery, corruption, murder?? ya some family values...
Harry Obnrian December 01, 2012 at 04:18 PM
Yes, listen to your neighbors, 80% of them have been shipped in from socialist states given local or state union jobs and infested NH quite efficiently, so listen to them so they can convert you as well.
Harry Obnrian December 01, 2012 at 04:20 PM
Yes gladly an income tax as long as my property taxes are cut in half and school appropriations aka union appropriations are cut in half.
Harry Obnrian December 01, 2012 at 04:23 PM
You're right because many of these big corporations union zealots talk about don't have union labor anymore. The majority of unions are governmental, which speaks volumes for the cause of getting rid of them.

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