February Letter from President Hoffman

FEBRUARY Letter to Local 4001 

Dear Sisters and Brothers: 

I want to take a page from our International Union and “inoculate” 4001 against what is coming our way. We are under assault by anti-worker groups in this country. On Monday February 26th the US Supreme Court will hear a case called Janus VS AFSCME Council 31. The likely result of this case will be to make “Fair Share fees” unconstitutional. So, in essence the fair share could still benefit from our collective bargaining but not have to pay for their share of it. 

I am telling you this because you will likely start getting mail, phone calls, and emails from people telling you that you can give yourself a raise by quitting the union. We cannot buy into their GARBAGE. What they will NOT tell you is that without the union there is nothing to stop “Bosses” from dropping our wages and making our working conditions unbearable.  DO NOT FOOL YOURSELF INTO THINKING THAT THEY WOULD NEVER DO THAT TO ME/US. Remember Wisconsin and Iowa. They will do it and they won’t think twice about it. 

I for one pledge to all of you I will not go down without a fight. Those that have gone before us fought and some died to get the rights that we have today. We cannot take them for granted and we cannot just give them away. 

On Saturday February 24 we will have a Working Peoples Day of Action at the Capital. It starts at 10:30 AM with sign making and then the rally will follow. This is a joint effort by AFSCME, SEIU, the Teachers and other unions too. Besides St Paul, it is also being held in 11 other locations in the country at the same time. 

In order to better position ourselves, we have been and will continue to work, at converting fair shares to Full Members to show the enemy that we will not be deterred. Just this week, I was joined by Sisters Denise Bickford and Mary Falk to complete a day of telephoning fair shares at their work site to ask them to join us. I am so proud and thankful for their help in converting “4” people. We made close to 90 calls, it was a great start and is just the beginning. We will continue to call, and even visit in person, both full and fair shares at the work site. Please do not be shocked when you see people from the local or council at your workplace. Take the time to say hi, we are ALL in this together. 

Do you have a co-worker that has not had a chance to sign a membership card and would like to do so? We now have the option of doing this over the phone by calling the Member Action Center at 651-450-4990. When they answer the phone just tell them you have someone that wants to join and they can take it from there. 

We need to stay the course and keep talking to each other. If you have a coworker that is a fair share, talk to them and help them see that as the late Paul Wellstone said, “We all do better, when we all do better.” 

In Solidarity,
Joel Hoffman, President