April 2, 2007: It can be hard for small locals to survive these days—especially when we are going up against big multinational corporations.
But when two small GCC locals with the same employer tried to merge, the GCC national leadership stood in the way and instead sent some of the members into an entirely different local—even though the membership of both locals and the GCC National Convention voted to approve their merger.
It started in September 2005 when the members of two small Denver locals, 440-M and 22-N, voted to merge. Both locals represent members at the Denver Post.
Instead of allowing the merger, the GCC General Board decided to transfer 440-M members into a third local, part of GCC District Council 2.
District Council 2 has been gobbling up smaller GCC locals across the western half of the United States. By the end of 2005, the last time reports were available, DC 2 reported a membership of nearly 9,000 members.
District Council 2 has multiple seats on the GCC General Board. Five DC 2 officers were in the $100,000 Club last year. The officers of Local 440-M are working members.
Last June, 440-M appealed to the GCC Convention. That body—the supreme authority of the GCC—rejected the General Board’s decision. The Convention voted by a 2-1 margin to let the members of the two independent locals merge.
Unfortunately, the story does not end there. This March, the General Board imposed a new administrative transfer. The Board moved about half of 440-M’s members and put them into DC 2 again—the very move the Convention, the GCC’s highest body, rejected.
The Board allowed the rest of 440-M to join 22-N.
When the GCC Board is willing to ignore a membership vote and a Convention vote, these administrative transfers put all small locals at risk of losing members.
Is it a coincidence that the General Board waited until after the IBT election to pull this trick? GCC national elections are next year. Now is the time to find out how candidates stand on local mergers.