Volume 3 • Number 3 July/September, 2004
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Official Publication of International Brotherhood of Teamsters Local 1150
Urging the Federal Government To Put America First!
Teamsters Local 1150 Helps
Kick-Off VH-92 American Tour
he campaign to retain the contract to build the next
generation of Marine One helicopters publicly kicked off
on Monday, July 12th when Sikorsky Aircraft officials,
UTC representatives, members of the Connecticut Congres-
sional Delegation and Local 1150 leadership gathered in the
Stratford plant to sing the praises of the VH-92.
The VH-92 is the Sikorsky Aircraft entrant in the now bitterly
fought battle to win the most prestigious military contract in
the past 40 years. The competition is a European consortium
led by British-Italian owned AgustaWestland. The fight has
been taken to the public, and it is the all-American label that
Sikorsky and the Teamsters are banking on to seal the deal.
Since word came from Washington that the government
planned to replace the aging fleet of VH-3D helicopters that
currently serve as Marine One, the Teamsters have been on
the front lines of the effort to win the contract. Teamsters
General President Jim Hoffa has been in contact with several
congressional members, as well as the president himself, to
urge them to make the right decision. Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro (center) tours the plant with
Secretary-Treasurer Rocco Calo to meet the Teamsters who
Showcasing the VH-92’s Superiority will build the next generation of presidential helicopters.
Local 1150 Secretary Treasurer Rocco Calo and President
Harvey Jackson have made several trips to Washington to
lobby members of congress and continually talk about the
importance of keeping jobs in America and the importance
of having the president fly in an American made helicopter.
As part of the celebration, Calo and Jackson were invited (RIGHT) Secretary-
to fly in the VH-92, after which Rocco addressed a group of Treasurer Rocco
invited guests and media. Calo spoke at length about his Calo addresses
displeasure with our country’s allies for their demands that
guests at a round
our government award this contract to AgustaWestland as
a payback for the purchase of some American-made military the kick-off of
hardware and for their support in Kosovo and Iraq. the VH-92
“The bottom line is they spent millions of dollars on Ameri- American Tour.
can made military hardware because they wanted the best in
Continued on page 3
U NION PERSPECTIVES
— B Y S ECRETARY -T REASURER R OCCO C ALO —
National Leadership Needed To
Fix America’s Health Care System
he cost of healthcare in this cost, universal healthcare does not have
country continues on the rise and the negative affect on health that its
has reached the breaking point. detractors would like you to believe. Rocco Calo
It is on everyone’s mind and on As I have said during all of the mem- Secretary-Treasurer
everyone’s tongue, and with a presiden- bership meetings over the past several
tial election in a couple of months, it months, and have spoken about in them to transfer the increased cost to
is the key issue of the 2004 campaign. countless one-on-one conversations the employee. In turn, the employee is
This is an issue that affects every with members, the issue of health care priced out of the healthcare system
single American, regardless of how cost is our biggest concern as a union. when he is forced to opt out of the
often or how much you use the system. We are nearly one year away from employer plan.
The system sucks so much money from beginning negotiations for our next A survey by Mercer Human Resource
the economy that we simply have less contract, and this issue will represent Consulting found that the average
to spend on everything else — and this our biggest fight. It is the number one monthly cost to an employee for family
fact puts a severe financial drain on our concern for unions and companies coverage is $359, simply unaffordable
entire economy. entering labor negotiations. for most working families. Employee
out-of-pocket costs for employer health
The Staggering Costs of Care Healthcare Costs Outpace
plans rose significantly in 2003, result-
Yearly Cost of Living Increases ing in a drop in participation from
The United States currently spends
about $1.6 trillion a year on healthcare. The Center for Studying Health 51% in 2002 to 48% in 2003. The
That equals 15 percent of the gross System Change (HSC) in Washington survey suggests employers will be
domestic product (the total output of estimates that healthcare expenses per motivated to drop retiree benefits this
goods and services) of the country! The privately insured American rose by 8.5 year because of the new Medicare
cost of health care takes a quarter of the percent in 2003 while inflation was at 2 drug benefit.
entire federal budget, far more than percent. Although recent trends indi- While insurance premiums continue
defense. Yet, even with these stagger- cate that the rise in cost may be slow- to rise and the insurance companies
ing figures, 44 million Americans live ing a bit (the 2002 increase in cost was continue to enjoy a nearly 25% profit
each day without any health insurance. 10 percent), the numbers are still far margin, they are not the only culprits in
Universal healthcare is often criticized apart. This discourages employers from the crippling of the healthcare system.
as a pipe dream — or a smokescreen. providing health insurance plans to Drug companies spend equal
Its critics say that it provides substan- their employees or at least encourages Continued on page 5
dard care with many unpublicized
drawbacks, such as lack of physician
choice and long waiting periods for O
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Teamsters Local 1150 O
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appointments and procedures. These
criticisms are not only exaggerated but
EXECUTIVE BOARD OFFICERS
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JA C K S O N JA C K S O N
in most cases they are absolutely
untrue. Universal healthcare is the Secretary-Treasurer .................................................... Rocco Calo
answer, and it works! President ............................................................... Harvey Jackson
Canada spends only 10 percent of Vice President ........................................................ Rick Rollinson
the gross domestic product on their Recording Secretary ................................................... Josip Racan
universal, federally run healthcare Trustee ..................................................................... Dan Tuozzola
system under which every citizen enjoys Trustee ....................................................................... Mitch Cairns
cost free care. According to the latest Trustee ....................................................................... Bob Duncan
figures the average life expectancy of an Business Agent ................................................... Carlos Clavarino
American is 77.1 years, yet the average Published by International Brotherhood of Teamsters Local 1150
Canadian is expected to live to 79.4 POSTAGE PAID AT BRIDGEPORT, CT 06602 POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Local 1150,
years. This clearly suggests that low 150 Garfield Avenue, Stratford, Conn. 06615-7101 Editor: Stephen French
TEAMSTERS 1150 NEWS • JULY/SEPTEMBER, 2004 • P AGE 2
VH-92 American Tour Senator Kerry Commits To
Continued from page 1
VH-92 As Next Generation
the world, and that’s what they got,” he said. “As far as
sending troops...we as Americans, for 228 years, have been
helping out anyone that asked without asking for anything in
of Presidential Helicopter
return, and they shouldn’t be [asking for anything in return]
hen he landed at
either. That’s what it means to be an ally.” Westchester County
The fight for this contract has become very personal for Airport in early June,
many, including the Teamsters. Almost everywhere you see presidential hopeful John Kerry
a Teamster logo you see the
had arranged to briefly meet
words “Proud to be an
with area veterans in an infor-
American, Proud to be a
mal greeting on the tarmac.
Teamster” — and we
What he had expected was a
are exactly that!
photo opportunity and chance
This battle has brought
to align himself with vets. What
together many groups that are
not often on the same side of he got was a bit different, a
issues. But that is the nature challenge from Teamsters Local
of this battle. Simply put: 1150 leadership, to which he
We cannot understand any responded swiftly.
Upon Kerry’s arrival at the Senator John Kerry said
American who would support
airport he was met by the small that as President he will
the idea of our president support American workers
flying in a foreign made helicopter, for any reason. group of veterans, who by and
by selecting the VH-92 as
Secretary Treasurer Calo summed it up by saying “we have large shook hands and ex-
the next generation of
a bipartisan delegation out here supporting this program, you changed pleasantries. Among Presidential helicopters.
have labor and management up here together supporting this those on the flight field were
program...this is about doing the right thing, and the right Business Agent Mitch Cairns
thing is keeping the jobs here in America, keeping our people and Director of Veterans Affairs Sam Ranno.
safe, and providing our military with the best... and that’s Cairns addressed Senator Kerry, explaining that he repre-
why we are going to win this program.” sented Teamster workers at Sikorsky Aircraft and reminded
Giving a potential boost to the bid for the presidential him of the battle that we are involved in over the retention of
contract was the recent news that the Canadian Government the VH helicopter contract. During his discussion with Kerry,
placed an order for 28 H-92 Superhawk medium-lift helicop- Cairns expressed our collective displeasure with the idea of
ters. This is the first significant order for the H-92 model and the President of the United States flying in a foreign-made
can only serve to legitimize the Sikorsky bid for the VH. aircraft. Mr. Kerry was presented with a model of the VH-92
The All-American Tour will see the VH-92 travel the country and was asked to make a commitment at that time to support
and be put on display for all of America to see. The tour Teamsters Local 1150 by promising to choose the VH-92 if he
includes much of what was seen on the day of the kick-off. has the opportunity to be in the position to do so.
Members of congressional delegations will have a chance to After listening to our concerns, Kerry was immediate in his
fly in it and will be told of the importance of keeping jobs in response. “Not only is that the aircraft that I will choose, but
this country. The nation will see first hand that it is the finest I will personally come to Sikorsky Aircraft and pick up the first
helicopter in the world, worthy of carrying the United States’ one,” he promised.
President for the next 40 years. Meanwhile, on the other side of this issue is Senator Hillary
Clinton (D-NY). Senator Clinton has made it clear that she
is in support of the foreign-made US101, citing the fact that
much of the stateside manufacturing will take place in her
Recently, Local 1150 Secretary Treasurer Rocco Calo wrote
to Senator Clinton to outline the union’s concerns and to
remind her of her past.
“There is a popular photo around here that shows Bill
Clinton and his wife Hillary on the tarmac with the VH-3D
behind them and the Teamsters Joint Council tractor trailer in
the background,” Calo explained. “I enclosed that photo
with my letter, and reminded Senator Clinton of the support
that the Teamsters had given her husband and her in the past
and that we expect she would do the same for the Teamsters
Teamster Local 1150, backed by an aggressive campaign from
by supporting our workers at Sikorsky Aircraft. I eagerly await
the IBT, is lobbying elected officials in support of the American-
made, union-made VH-92 as the next Presidential helicopter. Senator Clinton’s response.”
TEAMSTERS 1150 NEWS • JULY/SEPTEMBER, 2004 • P AGE 3
have your current address on
When Tragedy Strikes record, have a beneficiary named
for both your savings plan and
t’s something most of us don’t like your Sikorsky benefits (these are
to think about — the possibility of separate forms), be sure you have
dealing with personal tragedy. And a copy of the beneficiary forms,
although we hope that we never have and be sure that all of your depen-
to, we should be prepared and know dents are on record with the
what to do if we are faced with the company. Ensuring that this
unthinkable. information is on record and
During the past two years, a handful current will help avoid problems,
of Local 1150 members have had the such as probate, in the event of a
misfortune of becoming victims of Local 1150 tragedy. Make your spouse or other beneficiaries aware of
difficult and sometimes devastating where important documents are kept.
personal tragedy. Unfortunately, some
President Once your information is up to date, in most cases a simple
of them were not prepared and did not Harvey Jackson phone call is all it takes to set the wheels in motion. However,
know what their rights and benefits there are some differences in procedure, depending on the
were. In a recent interview with Teamsters Local 1150 individual circumstances.
president Harvey Jackson, he discussed the need for education Upon the death of an employee, the spouse or other
and preparedness. beneficiary will be required to take certain steps in order to
“When members are faced with a personal crisis, it becomes receive the benefits to which he or she is entitled. First, it is
difficult to give attention to the legal and technical tasks that important to know that spouses and dependents are entitled
must be accomplished,” President Jackson said. “To have to 30 days continuous coverage under the employee’s medi-
foreknowledge of the steps that need to be taken is vital to cal plan. Following the 30-day period, the family may opt to
ensuring that your affairs are in order when the need arises.” buy into the COBRA coverage at the company’s group rate
The need for being prepared is not isolated to the member. and can retain this coverage for 36 months. If the employee
It is equally as important to ensure that your spouse or other was retirement eligible, the surviving spouse should ask about
beneficiaries are knowledgeable as to what their benefits are retiree medical coverage.
and how to go about the process of claiming those benefits if United Technologies has introduced a new way to manage
the need to do so is there. your benefits. The new system is called Access Direct and is an
attempt to create a sort of one-stop-shopping convenience.
Prepare and Plan Ahead For Family Crises All employees should make themselves familiar with this
Although the benefits you receive through your employ- system and educate their spouse as well, as this is the system
ment at Sikorsky Aircraft and membership in the Teamsters that they will use to report a life altering event or simply
are solid, they are in most cases not all that you need. Often, update benefits information.
especially for those members who have families, it is necessary The first thing that should happen in the case of a tragedy
to carry additional insurance and have a legal statement of involving an employee is notification to the company, this can
your intentions should your personal circumstances change. be done by calling the employee’s supervisor or the Human
Local 1150 urges all members to be sure that they and their Resources department. The spouse or other beneficiary of a
families are prepared. If you are not sure whether or not you deceased or incapacitated employee should then call Access
have enough insurance you should contact a life insurance Direct as soon as possible. It is recommended that they do
provider to assess your needs. In addition, all members not try to navigate the automated system under such circum-
should have a legal statement of their intentions in the form stances. Rather, just say “representative” into the phone at
of a Will or Living Trust. If you are not sure of your need for a any time and you will be directed to an operator who can
Will or Trust you should contact a lawyer who specializes in help (this is a voice recognition system, so it can understand
probate law or estate planning, or you can contact union hall certain words in several languages). The spouse or beneficiary
and we can refer you to an attorney with whom you can should report the circumstances at hand and be prepared
consult. It is also advisable to consider having a power of with certain information, such as the employee’s Social
attorney drawn in order to prepare for the possibility of a Security number, the death certificate, and an accident report
spouse who may become incapacitated. (if death occurred as the result of an accident). An accident
“We receive many calls from members or spouses who have report is important in order to collect the accidental death
lost a loved one and are not financially prepared for the and dismemberment benefit that all employees have.
event,” Jackson said. “Beyond providing comfort and advice, If an employee loses a spouse or dependent, or the spouse
there is little we can do to help ease the burden after the fact. or dependent becomes seriously ill, there are certain steps for
Clearly, being adequately insured and having your intentions the employee to take. First, in the case of a serious illness or
legally stated is preferred.” injury of a spouse or dependent, be sure to contact Human
Jackson advises members to be prepared so that if tragedy Resources and ask about Family Medical Leave. This is a
were to strike, the burden on the survivors is not unnecessarily benefit that is available to everyone, provide you meet certain
increased by the difficulty of accessing vital benefits. He says criteria, and can provide you with much needed time off to
that if you are an employee of Sikorsky Aircraft, there are attend to your family’s needs.
certain steps that you or your survivors need to take in the If a family member dies there are few tangible benefits that
event of a tragedy. employees receive. You are entitled to three days paid
Preparation is key. All members are urged to contact the bereavement leave per the collective bargaining agreement,
UTC Benefits Center (read on to find out how) and make sure but little more than that. You should understand that there is
that all of your vital information is up to date. You should Continued on page 14
TEAMSTERS 1150 NEWS • JULY/SEPTEMBER, 2004 • P AGE 4
Continued from page 2
amounts - $20 billion a year – on advertising/promotion and
research and development of new drugs. American pharma-
ceutical companies employ one sales person for every physi-
cian in the country and consistently pick up the costs for
doctors to attend seminars that promote their products. This
cost is transferred directly to the consumer and is unnecessar-
ily pushing the overall cost of healthcare skyward.
“[Skyrocketing US healthcare costs] just can’t go on much
longer,” says Paul Ginsburg, president of the Center for
Studying Health Systems Change. “Things will happen.”
If the recent attempts by the Bush administration are any
indication, what happens will not be to our benefit nor will it
fix the problem. The Medicare changes that included the
new drug benefit did more to help the drug companies and
HMO’s cash in than it did to help Americans better afford
their healthcare. Politics have gotten in the way of every
attempt at remedying this national problem.
This is an issue that requires cooperation in order to find
a viable solution. It mandates that employers and unions
come together and requires democrats and republicans to
do the same.
Kerry’s Healthcare Plan For America
Presidential candidate John Kerry claims that his healthcare
plan will cover 95 percent of the American population,
including every child, and reduce premiums by 10 percent. I
don’t know if his plan will work or not, but there must be
something there that everyone can agree on. His technology
bonus seems to be a piece of the plan that makes a lot of
sense. Under the Kerry plan, healthcare providers will be
offered an incentive to update their procedures and switch to
electronic records, which will cut costs by billions of dollars.
The current cost of transferring medical records and informa-
tion by paper is staggering and, if done away with, could
make a significant difference. The Veterans Administration
has already tested this plan and is currently on-line with a fully
electronic system that not only saves time but also saves an
estimated $9.00 per transaction.
Unfortunately, President Bush sharply apposes any form of
national healthcare and his plan seems to focus on adding
benefits and choices to the Medicare system. Further fixing
Medicare is surely needed, but it still leaves nearly 45 million
people in this country without coverage.
Brothers and sisters, this issue touches us all. We at Team-
sters Local 1150 are fortunate to have the benefits that we do.
However, our future is uncertain in terms of the costs and
quality of our future healthcare. I cannot stress enough the
importance of solidarity in the coming year. We need to take
a good look at the substandard healthcare packages that have
been dealt to many UTC unions in the recent past and make
difficult decisions as to how important this is to us. It will not
come easy, I can assure you. It will take more than a handful
of men and women at a table in late 2005 to get the best
package possible. It will take every member of this union,
standing together with a single goal: to have what has been
earned and is deserved… NOTHING BUT THE BEST.
TEAMSTERS 1150 NEWS • JULY/SEPTEMBER, 2004 • P AGE 5
A LOOK AT LABOR HISTORY
of Labor Day
his September 6th, the first Monday in September, the
nation will shut down and take time to celebrate the
working men and women who, as Peter J. McGuire put
it, “have delved and carved all the grandeur we behold.”
Labor Day – Our Day – is the day created by and for the labor
movement, one that should be more than a traditional end to
On Tuesday, September 5, 1882, in accordance with the
plans of the Central Labor Union, the first ever Labor Day C1900 – Labor Day parade, Buffalo, New York
celebration took place in New York City. The celebration was
consistent with the proposal of the CLU and included “a street Massachusetts, New Jersey and New York - passed similar
parade to exhibit to the public the strength and esprit de legislation and by the end of 1889 Connecticut, Nebraska
corps of the trade and labor organizations of the community, and Pennsylvania followed. By 1894, 30 states had officially
followed by a festival for the recreation and amusement of the recognized Labor Day and on June 28 of that year the U.S.
workers and their families.” Congress passed an act making Labor Day a national holiday.
There is still some controversy today over who should be Labor Day is something of a contradiction these days. In a
credited with the founding of Labor Day. For some time it was country that sees Wal-Mart and Sam’s Club as Icons of what is
thought that the distinction should go to Peter J. McGuire, good, it is difficult to believe that the working people are
General Secretary of the Brotherhood of Carpenters and respected or revered. When we see anti-worker actions like
Joiners and cofounder of the American Federation of Labor. the Patriot Act from our national government and threats
However, many now believe, due to recent research, that it issued to union workers from our state’s (CT) top official, it is
was Matthew McGuire, a one time machinist and later the hard to understand how those same folks can stand at a
secretary of Local 344 of the International Association of podium on a parade route and join in the celebration of
Machinists, who proposed the holiday. Matthew was serving working men and women. From inside the labor movement it
as secretary of the Central Labor Union in New York at the appears to be a hypocritical holiday, celebrating those whom
time and it was the CLU that adopted the original proposal you seek to oppress. Yet, isn’t that how it has always been?
and appointed a committee to plan the eventual inaugural The first Labor Day was celebrated during a time when the
celebration. existence of unions was being challenged, when employers
In 1884 the CLU suggested that the first Monday in Sep- would actually consider murdering a worker rather than
tember of every year be set aside for the celebration of a improve his working conditions or increase his pay. Labor Day,
“workingman’s holiday”. With the rapid growth of labor since its inception, has been a celebration in the midst of a
unions at the time the idea took hold and in 1885 the day war. So this year, when your president or governor stands up
was observed nationwide for the first time. to tell the world of the greatness of the workers of this nation,
National observance of Labor Day increased over time and believe what he says, even if he doesn’t.
on February 21, 1887 the Oregon State Legislature became
the first to adopt the first Monday in September as a legal
holiday. During that same year four more states – Colorado,
Teamsters Local 1150’s
Labor Assistance Program
Help Is Just A Phone Call Away!
If you need assistance call:
DEB JOHNSON 386-3516 OR 381-9240
HARRY TESTANI CONTRACTOR - 386-4489
TEAMSTERS 1150 NEWS • JULY/SEPTEMBER, 2004 • P AGE 6
2nd Annual Scholarship Golf Tournament Sponsors
2004 GOLD SPONSORS
TEAMSTERS 1150 NEWS • JULY/SEPTEMBER, 2004 • P AGE 7
2nd Annual Scholarship Golf Tournament Sponsors
2004 HOLE SPONSORS
Thanks to strong support
from our many sponsors,
Local 1150’s Scholarship
Golf Tournament grows
stronger every year!
TEAMSTERS 1150 NEWS • JULY/SEPTEMBER, 2004 • P AGE 8
2nd Annual Scholarship Golf Tournament Sponsors
2004 HONORARY SPONSORS
TEAMSTERS 1150 NEWS • JULY/SEPTEMBER, 2004 • P AGE 9
2nd Annual Scholarship Golf Tournament Sponsors
2004 HONORARY SPONSORS
our many sponsors.
Their support and
Thank generosity helps
You make our Golf
Sponsors Tournament a
TEAMSTERS 1150 NEWS • JULY /SEPTEMBER, 2004 • PAGE 10
2nd Annual Scholarship Golf Tournament Sponsors
Retirees Plan More Trips UPCOMING MEETINGS
T he Teamsters Local 1150 Retirees Chapter has more trips
planned. As usual, all trips are open to retirees and active
members of Local 1150. The following trips are planned:
Connecticut Stewards Alabama Stewards
September 8th September 20th @ 4:00 p.m.
1:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m. October 25th @ 4:00 p.m.
September 18 – 22, 2004 – Las Vegas (Cost is $635 pp November 22nd @ 4:00 p.m.
twin/triple or $835 pp single). For information, contact
1:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m.
Ramona Rubin @ 736-0071. Alabama Members
November 10th September 21st
October 23, 2004 – Keene, New Hampshire Pumpkin 1:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m.
Festival (Cost is $56 pp). For information, contact Bette 2:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m.
Saloman @ 375-7313. Connecticut Members October 26th
September 15th 2:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m.
November 10, 2004 – Radio City Christmas Spectacular
1:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m. November 23rd
(Cost is $85 pp, includes lunch at Danny’s Grand Sea Palace).
For information, contact Bette Saloman @ 375-7313. October 20th 2:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m.
1:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m.
November 17 – 19, 2004 – Catskill’s Villa Roma Resort (Cost Florida Stewards
is $199 pp twin/triple or $259 pp single). For information, November 17th September 22nd @ 4:00 p.m.
contact Bette Saloman @ 375-7313. 1:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m. October 27th @ 4:00 p.m.
December 31, 2004 – January 2, 2005 – New Years Eve
November 24th @ 4:00 p.m.
Gala, including 6 fabulous shows! (Cost is $349 pp twin/triple
or $439 pp single). For information, contact Ramona Rubin
@ 736-0071. Septmber 23rd
12:30 p.m. and 4:00 p.m.
April 30 – May 8, 2005 – New Orleans (Cost is $649 pp).
For information, contact Bette Saloman @ 375-7313. October 28th
12:30 p.m. and 4:00 p.m.
Many of the above trips include valuable additions
such as meals and tours, so please call the contact November 25th
person for full details on each trip. 12:30 p.m. and 4:00 p.m.
TEAMSTERS 1150 NEWS • JULY /SEPTEMBER, 2004 • PAGE 11
Member’s Wife Honored Mitch Cairns Keeps
In Local Newspaper The Union’s Kitty Full
J oyce Kane, wife of Local 1150 member John Kane, was
he pages of 1150 News have told many times of the
honored in the August 10th edition of the Connecticut Post
pride our union has with respect to its abilities to help
in the Woman Wise section. Joyce, who woke up six years
those in need. From aligning with other unions to
ago from open-heart surgery to find she was blind, is a Girl
strengthen their voice at the bargaining table, to helping the
Scout volunteer and advocate for the blind.
“My greatest loss was not the loss of my sight but the loss family of a fallen brother or sister get back on their feet, we
of my independence,” Joyce said. “Suddenly, I had lost the are proud of our citizenship. This should be a source of pride,
ability to do the things that I had once done. I had all this not just for the union leadership but for the entire member-
time on my hands and I knew that I needed to start over ship, because it is the membership that truly makes it happen.
and get involved.” We are all fortunate to be some of the shrinking few who
Joyce volunteers as a Girl Scout co-leader, working with girls have good-paying, union jobs. We make a very comfortable
to complete badges as well as chairing the Camp Katoya living and are able to enjoy the luxury of being able to give to
Halloween Haunted Hike. She has developed the Seeing a cause that matters. Sometimes it seems as though there is a
Through Dark Eyes program to help children learn how to collection going on every day in the shop and it becomes
behave around guide dogs, as well as familiarize them with overwhelming. But, the membership of this union seems to
other adaptive devices for the blind. Her involvement with keep on coming back for more, and it cannot go unnoticed.
the National Federation of the Blind is also far reaching, Although the kitty can never be considered full, here at
serving as the Vice-President of the local chapter, Secretary of Local 1150 it is more so than ever before. Because of the
the state affiliate, President of the Diabetic Division of Con- generosity of the members, we are able to help more people
necticut, and a Board member of the Diabetic Network of the than at any time in our history. Through events such as the
NFB. She is also active in the fight to have insurance compa- Annual Scholarship Fund Golf Tournament and Pool Tourna-
nies cover the cost of the Talking Rx, a device that goes into a ment and 2nd Chance Dance you, the members, have sup-
prescription bottle and has the directions recorded on it. ported a scholarship fund that has distributed $20,000 in
John Kane is an 18-year member of Local 1150, currently scholarships over the past two years and already has the
working on the 3rd shift in the Stratford machine shop. funding to continue that trend into next year. We have
always supported the Sikorsky Walk Against Women’s Cancers
and for the past two years have been a partner in sponsoring
Get A Withdrawal Card the event. Since taking that partnership on, our members
have answered the call by raising more money for Swim
When You Leave Your Job Across The Sound (the benefactor organization) than Sikorsky
Be sure you request a withdrawal card when being laid-off, Aircraft raised. The Local 1150 food pantry has never turned
going on leave of absence, lengthy medical leave or away a family or individual in need.
terminating your employment. The charge for a withdrawal
card is still only 50¢, but all initiation fees and back dues must Trustee Mitch Cairns — A True Civic Leader
be paid before the withdrawal card is issued.
Stop by Local 1150’s office, or complete the form below , Fundraising is a difficult but essential part of running an
and mail it to our office along with your check or money order organization such as ours. Asking people for money is not
for 50¢. It is your responsibility to obtain a withdrawal card
after leaving the company so that you will not be obligated
always the easiest thing to do and to be successful at it
to pay extra dues. Failure to request a withdrawal card may requires skill and hard work. The man behind much of the
cause you to pay back dues. fundraising at Teamsters Local 1150 is Mitch Cairns.
Mitch is a Local 1150 Trustee and Business Agent. If you
Mail to: Teamsters Local 1150 Please enclose 50¢ check,
150 Garfield Avenue money order or coin know Mitch, you know that he is always smiling, always quick
Stratford, Conn. 06615-7101 to shake a hand and listen to what you have to say. A few
years ago, the fundraising at Local 1150 consisted of a few
WITHDRAWAL CARD REQUEST bus trips to ballgames and casinos. These efforts were noble
and resulted in a very enjoyable time for those who took part,
but unfortunately they did not raise enough money to sustain
the kind of programs that were envisioned here.
SOCIAL SECURITY # Eager to do more, Mitch spoke with several people and felt
he could organize something on a larger scale. He also had
LAST DAY OF WORK faith that the members would respond. With the help of
many dedicated members, the first Scholarship Fund Golf
NAME OF EMPLOYER Tournament took place, raising over $6,000 and setting the
stage for all of the events that followed.
REASON FOR LEAVING Today, Local 1150 has a handful of events that take place
(quit, laid off, terminated, etc.)
annually. These events not only raise money to fund all of
the programs that help the community and members, but are
events members look forward to as an opportunity to socialize
Signature with their fellow Teamster brothers, sisters and friends.
TEAMSTERS 1150 NEWS • JULY /SEPTEMBER, 2004 • PAGE 12
Local 1150 Spotlight O
LO - Sec
HMX-1 — A 57-Year 1150
JA C K S O N
Marine Corps. Tradition Outstanding Member
he squadron known to most for its role as the sole
helicopter transporter of the Commander in Chief of the
United States is much more than that. Marine Helicopter
Squadron One (HMX-1) is the place where helicopter innova-
tion began and where testing and evaluation of helicopter
technology continues today for
the US Marines. eamsters Local 1150 and
Established in 1947 at Marine 1150 News is proud to
Corps Air Station, Quantico by salute Tom Lehtonen as this
Commandant General issue’s Outstanding Member. A
Alexander Vandegrift, HMX-1 25-year employee of Sikorsky,
was tasked to “develop tech- currently working in the Product
niques and tactics in connection Integrity Hydraulic Test Lab,
with the movement of assault A Sikorsky HO3S-1, the first
helicopter used by HMX-1. Tom has been a member of
troops by helicopter in amphibi-
Local 1150 since 1980.
ous operations; evaluate a small helicopter as a replacement
for the present OY type aircraft to be used for gunfire spot- To say Tom is active in the
ting, observation and liaison missions in conjunction with community would be an under-
amphibious operations.” In early 1948 the squadron received statement. He is a member of the
its first helicopters, five Sikorsky HO3S-1s, with 18 pilots and Fair Rent Commission in the city of Tom Lehtonen
81 enlisted men assigned. New Haven, has served as a Block
HMX-1 quickly embarked on its mission Watch Captain for the past 20 years, and has held a position
exploring, through use of practical exercises, the as Justice of the Peace for 8 years. He has also volunteered for
viability and feasibility of ship to shore transport the Special Olympics for 20 years running. Tom also finds
of troops as a means of supporting amphibious time to support his local Red Cross by giving blood to the
assault missions, the laying of communications tune of 11 gallons to date.
wire, and spotting of artillery fire. By 1950, the
As a Sikorsky volunteer, Tom gives his time as a member of
Marines had proven the helicopter’s worth in search and
rescue, heavy lift operations in support of the corps of engi- the Plant Protection Brigade and the Medical Assistance Team
neers, medical evacuation, command and control, and anti- as well as the Co-Captain of the Sikorsky Running Team.
submarine warfare. A lifetime member of the VFW and an Air Force Vietnam
The Marine Corps has established the helicopter as not only War veteran, Tom Lehtonen has served his country, his
a valuable tool of warfare, but also of aviation. HMX-1 community and his union… all reasons that he has been
continues today in the testing and development of new rotary chosen as our Outstanding Member.
wing technology and is truly the leader in the industry.
On September 7, 1957, President Eisenhower was vacation-
ing at his summer home in Rhode Island when he was ur- Stay In Touch With Union News...
gently needed at the White House. Travel from his home in
Rhode Island normally required an hour-long ferry ride to get Get “On-Line” With Local 1150
to Air Force One and a 20-minute motorcade ride from
Andrews AFB to the White House. Due to the urgency, the Information is vital to being a
president ordered a quicker alternative. The result was a
seven-minute helicopter ride. After HMX-1 evaluated the productive member of your
possibility of landing a helicopter on the south lawn of the local union. Don’t rely on
White House, the squadron began transporting the President secondhand information or
from the residence to Andrews. In 1976 the Marine Corps rumors. When you want to
was assigned the sole responsibility of providing helicopter know what’s really going on, the
transportation to the President.
fastest way is via the World Wide Web.
The proud tradition of the Marine Corps’ HMX-1 is one of
ingenuity, innovation, and perfection. It is a group of dedi- Visit www.teamsters1150.org for the latest
cated and hard working individuals who continually exemplify Teamster news, labor union updates, upcoming
the squadron’s motto: “The First and Finest.” meeting information and other special union
events. Get up-to-date information on Local
If you are a veteran and need help with veteran’s
benefits or have any questions pertaining to your 1150’s Community Services Committee, the EAP,
status as a veteran, please contact Sam Ranno at and everything else you need to know to become
(860) 568-1264 or e-mail him at email@example.com an informed member.
TEAMSTERS 1150 NEWS • JULY /SEPTEMBER, 2004 • PAGE 13
Our Teens On the Day Hard Choices Made Easier
When to take a stand, when to argue, and when to let go
are hard choices. Your personal guidelines might consider:
of Remembrance • Is the issue negotiable?
• Is the argument productive?
By Deb Johnson — LAP • Is the behavior harmful?
• Is the experience going to prove the best teacher?
eptember 11th has become the symbol of the Day of • Is there a positive approach?
Remembrance. On this day and during the month of As in any relationship, constructive criticism is easier to take.
September, many people stop and reflect on how our
The trick is to say that something was wrong without saying
lives have changed since that awful day. We ponder the hurt
the one who did it is hopeless.
and anguish, the senselessness of it all. And then, we revital-
ize ourselves and, as Americans, do what we do best. We do They Need You And Love You
a good deed. Whether it is helping a coworker, a neighbor or You can help your teen mature when love and trust are the
someone we may not even care for. It could be as simple as basis of your relationship. A positive attitude and realistic
putting out and elderly neighbor's trash or giving someone a expectations are important. Open communication is the key.
quarter for the parking meter. Whatever we do, Americans Equally important is the support available to you outside the
always rise to the occasion. home. Parents groups, school and community counselors,
One of the greatest challenges we can meet is supporting and teen self help groups, religious groups, and of course EAP
those closest to us. And during these changing times, teen- are all available to help with these tough years.
agers in a family need the best that we’ve got. Our world is If you are finding you are having difficulties with your
traveling faster than the speed of light. We need to hold on teenage daughter or son, or any personal issue, please do not
to our families and support our children as they make their hesitate to contact Deb at 6-3516 or the union hall, or
way in the world. Below please find some tips that may help Harry at 6-4489. Your EAP is only a phone call away!
to make the road a bit smoother.
(In part by Parlay International)
What Kids Want To Tell You; Many Things That
Cause Teens To Worry
1. Normal body changes. You can reassure them, avoiding jokes When Tragedy Strikes
about changing voices and developing breasts Continued from page 4
2. Alcohol. You can be a good role model. Talk about drinking and
no life insurance coverage for family and dependents through
driving. Make a pact to trust each other by signing up with Stu-
dents Against Drunk Driving (P.O. Box 800, Marlboro, MA 01752). your employment with Sikorsky Aircraft. Life insurance
coverage only applies to the employee. Employees should,
3. Drugs. You can get information for yourself from the EAP however, contact Access Direct as soon as possible to update
department, on-line, or the phonebook. If you suspect drug use,
their benefits information.
offer support for wise choices along with disapproval of the unwise
ones. Contact EAP and we will guide you to help for your child. No one likes to think about a family tragedy, but being
prepared is important. All members are urged to contact
4. Social Status. Shy, insecure teens can be encouraged to join Access Direct now and
clubs or activity groups where making friends is easier
set up a user ID and password, making sure to provide this
5. Romance. Teen love is serious. Breakups are devastating. Your information to your spouse or beneficiary. Keep in mind that
sympathy can help diffuse anger and depression. the ID and password you create will work for the telephone
6. Sex. Plenty of love at home can make it less urgent to find love system as well as the website.
through sexual encounters. You can explain how fear of pregnancy The Access Direct toll free number can be used to access all
and disease changes relationships. Both of you may be embar- of your benefits, although the website only deals with health
rassed, at first, if you’re too direst. But related issues can open the insurance, so it is advisable to use the telephone system under
door. Then, be as specific as you can. difficult circumstances. Below is a listing of all of the essential
7. Birth Control. Teens are often misinformed about the conse- phone numbers and web addresses, which you can cut out
quences of sex. If it is difficult to talk about it, you can say so and and keep in a convenient location. For information on using
provide the facts with pamphlets or books. There are many alterna- the Access Direct system, consult the user guide entitled
tives regarding birth control and it can be a very sensitive topic, a “Discover…Your Benefits”, which was mailed to your home.
private family issue. But, one that cannot be ignored. “If difficult circumstances befall a member, we will be there
8. Trouble. Often a single run-in with the law, or an act of petty to help in any way
vandalism, is a one-time test of teen bravado. You may find consis- possible,” Jackson
tent disapproval works best. But overreaction can shut down
communications. You can ask your teen why, then be alert for a sign a member who is well
that is has happened again. Ask for help when you need it.
Access Direct – 1-800-243-8135
prepared for these
How Parents Can Open Doors difficulties is one whom Benefits Resource Website
Special family activities, or a time when you do chores we have already helped. www.mydirectory.com/UTC
together, offer natural opportunities for conversation. Check- That is what we prefer.”
ing in without prying, teasing or blaming lets a teenager If you have questions Savings Plan Website
know you’re interested. You can listen and sympathize when concerning benefits, http://netbenefits.fidelity.com
she or he approaches you. You can praise whenever possible. please contact Deb
Johnson at 386-3516 UTC Pension Website
Teens are typically secretive and independent. Your respect,
trust and attention say you’re ready to help. or call the Union Hall. http://utc.benefitcenter.com
TEAMSTERS 1150 NEWS • JULY /SEPTEMBER, 2004 • PAGE 14
Family Outing A Success! Local 1150 President
T Jackson Attends 2004
eamsters Local 1150 members and their families enjoyed
great weather, food and fun at Quassy Amusement Park
on Saturday August 7th at the 2004 Family Outing.
For the third year in a row, the outing was a sold-out event,
with over 1,500 tickets sold. Families who attended were
treated to a fabulous menu at the picnic area, and had a full
embers of the Connecticut Chapter of the Teamsters
day of rides and attractions including the new Saturation
National Black Caucus recently took part in
Station water park.
Bridgeport’s annual Juneteenth Parade and Festival
United States Senator
celebration. Black Caucus members joined police, firefighters,
Christopher Dodd (D-Ct.)
stopped by to greet marching bands, and city and state officials in the celebration
members and once again that has become popular in inner cities across the country.
pledged his full support Local 1150 President Harvey Jackson, who is President of
for all of our efforts on the Teamsters National Black Caucus Connecticut chapter,
behalf of working families. said Juneteenth commemorates African American freedom
Secretary Treasurer Rocco and emphasizes education and achievement.
Calo walked the park with “It is a day, a week, and in some areas a month marked with
Senator Dodd, celebrations, guest speakers, picnics and family gatherings,”
who spoke with many Jackson said. “It is a time for reflection and rejoicing; a time
Secretary-Treasurer Rocco Calo spent
members during the day. for assessment, self-improvement and for planning the future.
the day with Senator Christopher Dodd
A special thanks to all discussing issues important to members. Its growing popularity signifies a level of maturity and dignity
who helped organize this in America long over due. In cities across the country, people
year’s outing, especially to Quassy Amusement Park for of all races, nationalities and religions are joining hands to
once again giving us a day to remember. truthfully acknowledge a period in our history that continues
to influence society today.”
Juneteenth is the oldest known celebration of the ending of
Glad You Asked... slavery. Dating back to 1865, it was on June 19th that the
Union soldiers, led by Major General Gordon Granger, landed
By Deb Johnson — LAP at Galveston, Texas with news that the war had ended and
that all slaves were free. This was two-and-a-half years after
Question: I received a packet in the mail from UTC titled
President Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation - which
“Discover…New Ways to Manage Your Benefits. HELP!!!
became official on January 1, 1863.
Answer: Yep! Yet another change in these ever changing The Emancipation Proclamation had little impact on the
times. It appears United Technologies continues to centralize Texans due to the minimal number of Union troops to enforce
any facet of business they can and benefits is no exception. the new Executive order. However, with the surrender of
The new conglomerate that will now be servicing all our General Lee in April of 1865, and the arrival of General
benefit needs is a company by the name of Hewitt. The Granger’s regiment, the forces were finally strong enough to
proper title for our purposes is the UTC Benefits Center, influence and overcome the resistance.
AccessDirect. There are a few ways you can access your Later attempts to explain this two-and-a-half year delay in
benefit line. First and most importantly, though, you will need
receiving this important news yielded several versions that
to establish a user ID and password. You can call 1-800-243-
have been handed down through the years. Often told is the
8135 (the new all encompassing benefit services number) and
story of a messenger who was murdered on his way to Texas
establish your user ID and password by phone; assess the web
site at www.mydirectory.com/UTC; or go to the Sikorsky with the news. Another is that the news was deliberately
Intranet and access the website under benefits and establish withheld by slave masters to maintain the labor force on the
your user ID and password from there. This change is for plantations. And still another tells of federal troops actually
Benefits Services only (health and insurance including disabil- waiting for the slave owners to reap the benefits of one last
ity and TPD payments). For the savings plan, you will still cotton harvest before going to Texas to enforce the Emanci-
continue to visit http://netbenefits.fidelity.com or call 800- pation Proclamation. For whatever the reason, conditions in
466-2900. For the Pension Plan you will continue to visit Texas remained status quo well beyond what was statutory.
https://utc.benefitcenter.com or call 800-466-2900. Also, the Jackson, who was joined by several members of Teamsters
Employee Self Service (ESS) website on the Sikorsky Intranet is Local 1150 and the Teamsters National Black Caucus, says he
still the same. was honored to take part in his fourth Junteenth Celebration.
Other noteworthy participants on hand this year included
Question: I received a letter from CIGNA that VSP will no Bridgeport Mayor John Fabrizi, state senator Earnest Newton,
longer be the manage group for vision care. Now what? state representative Donald Clemons, and former NFL great
Answer: It’s back to getting a referral from your PCP to see a Anthony Tony Elliott. Elliott, a former member of the New
participating vision care specialist. You need to make sure the Orleans Saints was this year’s Juneteenth Festival honoree.
eye specialist you see is in the CIGNA Healthcare network. Elliott and Jackson grew up together in Bridgeport’s Beardsley
You can access the current list by visiting www.cigna.com. Terrace apartments. President Jackson says that all the partici-
Whatever you do, make sure you get your referral from your pants have two things in common, a love of the rich tradition
PCP and make sure the vision care specialist is in the network. of American history, and a love for the city of Bridgeport!
TEAMSTERS 1150 NEWS • JULY /SEPTEMBER, 2004 • PAGE 15
Second Annual Golf Tournament Nets
$5,500 For Union’s Scholarship Fund
he Second Annual Scholarship Fund Golf Tournament,
held at Whitney Farms Golf Course on Saturday, July 17
was a success as both fund raiser and social event.
Members, friends and family enjoyed a picture perfect day
as they hit the links at Whitney Farms to raise money for what
has become the favorite cause here at Local 1150. $5500
was raised for the scholarship fund and the day saw great
competition and camaraderie.
Finishing in First Place and taking home a prize of $200 and
a foursome round of 18 at Whitney Farms was the foursome
of Tom Matthews, Jim Ozelski, Wes Grosskurth and Rick Dini
with a score of 6 under par. Second Place, with a score of 5
under par, went to Joe Bogacki, Mike Doucette, Paul Beck and
Keith Grogan, who took home a prize of $160 and a 9-hole
round for a foursome at Woodhaven Country Club. Finishing
in Third Place and collecting $100 and a 9-hole foursome
round at Woodhaven Country Club, with a score of 4 under
par, were the foursome from Teamsters Local 677 of Dennis
Raymond, Cliff Socquet, John Capobianco and Warren Lucid.
Coming away with $50 prizes for closest to the pin were Keith
Grogan on the 4th hole and Mark Hansen on the 12th. In
addition, two $50 prizes were awarded to John Bloom and
John French for the longest drive on the 3rd hole and 10th
Following the golf, participants enjoyed a five star buffet This year’s First Place foursome was, from left to right:
dinner at the Stone Barn Restaurant, on the grounds at Tom Matthews, Jim Ozelski, Rick Dini and Wes Grosskurth.
Whitney Farms, where more than $2000 in prizes were raffled
off to lucky winners.
As with all of these events, a great deal of hard work is
involved in planning and preparing, so the executive board
and scholarship fund committee would like to extend a
special thanks to Mark Hansen, Tom Matthews, Bob Garbien,
Evylene Spigarolo and Mary Ann Orrell for the time that they
put in to make this tournament possible.
No group is more important to the success of this event
than our sponsors. The objective of the golf tournament is to
raise money, and that would not be possible without the
donations of goods, services and funds on the part of the
many sponsors. We ask that everyone please take the time to
browse the sponsors’ advertisements on pages 7-11 of this
issue of 1150 News and patronize as many as possible.
International Brotherhood Non-Profit Org.
of Teamsters Local 1150 PAID
150 Garfield Avenue Permit # 154
Bridgeport, CT 06602
Stratford, Conn. 06615-7101