Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Fun Facts: Thanksgiving Edition!

Thanksgiving, it turns out, can be good for you. Studies increasingly show that gratitude improves your health.  One insightful--and funny--psychologist points out that gratefulness inspires better work.

Lately, I hear folks saying, with varying degrees of stubborn optimism, "I'm just grateful to have a job." I sure can appreciate that. I'd like to personally say that I'm thankful for SHARE members, and a certain kind of generous spirit that I'm finding more and more.  I've lately run into several beautiful examples of departments hanging together, and SHARE members looking out for one another. I'm particularly inspired when I add that to the fact that, for a living, SHARE members take care of people, patients who need care.

Having said that, I would like to put aside the studies and the healthfulness and the heartfelt appreciation, and touch on another favorite Thanksgiving theme.  If you're looking for a good last minute dessert idea, then, man, have I got a recipe for you: Baked Indian Pudding with Maple Spiced Nuts.

Thank you all. And have a very very happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Harvard Works Because They Do

SHARE is glad to have secured four more years of strong benefits and wages with our recent contract. At the same time, our sister union at Harvard University, the Harvard Union of Clerical and Technical Workers (HUCTW), is currently working hard to negotiate their own contract. The biggest issues involved will sound familiar to you: health insurance, pensions, and raises.

In recent years--when the economy impacted the university's finances, and the stock market crash hit the Harvard endowment--HUCTW members made sacrifices. More recently, however, Harvard University has seen its financial situation improve. Harvard has fortunately been able to invest many millions in new and exciting projects, including campus expansion and financial aid for students. In one example, the University earlier this year committed $30 million to EdX, a collaboration with MIT to offer courses online and free to the public. Unfortunately, while the university prospers, they continue to ask the employees to sacrifice.

Last week, HUCTW rallied over 600 members and supporters for a "Stand Out" event in Harvard Yard in support of the union contract. SHARE supports HUCTW in their efforts. For more information, please visit the HUCTW Negotiations website.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

SHARE Raises in October 18 Paycheck

The plan was originally that the new contract rate would show up in paychecks this week. It turns out that that was not quite manageable, so the raise will show up in next week's paycheck instead.

Nothing has changed about when SHARE members started earning their new rates -- it is still effective this past Sunday, 9/30. The amount of the raise for the one-week delay will be in a small retro check, which people will get next week or the week after.

Thanks, everybody, for your patience!

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Raises and Layoffs

Last week we were very excited to announce that SHARE members had voted to ratify the newly-negotiated contract proposal. Later that day, we opened our inboxes and our newspapers and were socked with ugly news: UMass Memorial announced layoffs are on the way. Here are the facts that we have:
  1. We don't know how many SHARE members will be affected; we don't have a list; we don't know when it will be done. It is clear that management is creating a list, but we don't have any information yet about how many SHARE members will be affected, much less where or who they are. There are a lot of rumors, and many of them contradict each other. We are trying to get more information.  
  2. We are told by hospital management that the 140 positions reported in the news is a financial target, meaning that there is an amount of money that the Hospital plans to save by cutting jobs; this number would equate to 93 FTE's. Our understanding is that management is still figuring out which cuts they will make to reach that target.
  3. We have our Work Security process in place. Whatever is coming, we will follow our process by: 1st, looking for alternatives to layoffs; 2nd, making sure that if someone is laid off, it is the least senior person rather than the least popular person; and 3rd, working with whoever is losing a job to find another one as soon as possible. Layoffs are horrible, but together we are good at helping people through them.
Many of you have been emphasizing that you value job security more than any particular benefit. (That makes sense: if you don't have a job, raises and health insurance don't do any good.) Even many who have a relatively strong sense of job security have said you would be willing to take cuts for the sake of job security for your friends and co-workers.

In contract negotiations, the SHARE team discussed with management the idea of protecting SHARE jobs. When SHARE has offered help save money in the past, these efforts have not prevented SHARE layoffs. Hospital management did agree to our new proposals for stronger language regarding work security when it comes to contracting out and selling portions of the hospital to outside agencies. Management says cuts will be based on volume, and that they cannot make any contractual promises about staffing levels. 

Like many others at UMass Memorial, our union has made real sacrifices. As a result of our negotiations, our future members will receive three fewer earned time-days than our current members. We revised our pension plan to create savings. We are doing our part. We know that financial stability is good for the hospital, for patients, and for SHARE employees.

We all have a lot of questions about the future at UMass Memorial, and about our jobs. As always, we will take care of one another and use our Work Security program to protect our members' livelihoods.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Jerry Clark Memorial Scholarship

Hi all,

We just received an announcement from our parent organization, AFSCME, announcing the Jerry Clark Memorial Scholarship for sophomores majoring in social sciences who are children of AFSCME members:

The Jerry Clark Memorial Scholarship Program is an ongoing program available to children of AFSCME members. Under the program, one scholarship in the amount of $5,000 will be awarded annually to two students majoring in the social sciences for his/her junior and senior years of study. The chosen students will also be given the opportunity to intern at the International Union headquarters in the Political Action department during the summer between his/her junior and senior year or for one semester during his/her junior or senior year. Once awarded, the scholarship will be renewed for the senior year of study, provided the students remain enrolled in a full-time course of study as a social science major.
Any student in his/her sophomore year of study who is enrolled in a full-time four-year degree program in any accredited college or university, and whose parent, legal guardian, or financially responsible grandparent is an AFSCME member and who meets the following requirements is eligible to apply for the scholarship:
A.The student must have a Grade Point Average of 2.5 or above.

B.The student must be a social science (i.e., political science, sociology, ethnic studies, communications, etc.) major at an accredited college or university.

For full details, and to download an application, visit the Jerry Clark Memorial Scholarship homepage.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

SHARE Members Approve Contract

The contract was ratified with a 97% Yes vote (1,275 SHARE members voted Yes, and 33 SHARE members voted No.) Thank you to everyone who voted, either Yes or No. It is a sign of a healthy union that so many people came to voice their opinion. The contract goes into effect next week.

Monday, September 24, 2012


Monday, September 24
ACC                               1:00pm - 6:00pm                 4th floor, ACC4-001
Barre                              11:30am - 1:30pm               Break Room
Biotech III                      11:45am - 2:00pm                Conference Room (202)
CBO                               8:00am - 11:00am               1st Floor File Room
Farmhouse                    12:30pm - 1:30pm                Basement Conference Room
Hahnemann                   12:00pm - 1:30pm                2nd Floor Conference Room
Home Health                  9:30am - 10:00am                Break Room
Lincoln St Emp Health   10:00am - 10:30am              Break Room
Milford                           11:00am
Morgan                          12:00pm - 1:30pm                3rd Floor Conf Room
PTC                                3:00pm - 4:00pm
Shrews Family Med       8:45am - 9:00am                  Break Room
Shrews Radiology          8:00am - 8:30am                  Break Room
Sleep Center                  2:30pm – 3:00pm                 Break Room
So County Pediatrics     2:00pm - 2:30pm                  lobby
Tri-River                        12:00pm - 1:00pm                Community Room
WBC                              12:00pm - 2:30pm                Spruce Conference Room
W. Boylston Fam Med   2:00pm - 3:00pm                  Conference Room
328 Shrewsbury            3:00pm - 3:30pm
67 Belmont                    11:30am - 11:45am              Conference Room
Tuesday, September 25
University                    6:00am - 4:00pm                   Cafeteria (back right corner)
Memorial                     6:00am – 8:00am                   Memorial 1 Conf Room Memorial                     8:15am – 10:30am                 Memorial Cafeteria
Memorial                    11:00am – 4:00pm                  Memorial Cafeteria
Voting is limited to SHARE members. Please call the SHARE office if you need to sign a membership card.
You can vote at any location. However, absentee ballots are not allowed.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Contract Agreement!

The SHARE Contract Negotiating Team is very pleased to announce that we have reached a tentative agreement! The contract goes into effect if SHARE members vote to approve it on September 24th-25th.

All SHARE members will be mailed to their home address a Summary of the tentative agreement, a list of Voting times and locations, a list of Information Meeting times and locations, and a Raise Calculator.

Also you can find, through this highlighted link, Full details of the Agreement.

Our goal in these negotiations has been to preserve benefits, get a decent raise, and create as much stability for SHARE members as possible. If ratified, our new contract:

• Runs for four years, from October 1, 2012 to September 30, 2016

• Preserves the 85%-15% split on Health Insurance premiums & keeps co-pays the same

• Provides Raises that average 3% for SHARE members each year (see Raise Calculator)

• Reduces the Pension benefit (No pension earnings will be lost; however, starting in 2017, the calculation will be modified so that it continues to increase, but not as fast)

• Doubles UMass Memorial’s match for member contributions to the 401(k) starting in 2017

• Raises the Charge Pay differential from $0.60/hr to $2.50/hr

• Preserves the Earned Time accrual rate for current SHARE members, but reduces the rate for future members by 3 days/year

• Strengthens our Work Security language with stipulations about any potential outsourcing and department closures or sales in the future

The contract proposal also provides a timeline and guidelines for a joint Labor-Management Committee. During negotiations, SHARE and UMass Memorial identified a list of unresolved issues we have agreed to continue to discuss and try to reach agreement about. For example, UMass Memorial has stated its interest in raising parking rates gradually until SHARE member rates meet the newly-proposed higher rates. Enclosed you can find more details about the parking proposal, and a full list of the issues proposed by UMass Memorial and SHARE.

The negotiating team believes that with this agreement, we participate responsibly toward the success of our hospital, and, at the same time, provide what we and our families need, in order to deal with what seem to be ever-increasing economic pressures. We ask you to vote in favor of this agreement on September 24th-25th.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Signature Poster in Support of Our Contract

Our union's negotiating team is currently at work on the next SHARE contract. We are asking you to join thousands of other SHARE members here at UMass Memorial in adding your signature to a poster that will contain the language at the bottom of this post.

You may have seen a similar poster in the hospital from a few years ago, one that looks like this------>

All those tiny signatures represent over 2,000 SHARE members standing together for a strong contract. It's a powerful message.

When we have enough signatures this time, we will print copies of the poster for members to hang in their workplaces as a way of demonstrating their strong support for the negotiating team and their goals.

UMass Memorial Works Because We Do

We are the members of SHARE at UMass Memorial Medical Center. We enter our contract negotiations with UMass Memorial in good faith, ready to find creative solutions to difficult problems.

We Believe in our Future. We are committed to the success of our hospitals and to providing high quality, caring, and affordable healthcare to our families, our friends and our communities in Central Massachusetts. We know that our hospital will have to change to continue to provide excellent care and stay financially healthy.

We Believe in Participation. We are committed to having a voice in charting a future course for our hospitals. Our knowledge and experience helps improve patient care when we are involved in decision-making.

We Believe in Economic Fairness. UMass Memorial needs to cut costs, not shift costs onto employees who can’t afford it. No group should be asked to pay more than they can. Our paid time off, health insurance, pensions and work security help people move into and stay in the middle class. When our lives are stable, we can take better care of our patients.

We Will Stick Together, through our union, to move forward. Our patients, our families, and our community are depending on us.

Pro-Patient • Pro-Union

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

What's Happening in Contract Negotiations? August Information Meetings

Contract negotiations may move extremely quickly this time -- come find out why, and put in your two cents about health insurance, earned time, raises, the pension, and job security.  The SHARE Negotiating Team wants you to know what's going on, and we want your thoughts. (For more info, see post below.) Please come to a SHARE Information meeting.

Location                 Time                                              Room

Morgan                8/13 11:30-1:30                      3rd Floor Conference Room
University            8/14 11:30-1:30                       Benedict EA3-101
CBO                    8/15 12:00-2:00                       4th Floor Conference Room
Memorial              8/17 11:30-1:30                     Memorial 1 Conference Room
Farmhouse            8/21 12:00-1:00                     Basement Conference Room
Biotech III              8/21 11-12:30                        Seminar Room
WBC                    8/22 12:00-2:00                      Willow Conference Room 2nd Flr
Tri-River               8/27 11:30-1:30                     Community Room
Hahnemann           8/28 12:00-1:30                     2nd Floor Conference Room
ACC                     8/28 11:30-1:30                      4th Floor Conf Room, 4-0001

We will add more locations to this list as we are able to schedule them. In September, we will have another complete round of Information Meetings. Please contact the SHARE office if you would like a meeting in your location, and keep your eye on the blog for additional information.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Contract Negotiations and More

We're back in Contract Negotiations. The extension we agreed upon earlier this year runs through September 30th. That was awfully quick, wasn't it?

Obviously, there's a lot to say about all of this, and about all of the other goings-on. We're working on a more thorough and thoughtful information letter. And we are planning a series of Information Meetings. In addition to talking about the Contract, we will provide updates about the pension committee, the most recent past layoffs, the sale of the Home Health and Hospice facility and the Labs, the SHARE Signature Poster project, and more.

In the interest of making sure that everyone has some basic information, and knows how to get more, here's the first in a series of blog posts about Contract Negotiations.

SHARE has had two Negotiation Sessions with UMass Memorial management so far. The SHARE negotiation team is made up of the SHARE Officers and Executive Board and the SHARE Organizing Staff. We have been meeting with the hospital's management team, headed by Joe Fournier in Labor Relations, and Walter Hunter, an outside attorney.

In the first negotiating session, both teams introduced themselves. There are some new faces on the management team, and we are still getting to know each other. We got quickly down-to-business, as the management team made clear that they have a strong interest in settling a new contract quickly. Once we come to an agreement on the pension, even though nothing would change for us until 2017, the hospital can start counting savings on their balance sheet. If we settle before the end of this fiscal year, they can count savings in this fiscal year. So the timing matters a lot to them.

The SHARE team made clear that it has a number of important issues that need to be addressed, and spent time outlining these issues. The management team described the hospital's need to cut costs, the SHARE team emphasized that the vast majority of our members tell us that their biggest concerns include wages, benefits--especially health insurance, earned time, and the pension--and job security.

The second negotiation session opened with a presentation from UMMMC's Chief Financial Officer, Therese Day. She described the biggest negative economic impacts on the hospital (declining reimbursement rates, tiering by health insurance providers, declining interest rates, and the rising costs of providing healthcare). The management team asserted that healthcare is changing, and that the kind of change is different than anything we've seen before, in that the change involves a number of external forces over which the hospital has little or no control.

To finish negotiating with the hospital by the end of August, we have to figure out what to do with all the issues. Some of the issues are more time-sensitive, and others will require more time and energy than will be available before the contract deadline. In an effort to deal with this problem, we have begun to negotiate the idea of an ongoing Labor-Management Committee that could oversee jointly-made solutions. Knowing that we have a more reliable structure for dealing with ongoing issues, the negotiating team will be able to focus its attention on the topics that must necessarily be addressed at the negotiating table, including the pension, benefits, raises, and job security.

If the SHARE negotiating team can reach a tentative agreement with the hospital negotiating team by the end of August, then we will get the proposal to SHARE members to read, have another round of information meetings, and hold a vote before the end of September. That is a tight schedule, but it is possible. And both sides are highly motivated.

We'll keep posting updates on the blog, in newsletters, and at the upcoming Information Meetings. More to come . . .

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

SHARE Reps & Executive Board

Congratulations to the new SHARE Reps and Executive Board members, and to those who will be continuing this year from previous years. And to those SHARE Reps who are stepping down this year, thank you for your hard work!

Here are the new and returning SHARE leaders, by location:

Krista King, Barre Health Center

Biotech 3
Kay Ferraro, Cytopathology

Sandy Alafberg, SHARE Treasurer
Sheldon Brown, Executive Board, Affiliates/Outreach
Kyle Charbonneau, Billing – Affiliates/Outreach
Carol Fricka, Billing Support Services
Pat Strait, Billing Medicare

Eleanor Beshai, Plastic Surgery
Sharon Wagner, Family Docs - Rudnick

Alana Wesson, SHARE Co-President
Bill Brennan, Executive Board, Biomed Engineering
Joan Powlics, Executive Board, ED
Nancy Bickford, West 3
Andrea Caraglior, Respiratory Therapy
Jay Hagan, CAT Scan
Ray Gietler, Radiation Oncology
Ana Luiz, Women’s Services OBGyn
Michelle Norum, South 5
Joann Shoup, Maternity - Delivery
Angel Small, Multiple Sclerosis Clinc
Sandy Tebo, South 2

Matt Stockwell, 3PTC Psych Nursing

Tri River
Mary Misiaszek, Tri River Clinic Admin

Rita Caputo, SHARE Co-President
Rob Beatty, SHARE Secretary
Deb Clark, Executive Board, Univ. Admissions Unit
Kathy Girouard, Executive Board, Univ. Cardiac Cath
Sharon Pichierri, Executive Board, Univ. Ortho Clinic
Zelpher Bayode, Nursing One to One
Kathy Benitez, Lakeside 2
Sue Bouthot, Orthopedic Billing
Diane Brown, CAT Scan
LeDean Buzzell, Pediatrics Administration
Margaret Carolan, Neurodiagnostic Center
Tom Collins, Respiratory Therapy
Kona Enders, 3 West
Diane Jewell, 4th Floor
Lynn LaFrance, CVC
Rich Leufstedt, Radiology Diagnostic
Dianne Ludovico, Endoscopy Suite
Sue Maddalena, Cardiac Cath
Denise Page, ED
Harrison Saydee Sr., Nursing One to One
Matilda Williams, 6 East

Marie Guertin, HIM Chart Completion

No Vote on March 24

The nominations are in, and there will be no vote for SHARE Reps or Executive Board members this year. Every position up for election either had just the right number of candidates, or fewer. Our Elections Code says that all candidates are therefore considered elected. Many thanks to those who nominated themselves or a co-worker to help keep our union strong.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Notice of Union Rep and E-board Elections - May 24, 2012

If there are more candidates in any area than there are positions to fill, we hold a vote in that area. If there are not more candidates than positions, then the candidates are considered elected, and there will be no vote in that area. To find out if there is a contested election in your area check back here or call SHARE at (508) 929-4020 on May 23rd. The times are below, if there is a vote.

LOCATION                                   TIME                                              ROOM
328 Shrewsbury St                          2p - 2:30p                              Lobby
Barre                                             12p - 1p                                 Conference Room 
Biotech III                                       11:30 – 1:30p                        TBA
CBO                                             8a – 10:30a                             File Room
Farmhouse                                     12:30p - 1:30p                        Basement Conference Room
Hahnemann                                    12p - 1:30p                            Cafeteria Annex
Home Health                                  8:30a – 10:30a                       Break Room
Lincoln St Emp Health                      10a - 10:30a                         Break Room
Memorial                                        6:30a - 4p                              Cafeteria (little annex, near the trash)
Morgan                                          11:30a - 1p                            3rd Floor Rehab Conf Room        
PTC                                              2p - 3p                                  Conference Room
Shrewsbury Family Med                  9:30a - 10a                            Break Room
Shrewsbury Radiology                     8:30a - 9a                             Break Room
Sleep Center                                   2p - 2:30p                             Break Room
South County Pediatrics                   2:30p - 3p                            Lobby
Tri-River                                         12p - 1:30p                           Community Room
University                                      6:30a - 4p                              Cafeteria (back right corner)
WBC                                             11:30p - 2p                           Kitchen area, 1st floor

Voting times TBA for members at 67 Belmont, Milford Radiology, and Hahnemann Family Health at Chadwick Ct.

Voting is limited to SHARE members. 
Please call the office if you would like a membership card.
We are not allowed to have absentee ballots.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Parking Rate Increase

You've probably seen the memo that went out today about parking rates increasing as of July 2012.  Hopefully you also saw the part in the beginning of the email that we've highlighted below! 

Note to UMass Memorial Medical Center employees: The parking rate increases discussed below only apply to the parking areas noted in the memo. Rates on other UMass Memorial properties are not impacted by this increase. For those Medical Center employees represented by a labor union, any change in parking rates will be governed by the terms of the applicable collective bargaining agreement. Nothing will change until we negotiate about it. We can be pretty sure that management will propose these same parking rate increases to the SHARE Negotiating Team for our next contract. (The same thing goes for the recent earned time and pension changes for non-union staff at UMass Memorial -- it's very likely that UMass Memorial management will propose those changes for SHARE members too.) Stay tuned.

UPDATE: A link to the memo as a PDF.

Monday, April 2, 2012

When things are slow at work . . .

It's rare, in most departments, that business is slow for very long. Some days, though, the patients don't come. And then, it's important to know that you cannot be made to go home without pay.

If the option arises and you would like to go home, you can volunteer to do so; you can use time from your bank, or you can simply go unpaid. However, if you prefer to stay at work, your supervisor can work with you to find additional tasks, which could involve floating. If there are no tasks for you to do, then you may be sent home with pay. Here's what the SHARE contract says . . .

Time Off Without Pay (TOWOP)

No SHARE unit member shall be required to take TOWOP. When all other options have been explored, and there is no need to float, the SHARE unit member may take TOWOP or may use earned time or vacation/personal leave, whichever is applicable. If the SHARE member does not want to leave work (either unpaid, or using their own ET, or vacation/personal time whichever is applicable), the employee may choose to stay and be assigned reasonable other duties for which they are qualified (in this case, contract and practice restrictions on cross-campus and/or intra-campus floating will not apply.) If there are no such duties, and the employee is sent home, the employee will be paid.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Contract Extension Ratified

Our contract extension is now official. 1,101 SHARE members voted yes, 55 SHARE members voted no. That's a 95% yes vote, for those of you who like to keep track. Thanks to all those who turned out to vote, whichever way you voted -- it's important. And a thanks again to our negotiating team, who worked hard to get this Agreement.

The raise will probably show up in the March 22 paycheck, but we'll let you know as soon as we have that officially confirmed by HR and Payroll.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Contract Extension Vote this Tuesday, March 6

LOCATION                TIME                                      ROOM

ACC                            7a -12p                     4th Flr Conf Rm

Barre                           12p -1p                    Conf Rm 

67 Belmont                12p -12:30p

Biotech III                   11:45a - 2p               Seminar Rm 227

CBO                            8a -10a                      File Rm

Farmhouse                12:30p -1:30p           Basement Conf Rm

Hahnemann               12p - 1:30p               2nd Flr Conf Rm

Home Health             8:30a -10a & 3p - 4p   Break Rm

Lincoln St
     Emp Health          10a - 10:30a

Memorial                    6:30a - 4p                  Mem 1 Conf Rm

Morgan                       11a -11:30a

PTC                             3p - 4p

     Family Med           8a - 8:30a                   Break Rm

        Radiology           7a - 7:30a                   Break Rm

Sleep Center              2p - 2:30p                   Break Rm

Tri-River                     12p -1:30p                  Community Rm

University                   6:30a - 4p   Cafeteria (back right corner)

WBC                           12p - 2:30p              Elm Conf Rm

Voting is limited to SHARE members.
Please call the office if you would like a membership card.

Layoff Update

It's been a tough week. The layoffs are now over. Thirty-two SHARE members--including secretaries, PCA's, LPN's, and others--have been told that their hours would be reduced, or that their jobs were being eliminated.

SHARE reps are working with each of these layoffees to help them find resources, support, and new jobs. We've already received some interest in voluntary layoffs, and we're optimistic that these swaps will lead to some good outcomes. If you would like to know more about voluntary layoff, or would like to be considered for a swap, please call the SHARE office at 508-929-4020.

Also, if you are interested, you can click the following link to more information about the layoff process.

There will be another SHARE Information meeting on Monday, from 11:30-1:30 on the University Campus in room S1-123. And don't forget that the Contract Extension vote is this coming Tuesday, March 6th.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Do You Want to Volunteer for Layoff?

As you have probably heard, UMass Memorial recently gave notice to some employees--including some SHARE members--that they will be laid off, or have their hours cut.

Whenever there is a layoff, SHARE Reps work to help each member find another job, either in an open position or by "swapping" with someone who volunteers to be laid off. If we can find the right match for a swap, the person who was going to be laid off takes the volunteer's job. The volunteer gets the layoff benefits:
  • severance (one week per full year that you've worked here, minimum 2, maximum 8)
  • earned/vacation time paid out weekly (and keep health insurance until all time is used up)
  • unemployment
  • access to the SHARE training funds
If you would like to know more about what volunteering might mean for you, please call the SHARE office: 508-929-4020.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Information Meetings

Feb 22   Home Health 11:30-1 & 5-6 Break Room

Feb 22   Tri-River 12-1:30 Community Room

Feb 27   Hahnemann 12-1:30 2nd floor Conference Room

Feb 28   Shrewsbury Radiology 11-1 Break Room

March 1   ACC 11-12:30 4th floor Conf Rm (near elevator)

March 2   Farmhouse 12:30-1:30 Basement Conference Room

March 5   University 11:30-1:30 S1-123

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

About the Contract Extension . . .

Hi all. A mailing has been sent out to each SHARE member at their home regarding the Contract Extension proposal. Everyone should receive that some time this week. The mailing includes a description of the raises and the pension committee. You will be able to calculate your own raises thanks to enclosed directions. The mailing also includes a quick update regarding what we know about layoffs (so far, that's nothing that isn't also in the newspaper.) There is a list of voting times and locations for the Contract vote, which will take place on Tuesday, March 6th. And there's a list of Information Meeting times and dates. Information meetings have already begun. Please help us get word out in particular to those locations whose lunchtime info meetings are happening this week:

Wed Feb 15 Sleep Center 12:30-1:30

Thurs Feb 16 Barre 12-1

Thurs Feb 16 Shrewsbury Medicine 11-1 (Break Room)

Fri Feb 17 Memorial 11:30-1:30 (Memorial 1 Conference Room)

If you have questions or comments about the Contract Extension, or would like help calculating your own raise, please come to one of the scheduled Information Meetings, or give us a call in the SHARE office (508-929-4020).

Thanks everyone! And happy Valentine's Day!

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Contract Negotiations--Tentative Agreement!

We are happy to announce that we have a tentative agreement with UMass Memorial. The agreement would extend our current contract until September 30, 2012, with:

  1. A Raise for all SHARE members for this year
  2. The creation of a labor-management Pension Committee
  3. No other changes in the contract

Details coming in the mail:

We will be sending every SHARE member a letter with the details of the agreement, a list of information meetings, and locations and times to vote on the proposed contract extension. If a majority of the SHARE members voting vote “Yes”, then the agreement goes into effect.

The Raise:

The letter you get will explain the raise in detail, show the new ranges, and allow you to figure out exactly what you would get.  There are two parts to the raise:  an across-the-board base increase that moves everyone in SHARE up along with their grade, plus a step increase/bonus for everyone hired before 10/1/2011. The step increase gives SHARE members credit for another year of service, and moves them closer to their grade max. The bonus is for any part of the step increase that would be over max. The bonus would be based on the number of hours paid in 2011, including overtime.

In order to get a big enough raise, we would agree to have it go into effect January 1 instead of October 1. In effect, we would trade part of the retro we are owed for a bigger base increase.

The Pension Committee:

One of UMass Memorial’s big priorities is to reduce the cost of benefits. As part of this effort, the management negotiating team made a proposal about making changes to the pension. The SHARE negotiating team could not negotiate about anything that important without a great deal of research and discussion. And we didn't want SHARE members to have to wait that long for a raise. So we made an agreement that would set up a "Joint Pension Reform Committee" to look at the pension, its cost and future sustainability, management’s proposed changes and what effect they would have, and other options.

The committee’s job would be to make a recommendation to the SHARE and management negotiating teams in time for them to negotiate about the pension in our next contract. No changes to the pension would be made in this current extension. Any changes to the pension that might be made in the future would not affect any pension benefit you have already earned.


We hope to answer everyone’s questions soon in the letter we send to home, in information meetings, and in one-to-one conversations. Please be patient as we get this information out. We will be in touch soon.

Thank you,

The SHARE Negotiating Team:
Sandy Alafberg
Rob Beatty
Bill Brennan
Sheldon Brown
Rita Caputo
Deb Clark
Kirk Davis
Deb Engvall
Kathy Girouard
Carol Hehir
Jana Hollingsworth
Taylor Morgan
Deb Pawlina
Sharon Pichierri
Joan Powlics
Elisabeth Szanto
Alana Wesson

Friday, January 27, 2012

Upcoming SHARE Info Meetings

Hi! Please note the upcoming SHARE information meetings:

Mon 1/30        CBO                   12-2                      4th Floor Conference Room

Tues 1/31        Farmhouse     12-1                     Basement Group Room

Thurs 2/2       Hahnemann    12-1:30             2nd floor Conference Room

Fri 2/3             Tri River         12-1                      Community Room

Tues 2/7       University       11:30-1:30            S1-123

More to come . . .