Message from Debra A. Hagan, President
I want to wish everyone a joyful holiday season! I also want to thank you all for your hard work this year. It has been a busy one for everyone at Transport Workers Union Local 252.
Guardian’s contract ratification passed with major improvements including; guaranteed weeks, paid time off, and increase to wages each year. There has been continuous action to make sure the companies uphold each contract. Currently, several are in the process of being negotiated.
The second annual Union Picnic was held on May 21 at Belmont State Park and it was a beautiful day with food, fun and the company of our Brothers and Sisters. We had over 400 people attend which was an increase from last year’s picnic. Many of our members took part in Local 100’s Family Day at Coney Island. We had 45 people in attendance from 252 and we fed well over that many.
We held our second annual Bets for Vets fundraiser on November 12 with United Way and it was even more successful than the last. Over 300 people attended and $17,145 was raised for veterans. We hope to see you all again next year. TWU Local 252 will also be awarded the United Way Visionary Award for our fundraising efforts.
Our executive board member, Louie Mercado, volunteered for Operation Free PX which is a military charity organization that provides donations to wounded soldiers staying in the Brookes Medical Center and their families. They can shop for free among the tables of donated items in hopes that it will make their holidays a little brighter.
The Working Women’s Committee worked very hard on both the Union Picnic and Bets for Vets. They were responsible for this year’s coat drive as well. That was another great success. We had hundreds of coats donated that helped those in need including veterans. They also attended several conferences. In January, they went to Texas for the Working Women’s Conference. In May, they went to Miami and in September it was St. Louis. At these conferences, they meet with women from other local to learn, teach, and empower one another. Sometime early this summer Local 252 will once again be hosting the Working Women’s Conference which we are all looking forward to.
Our shop stewards attended a retraining class in April with Robert Wechsler from Transport Workers Union, AFL/CIO. The Long Island Federation of Labor accepted 14 registered members into their labor classes as well and they graduated earlier this month. Suffolk had a Special Election this year for Vice President. Karen Aguiar won and has been a valuable addition to our executive board. Together we attended the President’s Conference in New Jersey which was a very informative experience. Nina Thomas was present for the AFL-CIO Martin Luther King Jr. parade in Washington D.C. and will attend this coming January in Houston with TWU along with Neal Galloway.
I have been promoted to the International Executive Council and will be sworn in this January. I look forward to using my new position to make effective changes for the Transport Workers Union. I continue to attend the monthly NY-NJ State Conferences. Denise Fleming and I went to Washington D.C. where we met many congressman on Capitol Hill.
The Union had many wins this year but was not without losses. Local 252 lost their own Nancy Maresca-Elliott who was a dedicated executive board member.
Now we have a New Year ahead of us, which is sure to have its own challenges and triumphs. I look forward to working in solidarity with you to ensure that Local 252 and all its members continue to thrive.
See you in 2017!