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Railroaders' Nostalgia > When the UTU bought me a beer.


Date: 06/12/19 11:57
When the UTU bought me a beer.
Author: eminence_grise

As I recall, the UTU was created in 1971 out of the BRT,SUNA,ORC and a yardmasters union. In Canada, the BRT and BLF&E were the components, along with the bus divisions.

At the convention in Cleveland, because the position of locomotive fireman had been eliminated in 1955, it was decided to wrap up the affairs of the BLF&E in Canada.  This did not sit well with the Canadian delegates to the convention, but they were far outvoted by the US delegates.

By and large, the affairs of the fireman's union wound down in an orderly manner, with the union locals returning the charters and money to Cleveland.

However, several locals decided to carry on even though they no longer represented any employees. Finally, after at least a decade, the UTU International did an audit, and demanded that the remaining locals in Canada surrender their charters and monies.

While the money which any local has is closely monitored by the head office of any union, many had a small fund set aside for coffee and other incidentals. Because this fund was collected doing union business, Cleveland demanded this also be surrendered. However, someone mentioned that if the money was spent doing union business before the date it had to be returned to Cleveland on something to the benefit of all members, there would be no repercussions.

A picnic or a barbecue was suggested. However, the money left over in the fund in the BLF&E where I worked was so little that a picnic was out of the question. So it was that a round of beer at a local pub was purchased.

Fast forward to 2004, when the UTU was replaced by the Teamsters in Canada. This time, the UTU threatened legal action if the charters and monies were not returned immediately. The venerable former BRT Lodge didn't even get a chance to by a round of beer for the lads and lassies.

 



Date: 06/12/19 18:23
Re: When the UTU bought me a beer.
Author: ButteStBrakeman

eminence_grise Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> As I recall, the UTU was created in 1971 out of
> the BRT,SUNA,ORC and a yardmasters union.

Created May of !969.

Butte St Brakeman
 



Date: 06/12/19 19:08
Re: When the UTU bought me a beer.
Author: trainjunkie

I actually did a write up of a brief history of what is now SMART TD (in the US) on my former local's website here: http://smartutu1626.org/about.html

That being said, after belonging to, and being involved in, three separate UTU locals over the years, I'm continually amazed at how the International is so adept at alienating its own members. This is no dig on the honest, hard-working local representatives, who often toil away at a thankless job. But the International seems to be in its own world, and has been for quite some time.



Date: 06/13/19 08:05
Re: When the UTU bought me a beer.
Author: trackplanner

How did the old saying go? U Took Us?



Date: 06/14/19 16:27
Re: When the UTU bought me a beer.
Author: ln844south

Under Takers Union!

I remember how the UTU local 1312 in Pensacola, Fl was furious when they had a Convention in Hawaii!

Steve Panzik



Date: 06/14/19 16:30
Re: When the UTU bought me a beer.
Author: PHall

trainjunkie Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I actually did a write up of a brief history of
> what is now SMART TD (in the US) on my former
> local's website
> here: http://smartutu1626.org/about.html
>
> That being said, after belonging to, and being
> involved in, three separate UTU locals over the
> years, I'm continually amazed at how the
> International is so adept at alienating its own
> members. This is no dig on the honest,
> hard-working local representatives, who often toil
> away at a thankless job. But the International
> seems to be in its own world, and has been for
> quite some time.

Not just the UTU. CWA (Communications Workers of America) had the same problems too.
I suspect just about any big union has these throubles.



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