Tom Lehman TLehman at
Thu Aug 10 20:22:17 PDT 2000

Tonight the Steelworkers tried a little move at our county AFL-CIO meeting to generate more participation by union members in the county AFL-CIO and to better attendence at our monthly business meetings.

We forced a role call vote on a bylaws change that would have eliminated the chairman of a locals delegation from casting all of the votes for a locals delegation in a roll call vote. In other words only the delegates present at the meeting would vote. The chairman would be eliminated from casting all of the delegation's votes. This would mean that on a role call vote you would have to have your delegates present at the meeting. So let's say your local had 6 delegates---all six would have to be present if you wanted all your votes to count.

This move forces full participation and puts pressure on the local president or business manager to see that his delegates attend the monthly business meetings!

There is a democracy angle to this in that it does enable the delegates, and a one man, one vote angle too. Democracy is good. But as George Washington Plunkitt said, speeches about democracy are a dime a dozen.

We needed a 2/3 victory margin to make the bylaws change and we came up with 61.6% or something like that. So no bylaws change.

I personally didn't lobby any other unions for this change before the meeting; although I did say a few words at the meeting about participation and the goals and the survival of the union movement and of the AFL-CIO. Participation is the key. The more participation the better.

Tom Lehman

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