Saturday, June 16, 2007

More "Naked Promises" from Tom Lee

Tom Lee sent an email to delegates yesterday (June 15). It begins:

"Over the past two years..."

STOP! Tom Lee has been in office for six years, not two. He has had more time than he admits here.

"...the Federation has made significant, long overdue philosophical adjustments, including a new focus on increasing membership through state of the art recruitment and retention initiatives."

The only intelligent recruitment and retention (R&R) initiative I have seen was presented by Ray Hair, President of Local 72-147, in a twenty minute presentation at the New England Conference, in March of this year. I haven't located any examples that have emanated from the AFM. The truth is, there are none.

"Philosophical adjustments" isn't much to show for the last six years. If they were "long overdue," why didn't we make them earlier?

"[One important goal] is to focus our resources on finding ways to capture the work that is going to non-union shops in Seattle, as well as to foreign countries."

If we still haven't found a way after six years, will two/three years more really help? Having had six years, will two/three more help develop concrete, intelligent programs to retain our members and recruit new members? Bouncing this issue off the IEB has not amounted to a positive, substantive program.

We are all aware that we are all in trouble and that the AFM needs help. Honestly, after observing the leadership for the past six years, I have seen no viable programs, no new attitudes, and not even an understanding of the requirements for change.

We are seven years into the 21st century, and we have to try new leadership. Otherwise, the downward spiral of the AFM and our Locals will be the demise of all of us.

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