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— by bill lebo bill lebo
FYI-- Full mobility will bring the already painfully slow OWL to a complete stop. Even when work picks up, since the contractors will be able to use only their "company men" (and believe me I have nothing against "company men" they're as union as anyone) on jobs the OWL will be useless.  I have heard people say that the members on the list are only there because they can't hold a job or are unskilled. That is just not the case. There are tons of execellent carpenters on the list, in fact many of them are "company men" whose companies are so slow right now they don't have a spot for them. I do concede that many members who are on the list don't have the skills they profess to have. However, as I said at the forum we had with Dennis Walsh, the contractors could have remedied that if they had used the system that was available to them. That is, they could have laid that person off and sent a letter to the OWL stating that the employee in question was not skilled in that job, if a carpenter gets, I believe it is, 2 such complaints, from employers, that skill is removed from his/her skill list on the OWL unless that carpenter can provide letters from 2 other contractors that he/she has those skills, or that carpenter must take the class for that skill in order to have it restored on his/her skill list. If the contractors had used this system it would have improved the quality of the carpenters coming off the OWL, but they haven't, instaed they whine that they need full mobility. Now getting back to why full mobility is bad. Lets say your a " company man", and you've been working for Not So Good Drywall for 15 years, your an excellent carpenter, but this is the only company you've worked for since you started in the union, you also have a wife and 3 kids to support. Now the UBC in its infinite wisdom grants full mobility to the contractor associations. One day your boss comes to you and says he needs you to work the next job for cash or alongside non-union carpenters without a steward because he underbid the job and he needs your co-operation with this or he has to let you go. Now you have no hooks with any other companies, and the you have no chance of getting work off the OWL because full mobility has killed it. Do you (a) call the council and turn him in, (b) tell him to fuck off and get your check, or (c) do you think of your family, swallow your pride nod your head in obedience and pray you don't get caught because this is illegal and will get you thrown out of the union.
Scenario 2, this I've seen happen, a carpenter working for a large contrator, and one of the better ones, had given the company 6 months notice that he was  planning to take a vacation with his family in Hawaii. The 6 months notice was company policy and this individual complied. We were on a large job and the super for the company came to the job 2 weeks before this individual was to go to Hawaii with his family and told all the company employees that he himself was going on vacation and that no one could take time off while he was away. When the guy who had given 6 months notice balked at this he was told if he took his vacation he should take his tools with him because he would be fired. This individual canceled his vacation that he had planned 6 months in advance in order to comply with company policy and got screwed anyway. Now with full mobility this kind of abuse can and will run rampant. Members will have no choice but to put up with contractors abuse because they will have nowhere else to go. Full mobility is 100% contractor friendly and 0% carpenter friendly. There are many carpenters out there that don't work for any one particular contractor because they choose not to because they don't want to put up with the bullshit that many times comes with working for one company. Most contractors treat their "company men" like dogs. Some treat them very well. But bottom line is we are all union members and we need to look out for each other, "company men" and local members just the same. Full mobility is bad for all of us.