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September 13, 1995

1995.09.13: Memo from Michael Letwin to ALAA members – Proposed UAW Affiliation Agreement

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Association of Legal Aid Attomeys

568 Broadway, Room 702A, New York, NY 10012-3225

212.343.0708 • FAX 212.343.0966

MEMO

To: ALAA Members

Fr: Michael Letwin

Da: September 13, 1995

Re: Proposed UA W Affiliation Agreement (attached)

Attached is the text of the proposed affiliation agreement between ALAA and the UAW. As

discussed in the August 25, 1995 notice, ALAA will vote on ratification of this agreement, and elect

officers, at the membership meeting on September 28, 1995, 4 p.m., at 1199 headquarters, 310 W.

43d Street.

This proposed agreement reflects a complex and thorough process that began in early 1992.

Since that time, our members have expressed the consensus in numerous meetings that the UAW’s

clout and national affiliation with legal services workers would greatly benefit ALAA. At the same

time, we have recognized that affiliation must guarantee: (1) ALAA’s autonomy and a democratic

internal structure; (2) reasonable union dues for individual ALAA members; and (3) retention by

ALAA of funds sufficient to properly serve our members.

With the assistance ofUAW Regional Director Phil Wheeler, ALAA representatives conveyed

to the International UAW these essential terms, to which the UAW agreed. Consequently, in

September 1994 the ALAA Executive Committee voted to recommend affiliation with the UA W,

subject to a specific agreement on funding ALAA’s operations (point three of the previous

paragraph). The latter issue was favorably resolved when on May 31, 1995 the UAW agreed to

ALAA’s proposed proposals (see attached Side Letter).

In the midst of these complex discussions, the U A W put its strike fund at our disposal during

PRESIDENT MICHAEL LETWIN e SECRETARY-TREASURER JUDY WHITING e VICE I’KESillENTS GEORGE ALBRO e RICHARD ARMSTRONG

BARBARA BYRNE e GAIL GELTMAN e NANCY GINSBURG e JUDITH GOLDINEK e MARIA-ELENA GONZALES e JEAN MANDIC

OFFICE MANAGER OLIVE MODESTE e LEGAL COII!’\SEL DA!’\IEI. ENGEI.STEIN

~36

8 Association of Legal Aid Attorneys

1992 and 1994 contract negotiations. Over the past year, they have provided indispensable assistance

in lobbying for Legal Aid funding, an effort which contributed significantly to full restoration of the

state Aid to Defense grant.

Further discussion will be necessary concerning specific modifications in our internal structure

that the UAW Constitution might require, including the titles and election of officers, and the

composition and selection of ALAA’s Executive Committee.

Given the importance of these structural issues to our membership, the UAW has agreed to

a three-year transition period during which we could maintain our existing internal structure while

carefully crafting necessary modifications that remain fully consistent with the democratic character

of our union. The UAW’s flexibility on this and other issues related to affiliation strongly suggests

that it will not be difficult to achieve that goal. In any event, there is little risk involved since ALAA

retains the perpetual right of disaffiliation.

Over the past year, the terms of this proposed agreement have been reviewed by the members

of ALAA’s Executive and Bargaining Committees. The final language has been approved by ALAA

counsel Danny Engelstein.

Please read the proposed agreement carefully and feel free to raise questions or comments in

upcoming office meetings, or by contacting the ALAA office. Members who wish may review the

International UAW Constitution (216 p.) at the ALAA office, or by contacting their union

representatives, who will receive fresh copies shortly.

As previously announced, to appear in a special bulletin, nominations for Union office,

candidates statements with a maximum length of about 750 words and/or .a small black-and-white

photo, and/or statements concerning the proposed UAW affiliation must be received at the ALAA

office by 5 p.m. on Thursday, September 21, 1995.

~36

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PREFACE

e AFFILIATION AGREEMENT BETWEEN

ASSOCIATION OF LEGAL AID ATTORNEYS (ALAA)

AND INTERNATIONAL UNION, UA W1

AGREEMENT, made this day of September, 1995, between the Association of Legal Aid

Attorneys (hereinafter ALAA) and the International Union, UA W (hereinafter UA W).

WHEREAS, ALAA is a labor organization which has been certified by the New York State Labor

Relations Board as the collective bargaining representative of Staff Attorneys employed by the Legal

Aid Society (hereinafter LAS), who are covered by ALAA’s collective bargaining agreement with

LAS effective October 1, 1994 until September 30, 1998 (“the current agreement”); and

WHEREAS, the UAW is a labor organization with collective bargaining agreements in a wide variety

of industries, including non-profit organizations employing public interest law workers; and

WHEREAS, ALAA and the UA W share an overriding concern for the improvement and expansion

of quality legal representation for poor and working people, including a concern for the improvement

of terms and conditions of employment, and advancing the general interests of employees of LAS,

and a desire to bring those employees within the ranks of organized labor both in New York City and

throughout the country; and

WHEREAS, the UAW is willing to commit its experience, personnel, and other resources to

strengthen the bargaining effectiveness of ALAA, and to attempt to organize other public interest law

workers; and

WHEREAS, ALAA is willing to commit its experience, personnel, and other resources to help bring

unorganized public interest law workers into the ranks of organized labor; and

WHEREAS, the parties recognize that an affiliation between the two groups will enhance the ability

of each to achieve the above goals;

NOW THEREFORE, it is agreed that:

1. ALAA Authority to Ne2otiate

ALAA represents that, upon adequate notice and in compliance with its Constitution and

other lawful requirements, its governing Executive Committee has duly voted to negotiate

1Note: The footnotes herein are explanatory for ALAA members, and do not constitute part

of the text of this agreement.

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ALAAIUAWSeptember 1995 Affiliation Agreement Page2

2.

3.

with the UAW concerning possible affiliation with the UA W, subject to membership approval

ofthe terms ofthe affiliation. A membership vote of approval shall constitute application for,

and acceptance of, a UA W local union charter governed by the terms of this affiliation.

UA W Authority to Negotiate

The UAW represents that (1) it has full and lawful jurisdiction to organize public interest law

employees; (2) it has authority to enter into agreements of affiliation with other labor

organizations; and (3) the prospective affiliation of ALAA with the UAW has been approved

in the manner required by the UA W Constitution.

Effective Date

14 Effective as ofthe date hereof, ALAA will be an affiliate of the UAW upon the terms and

15 conditions of this Agreement.

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17 ALAA AS A LOCAL OF THE UA W

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4.

5.

6.

7.

Organizational Status

On the effective date that this Agreement is ratified by the ALAA membership, the UAW will

immediately charter ALAA as a local union. It will be known as The Association of Legal

Aid Attorneys, Local 2325, UA W Notice of this name change will immediately be

communicated to ALAA membership and any employers with whom ALAA has a collective

bargaining agreement. The new name will be used in all subsequent correspondence.

Bylaws

Local2325, UAW agrees to submit new bylaws to the UAW International President for itself

on behalf of any corporate entity established by ALAA, by October 1, 1998 which will

conform with the UAW Constitution.

UAW Constitution Governs

The new local union and its officers, agents and members will be governed in all respects by

the UAW Constitution.

UAW Resources

Upon affiliation, Local2325 and” its members will be entitled to all rights of membership and

to use all UAW resources otherwise available to a UAW local including the services of

international representative(s) and such departments as Legal; Research; Organizing; Social

Security; Community Services; Time Study; Education; Auditing; Arbitration; Community

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ALAAIUA W September 1995 Affiliation Agreement Page3

8.

9.

10.

11.

12.

13.

14.

Action Programs; Health and Safety; Public Relations; Civil Rights; Women’s; Consumer

Affairs; Technical; and Office and Professional.

Present ALAA Structure and Role

Subject to the UAW Constitution and applicable law, ALAA shall continue (1) its present

organizational structure, including, but not limited to, the election of officers, and the

appointment and election of unit representatives and shall enjoy independence with respect

to its internal affairs, and (2) its current collective bargaining relationship with LAS, including,

but not limited to, the negotiation and enforcement of its collective bargaining agreement, the

right to determine its own collective bargaining procedures, the right of ratification, and the

right of any checkoff provisions or authorizations to which the Association is a party. The

UAW agrees to continue ALAA as the separate autonomous local union and not to take any

action which would impair that status, without the consent of the membership of ALAA.

Collective Bar&ainin& A&reements

In future collective bargaining agreements, the exclusive bargaining agent will be designated

as the International Union, UAW and its affiliated Local 2325, UAW.

Political Independence

Subject to the UAW Constitution and applicable UAW policy, ALAA shall continue its

policies of political independence in all matters, including intra-union issues, and of pursuing

the goal of quality representation and equal justice for its clients.

Office and Staff

ALAA shall maintain its own staff, its own office and facilities.

Counsel and Consultants

ALAA may retain its own legal counsel and other consultants which it shall select.

Servicin& of ALAA Members

Except as provided in paragraph 7 (UAW Resources) and paragraph 12 (Per Capita Dues to

the UAW and Subsidies to ALAA), ALAA staff, counsel and consultants will take full

responsibility for servicing ALAA members.

ALAA Support for UAW Or&anizin& Efforts

ALAA’s full-time staff will play a significant role in efforts to organize other public interest

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ALAAIUAW September 1995 Affiliation Agreement Page4

15.

lawyers and legal workers into the UA W.

Per Capita Dues to the UA W and Subsidies to ALAA

A. Per Capita Dues to the UA W

Union dues will be distributed on the following basis:

Local Union

Strike Fund

International Union

Family Education Fund

38 percent

30 percent

30 percent

2 percent

As long as the strike fund remains above $500,000,000, ten percent (10%) ofthe

thirty percent (30%) distributed to the strike fund will be rebated to the local as

provided in Article 16, Sections 11(c), (d) and (e) ofthe UAW Constitution.

Three years from the date of this Agreement, the percentage of salary paid as per

capita to the International Union (30% for the International Union, 30% for the Strike

Fund, and 2% for the Family Education Fund), shall be based on the actual average

salary of the bargaining unit without regard to the salary cap provided in Item 2, A.

B. Subsidies to ALAA

In addition to the 38% of dues retained by ALAA and the strike fund rebate referred

to in the previous paragraph, the International President will give consideration to the

International Union providing a subsidy to ALAA?

C. State and Area CAP Councils

The local union will pay the required per capita to State and Area Community Action

Program (CAP) Councils and participate in CAP activities. 3

D. Backup Legal Assistance

Subject to the approval of the UAW Region 9A Director, the UAW shall provide

legal assistance in emergency or exceptional circumstances from the UA W Legal

Department, and/or in that Department’s discretion, from ALAA’s counsel, at the

2See attached side letter concerning subsidies.

3CAP is the UAW’s political action organization, to which UAW locals make a 3% per capita

payment.

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ALAAIUAW September 1995 Affiliation Agreement PageS

16.

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UAW’s expense.

E. Strike Assistance

The UAW shall provide [a]ssistance in any labor dispute or strike in which ALAA

may engage, including but not limited to, full coverage by the UAW Strike Fund,4 as

provided for by the International UAW Constitution.

ALAA Representation Rights

Upon affiliation, local union members who are members of ALAA will have all rights of

membership under the U A W Constitution and the U A W will pay any national per capita tax

to the AFL-CIO that is applicable to the new local. ALAA and its members shall be entitled

to fair and equal representation on subordinate bodies ofthe UAW in accordance with the

UAW Constitution.

UAW Family Education Center

In addition to having access to the ongoing educational programs of the UAW, members of

the new local will also have access to the educational programs, including the scholarship

programs, at the UA W Family Education Center in Onaway, Michigan.

Periods of Prior Membership

For the purposes of eligibility to hold office in ALAA and the UAW, to represent ALAA at

the conventions of the UAW, to vote in elections, or otherwise to enjoy the benefits of

membership in ALAA and the UAW, periods of membership in ALAA shall be deemed to

have been periods of membership in the UAW.

Membership Lists and UAW Publications

Upon affiliation, the new local will immediately provide the UAW with its membership list,

including a list of the local union officers and representatives and, if different, a mailing list

of all employees covered by its collective bargaining agreements (if available). The UAW will

add these names to its master mailing list and Solidarity magazine will be provided to all

members. The appropriate copies of other UAW publications will also be provided.

~he UAW strike fund currently provides strike pay of$150 per week and health insurance

coverage for members and their families.

ALAAIUAW September 1995 Affiliation Agreement Page6

1 RIGHTS AND OBLIGATIONS OF MEMBERSHIP

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20.

21.

Initiation Fees

ALAA members in good standing as of the effective date of this Agreement, shall be entitled

to all the rights and benefits of membership in the U A W without payment of any initiation fees

or other charges. Persons who become members in good standing of the ALAA after the

effective date ofthis Agreement shall be entitled to all the rights and benefits of membership

in the U A W upon payment of the initiation fee5 and other charges generally required of all

members ofthe UAW, as well as the dues requirement then applicable to ALAA members.

Dues Rates6

The increases in current ALAA dues that will result from this Agreement shall be voted upon

by the ALAA membership in conjunction with the ratification of this Agreement. If ratified

by ALAA’s membership, ALAA’s dues will increase from the present . 77 percent of the

average ALAA salary ($360 per year) to the required UAW rate of 1.15 percent of salary

pursuant to the following terms:

A.

B.

Average Salary

The present ALAA average salary of$46,550 will remain the figure used to calculate

the actual dollar amounts collected as dues, notwithstanding that the average ALAA

salary may increase or decrease.

Schedule of Increases

The following schedule will govern the increases in the percentage of ALAA salary

payable as dues:

~he UAW initiation fee of$10-$50 would represent a reduction from the $100 strike fund

contribution which ALAA now imposes on new members.

6Extraordinary expenses in response to the crises of the past year, together with a decline in

the number of Staff Attorneys, has sorely taxed ALAA’s treasury. Thus, completely apart from the

issue of affiliation, the Union will not be able to maintain its existing level of funding without

increasing its dues, which remain low when compared with other unions, and which have remained

unchanged since 1989.

Based on previous feedback from ALAA members, the affiliation agreement maintains our

existing flat dues structure under which each ALAA member pays the same dollar amount, regardless

ofindividual salary. ALAA would also have the collective option of adopting the UAW’s graduated

dues structure under which each member would pay 1.15% of her actual salary.

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ALAAIUAW September 1995 Affiliation Agreement Page 7

22.

(1)

(2)

(3)

First Increase

In the first full month which follows ratification of this Agreement, the

percentage of ALAA salary that will be payable as dues will be increased from

the present rate of. 77 percent of $46,550 to .87 percent of $46,550. It is

agreed that this increase in the rate will result in an across the board dollar

increase in dues from the present $30 per member per month to $33.75 per

member per month ($404.98 per year).

Second Increase

One year from the date of the ratification of this Agreement, the percentage

of ALAA salary that will be payable as dues will be increased from the rate of

.87 percent of $46,550 to .96 percent of $46,550. It is agreed that this

increase in the rate will result in an across the board dollar increase in dues

from $33.75 per member per month to $37.24 per member per month

($446.88 per year).

Third Increase

Two years from the date of the ratification of this Agreement, the percentage

of ALAA salary that will be payable as dues will be increased from the rate of

. 96 percent of $46,550 to 1.05 percent of $46,550. It is agreed that this

increase in the rate will result in an across the board dollar increase in dues

from $37.24 per member per month to $40.73 per member per month

($488. 78 per year).

(4) Fourth Increase

Three years from the date of the ratification of this Agreement, the percentage

of ALAA salary that will be payable as dues will be increased from the rate of

1.05 percent of$46,550 to 1.15 percent of$46,550. The parties agree that

it is their intent to move towards the constitutional dues requirement of 1.15

percent of salary per month, per member. Any further increase, however, will

be negotiated between the UAW and ALAA, and ratified by the ALAA

membership.

Dues Collection

Subject to the UA W Constitution, ALAA shall continue to collect and control dues and shall

forward to the International Union the total amount according to the schedule outlined in

paragraph 18 and Article 16, Section 11 ofthe Constitution ofthe International Union.

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ALAAIUA W September 1995 Affiliation Agreement PageS

23.

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28.

Strike Fund

It is understood that, as of the effective date of this Agreement, the ALAA and all of its

members in good standing, will be entitled to participate in all the benefits of the U A W Strike

Fund.

Ratification

The parties intend that ratification of this Agreement shall be conducted in accordance with

the procedures set forth in the ALAA Constitution and Bylaws and as required by law.

Current ALAA Treasury

ALAA shall retain dominion and control over its current treasury and all other assets, which

shall remain and continue to be its exclusive property. Expenditures from any funds will be

consistent with the UAW Constitution and applicable law. In the event of disaffiliation,

ALAA shall retain its treasury and all other assets existing on the date notice of disaffiliation

is given, or the effective date of disaffiliation, whichever amount is greater, subject to

payment of obligations of ALAA and/or the UAW outstanding as ofthe date of notice or

incurred in the ordinary course from the date of notice to the effective date of disaffiliation.

Collective Bargaining Status

It is the intention of the parties that the identity, continuity, bargaining status and other rights

and obligations of ALAA under any existing collective bargaining agreements or in

connection with any collective bargaining relationships shall not be affected by this Agreement

and the provisions thereof shall be interpreted consistent with that intention.

Severability

If any authorized tribunal holds that this Agreement or any provision thereof impairs any right

of ALAA under any collective bargaining agreement or relationship to which it is a party, then

this Agreement or the provision thereof shall be inoperative to the extent necessary to avoid

such impairment and the parties shall negotiate substitute provisions which will effectuate the

intent of the parties but avoid the aforesaid impairment.

Further Instruments

The parties shall, upon request, execute such further instruments as may be appropriate to

carry out the purposes and provisions of this Agreement.

ALAAIUAW September 1995 Affiliation Agreement Page9

1 RIGHT TO DISAFFILIATE

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29.

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31.

Procedure

Notwithstanding any provision to the contrary in the UA W Constitution either now existing

or as hereinafter amended, or in the constitution or bylaws of any other labor organization or

federation to which the UAW is affiliated, or which becomes a party by merger or otherwise,

either party may terminate this Agreement and withdraw from affiliation on 60 days written

notice to the other. In such case, the parties shall cooperate in good faith to restore the

organizational status quo which existed prior to affiliation and to make an equitable

adjustment and accounting of their affairs. Any dispute regarding this provision, except in

regard to the absolute right to disaffiliate, which the parties do not resolve shall be submitted

to and decided by an arbitrator to be mutually agreed upon, or if no agreement is reached, to

an arbitrator selected pursuant to the labor arbitration rules and regulations of the American

Arbitration Association. The ALAA will give the UA W 30 days notice of any disaffiliation

vote. If the parties fail to resolve such problems and/or issues, the UAW will have the

opportunity to address the ALAA membership prior to them voting on terminating their

participation in this Agreement.

Freedom from Interference

The right to disaffiliate shall not be abridged by any action by the UAW, including but not

limited to any attempt to impose a trusteeship or administratorship, or to otherwise affect the

integrity of the ALAA’s independence, and the sending of a notice of disaffiliation shall take

precedence over any such action, rendering that action immediately of no effect.

UA W Not Liable

ALAA agrees that the UAW is not liable for any liabilities, claims or causes of action which

might be attributable to ALAA prior to or subsequent to the effective date of this Agreement.

32. Disputes

In any misunderstanding or dispute regarding any of the above or in respect to any matter not

discussed or contained in this memorandum of understandings between ALAA and the

International Union, UAW, the decision of the International Union President will be

controlling, subject to the appeals process set for in the International UAW Constitution and

to other applicable legal remedies.

RATIFICATION

33. This Agreement shall become effective only upon notice by ALAA to the UA W of ratification

by the members of ALAA in accordance with ALAA’s rules and procedures.

[Signatures]

ALAAIUA W SIDE LETTER ON SUBSIDIES

1 Subsequent to the ALAA membership approving the proposed Affiliation Agreement with the

2 International Union, the UAW will provide ALAA a subsidy based on the following understanding:

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1.

2.

3.

4.

First Year

Effective with the first full month after which the Affiliation Agreement is approved and for

the first year, the UAW will provide ALAA with a monthly subsidy equal to 55.31 percent

of the per capita it pays to the International Union.

Second Year

For the second year, the UAW will provide ALAA with a monthly subsidy equal to 50.13

percent of the per capita it pays to the International Union.

Third Year

For the third year, the UAW will provide ALAA with a monthly subsidy equal to 45.83

percent of the per capita it pays to the International Union.

Fourth Year

22 For the fourth year, the UAW will provide ALAA with a monthly subsidy equal to 41.85

23 percent of the per capita it pays to the International Union.

24

25 Notwithstanding the foregoing the maximum annual subsidy the UAW will provide ALAA with be

26 $125,000.

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28 During the fourth year, this matter will be reviewed by the International President or his designee and

29 the President of ALAA to determine the amount of the subsidy in future years. The objective of both

30 parties is to reduce the amount ofthe subsidy in future years while recognizing the value to the UAW

31 of ALAA being responsible for both negotiations and servicing.

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33 The specific arrangements for implementing the understanding set forth in this letter will be worked

34 out by the Chief Accountant ofthe UAW and the Financial Secretary of ALAA.

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36 [Signatures]

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