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The Call Blog: Con Edison Lockout Continues, But Negotiations Resume

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Mayor Bloomberg? Paging Mayor Bloomberg. Hello?



After four days away from the bargaining table, Con Edison and the utility workers union are trying again to reach an agreement on contract terms. Negotiations resumed today after Con Edison locked out 8,500 employees when talks broke down during the weekend.

Con Ed lowered the voltage in more than a dozen Brooklyn neighborhoods today to reduce strain on the electric grid from the high temperatures. Some 5,000 managers are doing the work of the locked-out employees, many of whom are holding protests in the five boroughs.

Details of the contract terms are not being made public, but union leaders claim Con Edison wants to slash employee pensions. The utility paid for a full-page newspaper ad today saying workers are off the job because they refused to agree not to strike without advance notice. What do you say?

Are you encouraged that both sides have returned to the negotiating table? Do you think the lockout happened because of actions by Con Edison or the union? Were you affected by today's voltage reductions?

Send your thoughts using the link above.



It seems con Edison management is ceasing upon the anti-union bashing campaign popular nowadays, never mind that unions are just basically asking for contracts that will barely allow its members to survive during these harsh economic times.

Felix
Bay Ridge



I'm a Con Edison Union worker of 37+ years. This company made over a billion dollars last year and now they want to do away with everything us workers have fought to get for the past 50+ years. They want to put an end to our pension and go to a cash balance 401 K type of pension. They want to increase our medical coverage, which they canceled as of July 3, 2012, they want to make major changes to our sick time, and they haven't even discussed wages. One of the many reasons someone like me comes to work at a place like Con Edison is because of a defined pension and medical benefits package. Now they want to change everything, it's all about the almighty dollar and power. Our CEO Kevin Burke recently received a 5 year compensation package worth $25 Million, he has a pension with a value of $18 million. Con Edison workers aren't looking for anything extra, we just want to maintain what we have now. For a company that made over $1 billion dollars in profits last year, we'd like to think that the workers of Con Edison played some part in that and we want to be compensated fairly. Bargain in Good Faith Con Edison, the workers deserve that. As for the company saying they offered to extend the contract 2 weeks that came with strings attached. They wanted the Union to guarantee that we wouldn't go out on strike without giving them notice during this 2 week period. Why would any union do that to the workers it represents especially to a company that hasn't bargained with good faith up until now. When the Union said No to this the company then turned around and locked us out.

Shelley



John,

The issue here is not money per se but PENSION benefits. These large companies have plenty of money, perks etc for their executives but want to take away from the little guy. They walk away with billions. Let's get real here. This strike will be settled by negotiations or else the State will step in. The Unemployment Trust Fund of New York State would go bankrupt if all 8,500 workers were to collect unemployment benefits. If that should happen, then I feel Gov. Cuomo should step in.

Jeanne
Brooklyn, NY



I am one of the union members that was locked out by Con Edison this Sunday. As is stated in a few articles that I've read since this all started, the union agreed to work without a contract until one could be agreed upon by both sides and the company responded to this by telling it's 8500 union employees that their services were no longer needed. Con Ed has a reputation for crying poverty when it comes to contracts for their employees (lower/middle management included) and rate increases for their customers yet reports record profits every quarter. Something doesn't add up. Then, from what I've heard, Kevin Burke and the board (whose salary/pension/bonuses are outrageous) give all their higher level management employees a 20% pay increase. How is this balanced? I don't think Con Ed has any justification for trying to eliminate the pensions for their union workers or raise the cost of their medical benefits effectively canceling out any percentage pay increase that they receive during the year. The economy isn't the best right now and I understand that, but that has and never will have any impact on Con Edison. People need power, period. It's insulting to think that with all the money they make they expect their workers and customers to accept that their bottom line is somehow in jeopardy.

Here is what I would propose to the Con Ed representatives in charge of contract negotiations (and keep in mind I am not speaking for the union, just my own personal opinion)...

Leave the current contract exactly how it is, not touching the pensions or raising the benefits and giving the workers the same (modest) yearly pay increases that they have received the past four years. Just take the old contract and reinstate it for another term. But, since the company is doing so well obviously regardless of what they would have us believe, give your customers a break for the next four years. I think that's more than fair, I would happily give up the possibility of a raise that is more in line with how profitable the company is if they would be willing to benefit someone other than themselves. Anything at all.. give all the customers a rebate or a credit or maybe just not be as ruthless next time you apply for another rate increase that you clearly don't need.

I wonder what Con Ed would say to that? What do you think?

Randy
UWUA Local 1-2 Member



Why dosen't con ed give them wat they deserve. After all Con Ed has received all the rate increases they have ask for and has been showing showing a positve cash flow for the last three years. And giving themselves millions in raises. The workers have done this for them they the ones that did there jobs no matter what was wrong. Now its time for them to say thank you and keep up the good work. Not i want more work and nothing for you. This is the way you treat your customers too. Give me . I have no money lets get a rate increase. And the same thing all the time. Year after year . Why can't anybody see this go on. I'm sure there are people out there that see it but it's those green blinders that help them not see. Thank you

Luis



WHAT IS NOT BEING TOLD, PROPERTY TAXES ARE GOING UP AGAIN REAL SOON. CUNY TUITION WILL BE GOING UP REAL SOON. SPECULATORS WANT A RISE IN GAS PRICES AT THE PUMP REAL SOON. THE AVERAGE WORKER UNION OR NO UNION NEEDS A PAY RAISE REAL SOON. A UNION WORKER SHOULD BE VIEWED AS SOMEWHAT OF A BAROMETER OF WHAT IS NEEDED ALL AROUND. MY INSURANCE FOR 2 CARS ROSE $400 FOR THE YEAR. MY WIFE AND I ARE IN OUR MID 50'S AND THE CARS ARE OVER 10 YEARS. GIVE THESE CON ED WORKERS THEIR RAISES AND KEEP THE MILLIONAIRES PAWS OFF THEIR PENSIONS.

JOE, BAY TERRACE



I just want to share the fact that there was a Local 1-2 rally against Con-Ed today at 4 Irving Place. Thousands of people showed up to show support to union members of Local 1-2. We had the United Federation of Teachers there, as well as Occupy Wall Street. Students representing "CUNY" in support for Local 1-2 were also there with signs.

I am wondering why there wasn't more media attention? Channel 5 did some coverage, but the other channels 2,4,7 and 11 barely said anything. Obviously, when there is any negative media towards Con-Ed, it is out of the media within a day. I'm wondering if Mayor Bloomberg and Con-Ed have a way of silencing the media when any negative publicity has them in the spotlight?

As a proud member of Local 1-2, I am very concerned that there is not adequate news about the lock out of Local 1-2! I have been locked out of my job after 13 years, lost my insurance cause Con-Ed choose to cancel it on us this week, and now 8500 have to apply for unemployment benefits because Con-Ed felt it better to Lock us out, then give us a fair contract.

Con-Ed's profits soared last year. Our CEO has a multi-million dollar benefits package. He also just approved a 20% raise for the people who sit on the board. If Con-Ed has the money to produce for these employees, why not share with the people who actually keep the system up and running? Con-Ed has said in the media it has put 5000 management out in the field to respond to any emergencies. To date, two management personnel have been injured in manholes. I don't understand how you can take personnel who have not done this type of work in years (if at all) and send them into a extremely dangerous situation. It takes years of training and experience to do the type of work our labor force does.

In any event, Just wanted to share my annoyance on the fact the media is not adequately covering one of the largest rallies in decades..Thank you.

Sharon



So they are throttling back power in Brooklyn to try and prevent wide spread power loss, that's nice of them. I wonder are all those obnoxious lights on and hotel rooms still getting air-conditioning in Tourist Town, I mean Times Square. The rationing of power to customers is just a great ploy to turn the public against the workers, psychological warfare at it's best. The ad in the paper is another nice touch, claiming they locked the workers out because they wouldn't agree to tell the company if they were going to strike. The old you can't quit, I'm firing you power play. Not to worry though, the 5000 person management force can handle things, even though your station did report two of them have been involved in accidents, so they are down to 4998. If something does go drastically wrong I don't have much faith that ConEd has the manpower or brainpower to fix it with all of the actual workers standing on a picket line.

Like many callers said Tuesday it is odd that a company with 8500 workers, has 5000 managers. That seems like a lot of supervising, guess they have to keep an eye on the lazy, greedy, union workers who are trying to extort money from the company and the customers they care so much about. I am guessing that the money the 8500 union workers are asking for as part of their pension is less than whatever the 5000 management level workers get, or are they working there out of love for the energy business at a lower salary and less benefits?

The callers who have been saying the workers need to tighten their belts must really buy into this upper-class driven propaganda that all of this sacrifice is across the board in this country. The notion that these elitist business men are somehow more talented, harder workers and more deserving of anything is a misguided joke at this point. If all of these people were so great, the world would not be in the shape that it is right now. I guess this worship of false gods in expensive suits will never end though, since many are willing to even let them govern them to their graves. Just because someone made money does not make them a smart person, let alone trust worthy. Bernie Madofff, Pablo Escobar and every other thief, pimp, and drug dealer made a lot of money too, that doesn't mean they should dictate how a decent society is run.

RL
The Bronx



Hi John,

Management is nit picking now about the employees going out on strike. They should get back to the table. This is not the time to start playing games with us. We pay an awful lot of money for their so called service. They have lowered the voltage but they always do this and as a result no matter how many BTU's we have the black out occurs or the units run as though it were a fan. This has been going on for years and years and where are all the politicians in this city? Why are we always the ones in the outer boroughs that seem to be always affected?

HOPE YOU HAD A WONDERFUL 4TH OF JULY HOLIDAY
maxxiee
mp



John,

I moved to NYC in August 1966. From that time, and probably prior, every Summer Con Ed begs and pleads for it’s customers to conserve electricity, failing year after year to increase capacity to meet customer demand.

I lived on Long Island for several years and had to deal with LILCO which functioned much like Con Ed, i.e. with high prices frequently crummy service.

Joe
Port Richmond, SI



HOW MUCH ADVANCE NOTICE DO THEY NEED, CONTRACT EXPIRES, NO CONTRACT NO WORK DUH!!! PENSIONS TERMS ARE ALREADY NEGOTIATED, THESE CANNOT BE REINTRODUCED. WHY NOT CUT THE SALARIES OF THE 1.5 MANAGERS PER EMPLOYEE. AFTERALL, WHO NEEDS 1.5 PERSONS TO READ A METER HEY IF THEY CUT THE VOLTAGE DO THEY CUT THE RATE WE HAVE TO PAY? AS LONG AS WE ARE TALKING ABOUT CUTS, WHO PAYS FOR THE CONSUMER EQUIPMENT THAT IS DAMAGED DUE TO THESE VOLTAGE CUTS, AND PLEASE DON'T TELL ME THAT NO DAMAGE IS CAUSED.

BUTCH
SHEEPSHEAD BAY



The public should be outraged at the Con Ed managers. Be fair to the workers. They are not highly paid workers! The mayor should come out for workers.

Ph. Queens



It's a shame that the common New Yorkers are not united for the con Ed employees. They are among the best specialized and well train employees, from truck operators-engineer, and are expected to perform at high level every day! Including on days when temperatures are hovering 100f ( just imagine how hot it is in a manhole). The public must keep in mind that this is a publicly traded company and if trained workers are forced out, all profits will go to shareholders and not to the customers. The CEOs job is to bring greater revenues for investors / shareholders and not to help the customers. All that we want is what was promised to me when I was recruited to work here. Know they want to change the game after years invested with this company and all for greater revenues for shareholders! The managers working the fields are not only putting their own life on the line, but also the life of other New Yorkers! If this drags on for weeks lots of unqualified people working the field and customers will get hurt! Let's hope this does not happen! All we want is what was promised! I ask New Yorkers, how would you feel if you were promised a pension and after devoting 30 years to a company they change their minds! Not because they can't afford it, but because they want to bring greater revenues to share holders! Please do the research, approximately 18 straight quarters with increased record profits and that is not enough for them!

From an Employee and Shareholder!



If I'm not mistaken the Mayor preapproved Con Edison rate increases well in advance. I thought these increases should have included pay increases for employees. MORE AMAZING When temperatures approach 100 degrees and the company locks out their workers on the weekend I want the Mayor of the city to be here and be questioned by the press. It is amazing to me that the whole media (all the distinct separate competing companies all agree not to seek out the Mayor because he doesn't want to be bothered on the weekends.

R from Brooklyn



They are killing people these people have not worked on electric cables in years. it's just a matter of time before somebody in the public gets severely hurt. we have to put a stop to this just give them a fair contract .

KL



Myself and I'm confident, millions of NY'ers would like to see some true, unadulterated, un-biased facts about what is actually going on at Con-Ed. NY1 and other news outlets are reporting "...union officials said this..." , "...Con-Ed said that..." ad nauseam!

How about a simple, no-nonsense chart - What the Union wants - What Con-Ed wants - what it's going to cost the average New York resident?

Please put an end to the confusion. Plain simple numbers with the DETAILS would be nice.

James
Rockaway Park, NY



ConEd didn't lock us out because we wanted more than they could give. We didn't even get a chance to ask for anything.

At the last minute, the Company presented a really crappy contract (to sum it up, lots of people get no raises at all, health care costs tripled, abolish pensions and institute 401K). Yeah, the Union was taken aback but said "ok, let's talk about this." It was already past the deadline. The company was surprised that the Union didn't immediately strike. They asked "why aren't you striking?" The union said "we don't want a strike! We want a contract!" The company then offered to extend the current one for a few weeks if the Union promised to give advance warning of a strike. The Union said we'd work without a contract to keep the service up but wouldn't give up the right to strike (bear in mind, being required to give advance notice neuters the power of a strike). Then ConEd said they were locking us out.

The reason they gave for locking us out is that they couldn't afford to risk having the workers strike. Which left us wondering how a lockout is any different. The same people would have taken over anyway.

The company tried to goad us into striking. This was a thinly veiled effort to break the union. Now they're trying to starve us out. We wanted none of the crazy things unions are notorious for wanting. All we want is what we already have. And for a company constantly talking about their record profits and whose executive board voted themselves a 20% raise two months ago, I wouldn't think it would be that hard.

George
Local 1-2 member



All the talk is about the Union, no one cares to about the FACT that the low and mid-level management workers got screwed when they announced the new retirement policy mandating 35 years of service or age 60 before you can leave, only grandfathering in workers who will be 50 by 01.01.2013. Many just under 50 already have 20-25 or even 28 years of service having started at 18-23 years old. The Union can fight for their rights hut don't curse out the management staff who don't have that voice and can only retire as their voice in protest if getting screwed too.

Bella



Let's be clear on one thing - the union did NOT strike - Con Ed management locked them out and told them not to come to work. Management is getting rich while the working men and women are struggling to make ends meet. We are willing to contribute more towards our medical coverage. My husband & I have been on the other side of the coin working for small companies and paying for our medical coverage at the rate of $200.00 a week. We get that it costs the company money to insure us but Con Ed had record profits - why is it with these record profits that the men & women who made that happen didn't get any bonus?? Why is it okay for the Union to have to give back constantly and not management? Let them sacrifice for once. Everyone who says it is the Union's fault needs to look at the facts - the Union offered to continue to work for 2 weeks without a contract and management told them that was unacceptable and tried to bully them to get their way. Con Ed management is no better than the schoolyard bully.

Laura
Yorktown Heights, NY



Con Ed is playing the old game again the end result will be that they will use this as an excuse the raise the rates once more and they will take the benefits of the employees away. This has been the routine with all the big corporations lately and then they will bring on more fat check managers.

F. C.
Long Island



The takebacks the company is looking for are way out of line.. The men are skilled workers, and put their life on the line every day. They have families, need heath benefits . con ed wants a large give back on that as well as pensions and holidays and pay. Im told that the CEO has a salary of 26 mill. The men need to maintain their families a nd pay their bills

Big



Why dosen't con ed give them wat they deserve. After all Con Ed has received all the rate increases they have ask for and has been showing showing a positve cash flow for the last three years. And giving themselves millions in raises. The workers have done this for them they the ones that did there jobs no matter what was wrong. Now its time for them to say thank you and keep up the good work. Not i want more work and nothing for you. This is the way you treat your customers too. Give me . I have no money lets get a rate increase. And the same thing all the time. Year after year . Why can't anybody see this go on. I'm sure there are people out there that see it but it's those green blinders that help them not see. Thank you

Luis



The lock out happened as of a result of the Utility itself. The company felt that they were going to be able to scare tactic the union into any contract because of the climate of the economy. Yes, no one wants to be out of a job, but on the other hand no one wants to work a "career" in a place that they cant have something positive look forward to when retiring. When you take away pensions, double medical coverage and co pays and make less then the average unionized workers in NYC it is hard to cope with. Living middle class/ lower middle class in NYC is hard to do on its own or to save money with in a desperate economy. Con Ed is the one who is bleeding NYC's pockets dry with there overhead of managers that they dont need, and pocketing all that profit meanwhile still asking the PSC to constantly raise our bill. The union workers do not get a break on the bill either, we pay what you pay. The union is about 5% of our bill meanwhile Kevin Burke makes an estimated $4800 an hour. Do not believe the lies and propaganda that is spewing from the pr man at con ed. While watching his interviews it looks like even he cant believe the lies he is paid to say. In the long run this is just gonna have to fall back on us "bill payers", because the management can not do this work properly and it will cost all of us $ in the long run. Union workers will have to go back to all there bandaids on bullet holes and make NYC safe again. Meanwhile it could have all just been avoided.

Support Local 1-2. We are on your side

Frank



Last night there was an ignorant man from Murray Hill stating union workers need to take economy class. How stupid that comment is! There are many ignorant in New York City. If you don't know something, please shut your mouth up.

Lots of things you don't know about Con Edison. - In Con Edison, many managers were from the Union whose pensions are vested after working for the company for 5 years. If all the managers are willing to give up their lifetime pensions, by all means, our union workers are willing to do the same.

Bernadette
Upper West Side



Threatening a strike for an essential service in the middle of the summer. Can someone say extortion? I understand labor's demands, but the economy isn't exactly booming. Everybody wants higher pay, great pensions, and unlimited pensions, but extorting consumers is not the way.

Frank - Sunset Park, Brooklyn



The Con Ed Union will prevail for this city was built by Unions. The greedy Executives will never be able to spend all the money they make in 10 life times.

Mike M.
Local 1-2.



It's a shame that these labor negotiations are always reduced to who's a creep and whose a jerk. Who failed to do what in order to help themselves. I would really like an investigation into real facts: wages, trends, costs, profits, losses. That's what we need to know to understand in this 99+1% economically depressed times.

Lewis in Manhattan



Why is the United States becoming a feudal system? The corporations are becoming the Land Barons and the workers are becoming the serfs. Don't these greedy corporations realize how much justified anger they are generating. I would rather sit in the dark than hear that ConEd got away with the abuse of these hardworking men and women.

Frances
East Village



Both con ed and union are selfish. Elderly people can die and suffer health issues if electricity goes out. If my 97 year old mom suffers in any way both of them will pay the price and will worry about more than a contract. Greed ruins all.

The government should step in!

Tom in Westchester



HOW CAN ANY UNION BE STRONG WITHOUT THE POWER OF STRIKING

PEDRO
BRONX



could you please list the brownouts throughout the city -- and give or discuss con possible defense of their regular unability to provide reliable service?

many thanks,
matt/brooklyn



Cecilia, you're breaking my heart. Yes, union members have better pay, protection, and benefits compared to non-union workers. That's why we need MORE unions, not less.

Jordan
Flushing



I believe Con ED is doing right. Unions is one of the reason why companies fail. Look around, any company/corporation that has unions face high cost and low productivity. Look at Verizon, look at GM, look at the MTA. Rehire only the ones that deserve a second chance. Kevin Burke is a leader, he makes decisions, union employeees don't make decisions, they don't even write procedures. They do what is told. Anyone can be trained to splice a wire etc, but you cannot just make a decision. They too much money based on the norms of utility companies. Unions destroys corporations. They only want and they don't give back. They fight productivity and fight discipline even when the employee is wrong.

Con ed has too many unions members. The can easily be replaced tomorrow.THet should appreciate what they have. If they really care why dont they take a pay cut and give back to the customers. They wont..

Right now i believe management is doing the right thing. I support Con Ed Management on what they are doing. They care about the customers that is why they had a lock out. They want to reduce the cost.

I work in a union, and i must tell you that union members don't work to their full potential. Look around corporations are getting rid of unions. Management creates safety procedures because the union causes this upon themselves. GO Con Ed management team!!! I support you.

The PSC, the mayor, the Governor supports the management team of Con Ed because they are fighting for the customers.

Steve


It's ConEd's fault! Union Employees are fighting to keep the benefits ConEd agreed they deserved 4 yrs ago. It is not that they don't wan't to work WITHOUT pay, coned locked them out. Most of these employees live paycheck to paycheck and are struggling just like all other working new yorkers! People do not realize that rate increases will happen whether this contract stays the same or gets cut down! Time to put coned in the spotlight with their greediness!

V.I.



The job is dangerous and let them keep there pension you have the replacements getting injured it proves it's dangerous. Union's are going instinct

Queens -Rob



The people of NYC are confusing striking with being locked out. The union employees WANT to work. Con Edison is being selfish and greedy and locked out the workers. The workers want to keep what they have already. Those who are saying that union workers get more benefits, etc are misled by whatever news outlet they are listening to. To say that the workers signed up for a dangerous job so they deserve less benefits? How does that make sense? I have a one year old and a 10 year old that now has no insurance or drug coverage because greedy Con Ed terminated coverage. How is that fair??

Liza



I had to laugh at "Cecilia" so aghast that union workers get better pay, better benefits than the average worker. That's exactly why workers should join a union - to get better working conditions! Maybe Cecilia should start one at her work....and learn the difference between a strike and a lockout.

Mia, Upper West Side



Has anyone mentioned the rumor that Con Ed wants to be sold? What better way to maximize your return than to cut costs and show even more profit? Any buyer would pay top dollar for such a company.....and why would the billionaire mayor of the city that is serviced by Con Ed say a word??????? Your guess is as good as mine as to how much Con Ed stock he owns.

Part of accepting a job and making it a career is because the company hooked you. Good benefits, decent pay and job security are probably the 3 biggest factors. I have 12 yrs in the company and we have always given something up in all the contracts since I've been here. We (UNION) will negotiate. CON ED WILL NOT! They shoved all these changes down there lower management's throat about 3 months ago. They had no say. Take it or leave it.

We have a say as a union. Leave our pensions alone. Raise the medical? Fine. At a representative cost to medical increases in New York. NOT DOUBLE what we pay now. How Does Con Ed turn a $1.1billion profit, PROFIT, and then cut our pensions in half? We want nothing more than what we have now. Just want to provide for ourselves and our families.

I.B.



I'm a Con Ed Mechanic, and everyday we put our lives on the line for the public. It's Indies to hear people say that unions have too much power, when companys like con ed have the power to lock its employees out, without notice. No I didn't graduate multiple colleges with multiple degrees, but that does not mean I don't deserve to provide for my family!

Anthony



Bullying seems to be the theme for 2012. Not much changes from the lunchroom to the boardroom.

Patrick from Astoria



If the power goes out and there is a single death as a result, I hope the union's get their butts sued for trying to extort consumers during the summer - when power demand is at its highest. EXTORTION - plain and simple. The fault is 30% Con Ed, 70% Union.

Frank. Sunset Park, Brooklyn



con Edison brought in a union buster to bust the con Edison worker and give 20 days off for miner work rules error, this has been going on for a while now the sick dept. has been harassing us for years now this is just iceing on the cake

fed up worker



Its obvious that the union workers are only trying to take care of their family, their not asking to be rich, just the basic to secure their family and future.

Reginald



Explain to me how Con Edison cannot afford to pay the unions pensions, but can afford such lavish executive compensation?? It is simply the 1% looking to further crush the middle class. These workers have very dangerous, technical jobs. If the job was so easy, Con Ed would have replaced them with minimum wage day laborers long ago.

Frank



These are hard working men and women!! They are trying to provide for their families!! Con Edison is trying to turn the public against its employees and its backfiring!!! How horrible they are locking out there hard working employees!! New York is on Con Edison employees side!!!

T. Rodriguez
Queens, NY



Con ed is seriously playing a dangerous game. Governor must step in a do something about it, because they're hurting not only con ed managers, but also putting public at risk. Before the lock out, managers had one week of training. with union, its takes 2 to 3 years with a lot of hands on time. So now, is one week enough to learn a trade?

B.



I could not help but notice an email scrolling along the TV screen where a person commented that Mayor Bloomberg should come out in support of the workers. PLEASE -- do we not know by now that Mayor Bloomberg is anti-union!! He is always Union-busting -- take a good look at the games he plays with The Teachers Union and see it for what it really is. His behavior is just as bad as Con Edison's behavior is toward the Union. I thought people were getting a little bit smarter about Mayor Bloomberg!

Management should have never locked out these workers! That is not the art of negotiations.

Lisa



It is clear what is going on, just as it is throughout the country, taking away the collective bargaining rights of average americans. Anyone who attempts to justify an obvious measure by a corporation to rescind the rights of their employees, either benefits directly, or, they expect to somehow benefit, eventually.

K
Harlem



For anyone blaming the union, ask yourself this: Do you think Con Edison is going to lower your bill if they suceed in getting all of their demands in these negotiations? Where is the extra money going to go? How about upper management gives up their pensions (which they all have) first before they demand the union to do the same? If the union gives up their pensions during this negotiation, what will they be asked to give up in four years?

Dan
Brooklyn
Proud Union Employee



This situation is nothing more than a continuation of the attack on the middle class in our country. The real problem is the entire country needs to unionize to stop these attacks. The people are forgetting that the unions gave us the middle class.

Henry



Con Edison should have more respect for the hardworking employees. Con Ed pays their workers very low salaries. They only wants what is theirs! They are NOT asking for anything more. I blame Con Ed Management for this situation. Corporate mismanagement is the biggest reason of our bad economy in every single business ! They need to realize that. They just want fair contract.

Teresa from Forest Hills



we should support every union cause management is trying to take away what we work so hard for

andy
queens



I have worked for Con Edison 42 years and been an avid voter for the peoples rights. Now my employer has locked me out of work. Not being very clear on what the issues are but to my understanding it's over pensions, medical and other benefits. The members of upper management want to change everything in their favor.

Kevin Burke which is our CEO made over 10 million dollars last year. The company has made record earnings. Yet they want to take this money from the working people who are very highly skilled professionals that have earn these benefits. The management are placing our communities at risk. They are maintaining a state of the art grid with management people who are very unfamiliar with our system.

Con Edison has been in business for over 125 years. We have earned these benefits through hard work. I have been through many contracts. They are violating all the years of hard work my union brothers earned & tolled for. Only 5% of our electric bill covers the salaries & benefits paid to 8500 union workers. Where is the the other 95% going? Not just to operating cost. Mr. Burke just increased the salary to each board member by 20 %. They give themselves a nice hefty raise. Maybe the stock holders should investigate their raises.

Con Edison service record is the best in the country. Thanks to my hard working union brothers. Now our upper management wants to change the way they do buisness. They want to keep the money for themselves and take from my union brothers all the years of hard work to earn their benefits. Is this justifible? No regard for their fellow man. This is unjust.

THIS IS WHAT I CALL GREED.

Anonymous



Kevin burke reminds me of enrons ceo robbing the company, the union workers, and the public blind he should be arrested.

O.J.



Corporate bullying at its best !!!!! Look trying to call can't get through problem is kevin burke, craig ivy, since ivy came here a lot has changed with this company

Shawn



Labor is regressing to the same condition as the early 1900's. If the US government does not intervene against greed, all persons in the U.S. and those associated with us will suffer.

Damond,
Clinton Hill Brooklyn



Con Ed is a monopoly and for the public to think that it would be easy to replace us, your wrong. We are highly trained skilled workers with years of training and experience. Our job is not easy and to take away our pensions and health benefits shows you that they don't care about the workers.

Lenore



Does con Edison make political contributions Does ConEdison have PSC commission in their you bet how nice of them to make the politicians look good when they apply for rate increases Ask for 18% and have the politicians look like saints when in actuality it's really a 12% increase their looking for they are a Monopoly true and through who do you think is subsidizing the steam that is pumped into Manhattan out of Burroughs all they need to do is lower the dividend payout by $.30-$.45 to solve this problem for six years how nice of them to lie in the past regarding increases due to oil price increase I guess that would change their name If everyone was named Ed why don't they just come out with lottery tickets winner wins one year of free electricity prices ticket $.25 or a 50 Cent ticket 3 yrs

L.C.



I am not a union employee, but I know history and reality - UNIONS helped build the American middle class and the attacks on unions are an attack on ALL working people. As Justice Louis Brandies said, "We must make our choice. We may have democracy, or we may have wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can't have both."

Tara



Hi The Call,

It is unfair to compare Union workers who have certain benefits should either lower or do without benefits because some other types of workers do not have benefits. Why should workers lose benefits because non-unionized workers do not have benefits? The goal should not be to lower or eliminate workers’ benefits to meet the conditions of non-unionized workers; the goal should be instead to provide all workers with benefits such as pensions, vacation, medical & health insurance.

MARIO
BRONX



When is Kevin Burke's next appearance on Jim Cramer's Mad Money on CNBC?
...... Maybe he'll tell the public how he cut everything from his own hard working middle class workers, so he can watch his shares quadruple.

Ed



I guess Con Ed and Kevin Burke thought that local 1-2 would just lay down and take it, sorry to disappoint you you Mr. Burke but thats not going to happen. It seems you just woke up a sleeping giant. Im so proud to have been apart of the rally at Con Ed headquarters today. It was amazing. This is just the beginning Mr. Burke, you and that weasel Craig Ivey, you've tried to take everything and now we have nothing left to lose furthermore local 1-2 considers this a fight for all New York workers voices that can not be heard. It seems Mr. Burke and Mr. Ivey have severely under estimated the will of all the workers of New York especially local 1-2.

Crystal



How many men / women have to get hurt before OSHA steps in to check in on how the work is being preformed? As an electrical worker I know that it takes months to be proficent in either the overhead or underground aspect of this job. This is why the company is broken up into different departments that preform so many different taske. Every so often we go for new courses, online training or re-fresher courses. When you take people out of an air-conditioned room and throw them into an under ground structure 10-15 below grade where it can get wellover 120 degrees and have them preform tasks which they have not done in 5, 10 or 15 years with no prior training is just plain stupid. This shows how much this company cares about profit & how it puts it before their workers every day of the week. This company preaches safty & puts so much pressure on their day to day workers and so little on the management in this situtation. If we break one of the 7 key safety rules we get a month off with no pay yet you see on the news so many safety rules being broken, like no hard hat in the set-up, no safety harness, no safety glasses ect.

When push comes to shove it comes down to the dollar and in times of emergency so much gets overlooked. Con Edison the monolopy has to much power & I am not talking about electric. This is one of the only companys' probably in America that can tell the government what to do, can hide or cover up just about anything & lie about mor ethen they tell truths.

The more I write the more I get disgusted so I will stop and wait for this lockout to come to a close so I can get back to my underpaid job risking life & limb to keep New york the brightest city in the world.

Sam



The unions aren't asking for more from con Ed they just want to be able to keep the benefits they deserve like health care.

Con Ed doesn't have enough money to pay pensions but can waste my money to print propaganda in the newspaper.

Erica
Bayside Queens



As a business Con Edison had to get the Managers trained up because the Union wanted to use crippling the city as a bargaining chip! Union workers are some of the laziest people I ever seen! I'm proud of Con Ed for ensuring the public doesn't suffer for another greedy Union...

Candice



new yorkers all know this is a premeditated action by con ed to end pensions, medical benefits and decent wages. what con ed, and other corporate hogs slurping at the trough want, is a trip into the wayback machine. before there were unions workers had to show up 7 days a week, no bathroom breaks and if you didn't come in sunday don't come in monday. when the formerly professionally trained and experienced middle class workers are impoverished, con ed and the general corporate mentality is that workers will be desperate. if they can get away with paying 10cents an hour that's what they'll do. the corporations do it now, in third world countries. if con ed could outsource their workers they would do that. meantime, con ed is not all air conditioning. don't get in an elevator if you value your health. hot, sweating and stuck. not a good thing.

Judith
manhattan

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