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Legislation is pending in the U.S. Senate that will meet the twin goals of preserving coal mining jobs and addressing climate change. Sponsored by Sens. Jeff Bingaman (D-N.M.) and Arlen Specter (R-Pa.), it is the only legislative initiative before the Senate that sets reasonable, achievable goals for reduction in greenhouse gas emissions while allowing time for technological advances to be developed that will make it possible to capture and store carbon. That will mean the United States can continue to use its most abundant energy resource--coal--to generate electricity far into the future without adding additional greenhouse gases to the atmosphere.

The UMWA urges all members and supporters to contact their U.S. Senators and urge them to support the Bingaman-Specter legislation. Click here to get the e-mail address of your Senators.

No change to health benefits for UMWA members, retirees after passage of health care bill

March 31, 2010

The passage of the health care bill by Congress in March "will not reduce or change any of the current health care benefits UMWA active members, retirees and their families receive," UMWA President Roberts said.

“And it will not mean a tax increase for UMWA members or their families, now or in the future," Roberts said. "Any excise taxes that our members’ benefits may be subject to won't become effective until 2018. If some portion of those benefits were to be subject to that tax at that time, it would be paid by the insurance providers, not individuals members.”

Click here to see for yourself what the health care bill will do.

UMWA officers inaugurated in Morgantown

October 13, 2009

The new international leadership of the UMWA was sworn into office at a ceremony in Morgantown, W. Va., on Oct. 7.

International President Cecil E. Roberts, International Secretary Treasurer Daniel J. Kane, three International At-Large Vice Presidents, six International District Vice Presidents and three International Auditor/Tellers received the oath of office at the event. They will serve a five-year term beginning Dec. 22, 2009.

The International officers are:

International President:                           Cecil E. Roberts
International Secretary-Treasurer             Daniel J. Kane
At-Large International Vice President         Don Barnett
At-Large International Vice President         Donnie Samms
At-Large International Vice President         James Gibbs
International District 2 Vice President         Ed Yankovich
International District 12 Vice President       Steve Earle
International District 17 Vice President       Joe Carter
International District 20 Vice President       Daryl Dewberry
International District 22 Vice President       Mike Dalpiaz
International District 31 Vice President       Mike Caputo
International Auditor/Teller (Canada)         Bob Burchell
International Auditor/Teller (East)              Jerry Stallard
International Auditor/Teller (West )            Roy Fernandez

Roberts taking the oath of officeSurrounded by friends and family, President Roberts takes the oath of office, administered by AFL-CIO President Richard L. Trumka.

Kane oathSecretary-Treasurer Kane is sworn in with his family at his side. 

IEBThe UMWA International officers. 

CER speechPresident Roberts delivers his inaugural address.

Follow the UMWA on Facebook and Twitter

October 10, 2009

Connecting with friends and family on Facebook? Are you "tweeting" on Twitter?

If so, you can follow the UMWA. Click here to join the UMWA Facebook page, and click here to follow the UMWA on Twitter.

Ludlow National Historic Landmark dedicated June 28.

June 16, 2009

More than 700 people attended the National Historic Landmark dedication ceremony marking the site of the 1914 Ludlow tent colony on June 28.

Speakers included UMWA President Cecil Roberts, Secretary-Treasurer Daniel Kane, Colo. State Rep. Buffie McFadyen, Colo. AFL-CIO Executive Director Mike Cerbo, Dr. James Green from the University of Massachusetts, Dr. Elizabeth Jamison from Calgary University, UMWA International District 22 Vice President Mike Dalpaiz and UMWA Region 4 Director Bob Butero. Colo. Gov. Bill Ritter read a proclamation.

 Click here to see a video of President Roberts' remarks


How Clean Coal can generate $1 trillion of economic output, create millions of jobs

February 17, 2009

Click here to see video highlights of a press conference with the UMWA, other unions and the American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity.

We discussed a new economic study that demonstrates how deployment of advanced coal-based electricity generation facilities
(power plants) equipped with carbon capture and storage (CCS)
technologies that reduce carbon dioxide emissions could generate $1 trillion of economic output and create 7
million man-years of employment.


Employee Free Choice Act Facts

January 6, 2009

The Employee Free Choice Act was introduced in Congress on March 10 by Sen. Ted Kennedy (D-Mass.) and Rep. George Miller (D-Cal.). American working people are one step closer to true economic security through a free, fair and democratic process for forming a union where they work. 

Click here to see President Obama's recent comments in favor of the Employee Free Choice Act and the need to pass it soon. 

Click here to keep track of what's going on with the fight to restore American workers' right to organize. 

Although 60 million U.S. workers say they would join a union right now if they could, they are prevented from doing so by the threatening and intimidating tactics of their employers.

Here are the facts, according to a study by Cornell University:

  • 92 percent of private-sector employers, when faced with an organizing effort, force employees to attend closed-door meetings to hear anti-union propaganda;
  • 75 percent hire outside consultants to run anti-union campaigns;
  • Half threaten to shut down partially or totally if employees form a union;
  • In 25 percent of union organizing campaigns, employers illegally fire workers.
  • Even after workers successfully form a union, in one out of three cases, employers do not negotiate a contract.

That’s not a level playing field, and it hasn’t been for years. That’s why American workers need the Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA). The single most important piece of labor legislation in more than 70 years, it is vitally needed to restore to American workers the right to form unions.

And that is precisely why so many employers are scared of it. So scared, they’re willing to lie about what EFCA does:

Big Lie #1:    “EFCA will eliminate the secret ballot election in union organizing campaigns.” Wrong - the language in EFCA keeps the option of having a secret ballot election, except it puts the decision to have an election in the workers’ hands, not the bosses. Since it’s the workers who are deciding whether or not to form a union, shouldn’t they be the ones to make that decision?

Big Lie #2:    “EFCA will subject workers to intimidation from union organizers.” Wrong again - the only intimidation going on in the workplace today regarding union elections is on the side of employers threatening to close if a union is elected, or firing or disciplining employees for supporting a union.

You can bet the house that thousands of union-busting consultants are developing  strategies right now for defeating card-check organizing if EFCA passes. And part of that strategy will continue to be threats and intimidation about jobs and closing workplaces if a union is voted in.

Big Lie #3:    “Unions may have been good once, but workers don’t really need them anymore because of government wage and safety regulations, and besides, employers have become enlightened about how to treat their employees.” Wrong a third time. Just ask the coal miners at Sago or Crandall Canyon how well their employers followed government regulations or how enlightened their bosses were.

EFCA will restore workplace rights for millions of Americans by:

  • Allowing employees to form unions by signing cards authorizing union representation, or by holding a secret-ballot election should the workers–not the companies–choose to hold one.
  • Establishing stronger penalties for violation of employee rights when workers seek to form a union, and during first-contract negotiations.
  • Providing for mediation and arbitration of first-contract disputes.

Click here for more information about EFCA and how it will help American working families.


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