February Retiree Report

UAW  Our February Retiree meeting was well attended by 185 members and guests.  We would like to thank Vice Chairman Orville Clark for the potato soup he commissioned; excellent fare for a chilly winter day.  Kudos to Peggie Sponsler who each month comes in bright and early to get the coffee going so that our early birds can enjoy their eye opener while socializing with their former co-workers.  We would be remiss to not acknowledge our loyal kitchen help; Ralph Hahn, Wally Budzinski, Bob Freely, Steve Kreider, Rick Thompson, George St. Mary and John Grey.  There would be no lunch without these volunteers.
  Thank you Defiance County Public Health Dept. Nurses, Katie Fitzwater and Stacy Lucas.  The great success of our retiree meeting is the camaraderie and team work of all those who pitch in to ensure we have both a fun and informational experience.
  Our meeting was called to order at 12:00 Noon by Chairman Ted Fleming and all officers were in attendance.
  Orville Clark led us in the Pledge of Allegiance and we observed a moment of silence for our deceased members.  We made note that it was sadly the one year anniversary of the accidental death of our union Brother Terry Bodenbender.
  President Keith Boecker mentioned that there is no local agreement as of yet but talks are continuing.
  Darla Rickenberg our Benefits Rep, said tax documents were mailed postmarked January 31st so watch for yours.  These include Retirees’ 1099R and Active workers W-2 forms.  Darla reminded us to ALWAYS update our beneficiary when there has been any change to our marital, and or beneficiary status.  Whoever you’ve listed on you Met Life beneficiary form is who will receive your insurance.
  Benefit reps. will be “away” and unable to answer your questions in any detail at the time of our April meeting.  A skeleton crew will be available for minor inquires, but any detailed queries should be brought to her attention either well before the April meeting or after they return.
  Our new Legal services plan began opening cases on Wednesday, January 25, 2017.  A new case can be opened by calling 1-800-482-7700.  Legal Services representatives will be available to answer questions either at March or April meeting, but a definite date has not yet been determined.
  The plan will offer an “Office Work” benefit with services for the following legal matters:
Wills and Trusts, Powers of Attorney, Purchase or sale and other uncontested issues regarding residential real estate property, deeds, uncontested family matters, credit reporting, contracts for good or services, residential leases, birth or marriage certificates and name change.
  Ted Fleming spoke on “Right to Work” which is better described as “Right to Work is WRONG!!” People make less in wages in Right to Work states.  Right to work is an assault on organized labor.  Ted noted that often on social media like Facebook, he has seen derogatory comments concerning Unions and sometimes by children of Union members. Wouldn’t that be considered biting the hand that fed you?  “We are Ohio” has a great Facebook page for those wanting to check it out.  Here is a snippet of what I found on their Facebook page… “In 2011 when we came together and fought against Senate Bill 5 the message was clear:  Ohioans vote to protect workers, not dismantle their bargaining rights.  Right to Work is WRONG for workers, WRONG for our communities and WRONG for Ohio!  As Ted wisely reminded us “Don’t be silent when you can speak up on anything Union related”.  Keep in mind…Our union is not growing…it is shrinking.
  Sara Laws also spoke on Right to Work and “Truth Teams” which need volunteers.  Any volunteers for the “Truth Teams” in our area would come under Rep. Bob Latta’s District.  Since this was something I wasn’t’ familiar with I researched and found the OFA (Organizing  for Action) and they are a non-profit whose mission is as follows:  “The OFA Truth Team is a grassroots network dedicated to debunking myths  and spreading accurate information about health care reform, immigration reform, and other important issues.  This page is run by Organizing for Action”  I found them on Facebook.

  There has definitely been an abundance of fake/false news over this past 18 month, so it is refreshing to see that someone is prepared to take this on.
  It was once again mentioned that our Local 211 newspaper often gets returned to sender because someone moved and didn’t change their address. This is costly to our Union.  Cost saving is quite likely will result in bi-monthly issues but you can always see our Local 211 newspaper monthly online at www.uawlocal211.com
  We acknowledged members birthdays and anniversaries and after a few jovial minuets Ted playfully reminded us “It is not Peggie's Birthday Yet”
  Look forward to seeing you March 2nd.  Lunch starts at 10:30 am. and the meeting begins at noon.  Pop in to see what our gourmet officers (Orville and Peggie) have in mind for your dining pleasure in March!  Feel free to make requests for future lunch selections. We are always open to suggestions.
  Reminder: Kitchen help will be Pat and Abe Kuhlman and John and Carol Ehlinger.

Submitted By:
Dorothy Engelhaupt
Local 211 UAW
Retiree Recording Secretary

To our bereaved members and their families, we offer our sincere condolences for the loss of their loved ones. We extend our sincere sympathy to the families of
Elvin Greear – Retired 5/91
Rafael Manriquez – Retired 3/79
Harriet Sanders – Retired 8/01
Ronald Ellerbrock – Retired 1/00
Reed Avram – Retired 9/97
Keith Langdon – Retired 6/06
Guadalupe Villarreal – Retired 1/07