Some helpful tips for SFWU members

Observation by the Owl

Please read the note on the SFWU website regarding Union fees deductions below.

Important Note:

Union members are responsible for checking their fee deductions to ensure they are paying the correct rate.  Refunds will only be agreed to in extenuating circumstances and shall be granted for no more than a 12 month period.

If you as a union member make a mistake or have been over-charged you need to provide “extenuating circumstances” and a refund is only for 12 months.

Well, great to see the SWFU is a caring, sharing organisation.

I recommend that the SFWU should go through the last 10 years records on behalf of their members and identify all the errors and refund them asap. That is what a caring and sharing employer would do.

This is poor business on behalf of the Union – “if I was a member”

SFWU – it is your responsibility to check your members fees – not the members!

 


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  • Time For Accountability

    If they have knowingly kept money they are not entitled to with mens rea in other words knowing it is wrong that that is probably a high enough bar for theft.

  • johnbronkhorst

    This is how the union execs stay in power and spend/collect the money as they see fit…..Apathy of the membership!!! They rely on the fact that the rank and file members don’t READ their union agreement beyond how much they get paid, holidays etc.

    Members are NOT encouraged to participate in THEIR union only to TRUST the executive…Who bring in rules like this:
    “Union members are responsible for checking their fee deductions to ensure they are paying the correct rate. Refunds will only be agreed to in extenuating circumstances and shall be granted for no more than a 12 month period.”

  • Simian

    Wow! A organisation that is voluntary to join and provides the members a service has rules. And those rules are clearly stated on their website! Those bastards!

    • Muffin

      maybe its about time they collected their own fucking fees directly as well then.

      • Simian

        You can make payments direct to the union from your bank account instead of through your employer. Have a look at their website instead of just reading snippets whale grabs to try and make them look bad.

        • Guest2

          Its about – has union members been double charged?

          If so will the Union refund?

          How many effected?

          • Simian

            I am not 100% sure how your comment is a reply to what I have written above but, the other article provided no evidence that anyone had overpaid. It simply implied that some members could be paying through 2 different employers and may overpay if they don’t understand how to calculate the payments needed to be a member.

            If they were unsure they should have contacted their union rep who I would imagine could explain that they can increase their payment from one of the jobs and not make payment from the other to meet their required payment based on hours worked or instead pay directly through their bank account.

            As above the union can do refunds although they will only do so in limited circumstances, I don’t see a problem with that as the member should make themselves aware of any rules before signing up. Nobody has to join.

          • Guest2

            yeah agree but shouldnt you think the union should be offering that service of identifying errors?

            It maybe only 3 or 4 but it should still be done.

            What say its a 100 or 1,000?

            Even you have to agree that cant be a bad thing for the union to do a database dump – its pretty easy

          • Simian

            Yeah they could look at implementing a system but off course this takes money away from other things so that is a negative.

            And it’s up to the member to determine how much to pay as they know their hours not the union. I would imagine if a union did this it would also find out a lot of member’s were underpaying due to increases in hours etc and forgetting to up your amount.

            I would rather they were focusing on other things really, the things their members pay for. Maybe include an article in the next union newsletter/magazine to get members to check they are paying the right amount. Of course as nobody has asked the unions about this issue they maybe already do this regularly?

        • Muffin

          And how many do?
          Unions dont need me or anyone else to make them look bad, they do that all by themselves. They are historic standover type organisations that will hopefully die a miserable death as people become more educated and self reliant. Then hopefully those loosers in labour can go the way of the dodo at the same time.

          • Simian

            Well that’s your opinion of unions not mine. I think they are organisations that stand up for employees rights and have contributed to a better working environment.

          • johnbronkhorst

            My EXPERIENCE too, not just opinion!!!!!

          • Simian

            Um … usually experiences are what form opinions. Not quite sure what you are getting at there.

          • johnbronkhorst

            Idiot…here’s a list. That I have seen personally.
            Union holding meetings at times that members can’t get to! (during or just at the end of working time)
            Meetings held at places they can’t get to.
            Quarums reduced so that executives alone, make up a quarum.
            Notifications of meeting sent AFTER they have been held.
            Minutes of meeting altered.
            New expenditure for executive cars, premises, computers etc,made without consulting the membership.
            Spending money , time and vehicles on electioneering without consulting the membership.
            Manipulating ballot draws for union owned holiday homes (the use of).
            NO declaration of accounts or presentation of accounts!!

          • Simian

            Hey relax no need for insults calm down and have a herbal tea.

            If a union is doing this and the member is unhappy as I have said before the member can leave. They could even start their own union and do it better.

            Obviously all unions don’t do this or else they wouldn’t have any members.

            And come on a union cant please everybody every time and everywhere. If an employer doesn’t allow a meeting on work premises a union will need to find somewhere else that may be difficult for some people to attend. In these cases normally the union will provide info of what was discussed to those who couldn’t make it and if a vote was important allow members to vote at a latter time.

            Just because you have had a bad experience doesn’t mean everyone has them.

          • johnbronkhorst

            Fucking idiot!!!!
            Bullying is rife in the union movement!!!
            Try not being a member of the seamans union

          • Simian

            “Try not being a member of the seamans union”

            I’m not a member so that’s going good for me! :) (And is it wrong that I laughed a little when I read “Seamans Union”)

            Obviously you cant discuss issues without getting overly heated and cursing (I’m glad I’m not an employee of yours!) so I am going to leave it there.

            Thanks for your time. I hope your verbal gonorrhea clears up soon!

          • johnbronkhorst

            PRATT….you can’t get a job aboard ANY ship without being a member, you are either bullied into membership or out of a job!!!
            EDIT: If you didn’t lie so much my temper might be a bit more even!

          • profile

            – encouraging non union members to attend union meetings. Just sign this attendance record at the meeting. Low and behold next pay signing of the attendance sheet has actually made you a new member of the union and your salary is docked. Signing up of members by deception – nice.

    • Plue

      Service? what service. You are confused Simian the purpose of unions is to provide a career path for union officials.

      • Simian

        Well I think their members disagree with you and are happy with the service. If they weren’t they could stop anytime.

        • Muffin

          union membership is dying ……………………… so you are right, people are stopping anytime!

          • Simian

            Yeah but unemployment is increasing especially in the government with staff numbers decreasing so I would expect union numbers to be down. It would probably be more interesting to see if percentages of members in workplaces with unions had decreased as that would show a definite trend. Our workplace membership has increased slightly according to our last members meeting.

          • johnbronkhorst

            Unemployment is generally FALLING. The truth please, if you are going to attempt an argument!!!

          • Simian

            Sorry let me reword that:

            “Yeah but since unemployment has increased over the figure it was when national took power I would expect Union numbers to be down…”

            Just because it “may” be starting to get better doesn’t mean the unemployment rate is not sill bad!

          • johnbronkhorst

            Union membership is a an all time low 17% of workers!!
            The number is falling, because unions are not delivering, they are NOT supporting workers, they are supporting the labour party puppet masters (the senior union executive). They give large amounts of money directly to the labour party and spend fortunes in support of the labour party and any other leftie idiot that they can manipulate!!!

          • Simian

            Hey if members think those things of their union they should cancel their membership. I don’t think that of my union so I am still a member. And I would be the first out if I didn’t think it was worth my time, that’s an extra coffee each week that I could buy!

            I would imagine that a big factor in decreasing membership would be better employers and better employee rights which we have had for a while now making less need for them.

            However with National introducing new legislation that could change and I wouldn’t be surprised to see numbers increase.

          • johnbronkhorst

            What bollocks!!
            Members are bullied into staying….Try being a non member of the interisland ferries!!!
            Executive rely on the apathy of members.
            If members were asked to opt into the union instead of out, at the start of their employment and they had to pay the fees by automatic payment, themselves (instead of their employer).
            Union membership would collapse completely and the helen kelly’s of this world know that and that is why they are raising such a stink!

          • Simian

            No what you are saying is “bollocks” this whole “you cant leave rubbish” is just that. For a start if membership numbers are decreasing like you say they are (and I have no reason not to believe you) obviously it’s very easy to leave a union. Staff aren’t bullied and no-one is forced into a union. When you start if there is a union collective you usually are on it for the first month and IF you decide to join the union you will remain on it or else if you decide not to you fall back onto an individual agreement. I worked for my employer for about a year before I finally joined a union as when I started I didn’t really know why I might need one and no-one was trying to “force” me to join.

          • profile

            Not forced to join the union just tricked by the attendance record type techniques as above. Taking advantage of lowly educated employees.

          • johnbronkhorst

            Try not being a member of the seamans union!!!!!
            Bullying is rife!!! No one talks to you, you shunned, your working day is spent alone!!!

          • Time For Accountability

            As i say elsewhere no employers have a choice they don’t want workers who are part of the mob mentality they want independent thinkers who simply do not exist in unions.

            Many ex members have seen the light and realize they earn more and achieve better outside the mob.

          • Ducky

            yes unemployment will go up because the unions are doing their members out of jobs while increasing their coffers at the same time.

          • Simian

            I don’t buy that argument, the only person who decides if an employee is kept or not is the employer, it might make them feel better to imply it’s the unions fault but it’s not.

          • johnbronkhorst

            Really??? You are a know nothing idiot. You have obviously never employed someone and most certainly have NEVER fired someone. It is bloody near impossible.
            You can’t do it just for incompetence!!
            I had a guy come to work stoned every day, he threated the staff with violence, he abused the customers, he lied and didn’t do the work if it interfered with his social life (lost us a VERY big contract).
            I still had to give him written warnings and put him into “training”.
            Eventually he stole from us and I still had to call the police, lay a complaint, be a witness in court BEFORE I could use ….wait for it…..it’s good……….INSTANT DISMISSAL!

          • Simian

            That is not at all what I am talking about. You do realize its employment law that makes it difficult to fire someone not a union?

          • johnbronkhorst

            Who the FUCK do you think wrote it? Then gave it to their labour party puppets and are now the big bitchers when it is being modified!!!!

        • Muffin

          you are entitled to your opinion i guess

  • blokeintakapuna

    Ironic the unions were banging on about the main banks over-charging customers…
    It seems the poor NZ worker needs a legal-type to champion their cause and start a class action against all the unions on behalf of union members for being over-charged over numerous years/decades. Could Cactus recommend anyone?
    I wonder what the Auditor General / SFO would discover reviewing all the union accounts? Be most interested in what they discover within the Meat Worker Union with all the dodgy financial reporting behaviour The Owl & Whale have discovered?
    …and be even more interesting if there was a Parliamentary Enquiry into the possibility of corrupt, money laundering by then unions to their “related party” beneficiary – the NZ Labour Party!
    Let’s hope the investigation… and publically available resulting outcome become public knowledge about 2 month’s out from the election… for the sake of “Transparency” and to ensure everyone is “paying their fair share” – as Shearer is always so insistent on – for the sake of transparent honesty…

  • Time For Accountability

    I wonder when the members will wake up and realize non union staff have a better career path and wages than non union staff. Union members are caged and the good person cannot progress up because they are treated with disdain by their fellow members. That is the basis behind the all criminal gangs or mobs work.

  • peterwn

    Almost certainly wrong. It is most likely members have six years to claim back over-paid fees, not 12 months the union claims.

    • johnbronkhorst

      You’re not suggesting that the union is lying??? Surely not!!

  • johnbronkhorst

    This is just the lenders responsibility regarding loans.
    I believe all contract law (and this is a contract between member and union, where money changes hands).
    If you borrow money, the lender MUST go through the contract line by line, showing you YOUR obligations, their obligations and any penalties.
    So how come the union can be so vague??Bet non of the members have had this clause pointed out to them!!!
    Disclosure

    If you are a creditor in a consumer credit contract there are four situations in which you will
    be required to provide disclosure to the debtor:
    ■ at the start of the contract (initial disclosure);
    ■ during the life of the contract (continuing disclosure);
    ■ any time the contract is varied (variation disclosure);
    if the debtor requests it (request disclosure).
    You must also provide disclosure to anyone who has guaranteed the debtor’s obligations under the contract (guarantee disclosure).
    The Act spells out the information you must provide, and how and when to provide it.
    See: Disclosure standards P32
    Initial disclosure
    You must provide the debtor with initial disclosure of key information and a copy of every other contract term before the contract is made or within five working days of when the contract was made. The law of contracts governs when a contract is “made”. If you are in any doubt consult your lawyer.

    Schedule 1 of the Act sets out the key information that must be provided to the debtor. The

    CCCF Act’s regulations set out several assumptions that apply to this key information, and

    if the information can be ascertained on the basis of these assumptions, you must disclose it.

    • Time For Accountability

      Very simple to fix.
      Enforce the existing law.
      But extend it to provide a cooling down period and make it compulsory that a member gets an appraisal of the benefits before hand and a benefit assessment each year and compare those benefits to the cost.

  • Time For Accountability

    “and a refund is only for 12 months.”

    Owl mate – read the fine print.
    I read this as they want the refund back after 12 months!

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