2003 RETIREES LUNCHEON IN FORT WALTON BEACH!

THREE APWU GENERATIONS RALLY IN FORT WALTON BEACH

We have just returned from the APWU of Florida Fall Educational Seminar Rally held at the Radisson Beach Resort in Fort Walton Beach, Fl., from Sept. 17-20, 2003, where three (3) APWU labor union generations learned how to help one another to protect our postal jobs, benefits, and retirement now and in the future.

The World War II veterans/depression era generation, the Vietnam War veterans/baby boomer era generation, and the Gulf/Iraq War veterans/3 XXX era generation enjoyed a Dutch treat luncheon on Thursday and Friday, Sept. 18-19, 2003 at the Radisson Palms Restaurant with Bob Tunstall, National APWU Sec.-Treas., as our invited main guest speaker at the Retirees luncheon on Friday. He stated our APWU of Florida State Retiree Chapter activists are a shining example of National APWU “Proud to be Union” organization ingenuity, with 2789 APWU of Florida union dues paying retirees who belong to the National APWU Retirees Department, each paying $2.00 monthly Natl. APWU retiree union dues.

We wish to thank Bob Tunstall, Retiree Director John R. Smith, Sally Davidow, Communications Director, and Roger Cronk, Information Technology Director of the National APWU headquarters, who have added our APWU of Florida State Retiree Chapter web link to the National APWU website
www.apwu.org map and other links list, effective October 1, 2003. This innovative action allows all the APWU membership, officers, and families all over the world to share in APWU retirement information with the click of a mouse by going on the internet directly to our www.apwuflorida.org/retiree web link. Over 125 hyperlinks which are well organized from A to Z await you to give you instant pleasure in seeking connection with the APWU world of active members, retirees, and families all across the globe.

Others who have added our Florida APWU State Retiree Chapter retiree website are (1)
www.21cpw.com (21st Century Postal Worker site used by APWU officers and members), (2) www.lunewsviews.com (Lucille Caldwell’s cool site from Walnut Grove, Ca. which has an up-to-date zillion bytes of electronic postal and retiree news), and (3) several APWU local union websites around the country (where alert webmasters have found APWU retirement to be a hot issue that everyone seems interested in).

FLORIDA AFL-CIO CONVENTION HELD IN JACKSONVILLE, FL.

Martha Shunn-King, our APWU of Florida State President, was elected Vice President At Large on the Florida AFL-CIO Executive Board by the affiliated organizations at the annual Florida AFL-CIO Convention, held at the Hilton Riverfront Hotel in Jacksonville, Fl. from Sept. 21-25, 2003. We wish to congratulate Martha on achieving this milestone in her union career, as dreams do come true!

President John J. Sweeney, National AFL-CIO, installed the newly elected Executive Board members, and he emphasized that Florida is the #1 targeted battleground state in the 2004 general elections and asked for our support of labor’s candidates. Bill McBride, Democratic candidate for Florida Governor in 2002, was invited by Florida AFL-CIO President Cindy Hall to speak, and he thanked all of labor for supporting him in that race.

Martha Shunn-King introduced an APWU resolution #44 at the Convention which was passed unanimously by the body, in support of APWU opposition to the recommendations of the President’s Commission on the U.S. Postal Service which were reported to President George W. Bush on July 31, 2003. All of the ideas brought forth by the Commission are now working their way through U. S. Congressional Committees, with dire results down the road. All the APWU officers attending the Florida AFL-CIO Convention joined the call by a CWA local union at the Convention for a live picket of the AT&T office building in Jacksonville. Members of three labor union generations marched on the sidewalks to unite against contract infringement by management greed and privatization efforts.

NOVEMBER 20 IS D-DAY FOR FREE TRADE AREA OF AMERICAS

Eric Rubin, State Coordinator, Florida Fair Trade Coalition, made an excellent presentation in Fort Walton Beach and Jacksonville for opposition to Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA). Folks, this is a big deal! Foreign trade ministers of all the 34 countries in Central America, South America, and the Caribbean, excluding Cuba, will convene in Miami, Fl. on Nov. 20-21, 2003 to approve the opening of all the above hemisphere borders to free trade. This means thousands of jobs, including many industrial and postal services, will migrate south of the border. The results of this FTAA agreement is ten (10) times as dangerous and damaging compared to the North America Free Trade agreement (NAFTA), where 766,000 U.S. jobs heave been lost and union bargaining power has been undermined.

FTAA would expand NAFTA’s attacks on workers and environment, increase corporate power, erase essential public services such as education, health care, energy, water utilities, and postal services, and destroy family farms by flooding local markets with cheap imported goods. Negotiations on the FTAA are ongoing and set to be completed in 2005. Now is the time for all three (3) labor union member generations and their families to become activists in the streets to protect our Social Security, Medicare, health insurance, prescription drugs, pensions, retirement benefits, and thousands of U.S. jobs which will be lost to Central America, South America, and the Caribbean as President George W. Bush continues to privatize the American landscape and global economies.

The National AFL-CIO and international labor unions all over the country will send hundreds of buses full of protestors from Seattle, Michigan, Maine, California, Texas, and all other states to Miami, Florida on Thursday, November 20, 2003. All three (3) labor union member generations and families are urged to answer the Call for Mobilization! President Tony Fransetta, Florida Alliance for Retired Americans (FLARA) has promised to provide free breakfast, lunch, and transportation to participants who ride the buses originating in Florida. Many buses will leave at wee hours of the morning, probably about 4:00 a.m. or earlier from Central and West Coast Florida locations, and you can sleep on the buses going to Miami.

A giant breakfast gathering of thousands is scheduled from 10 a.m. to 12 noon at the Miami Marriott Hotel on Biscayne Blvd., and from 12 noon to 4 p.m. a march of thousands of protestors in the streets of Miami and a giant rally at Bayfront Amphitheater will conclude the FTAA protest activities for the D-Day demonstrations on Thursday, November 20, 2003. Contact Larry Winawer, National Alliance for Retired Americans Florida organizer, at 561-792-8799 in West Palm Beach or go to
www.aflcio.org (National AFL-CIO) or www.retiredamericans.org (National Alliance for Retired Americans) or www.flara.org (Florida Alliance for Retired Americans) for more internet information if you are interested in attending to let your voices be heard.

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