Open Enrollment for your benefits will take place beginning Oct 21st and continuing until midnight November 4th. Members should receive notification from the Company in the mail. Open enrollment is an opportunity to make changes to your coverage for plan year 2015. Changes such as medical and dental coverage, add or remove a dependent and changes to your healthcare spending accounts and dependent day care accounts. This open enrollment is the only time you can make changes to your benefits unless you have a qualified life event during the year. There are some minor changes to the MEP and HCN healthcare plans that are described in the company mailing. If you need to add or remove a dependent from your coverage this open enrollment is the time to do so. The company has once again waived the healthcare Assessment for 2015. This means if you have already taken the assessment to receive the $100 credit in the past two years then you do not need to take it again. You will automatically receive the credit in 2015. If all your elections are the same as 2014 then you will not need to do anything, your selections will carry over. I urge everyone to look at all their elections and verify that they are all correct. All changes and all your information can be seen at Verizon.com/benefitsconnection. Log in to the website and verify your information. If you chose No Medical Coverage in 2014 this will also carry over into 2015 unless you change it. If you previously had no medical coverage and you now need it then you must log in and choose a plan. If you are a married couple and both work at Verizon then you cannot cover yourself and be covered as a dependent under your spouse. You must choose no coverage and then become a dependent on your spouses plan. These changes can also be made through the website. If you have any questions regarding open enrollment then please call this office. Remember this is basically the only time you can make changes to your coverage so please check your selections online and make sure they are correct.
A reminder for all members to make sure they are using the healthcare spending account debit card. The money on this card was a bargained for benefit during our last negotiations. Until we get to the bargaining table we will not know what will happen to any money left on these cards. We will do our best to bargain for another card but I would suggest that all members exhaust the money on their current card. You can check your balance and view transactions on the benefits website. I urge all members to check their balance and use the remaining funds.
The Union and the Company have entered into discussions over the potential for an incentive to a contractual IPP. At this time the discussions are preliminary and there are no hard numbers to a surplus. Meetings have taken place and there are many hurdles to overcome before an agreement can be reached. The System Council T6 will make sure that an agreement like this will protect the membership going forward as well as offer the volunteers an added bonus. Agreements like this are not made easily or quickly. Decisions here will have a major impact on this membership. If an agreement can be reached then we would be looking at an offer some time in November. If an agreement can’t be reached then a surplus will most likely go out in the next few weeks. We will continue meetings in regard to this potential offer and when we have more information we will update this tape.
The Company has completed the canvassing for permanent I/M positions to fill openings in three Rhode Island locations. This Local had 5 volunteers and these technicians have moved on to their New Locations.
The Company has changed its policy on a loss of license for any member whose job requires one. Any member who requires a license to perform their duties here and losses it for any reason will be accommodated once but will not be paid. The time spent without a license will now be a suspension. There will not be an alternate position offered while you have no license. This is a major change that will have a negative impact on anyone who losses a license. We will be out to all garages to explain your options. The Company has taken a hard position on this topic and it’s up to everyone to be extremely careful when making choices outside of work. Your job is important to you and your family and you must understand the consequences to a poor decision. If you have any questions please call the office.
The System Council T6 mobilization Committee will meet again this month. This committee will continue to discuss and plan mobilization activities for all Locals as we prepare for another long and difficult fight at the bargaining table. Remember to wear red on Thursdays and black on Fridays in a show of solidarity as we prepare once again to fight for a fair contract. Do not assume that someone else will take care of it. We all must stand together and fight. Our mission starts now and our future depends on it. Get active and wake up, this will be another battle.