Webinar and comparisons
Making sense of Washington's new Long Term Care program
With members seeking information about the Washington (WA) Cares Fund and the Trustmark voluntary plan offering recently announced by Boeing, SPEEA Senior Director of Compensation and Retirement Matt Kempf, CFP ®, CEBS®, recorded a webinar and put together on-line tools to help explain the differences between the WA Cares Fund and the Trustmark insurance product.
The state legislature created the WA Cares Fund to make long-term care available to all workers in the state. Funded through a payroll tax which starts in 2022, the benefit is capped at $36,500. An opt-out is
available for people who have long term care insurance in place by Nov. 1 and apply for a state exemption between Oct. 1 and Dec. 31, 2022.
Tom McCarty, SPEEA past president, dies at 77
Thomas (Tom) McCarty, a past SPEEA president and inventor of the environmentally friendly burn barrel, died at his home July 27.
McCarty, 77, served as SPEEA president from 2010 to 2014. An electronics and electrical engineer at Boeing for more than 41 years, he retired in 2014 and lived in Seattle with his wife of 13 years Sara Arnold.
In addition to SPEEA president, McCarty served terms as SPEEA treasurer, Professional Negotiation Team member, Council Rep, Area Rep, IFPTE vice president and more recently president of the Engineering Retirees Society (ERS). In 2018, he received a SPEEA Lifetime Achievement Award.
“Tom was union through and through,” said Joel Funfar, past president who worked with McCarty on several Negotiation Teams. “He always had time to talk and share his wisdom. I learned a lot from him.”
Born May 10, 1944, McCarty was the oldest of six children whose parents were both teachers and union members. A SPEEA member his entire career, the one-day strike in 1993 increased his own union interest. Soon after, he became a Council Rep. Early in the strike of 2000, McCarty heard the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) said the picket line open burn barrels were a problem. While others worried, McCarty dove into solving the problem. Within days, he had designed EPA-compliant burn barrels and was delivering them to the picket lines. In 2020, McCarty completed and published “Picket Line,” a book about the 40-day strike.
McCarty was preceded in death by his first wife, Betty Jean and son Corey. A private, family service is planned with a public picnic in his honor to be held at a later day.
Traveling Vietnam Memorial at Enumclaw
ENUMCLAW, Wash. – The SPEEA Veterans Committee encourages Puget Sound members to visit a replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Enumclaw, Wash., Aug. 5-8.
“This is an important opportunity to pause and reflect on their ultimate sacrifice,” said Craig Kowald, a SPEEA Veterans Committee member.
Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) Post 1949 arranged for “The Moving Wall” to come to the soccer fields between Sunrise and Southwood Elementary Schools.
Protecting the Right to Organize (PRO) Act is landmark legislation that gives workers a fair chance to organize a labor union at work without employer interference. Passed by the U.S. House of Representatives in 2020, the legislation (H.R. 842 and S.420) now awaits a vote in the Senate.
This federal legislation, if passed by the Senate, accomplishes two primary objectives:
Ensures workers can collectively push for the changes they want to see at their jobs without fear of retaliation.
Strengthen workers’ rights to form a union and negotiate for the changes they choose.
Currently, there are no penalties for employers who illegally retaliate against, or fire workers for collective action to organize. Today’s labor laws are outdated and fail to protect working people who voice concerns or seek workplace improvements.
The Boeing Company Virtual work is agreement between manager/employee
SPEEA received reports Boeing may require all employees working virtually to do so from a location covered by the Puget Sound (Tech or Prof) contracts. For some, this means relocating from current virtual locations back to the Puget Sound region or other areas covered by the contracts.
Despite what managers are telling impacted employees, SPEEA did NOT request this change. Virtual work arrangements are coordinated between SPEEA-represented employees and their managers.
Those who may be impacted are encouraged to contact their manager to discuss possible options or accommodations, such as long-term telecommuting or taking a leave of absence.