“It’s important it is for us to have a voice in the process and work of AFSCME. “
Pam Brodersen, NP, shares her AFSCME convention experience below.
To be part of the delegation representing NUHHCE and UNAC/UHCP was, number one, an honor and, number two, a truly busy week! We had work to do through out the day at the convention, it was always long days and sometimes long nights as well! There is a lot of work to be done in the five days of the convention, new officers to elect as well as resolutions and constitutional amendments. Our most significant work had to do with the election of a new President and new Secretary-Treasurer for AFSCME. We worked very hard on our campaign and in the end our candidates did not win. It was a disappointment, but also a look at how democracy works in our union. The process allowed our delegation to have 4 "observers" as part of the oversight process for the casting of the votes on election day as well as the oversight of the actual count. The oversight "observers" were myself, Barbara Blake, Suzanne Delaney and Tim Uliasz. We rose early that day (0400) to be on a bus by 0445 in the morning en-route to the convention center to prepare for the big election! We stayed in the basement of the convention center until 5:15 that evening. We jointly observed the process, and believe ASFCME conducted a fair and ethical election! At the end of the ballot casting/count we returned to the convention floor to hear along with the other 5,000 people in the room the results of the election.
The election was an historic event. The ticket for Lee Saunders and Laura Reyes won! It was the first time in 31 years we have a new President of AFSCME, and the first time we have elected a woman to the position of Secretary-Treasurer.
We also elected our own UNAC President, Ken Deitz to one of the offices of Vice-President, NUHHCE. He replaces the now retired Kathy J. Sackman.
Even though the candidate we supported did not win, it remained an exciting and historic week. I was proud to be part of the process and to see how important it is for us to have a voice in the process and work of AFSCME.