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Common Ground VOLUME 1, NUMBER 3

MARCH 2010

Take Heidi Home See Page 10

“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.” - Martin Luther King, Jr.

You do not need to look far for Rhode Island’s Economic Engine Urge our Congressional Delegation to Support ReNEWable Port’s quest for TIGER Fund Our elected officials and leaders do not need to look very far for a job stimulus plan right in our own backyard, or should we say, front port. With its recently dredged channel, excellent intermodal rail and Interstate Highway System connections, generous cargo-handling area, and the advantages of the marine trades in general, ProvPort is an untapped resource that can drive the Rhode Island economic engine. A new initiative of ProvPort and the City of Providence will create an estimated 1,000 new jobs with an average salary of nearly $80,000. ProvPort has been operating and working to improve the Port of Providence for the past fifteen years. These improvements have included dramatically expanding the operations, increasing the number of tenants, growing jobs, and making more than $12.5 million in capital improvements. The result of these improvements has been the dramatic expansion of both jobs and economic impact. These investments have sparked an additional

$70 million in improvements to the campus facilities by the tenants. Under the new ProvPort initiative, ReNEWable Port, plans are underway to transform the Port of Providence into a modern, highly competitive marine cargo center. The ProvPort campus would serve as a model in order to preserve existing port jobs, greatly expanding the maritime-related workforce in the area. It would serve as a major expansion of the Northeast “Marine Highway” as a viable strategy for reducing growing and highly inefficient highway congestion. In addition, by creating renewable, clean energy sources, a lasting positive environmental impact would be made. ReNEWable Port is a regional effort among more than a dozen companies, the State of Rhode Island, the State’s Economic Development Corporation, the City of Providence, the University of Rhode Island, Bryant University, and the non-profit ProvPort Corporation. This joint cooperative effort is a dynamic model for sparking superior environmental policy and economic growth. Instrumental in this process is the collaboration among Cooley High School, the Met School, and College Unbound Providence to launch the Apprentice Partnership Program that would allow students to apprentice with engineers, scientists, designers, Two 30-year-old cranes that are leased from NJ. These cranes support more and Port staff. than 1,000 direct jobs but are 5-years past life cycle. Replacing the cranes is Through “live critical to the protecting jobs.

learning,” students will study and learn in a range of environments and work with faculty, advisors, and fellow students to tackle real world problems. But, in order for ProvPort to expand its activities and capacities, provide dramatic job growth in the region, and replace existing fossil fuel consumption with renewable energy production, federal investment is required. The Department of Transportation has $1.5 billion available Rendering of the Wind Turbines being developed as part of the ReNEWable through the TIGER Port. Federal TIGER grant funding is critical to turn ProvPort green and discretionary grants create 1,000 new regional jobs. (Transportation Investment Generating Economic according to a study completed by the Recovery). Mayor Cicilline has enlisted national maritime research firm, Martin the Rhode Island congressional Associates. Jobs created by ProvPort delegation to fight for these TIGER activities now exceed 2,400 high paying funds. The funds would pay for two jobs. Since 2001, ProvPort has grown barge-based container/cargo cranes, two from handling approximately 750,000 150-to-250-foot wind turbines and solar tons to more than 3.2 million tons in panels providing electricity to operate 2008. This growth in tonnage has also the entire facility (with any extra sold fueled job growth. According to marine to the electrical grid. According to a consulting group Martin Associates, study conducted by Bryant University, ProvPort creates in excess of 2,300 jobs the initial investment will generate throughout the Northeast. Today, the more than $120 million in economic Port generates 953 direct jobs, 712 stimulus. induced, 224 indirect and 469 related. During the past decade, the direct Moreover, ProvPort is a significant and indirect jobs created by ProvPort economic engine to the region, creating have grown by more than 300 percent $182.0 million in economic activity. See Tiger Funds, page 13

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Common Ground

MARCH 2010

College Courses at UA Local 51 We sponsor low-cost Leading to a College Degree spaying/ neutering clinics, to twenty credits which when The Institute for Labor provide pet adoption combined with twenty credits Studies and Research is services, legal Assistance, from general education providing the opportunity for courses and twenty credits members of organized labor investigate neglect and from other related technical who have completed or are low-cost We sponsor abuse cases, and advocate courses meet the academic enrolled inspaying/ a state approved neutering clinics, apprenticeship training for theprovide protection ofrequirements be awarded pet adoption the Associate in Applied program to get a college services, legal Assistance, Science/Technical Studies degree. investigate neglect and sponsor degree. In 1984We the Institute and low-cost abuseancases, and advocate clinics, Bob Delaney, Executive CCRI spaying/ finalized agreement neutering Director of the Institute for to createfor an Associate Degree of animals. the protection provide pet adoption Labor Studies and Research in Applied Science/Technical To defend the inalienable worked with UA Local 51, This degree legal has threeAssistance, Business Manager, Tom components: individuals rights of both companion investigate and Business Agents Handfield, successfully completing a neglect To defend inalienable and the wildlife through Fred Foeri and Tim Byrne stateanimals approved apprenticeship abuse cases, and advocate rights receive of both and Training Coordinator training program upcompanion

education, legal and for animals the protection of animals. and wildlife through legislative activism. education, legal and legislative activism.

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To defend the inalienable rights of both companion animals and wildlife through education, legal and legislative activism. DEFENDERS OF ANIMALS P. O. Box 5634

DEFENDERS ANIMALS Weybosset OF Hill Station Annual Membership Fee: $25 Providence, RI 02903-0634

P. O. Box 5634

Weybosset Hill Station 401-461-1922 Providence, RI 02903-0634


Common Ground P. O. Box 5634

Weybosset Hill Station

Providence, RI 02903-0634


, Inc.

John J. Tassoni, Jr. - Publisher John Houle - Co-Publisher/Editor

Dave Marland to select the first course offering, market the opportunity to their members and set up a schedule. The first course offering at UA Local 51 was “Workplace Psychology” offered on a Friday evening at 5:00 pm. Twenty enthusiastic and committed students started and completed the class. Even more interesting was the variety of backgrounds of the students in the class. They included everyone from apprentices to journeymen to UA 51 union leadership, all

of whom offered topical input each and every class, making it even more relevant to the work they do in their jobs. Recently, two new courses were offered on-site at UA local 51 on Wednesday and Friday evenings with thirty eight students enrolled. These are courses that the Institute contracted with CCRI to provide on site. In the next round of course offerings, there will be both CCRI and National Labor College course offerings, and students participating will be working

toward either their bachelor or associate degrees. Anyone interested in taking courses offered at Local 51 is welcome and can call the Institute for enrollment details. It is our goal to have college courses offered at several on-site locations around the state. If any union is interested in offering an on-site option to their members just call the Institute at 463-9900.

The Lifespan-CNE merger would not have cut health care costs By Stan Israel

The health insurance commissioner’s report on payments to hospitals underscored some previously ignored impacts of the proposed but failed Lifespan/Care New England merger. Hospital payment rates favor network hospitals, often without any medical justification. The total insurance payments to the combined Lifespan/CNE entity would have exceeded 75 percent of all payments to hospitals in the state. This merger would have accelerated already steep increases in insurance premiums across the board. This is not something we have to speculate about; this has already happened in Massachusetts as well, due to the growth of one gigantic hospital network, Partners. Since this merger, Boston media and government officials estimate that insurance rates

have gone up significantly in that state to pay for these increased payments to Partners. Ironically, Lifespan and CNE bosses tried to use the market dominance of the Partners system in Massachusetts, and their expansion into nearby Foxboro, Mass., as justification for doing the same thing here. I have never seen a merger that did not result in job loss. Where else can any efficiency be found? Laying off senior management? If Lifespan President and Chief Executive Officer George A. Vecchione and Care New England President and CEO John J. Hynes were serious about their merger being a “jobs engine,” would they have committed to at least keeping the good jobs we already have in our state? Rhode Island does not need any more layoffs. The biggest challenge

facing those with and without insurance in Rhode Island is the annual unrelenting increases in premiums that regularly exceed inflation by 200 to 300 percent. The evidence shows that hospital systems already have used their power to drive up insurance rates. Would they have used their increased market power to hold the line on increases in premiums? Or would they have continued to use their increased leverage with insurers to increase prices at the expense of community hospitals and subscribers? They were not able to explain how the merger would not have made an even more dramatic effect on insurance costs. Stan Israel is executive vice president of the New England Health Care Employees Union.

Paul Pelange - Editor


Glenn Moretti - Advertising Manager Anna Romano - Office Manager Kerryn Azevedo - Graphic Design Jen Davey - Web -

Common Ground, Inc. 111 Wayland Avenue, Providence, RI 02906 c. 401.451.1305 f. 401.831.6111

Page 1

You do not need to look far for Rhode Island’s Economic Engine

Page 8

Facts Every Retiree Should Know

Roberts Launches Statewide Arts & Culture Tour

Page 2

College Courses at UA Local 51 Leading to a College Degree

Page 9

Intervention: Not just fodder for entertainment

The Lifespan-CNE merger would not have cut health care costs

Page 10

Take Heidi Home - Ten Requests From Your Pet

Page 3

Growing Rhode Island’s Economy via Workforce Development

Page 11

Archambault calls on insurers to cut administrative costs

Page 4

Buy Union Products, Use Union Services

Page 12

Announcing the Rhode Island Alliance for Retired Americans

Page 5

A Long Tradition of Pro-Union Publications

Page 13

Making The Home Value Fit Your Purse

Providence Firefighters support American Lung Association’s ‘Fight for Air Climb’

Page 14

Rebuilding your estate for future generations

Help Soldiers Call Home

Great Flint Sit Down Strike

Page 6

Take Charge of Healthcare Costs

Page 17

ER Card pilot program extended for one year in Warwick

Page 7

The Jobs-Producing Power of “Big Wind”

Page 18&19 Directory of Union Services



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MARCH 2010

Common Ground

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Growing Rhode Island’s Economy via Workforce Development

 By Brian Hull 

At the end of January, the state Senate held an Economic Policy Forum at
Bryant University. The focus of this forum was on workforce development. In her open remarks, Senate President Teresa Paiva-Weed spelled out how important workforce development is with regard to growing the state’s
economy, saying “A recent national study shared with the Senate Task Force on Small Business Growth and Development indicated that the quality of a
state’s workforce and the quality of its education system ranked 2nd and 8th
respectively in how businesses decide where to locate. Surprisingly, the top
concern is not taxes, not permitting processes, but having the needed
skilled or trainable labor supply. Workforce development is economic

 There are specific industries that have a huge potential for growth in our
state, specifically because of where we are geographically. It may be
possible to capitalize on these industries, but only through the enhancement
of the state’s workforce to meet the labor needs of employers.

Biotechnology, Medical Technology, Alternative Energy Technology, and Advanced
Computer Systems Technology – these are high wage jobs that are critical to increasing the state’s median wage, improving the standard of
living for many Rhode Islanders, and growing the state’s economy in the
long-term. Moreover, middle-skills jobs training would close the wage gap
between high income earners and low income earners. Bringing up the income
levels of the state’s low-income population would go a LONG way in reducing
the state’s tax burden on its residents. This should be a critical subject
for everyone complaining that the state’s tax rate is “too high.�

 It’s been said that if you want to get the biggest bang for the buck, train
workers. The economic benefit of this type of expenditure generates a much
greater positive economic impact than almost any other development strategy
the state can dream up. Customized job training suited to individual firms
and tied to

business expansion or location in the state creates about ten
times the positive economic impact per dollar than a business tax incentive.
Let’s stop spending money to incentivize business location to Rhode Island
through tax credit and corporate subsidy programs which don’t work (or I
should say don’t work very well), and let’s spend the money and invest in
our state’s workforce. Let’s give residents of the state the skills
necessary to meet the labor needs of employers seeking to grow. 

 I would argue that we should model a workforce development program after
national programs like AmeriCorps, the National Health Service Corps, Learn
and Serve, etc. The state can invest in its citizens by providing FREE job
training or higher education contingent on business expansion as well as
residency requirements. This should be the state’s number one economic
development strategy moving forward. If an employer is seeking to expand in
the state, but needs a larger workforce in order

to do so, the state should
spend the money to train the workforce, and NOT give out tax credits to
business with a promise that they’ll create jobs. A tax credit or a
corporate subsidy once given cannot be recouped when the promise of job
growth isn’t realized. We can pay for this type of workforce development program by eliminating the
current corporate subsidies that have no reliable analysis of their
 effectiveness or cost (there are a lot of them). The state can grow the
economy by giving businesses the best reason to come to the state. Forget
about the mythical “low taxes� panacea, tell businesses that we’re willing to train an army of workers to meet their employment needs.
To modify a Chinese proverb: give a corporation a tax credit, feed it for a
day; teach a worker new skills, feed him for a lifetime.

 Brian Hull is the owner and editor of the progressive news blog Rhode
Island’s Future ( He can be reached at

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Common Ground

MARCH 2010

Buy Union Products, Use Union Services

Don’t Miss

By George Nee

One of the easiest ways to support economic development in Rhode Island is to be conscious of where the goods and services you purchase come from. If you make an effort to buy union products and use union services, then you are helping to grow the middle class in Rhode Island. A union job provides good wages and benefits, therefore growing Rhode Island’s taxable wage base and lessening the demand on social programs. With a robust middle class Rhode Island would be well on its way to economic recovery, but it is up to you to make the decisions necessary to lead the way. Making the decision to support union companies does not have to be difficult— you probably use many union services already without even knowing it—all it takes is a little time to educate yourself. This very newspaper is printed by union workers and you can find a guide to other union goods and services on pages 18 and 19 as well as online at to help you make decisions on where to spend your hard earned money and to help build the middle class. In Rhode Island, services as diverse as grocery stores and cell phone providers are represented by unions. By making a few small changes in your daily routine you can make a big difference in the direction our state. “Buying union” means that you are spending your money at a company

whose workers are represented by a labor organization for collective bargaining purposes. The workers, union representatives and company management negotiate fair wages, benefits and working conditions together, which are then written into a legally binding contract that all parties must follow. Having a contract benefits both the workers and the company because both parties know what is expected of one another to make the company succeed. To determine if something is union made just look for the “Union Bug” a small tag or logo that says what union made it. These labels ensure that you are buying quality goods that were manufactured by union workers. For union services in Rhode Island use the union directory and to find union goods made in the United States visit or If you have any doubts which union represents the company’s workers, just ask any reputable unionized firm will respect that you are concerned with supporting good jobs and be more than happy to help. By using your purchasing power to buy union goods and services you have the power to help increase the number of union members in Rhode Island, as well as protect the thousands of union jobs already here and contributing to the state.

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Pasquale Zompa Norma M. Sousa President Vice President

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MARCH 2010

Common Ground

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A Long Tradition of Pro-Union Publications By Scott Molloy The labor newspaper, Common Ground, is the Knights hit the skids, the newspaper sadly ceased publication. only the latest entry in a long list of union oriented Apparently, working people and their publications in Rhode Island. The book, Printers and Printing in Providence, representatives understood the value of 1762-1907, was issued by Local 33 of the communication so the Providence Central Labor Typographical (Printer’s Union) on its fiftieth Union (predecessor of the State Federation of Labor Today) issued Justice for two years, 1894anniversary. The volume is also about the formation 95. This sophisticated and well crafted publication of labor unions in the area. Printers played a major role in the movement followed the outlook of the due to their literacy American Federation of “ the obvious need for another, longer lasting skills and helping to Labor, which was emerging into prominence at the time get the word out to source of union information is quite clear. Let’s others. But they usually under the leadership of get behind Common Ground and make sure it worked at mainstream Samuel Gompers. The First press Rather than labor gets out to the Rank and file.” - Scott Malloy issue of the paper, on Labor Day, 1894, featured a front projects. page layout that spaced the The Greenback Courier ran for six months in 1878 and described print from left to right to artistically spell out Labor itself as a workingmen’s paper although it had more Day vertically. Again, this weekly fell by the wayside to do with currency reform than union issues. after little more than a year. The Rhode Island Socialist Party tried its hand Several years later the sudden industrial at reporting The Labor Advocate from 1912-1915. dominance of the Knights of Labor in the US and Rhode Island led to the local publication of The Using bold and Provocative headlines, the Advocate took a militant line in all labor disputes around the People from 1885-1888. This weekly not only reported labor and political events, but also tries time of World War I. At times the paper even threw to educate mill operatives about the workings of a shot or two at the AF of L as well as employers. society. The Knights were unusual for the times, Because there was so much labor strife in that era, enlisting people of color and women into the group’s particularly within the ranks of new Industrial and ranks, which is reflected in its articles. When Workers of the World (IWW), the paper is very

valuable for its coverage of conflicts in the textile industry and the plight of many immigrants from the Mediterranean area. Several issues covered the local crowds that turned out to hear presidential candidate and former security-treasurer of the Brotherhood of Locomotive Firemen, Eugene Debs. However, like its predecessor, the Advocate folded after only a couple of years. One subsequent newspaper the Rhode Island Labor News lasted from 1927-1978, a remarkable fifty years but in varying degrees of quality and sporadic appearances. When the paper was at its best, it included variable information about all aspects of the state labor movement. At other times, it was more of an advertising sheet providing publicity for those who bought the ads. Not much is known about the paper in general. All of these papers are available on microfilm at the RI Historical Society Library on Hope Street in Providence; some of the originals are housed at the URI Special Collections in Kingston. As we enter one of the most dangerous anti-union climates in American history, the obvious need for another, longer lasting source of union information is quite clear. Let’s get behind Common Ground and make sure it gets out to the Rank and file. Scott Molloy, Ph.D. is a professor of labor studies at the Schmidt Labor Research Center, University of Rhode Island.

Providence Firefighters support American Lung Association’s ‘Fight for Air Climb’ On February 27, the Providence firefighters participated in the American Lung Association’s fundraising climb of 29 stories of the tallest building in the state. “As firefighters in the host city we are happy to raise money for a cause that is close to our heart; lung disease is one of the most common occupational illnesses we face,” said Paul Doughty president of the Providence Firefighters. Off-duty firefighters competed in the competition, climbing 58 flights of stairs wearing their full personal protective equipment including helmet, coat, boots and breathing apparatus. “For us, this is similar to what we would do if there is a fire on the upper floors of any of the high-rise buildings downtown, so it was good practice as well as a good time,” said Doughty. This is just one of the many charitable organizations that firefighters support, and they are proud of their continuing efforts to help those in need, on the job and off.

Providence’s Bravest Providence’s Bravest Providence’s Bravest Serving the City of Serving Providence sinceof1854 the City Providence since 1854 Serving the City of Providence since 1854



Help Soldiers Call Home

The Teamsters Joint Council 10 New Paul A. Doughty,Paul President A. Doughty, President England Women’s Doughty, President Philip F. Paul Fiore,A.Vice President Philip F. Fiore, Vice President Committee is sponsoring a “Cell F. Fiore, President Scott Philip G. Mello, Secretary ScottVice G. Mello, Secretary Phones for Soldiers” Scott G.John Mello, Secretary Treasurer John F. Woodard, Treasurer campaign starting F. Woodard, immediately and John F. Woodard, Treasurer ending June 30, 2010. Executive Board Executive Representatives Board Representatives Our goal is to collect ExecutiveJ.Board Representatives Christopher Jannitto Christopher J. Jannitto as many phones as Joseph P. Moreino P. Moreino possible to help our ChristopherJoseph J. Jannitto Hans Ramsden Hans Ramsden military have a means Joseph P. Moreino Wayne C. Oliveira Wayne C. Oliveira of communication Hans Ramsden Zachariah Kenyon while they are away Wayne C.Zachariah Oliveira Kenyon Anthony Toro Anthony Toro from home. Please help us make this a successful venture. Zachariah Kenyon The phones that are collected are sent to a reclamation center. The center clears Anthony Toro out all the information in each cell phone. Proceeds will be used to purchase 92 Printery Street Paul A. Doughty Paul A. Dough 92 Printery Street calling cards for our troops so they can stay connected with their families. Providence, 401-569-4444 401-569-4444 Providence, If you would like to help support our soldiers to communicate back home, you RI 02904 92 Printery Street RI 02904 Paul A. Doughty 401-272-7999 may drop off cell phones to the Teamsters Local Union No. 251 Union Hall, 121 (O)401-272-7999 (O) Providence, RI 02904 401-569-4444 401-274-7999 (F)401-274-7999 (F) Brightridge Avenue, East Providence, RI.

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Common Ground

MARCH 2010

Take Charge of Healthcare Costs By Bob Dumais

As health insurance carriers again seek approval for double-digit rate increases, the state’s decision makers and the public are collectively evaluating whether or not the rate increases are justified. However, even if the increases appear justifiable, they are not affordable. While few people question the quality of the United States healthcare system, its costs, which are more than 50% higher than the next highest spending country and as much as 90% higher than many other countries, explain the staggering 70 million uninsured or underinsured Americans. Regardless of one’s opinions about the U.S. system, every issue inevitably comes down to costs, which are simply too high, and leave purchasers feeling powerless. Since immediate, meaningful changes from our lawmakers in Washington appear unlikely, group purchasers of health insurance at a local level must isolate and work with the numerous variables they can control. Some of these variables include requiring a more rigorous evaluation and negotiating process with insurance carriers, evaluating funding alternatives, assessing varying plan designs, considering consumer-driven health plan models, and encouraging member involvement. Rhode Island offers a selection of three viable insurance carriers, each with its own strengths and weaknesses. While one carrier may be preferred over

the others, significant cost-savings of the second choice carrier may increase its appeal. Competition is good, and shopping the marketplace can often be worth the effort. If the group purchasing entity is of sufficient size, alternative funding options should be considered. A willingness to assume some degree of financial risk may prove to be cost effective, assuming a thorough review of the risk factors is performed. Conversely, large groups should not automatically assume that self funding is more cost effective than a fully insured offering. In fact, prospective rates at times can be less expensive, and without risk. This can be the result of internal carrier strategies, uncompetitive reinsurance markets, or other external factors, such as legislative and regulatory matters. Since funding changes are invisible to plan members, they should be evaluated yearly. If the decision is made to remain prospectively rated, carriers will often offer “risk-sharing” models, where the group assumes a risk corridor that limits upward exposure, while affording the opportunity for savings if warranted. Plan designs should also be evaluated on a regular basis. Even if no benefit changes are elected in a given year, newly proven medical technologies, treatment protocols, and cutting-edge prescriptions are automatically added to coverage each year,

effectively enriching the plan. As funds struggle to remain financially stable, multi-tier benefits offerings based on hours should be considered. Consumer-driven plan models (CDHP) are considered by some to be viable options, because of their cost-saving potential. The concept promotes the responsible usage of healthcare, with financial rewards for compliance. There are pros and cons to these designs that should be carefully considered, and member education is imperative when implementing such plans. The level of member involvement should be continuously considered and promoted. With more than 70% of healthcare claims being “lifestylerelated,” the best way to control costs is to control claims. Investments in wellness are effective in environments where members and their dependants can be accessed, and where member turnover is minimal. Education is a powerful tool, and putting a competitive spin on health improvement can produce favorable results. Benefit changes, where more costs are shifted to the members, are most effective when coupled with opportunities for health improvement. For example, an imposed deductible may be more tolerated in conjunction with an opportunity for members to earn financial rewards for healthy behaviors. These win-win scenarios serve to make members more health conscious, thus helping to control costs on a long term basis. INC. An overhaul of the current healthcare system is not imminent, but the situation is far from hopeless. A detailed assessment of each case’s requirements and 40+ years combined constraints will determine the appropriate course experience ensures you of action to generate financial savings, or at the best health coverage the very least lessen the rate of cost increases. It is at the lowest cost. recommended, however, that professional resources are considered, in order MEMBER AFT Keith R. Demty Robert A. Dumais, MBA to achieve the desired Principal Principal outcome, and maximize group and member 495 Purchase Street • Swansea, MA 02777 satisfaction. Phone/Fax: 774.565.2002 • Email:

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MARCH 2010

Common Ground

Page 7

The Jobs-Producing Power of “Big Wind” Making It Real By Laurie White

Laurie White As Rhode Islanders, we have become hyper-energized on new ways to create jobs. From the Greater Providence Chamber of Commerce’s perspective, it is a pleasure to work with our colleagues in the labor community to make the knowledge economy “real” for everyone. Together, we are making it “real” for workers at all points across the skills spectrum. So, what’s next? What are we most excited about? Think about this!

Today, Rhode Island has an exceptional opportunity to be the national and international leader in the offshore energy production industry — appropriately referred to as “Big Wind.” By leveraging our world class expertise in ocean engineering and related sciences, we can quickly ignite in Rhode Island an entrepreneurially driven explosion of new jobs, new investment and new tax revenue in the offshore wind sector. Deepwater Wind’s proposal to site the nation’s first off-shore energy production facility in Narragansett Bay is the game changer we need. Further, through this effort, we could finally solve one of Rhode Island’s most stubborn economic challenges — coalescing the community around a common vision for the highest and best use of Quonset and its strategically located port. The just-announced infusion of more than $22 million in federal stimulus monies to fix up the port’s piers and infrastructure is sure to be a huge help. Rhode Island’s considerable

A.C. Jewelers

brainpower is another hugely helpful asset. As the global epicenter of knowledge in offshore wind technology, the University of Rhode Island, for example, could spark along the Kingston/Quonset/Providence corridor a critical mass of industry players. Builders, researchers, entrepreneurs, fabricators, shippers, engineers and other vital participants in the supply chain would need to literally and figuratively “beat a path to our door” in order to fully capitalize on this body of knowledge and to collaborate with the best hands and minds in the field. The mammoth wind turbines would be manufactured locally by a ready supply of trades professionals — many of whom have expertise in composites technology due to our strong boat building heritage — then shipped efficiently through the Port of Quonset to destinations domestically and throughout Europe. Business, labor and academia would seize this target of opportunity in the Green and Clean Revolution

with great gusto because it fulfills the market potential identified in the Greater Providence Chamber of Commerce Knowledge Economy Roadmap. (Environmental and Alternative Energy Technologies). It is vitally important that all of us move forward with deliberate speed to ensure Rhode Island’s rightful place as the center of “Big Wind”, the offshore energy industry, as other states will undoubtedly attempt similar initiatives. By connecting the dots in this unique way in Rhode Island, “Big Wind” could in fact reinvigorate the state’s storied maritime roots and launch the next wave of our jobsproducing economy. Laurie White is the president of the Greater Providence Chamber of Commerce.

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Common Ground

MARCH 2010

Facts Every Retiree Should Know By John A. Pernorio

Medicare Drug Bargaining For the past year, seniors across the nation have felt the devastating effects of Medicare Part D. This misguided plan forces seniors to make heartbreaking decisions between paying for medicine and paying for food. Now, Congress has a chance to ease this burden by giving Medicare the right to bargain for lower drug prices. In January, the House of Representatives passed a bill that required Medicare to bargain for lower prescription drug prices. The Senate watered-down its version of the bill to only permit Medicare to bargain. However, 43 Senators blocked a fair up-or-down vote on this issue. We need to tell these Senators to stop putting drug companies’ profits ahead of seniors’ health. How does Medicare Bargaining affect retirees? Part D prohibits Medicare from

bargaining for lower drug prices. Since Part D took effect, prices of the 15 most-used prescription drugs have gone up by an average of 9.2% ­— that’s four times the rate of inflation, and three times the Cost of Living increase provided by Social Security. Without bargaining, Medicare is overpaying drug companies by 12% — that money comes directly out of your pockets and goes into CEOs’. Prices under Medicare Part D are at least 50% higher than prices for veterans, because the Veterans Administration is allowed to bargain, while Medicare is not. These high prices push seniors into the infamous “Part D doughnut hole,” and they push Medicare towards insolvency. Giving Medicare the right to bargain wouldn’t just help seniors; it would help all taxpayers, because Medicare Bargaining would save $20 billion in tax dollars every year. Medicare Bargaining would cut costs for seniors

and taxpayers right now. It’s time to tell the Senate to make this crucial change for the sake of all retirees and all Americans. Help May Be On The Way President Obama’s Fiscal Year 2011 budget proposes a $250 payment to Social Security recipients. The relief would come at a time when Social Security beneficiaries will not be receiving a normal costof-living adjustment (COLA) because of a formula that forbids adjustments during times of negative inflation.
 “Without a COLA, far too many of America’s seniors will find it even more difficult to purchase basic necessities, heat their homes and pay for their medications,” said Barbara J. Easterling, President of the Alliance.

“We urge Congress to similarly work to provide much-needed economic relief to older
Americans who are struggling to make ends meet during these difficult times,” she continued. “The President’s budget proposal will provide Social Security beneficiaries with the equivalent of a 2% increase in benefits and will help greatly to bolster their financial security.” John A. Pernorio is President of Rhode Island Alliance for Retired Americans and can be reached at 401-722-2770.

Roberts Launches Statewide Arts and Culture Tour Lt. Gov. Elizabeth H. Roberts, Chair of the Small Business Advocacy Council, announced the launch of a Statewide Arts and Culture Tour to support small businesses in the arts and culture sector. The month-long Statewide Arts and Culture Tour highlights arts and culture businesses that create direct economic growth, jobs and new entrepreneurial ventures. “From small jewelry manufacturers, to on-stage performers, to high end graphic designers, the small businesses of the arts and culture sector are a key component of Rhode Island’s economy. Businesses that make up the creative community grow our economy, create jobs, and help make Rhode Island a unique state to live or visit. As we work to support

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our locally-grown small businesses throughout the state, we cannot leave the arts and cultural economy behind,” Roberts said. Lt. Gov. Roberts launched Buy Local RI in 2008 to support locally owned, independent businesses, and her “Main Street” tours throughout the state build on existing local initiatives that highlight the opportunity and benefits of choosing to Buy Local RI. The Buy Local RI initiative also launched

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MARCH 2010

Common Ground

Page 9

Intervention: Not just fodder for entertainment By Vincent A. Ceraso

The death of Adam Goldstein, aka DJ AM, is yet another reminder of the effects of the substance abuse epidemic that is facing this country and beyond. The Philadelphia Inquirer reported on September 3rd, 2009 that he had eight undigested oxycontin pills in his stomach and one in his mouth. They went on to say that this was an apparent suicide. As everyone knows by now, Adam survived a plane crash along with one other person last year. Could it be that Adam was quietly suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder from the plane crash, which was never addressed? Could it be that no one around him saw that he was suffering? Adam certainly had enough people around him that should have noticed something. After all, he had just finished filming 8 episodes of a highly anticipated series for a major network in which he attempted to help young adults and their families caught in the grip of addiction. I know something about this production because I spoke to the producers in New York about finding individuals for their show. The part that makes me scratch my head is the fact that these producers were more concerned with the casting process and logistics than the person in crisis. The producers obviously new a lot about producing a network show, but didn’t know a heck of a lot about addiction or recovery. If they had been more educated about this topic before producing a show about it, would they have been able to see

they must recognize the signs of addiction that may be present on the set and beyond. We need to work as a team to accomplish our respective goals and save lives. It is sad that someone had to lose their life for drastic adjustments to be made but that is often how the process works. I’d like to point out, the fact that Adam Goldstein suffered from a deadly disease, and while people will cast judgment, know this, nobody is safe! If humanity is not all working as a team, we will all lose. Adam lost his life and “there is hope and it’s usually just a phone that is tragic; however, his call away. Your loved one needs you story has changed the way the message of hope will desperately. In fact, they’ve never needed be shared from this point you more.” - Vincent A. Ceraso forward and I guarantee you that his single cautionary tale will save countless lives the message of recovery and hope with from this point forward. millions and the networks wanted These thoughts about Adam content for their production. It was a actually lead me to some other win-win across the board…until the questions for the readers of this host of one of these shows dies of an publication. How many people overdose. reading this have a loved one or friend It is at this moment when the that may have an issue with drugs entertainment-recovery paradigm and/or alcohol? How many of you shifted completely. The point is, know what to do with your addicted recovery is not entertaining and loved ones? How many of you are cannot be treated as entertainment. absolutely frozen with fear because From this point forward, new they don’t know what to do or they methods for responsible content fear they’re doing the wrong thing? production will be established How many believe their addicted or companies like mine will not loved one would be mad at them for participate. Now, production “intervening” on their bad behavior? companies will need to train their staff The last point is obviously one of to recognize more than just celebrities; that the star of their show was also in crisis? Believe me, I’m not blaming the production company, just asking some questions. While my company and I have assisted several networks in the past, it was generally understood that us (the professionals), and them (the production) each had something the other wanted and therefore were able to coexist rather nicely. We certainly saved lives, which made the process a great deal smoother. It was simple, recovery professionals wanted to share

the myths associated with the act of Intervention. As far as the other questions posed, get a professional to help you come to a conclusion. That professional will help you decide the proper course of action. The course of action, in most cases, will be the act of intervention. Intervention is the action taken by family, friends and concerned others to actively assist someone in changing their unacceptable behaviors. The problem areas that an intervention typically addresses are alcohol and/or substance abuse. Other problem areas where intervention is useful are eating disorders, internet addiction, sexual addiction and compulsive gambling. The main issue that a family needs to be aware of is that there is hope and it’s usually just a phone call away. Your loved one needs you desperately. In fact, they’ve never needed you more. Choose to help them. If you don’t and this disease claims them, like it’s claimed so many others, you’ll regret it for the rest of your life. Believe me, I know, I speak from experience. Vincent A. Ceraso, BA, CEAP, SAP, CAI is the EAPA Labor Director and Regional Director for Treatment Solutions Network. He can be reached confidentially at 866-53-SOBER (866-537-6237).


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Page 10

Common Ground

MARCH 2010

Hello my name is Heidi! I’m 6 and a half years old. I know I could stand to lose a few pounds, but I’ve been cooped up for a few years since my former owner was no longer able to walk me. I do need a little work with walking on a leash, but I’m very smart and very willing to learn. I don’t show well in my kennel at the shelter. I do get scared when I feel trapped and cornered so please ask to see me outside. I love to play ball although I tend to entertain myself once you throw it to me. Tennis balls are the best! I really like car rides too! I lived with a 12 year old child so kids that age and older are great. They can throw a ball too!!!! I did live with cats too. I’m a great dog if someone would like to get to know me. I can get a little protective over my family sometimes so a family with some experience on how to let me know that it’s okay would be perfect. Although I do act like a clown sometimes, I am a Shepherd; I do my job. I’m a loyal playful girl everything a shepherd is just a bit chubbier!

Heidi is up-to-date with routine shots, house trained and spayed. Please call Defenders of Animals, Inc., at 401-461-1922 if you would like to see Heidi.

Ten Requests From Your Pet By Dennis Tabella 1. My life is likely to last 10-15 years. Understand any separation from you is likely to be painful.

 2. Give me time to understand what you want of me.

 3. Place your trust in me. It is crucial for my well-being.
 4. Don’t be angry with me for long and don’t lock me up as punishment. You have your work, your friends, your entertainment, but I have only you.

 5. Talk to me. Even if I don’t understand your words, I do understand your voice when speaking to me.

 6. Be aware that however you treat me, I will never forget it.

 7. Before you hit me, before you strike me, remember that I could hurt you, and yet, I choose not to bite you.

 8. Before you scold me for being lazy or uncooperative, ask yourself if something might be bothering me. Perhaps I’m not getting the right food, I have been in the sun too long, or my heart might be getting old or weak.

 9. Please take care of me when I grow old. You too, will grow old.

 10. On the ultimate difficult journey, go with me please. Never say you can’t bear to watch. Don’t make me face this alone. Everything is easier for me if you are there, because I love you so.

Compliments of

International Union of Operating Engineers LOCAL UNION 57 Providence, Rhode Island

James J. White

Business Manager and President

Timothy E. Quillen

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Gregory E. Olson

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MARCH 2010

Common Ground

Archambault calls on insurers to cut administrative costs Steve Archambault, Democratic candidate for Attorney General, called for a new emphasis on cutting administrative costs and sounded his opposition to rate hikes proposed by Blue Cross & Blue Shield of RI, United Health Care of New England and Tufts Health Plan for small and large group employers. Pointing to a recent study released by Health Insurance Commissioner Chris Koller’s office that ranks Rhode Island Health Insurers’ Administrative expenses higher than the average in New England, Archambault called on Health Insurance Commissioner Koller to give administrative costs stricter scrutiny. “These proposed double digit rate hikes pose a serious potential economic hardship to over 300,000 Rhode Islanders. Rhode Island families and businesses are already squeezed as our state faces the most difficult economic situation in at least a generation,” Archambault said. “There needs to be a new emphasis on cutting administrative expenses and

other costs before seeking rate hikes.” Blue Cross is requesting an average increase of 11.6% for small groups and 14.6% for large groups. United Health Care is requesting a rate hike of 10.6% for small groups and 4% for large groups and Tufts Health Plan is requesting an increase of 9.6% for small groups and 9.3% for large groups. Small groups are defined as employers with 50 employees or less and large groups are defined as employers with 500 employees or less. Blue Cross covers the overwhelming majority of small and large group employees. Steve Archambault will submit public comment to the Office of Health Commissioner on the need to put greater emphasis on reducing administrative costs in the factors that determine the acceptability of rate increases. The Commissioner is providing a public comment period at today’s meeting of the Health Insurance Advisory Council and is accepting written public comment through Feb. 22.

Page 11

“In these tough economic times, we must re-double our efforts to protect all of our residents from fraud and bad business practices. Truth in Advertising needs to be more than just a slogan. As Attorney General, I will work to make it the Rhode Island way.”

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United Food and Commercial Workers Union Local 328 is using this coupon as a negotiating tool. As we continue with negotiations, the customer purchases groceries and then hands the coupon directly to the store manager. The intent of this action is to equate the threat of not shopping at Stop & Shop in the event that our members employed at Stop & Shop go out on strike.

You can afford Healthy Benefits Healthy Benefits is a single source for a broad spectrum of health care services. Whether you are an employer, self-employed, employee, or independent contractor, Healthy Benefits can deliver discounted health and lifestyle services from the nation’s leading providers. Benefits available are: • Dental care • Vision care • Discounted prescriptions & vitamins • Electronic medical records • LifeLock • TelaDoc • Hearing care • Diabetic supplies • Chiropractic care • Nursing hotline • Family consultation services • Pet care savings program

Do you own a vehicle with a model year of 2006 to the present? • Was the vehicle involved in an accident caused by someone else? • Was the vehicle repaired?

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we guarantee you will receive at least $500.00. Call Us Now! 401.273.1111

For more information, call 888-311-4120 or 401-257-6131 or go to This is not health insurance.

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Page 12

Common Ground

MARCH 2010

Announcing the Rhode Island Alliance for Retired Americans In the year 2002, the national AFL-CIO created a new organization called the Alliance for Retired Americans (ARA). This organization is the outgrowth of the National Council of Senior Citizens. We want to inform you of a new organization, the Rhode Island Alliance for Retired Americans. The Rhode Island AFL-CIO is reaching out to all labor organizations along with community based organizations to participate in this unique organization to promote the well being of all Rhode Island seniors. The mission of the Rhode Island Alliance for Retired Americans is to ensure social and economic justice and full civil rights for all citizens so that they may enjoy lives of dignity, personal and family fulfillment and security. The Alliance believes that all older and retired persons have a responsibility to strive to create a society that incorporates these goals and rights, and that retirement provides them with opportunities to pursue new and expanded activities with their unions, civic organizations and their communities. A primary objective of the Rhode Island Alliance is to enroll and mobilize retired union members

and other senior and community activists into a nationwide grassroots movement advocating a progressive political and social agenda-one that respects work and strengthens families. The longterm goal of the Alliance is to become the voice for all older Americans. By engaging in important political battles to protect and preserve programs vital to the health and economic security of older Americans, the Alliance will gain recognition as the country’s leading progressive grassroots senior organization. In pursuit of these values, the Alliance will: • Build a strong organization of seniors with a viable structure, ample resources and clear objectives - a structure compatible with that of the labor movement and community-based groups at local, state and national levels. • Create programs and membership organizations designed to promote a commitment by retired workers and older persons to the concept of lifelong participation in their unions, and in their community, political and civic organizations. • Encourage all segments of the senior population to act with unity on legislative, political and policy issues of importance to retirees and their families in order to maximize their influence on federal, state and local governments and on private organizations that affect their interests.

The RI ARA HealthLink Wellness Mission Since 2001, the goal of the RI ARA HealthLink Wellness program is to initiate a process of prevention and early detection that will become a model for expansion into other community settings. The mission is to create a community health culture that revolves around three principles: Education: Setting up comprehensive approaches to retiree health wellness education. Giving members the knowledge they need to stay healthy through regular health screenings and the HealthLink Wellness Newsletter. Health Programs: Engage a large proportion of retirees in health wellness promotion activities such as walking clubs, healthy cooking & exercise programs to reduce retiree health risk. Partnerships: Develop an extensive network of partnerships that engage retirees in the fabric of the community. For example, outreach for this program should lead to networking with existing senior citizen centers, labor and community based organizations throughout Rhode Island. For more information on the RI ARA HealthLink Wellness program, go to

Low-cost Cat Spay/Neuter Clinic

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rule is for size only

rule is for size only .75”

rule is for size only

A low-cost Cat Spay/Neuter Clinic will be held on Thursday, March 18 at the .75” SNYPP Clinic.75”in Pascoag, RI. The cost is $65 per cat and includes the check up, rabies and distemper inoculations, and the spay/neuter procedure. The SNYPP Clinic has spayed/neutered over 5,000 companion animals since it opened several years ago.

This scheduled clinic is being held in cooperation with the Humane Association of Northwestern RI, the SNYPP Clinic, and Defenders of Animals, Inc. The appointments for the spaying/neutering of cats for this day are being made through Defenders of Animals, Inc. Please call Defenders of Animals, Inc., at 401-461-1922 for appointment information.

Rhode Island Brotherhood of Correctional Officers “Representing Those Who Work the Toughest Beat in the State”

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MARCH 2010

Common Ground

Page 13

Tiger Funds, continued from cover The growth at ProvPort stands in stark contrast to the economic condition of the City of Providence and the State of Rhode Island. Presently, Rhode Island’s unemployment rate ranks third in the United States – 12.9% of Rhode Islanders are unemployed. Providence’s unemployment a rate is now in excess of 13% – the fourth highest for a metropolitan area with more than 1 million in population. The Port of Providence in Rhode Island is a source of significant positive economic impact on the City of Providence and the State of Rhode Island. The construction of the proposed ReNEWable Port, in its first year of full operation, will contribute approximately $100 million to the local economy and $121 million to the regional economy. Although projects such as the ReNEWable Port are generally regarded as an asset to a community, the direct service it will provide locally will contribute substantially to the economic wellbeing of the Northeastern Corridor Water Freight Region and the Nation. Simply stated the Port generates income, creates wealth and employment for the citizens of the region, builds tax revenue and will advance the environmental and social wellbeing of the Northeastern corridor region. As a multi-modal transportation facility ProvPort is very well positioned for the coming future Salt being unloaded at night at ProvPort. Today, ProvPort of product is responsible for nearly 2,400 jobs in the region and more transportation. than 3.2 million tons move through the port annually.

Aerial photo of ProvPort campus. ProvPort is a public-private non-profit partnership that supports hundreds of critical union jobs in Southern New England.

Loan Modifications The Obama Plan and You How to lower your mortgage payment By David Conti

Nowadays, it comes as a surprise to me that your homes are no longer a safe haven for our hard earned dollars. With real estate prices plummeting, making homes affordable is not an easy task. The monthly payments were hardly a concern in the past, but with the loss of jobs and underemployment, mortgage payments are becoming a financial hazard for many homeowners. Homeowners can no longer afford the monthly payment of their first loan and are turning to Obama’s Mortgage Loan Modification to make the home loan affordable. In most of the cases, refinancing of the first loan is not possible because of the depreciation of the house values. With that being said, the only option left is to make the loan more affordable with a home loan modification program. Many of the banks have an “in house modification program” but The Obama’s Plan is the best way to obtain a modification. The intent of the Obama Plan is to reduce the monthly payment, lower the rate of interest, and make the monthly payment affordable. The goal is to align your mortgage to 31% of the gross monthly income of the debtor. Who is Eligible? If you are having a difficult time making your mortgage payment, have been late or missed a month, you may qualify for a loan modification to make your monthly mortgage payment more affordable.

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Page 14

Common Ground

Rebuilding your estate for future generations

Put John’s 25 years of experience along with Maffe’s Tax, Estate & Retirement Planning services to work for you today.

By John Edes

Preparing for retirement and managing income during retirement remains a major concern for millions of Americans. Terms like “the new face of retirement,” “bridge job” or “working retired” have taken on new definition as Americans labor past the traditional retirement age and continue to work into their late 60’s and beyond. The economic crisis continues to be a wake-up call; with typically low savings rate already an issue and as stock and mutual fund holdings decline, U.S. household net worth has fallen to new lows. With unexpected health care costs, inflation concerns and managing or reducing current debt, pre-retirees are making tough financial decisions that will impact their current as well as their future financial lives as many expect to work on average a full decade longer than those already in retirement. Are you one of the many consumers who are experiencing similar effects on your retirement savings and are looking for answers? Even if you have actively planned and saved, you may be witnessing your hard-earned nest egg cracking right in front of your eyes. It is no wonder that many Americans are feeling financially unstable and are looking for ways to provide financial protection and future security for their family. Fortunately, there are a number of strategies that may help you get back on track with your plans. One possible strategy may include permanent life insurance. Life Insurance provides more than just family protection through the death benefit, it can help restore your financial legacy – and make it easier to keep your goals on target. In addition to the death benefit permanent life insurance provides, there are unique living benefits, including

the policy’s cash value, that may be especially useful today. The cash accumulated inside the policy can be a source of cash to pay the mortgage or the car loan, improve a home for sale, start a business, pay for college or supplement retirement income. The policy loans do not need to be paid back. Any loan amount and interest due is deducted from the policy death benefit amount that is paid out at death. Another benefit of permanent life insurance is as a source for long term care health needs; for an insured with a terminal or chronic illness, some or all of the death benefit can be used, during lifetime, to pay for costs associated with a long term illness. These benefits help make permanent life insurance even more important to families in the current environment where there is an increased desire for a stable, dependable way to protect loved ones. Receipt of accelerated life insurance benefits may affect your, your spouse or your family’s eligibility for public assistance programs such as medical supplementary social security income (SSI), and drug assistance programs. You are advised to consult with a qualified tax advisor and with social service agencies concerning how receipt of such a payment will affect you, your spouse and your family’s eligibility for public assistance. Riders are optional and may not be available in all states John Edes is a Registered Representative of, and securities offered solely by Equity Services, Inc., Member FINRA/SIPC, Maffe Financial Group, 875 Centerville Rd, Bldg One, Warwick, RI 401-8282090 X305. Maffe Financial Group’s independent of Equity Services, Inc.

MARCH 2010

John C. Edes, LUTCF

Maffe Financial Group Inc 875 Centerville Road Warwick, Rhode Island

Office: 401-828-2090x305 Cell: 401-529-5110

The 73rd anniversary of the ending of the Great Flint Sit Down Strike (1937). Roscoe Van Zandt, a janitor at the factory, did not have anything to gain from the strike, but stayed in the plant with the workers (he was the only black man there; can you imagine that?) He inspired the workers so much they elected him to carry the flag out of the factory upon victory. Heroes aren’t born - they’re made; and they don’t make ‘em like Roscoe anymore.

Looking for some good news for a change?

View past issues at Rhode Island's only newspaper for unions, and about unions.

MARCH 2010

Common Ground

Page 15

William J. Hawkins, III, CRPC® Financial Advisor 100 Westminster Street, Ste 1600 Providence, RI 02903 401-459-6824 Investment and Insurance Products:

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Common Ground


MARCH 2010

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MARCH 2010

Common Ground

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ER Card pilot program extended for one year in Warwick If employee participation increases, potential cost savings could reach as high as $876,000. Citing the success of a one-year pilot program, Mayor Scott Avedisian and Maria Gil, managing partner and co-founder of ER Card, announced today that they will extend for another year, at no cost to the city, a program that allows City employees and their immediate family members to enroll in the innovative, electronic personal health record (ePHR) and healthcare management service. In January 2009, Avedisian and Gil announced the pilot program, funded through a $75,000 grant from The Rhode Island Foundation. ER Card will absorb the cost for the second year. ER Card members create their electronic personal health record by accessing and completing ER Card’s private network software on the Internet (, or by supplying their health information to ER Card care managers via phone, fax or email. Member information is confidential and protected within an encrypted database. All sensitive information stored through the ER Card website is VeriSign Secured. In addition, all members must

complete Release and Verification of Information forms in accordance with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). ER Card members can update their health records and share their information with caregivers 24-hoursa-day, seven-days-a-week. Members can provide doctors with access to their health record via the Internet, print a hard copy, or synchronize their

these, 100 individuals reported one or more prescribed and over-thecounter medications to ER Card care managers. ER Card’s clinical pharmacist reviewed their charts in depth and identified 44 patients who could benefit from having their medication regiment altered, either because of drug therapy duplication, drug interactions or improper dosing. They also examined medication management issues specific to chronic “Mayor Avedisian has taken the lead once diseases, such as again, to explore ways to reduce health care identifying patients having risk factors for costs and improve care for Warwick employees, upper gastrointestinal retirees and their families.” - Maria Gil bleeding (UGIB), and who were also using medications electronic personal health record to a that are known to increase the risk portable “flash drive” device to carry of bleeding. UGIB is a serious and with them to medical appointments potentially fatal condition, typically or keep with them for emergencies. requiring costly inpatient medical ER Card’s flash drive technology is care. the first and only portable device Ultimately, the clinical pharmacist that can be synchronized with an contacted the patient, the prescriber online record. Doctors can access the or both, and followed up with flash drive using any computer, and 39 letters. In some instances the it even provides optional password physician modified the patient’s drug protection. regimen, and it’s anticipated that A total of 210 employees or more modifications will be made in family members voluntarily enrolled the future. in the program last year. Of ER Card estimates that the average increase in health care costs due to an adverse drug event is $1,000 to $2,000 per episode. Based on figures from the pilot program, they estimate that if 1,250 employees/ family members were to enroll, then approximately 438 medication-

related problems would be identified, yielding a potential cost savings of $438,000 to $876,000 annually. “Mayor Avedisian has taken the lead once again, to explore ways to reduce health care costs and improve care for Warwick employees, retirees and their families,” Gil said. “ER Card’s medication management feature is a unique offering that could potentially save the City close to $1 million a year in medication-related problems alone,” she continued. “The care coordination and pharmacist’s intervention was particularly helpful to spouses, children and retirees who do not have access to many of the specialized health and wellness programs the City has to offer.” “We thank Mayor Avedisian for the opportunity to prove how fundamental care coordination and medication therapy support, not currently available through most health care plans, can reduce the risk of costly short and long-term health care issues. We expect year two to yield equally remarkable results,” Gil said. “I’m very encouraged by the results of the first year, and thank ER Card for their willingness to continue this program at no cost to our employees and their families,” Avedisian said. “This provides a critical component to our ongoing efforts to help employees take proactive steps to assure good health and will ultimately help us to reduce medical expenses.”

UA Local Union 51 Plumbers • Pipefitters • Refrigeration Thomas A. Handfield Business Manager Robert Walker Financial Secretary

Timothy L. Byrne Business Agent

Frederick Foeri Organizer/Agent

William D. Mello Business Agent

Done Once. Done Right Serving Rhode Island and Southeastern Massachusetts

II Hemingway Drive, East Providence, Rhode Island 02915 Telephone: 401-943-3033. Fax: 401-943-8027

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Common Ground

MARCH 2010

DIRECTORY OF UNION SERVICES BARBERS & HAIRDRESSERS Some barbers and hairdressers are organized by UFCW Local 328. For a list of union barber shops and hairdressers, please contact Local 328 at (401) 861-0300 or

BUILDING TRADES For home and business construction, repairs, or additions please contact one of the following unions for a reputable contractor in your area. For general questions or help please call Build RI at (401) 553-2100 or Boilermakers Local No. 29 (617) 328-8400 Bricklayers Local No.1 (401) 946-9940 Carpenters Local No. 94 (401) 467-7070 Elevator Constructors Local No. 39 (401) 423-2293 Glaziers Local No. 1333 (401) 781-4736 Heat and Frost Insulators Local No. 6 (617) 436-4666 International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local No. 99 (401) 946-9900 International Union of Operating Engineers Local No. 57 (401) 421-6678 Iron Workers Local Local No. 37 (401) 438-1111 Laborers Local No. 271 (401) 331-9682 Painters & Allied Trades District Council 11 (401) 467-7010 Plaster & Masons Local No. 40 (401) 943-1185 Plumbers & Pipefitters Local No. 51 (401) 943-3033 Rhode Island Building Trades (401) 438-1111 Roofers & Waterproofers Local No. 33 (781) 341-9192 Sheet Metal Workers Local No. 17 (401) 831-7150 Sprinkler Fitters Local No. 676 (860) 666-4447 Teamsters Local No. 251 (401) 434-0454

BUS SERVICES RIPTA Rhode Island Public Transit Authority 265 Melrose Street Providence, RI 02907 (401) 781-9400 Peter Pan Bus Lines Corporate Headquarters P.O. Box 1776 Springfield, MA 01102-1776 1-800-237-8747 ext. 1209

CHILD CARE PROVIDERS To arrange on-site child care coverage for your meetings or conferences, or to locate a DCYF-licensed home-based child care provider in your neighborhood or near your workplace, contact the union of home-based child care providers, District 1199 SEIU, at (401) 457-5099 or www.

DELIVERY SERVICES United Parcel Service The Teamsters Local 251 represent Rhode Island’s UPS workers. For the outlet nearest you, or to schedule a home pick up, please contact UPS at or 1-800-PICK-UPS. United States Postal Service Your local post office is represented by the National Association of Letter Carriers, the American Postal Workers Union and the National Postal Mail Handlers Union (a division of the Laborers Union.)

FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS Credit union employees are organized by UFCW Local 328. Rhode Island Credit Union Providence Branch 160 Francis Street Providence, RI 02903 (401) 751-7440 Cranston Branch 570 Pontiac Avenue Cranston, RI 02910 (401) 941-8770 Bristol Branch 390 Metacom Avenue Bristol, RI 02809 (401) 253-1313 URI Branch URI Memorial Union Kingston, RI 02881 (401) 789-0253 Dexter Credit Union 1 Village Plaza Way North Scituate, RI 02857 (401) 934-7600 934 Dexter Street Central Falls, RI 02863 (401) 724-6200 Woodlawn Federal Credit Union 744 Main Street Pawtucket, RI 02860 (401) 728-8300 The Carpenters’ Union represents: First Trade Union Bank 14 Jefferson Park Road Warwick, RI 02888 1-800-242-0272

FUNCTION FACILITIES Biltmore Hotel 11 Dorrance Street Providence, RI 02903 (401) 455-3027 Scott Connery, Director of Catering Brown University 45 Prospect St. Providence, RI 02912 (401) 863-1075 Cynthia Schwartz, Director of University Event Bryant University 1150 Douglas Pike Smithfield, RI 02917 (401) 232-6921 Sheila Guay, Director of Events

Community College of Rhode Island Knight Campus, Warwick Flanagan Campus, Lincoln Liston Campus, Providence Newport Campus CCRI Downcity (401) 825-2015 Edna Mattson Dunkin Donuts Center 1 LaSalle Square Providence, RI 02903 (401) 331-0700 ext. 150 Robert Sturm, Event Manager Newport Grand 150 Admiral Kalbfus Road Newport, RI 02840 (401) 849-5000 ext. 157 David Rollin Providence College 549 River Avenue Providence, RI 02918 (401) 865-1000 ext. 2070 Victoria Mocshu Rhode Island College 600 Mount Pleasant Avenue Providence, RI 02908 (401)456-8022 Kathy Sasso RI Convention Center 1 Sabin Street Providence, RI 02903 (401)-458-6002 Antonia Anthony, Director of Event Services Roger Williams Park Casino 1000 Elmwood Avenue Providence, RI 02905 (401) 785-9450 ext. 240 Lisa Gonzales, Casino Event Planner Roger Williams University 1 Old Ferry Road Bristol, RI 02809 (401) 253-1040 ext. 3793 Allison Chase-Padula Twin River 1600 Louisquisset Pike Lincoln, RI 02865 (401) 723-3200 ext. 8497 Alana Barts University of Rhode Island Kingston, Alton Jones Campus Providence Campus (401) 874-2214 Sherry Davis The Westin Providence 1 Exchange Street Providence, RI 02903 (401) 598-8245 Alan Swerdolff, Director of Sales and Marketing

HOSPITALS UNAP members work at the following locations: • Fatima Hospital • Greater RI Visiting Nurse Service • Homestead Group • Kent Hospital • Landmark Medical Center • Memorial Hospital • Rehabilitation Hospital of RI • Rhode Island Hospital • RI Community Living & Support Services • RI Dept of Human Services • RI Veterans’ Home • URI, CCRI, RIC Health Services • Westerly Hospital (Professional & Technical) • Westerly Hospital (Service & Maintenance) • Zambarano Hospital SEIU 1199 members work at the following locations: • Butler Hospital • Women & Infants Hospital

JANITORIAL SERVICES Some janitorial companies are organized by SEIU Local 615. For a list of unionized janitorial services, contact the Local 615 office at (401) 521-6150 or visit their website at

NEWSPAPERS Providence Journal Subscribe (401) 277-7600 Pawtucket Times Subscribe (401) 722-4000 Woonsocket Call Subscribe (401) 767-8522

NURSING HOMES SEIU 1199 members work at the following locations: • Bannister House • Charlesgate Nursing Center • Country Gardens Skilled Nursing • Crawford Skilled Nursing • Greenville Skilled Nursing • Hopkins Manor • Pawtucket Skilled Nursing • Parkview Associates • United Methodist Health Care Center

PRINTERS, BANNERS & SIGNS American Speedy Printing 635 Arnold Road Coventry, RI 02816 Phone: (401) 823-0090 Fax: (401) 823-0092 B Sign Graphics 27 Libera Street Cranston, RI 02920 Phone: (401) 943-6941 Fax: (401) 943-2287 Cogens, Inc. 1 Virginia Avenue Providence, RI 02905 Phone: (401) 421-4436 Fax: (401) 331-9032 Crownmark 109 Fletcher Avenue Cranston, RI 02920 Phone: (401) 943-1112 Fax: (401) 943-1113 Dorrance Engraving 635 Prospect Street Pawtucket, RI 02860 Phone: (401) 725-0504 Fax: (401) 725-0504 East Coast Screen Printing 22 Partridge Street Providence, RI 02908 Phone: (401) 272-1166 Fax: (401) 272-1167 Federal Signs 135 Dean Street Providence, RI 02903 Phone: (401) 421-3400 Fax: (401) 351-2233 Financial Innovations 1 Weingeroff Blvd. Cranston, RI 02919 Phone: (401) 467-3170 Fax: (401) 467-3570 JB Foley Printing 1469 Broad Street Providence, RI 02905 Phone: (401) 467-3616 Fax: (401) 467-8309 Lamar Outdoor Advertising 360 Warren Avenue E. Providence, RI 02914 Phone: (401) 421-4504, Fax: (401) 421-4757 Mandeville Sign Co. 676 George Wash. Hwy. Lincoln, RI 02865 Phone: (401) 334-9100 Fax: (401) 334-7799 Regine Printing Co., Inc. 208 Laurel Hill Avenue Providence, RI 02909 Phone: (401) 943-3404 Fax (401) 944-1228

R.I. Litho Prin 1395 Atwoo Johnston, RI 0 Phone: (401 Fax: (401) 4

Screen Work 62 South Ma Woonsocket, Phone: (401)

Sheahan Prin 1 Front Stree Woonsocket, Phone: (401) Fax: (401) 7

Sign Lite, Inc 6 Corporate N. Haven, C Phone: 1-800 Fax: (203) 2

The Sign Sho P.O. Box 229 Westerly, RI 0 Phone: (401)

Tarvis Graph 21 Sabin Str Pawtucket, RI Phone: (401) Fax: (401) 7


All public sch organized by Federation of Health Profes National Edu of Rhode Isla

The following are also unio • Laborers • Textron C • Times 2



ork at



Nursing es Health






MARCH 2010

Common Ground

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DIRECTORY OF UNION SERVICES R.I. Litho Printing, Inc. 1395 Atwood Avenue Johnston, RI 02919 Phone: (401) 275-0760 Fax: (401) 464-6002 Screen Works, LLC 62 South Main Street Woonsocket, RI 02895 Phone: (401) 692-0304 Sheahan Printing Corp. 1 Front Street Woonsocket, RI 02895 Phone: (401) 273-7272 Fax: (401) 769-9206 Sign Lite, Inc. 6 Corporate Drive N. Haven, CT 06473 Phone: 1-800-544-0854 Fax: (203) 234-8344 The Sign Shoppe P.O. Box 2296 Westerly, RI 02891 Phone: (401) 364-7442 Tarvis Graphics Inc. 21 Sabin Street Pawtucket, RI 02860 Phone: (401) 726-5530 Fax: (401) 723-6420

PUBLIC SCHOOLS All public school employees are organized by the Rhode Island Federation of Teachers and Health Professionals or the National Education Association of Rhode Island. The following Charter Schools are also unionized: • Laborers Charter School • Textron Charter School • Times 2 Charter School

RECYCLING AND TRASH REMOVAL SERVICES Waste Management of Rhode Island (800) 972-4545

SUPERMARKETS Supermarket employees at the stores listed below are members of UFCW Local 328 or UFCW Local 791. Super Stop and Shop • Bristol • Coventry • Cumberland • Johnston • Lincoln • Middletown • Narragansett • Newport • North Kingstown • North Providence • North Smithfield • Pawtucket • Providence • Richmond • Smithfield • Warwick • Westerly Shaw’s Supermarket • Barrington • Garden City • Cranston • East Providence • Riverside • Johnston • Middletown • North Providence • Pawtucket • Providence • Wakefield • Warwick

• Lakewood • Westerly • Woonsocket

Don’t Miss Don’t Miss

Eastside Marketplace • Providence Brigidos IGA • Pascoag • North Scituate Grand Union Family Markets • South Yarmouth • Provincetown • Buzzards Bay • South Yarmouth

An informative, one-hour weekly show highlighting An informative, issues and eventsone-hour affecting weekly show families. highlighting working

C-Town Supermarket • Pawtucket

issues and events affecting working families. TUESDAY 7 P.M.

TELEPHONE, INTERNET & CABLE SERVICES AT&T Wireless 1 (800) 897-7046 Union members recieve special discounts on AT&T wireless service plans. For more infomation to to Verizon Verizon, whose employees are members of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 2323, can provide for all of your home and office internet, telephone and cable TV needs through Verizon’s new FiOS (Fiber Optic Service) network.


P.O. Box 7613 Warwick, RI 02887 (401) 751-7100 P.O. Box 7613 Warwick, RI 02887 (401) 751-7100

Simply call 1-888-Get FiOS or 1-888-591-6076 or contact IBEW 2323 at (401) 946-2323.

BUY Union Products. USE Union Services. Use yourUnion hard earned money to support hardUnion working union members! Products. Services. BUY USE

Use your hard earned money to support hard working union members!









14 04,





Affiliated with the INTERNATIONAL BROTHERHOOD OF TEAMSTERS 121 BRIGHTRIDGE AVENUE, EAST PROVIDENCE, RHODE ISLAND 02914 EXECUTIVE BOARD Joseph J. Bairos Secretary-Treasurer Principal Executive Officer Kevin Reddy President James Croce Vice President David Demuth Recording Secretary Dennis Mello Trustee Susan Folan Trustee Janet O’Grady Trustee

BUSINESS AGENTS Brian Carroll Kevin Reddy Steven Labrie Joseph Boyajian Douglas Teoli Daniel Manocchio Asst. Business Agents Linda Russolino

Page 20

Common Ground

PUBLIC EMPLOYEES’ LOCAL UNION 1033 Representing the Public Servants who make government work!

MARCH 2010

Partnering with Rhode Island’s Municipalities to Provide the Most Effective and Cost-efficient Public Employee Benefits

The Rhode Island Public Employees’ Health Services Fund

The Rhode Island Public Employees’ Legal Services Fund


The Rhode Island Public Employees’ Education, Training and Apprenticeship Fund

Cranston Crossing Guards

Town of North Kingstown Lincoln Highway Department Providence Community Action Program Providence School Department Lincoln Public Library Narragansett Bay Commission Town of North Providence City of Providence Narragansett Town Hall North Providence Crossing Guards Lincoln Water Commission Providence Civic Center Authority R.I. Department of Transportation Warwick Crossing Guards North Providence School Department Lincoln Town Hall


Business Manager

Donald S. Iannazzi, Esq. Chairman


Vicki A. Virgilio Trustee

Pasquale T. D’Amico Trustee

Sharen Gleckman Trustee

Joseph F. Kenney Trustee

Betty Jackson Liaison

Chris Lombardi Coordinator

Rhode Island’s Union Built, Operated and Staffed Facilities Roger Williams Park Casino

accommodating 50 - 300 (401) 941-5640 (401) 785-9450

city center skating rink

accommodating groups from 10 - 400 (401) 331-5544 ext. 5

Common Ground March  

The newspaper for Rhode Island workers and their families

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