News

Wheelhouse Weekly – November 10, 2008

November 10th 2008

 

– Bridging the Information Gap With E-News You Can Use –

Volume 12 . . . . . Number 45. . . .November 10, 2008

STORIES COVERED

REMINDERS

T-AGS Oceanographic Survey Ships Info

Required Coursework

Security Clearances

MSC Physicals

MM&P FCU News

MM&P Health & Benefit Plan News

Meet Our New Prescription Benefit Manager, PHARMACARE

Notice to MM&P Health & Benefit Plan Participants

WWII USCG Veterans Outreach

Company Gives Bucks Back for buying Safe Shoes

Website Offers Union-Made Goods and Services



Did you miss a week? Back editions of the Wheelhouse Weekly are available in the section.


UNIONS CHEER ELECTION OF OBAMA

The International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF) and the AFL-CIO’s Transportation Trades Department (TTD), two organizations of which MM&P is a member, were among the labor groups that issued statements hailing the election of Barack Obama. The ITF said it welcomes “this positive step forward for labor rights in the United States.” In a statement to all affiliated unions, ITF General Secretary David Cockroft said Obama’s election “promises to bring in important policy changes on trade union rights, new hope for international relations and a progressive response to the global economic crisis.”

TTD President Edward Wytkind called the election “historic,” saying “transportation workers joined millions of Americans to vote for change…  After eight cruel years of anti-worker policies under President Bush, they understood that their jobs, their livelihoods and their futures were on the ballot.”

Nationwide, more than 250,000 union volunteers reached out to fellow union members during the course of the campaign.  The AFL-CIO released a statement saying that “10 million door knocks, 70 million phone calls, 27 million worksite fliers and 57 million union mail pieces made the difference in races from the White House to state legislatures.” Union voters supported Obama 67 percent to 30 percent over Sen. John McCain. In the top-tier battleground states, the difference was even more significant, with union members going for Obama 69 to 28, a 41-point margin.


MM&P MEMBERS HONORED WITH AOTOS AWARDS FOR HEROISM, HUMANITARIAN SERVICE

The Mariners’ Plaque for Heroism has been awarded to the officers and crew of Fast Ferry CHENEGA for saving the lives of three boaters earlier this year. The three were on a fishing trip June 8 when their small craft foundered in icy waters near Whittier, Ala. Accepting the plaque on behalf of the officers and crew of CHENEGA were MM&P member Captain Samuel Daniels and Roger Wetherell, chief communications officer of the State of Alaska’s Department of Transportation.

During the course of the ceremony, held in New York on Nov. 7, the officers and crew of USNS MERCY and USNS COMFORT received awards for humanitarian service. MERCY deployed on a four-month humanitarian mission to the Western Pacific and Southeast Asia from May to September of this year. The award was accepted on behalf of the officers and crew by Captain Robert Wiley and Chief Engineer Joseph Watts. COMFORT deployed on a four-month humanitarian mission to Latin America and the Caribbean from June to October. Captain Edward Nanartowich accepted the plaque on behalf of the officers and crew of the vessel.

Also honored at the event were Michael Garvey, chairman of Saltchuk Resources, Gen. Norton A. Schwartz, chief of staff of the U.S. Air Force and James Capo of the U.S. Maritime Alliance.


PIRACY UPDATE: ITF, SHIPPING COMPANIES, ISSUE URGENT CALL TO GOVERNMENTS; NATO SENDS MORE SHIPS

Seven shipping organizations, including the International Transport Workers Federation (ITF), have issued an open letter to governments, calling on them to take urgent action to address “the scourge of piracy against merchant shipping.”

The Round Table of international shipping associations joined ITF in calling on the authorities to do “everything in their power to counter the state of lawlessness and to restore safety of navigation in the Gulf of Aden.” They said that “coordinated international action is the only mechanism likely to bring any lasting relief to this troubled and lawless area.”

The group called the current situation, with numerous seafarers being held hostage, “appalling.” They urged governments to commit sufficient numbers of warships, military aircraft and surveillance assets to the region and to coordinate their command and control under the auspices of a United Nations mandate. Last weekend, NATO sent three more warships to the Gulf of Aden, but the pirate attacks have continued. At least 77 ships have been attacked in African waters this year. Thirty-one ships have been hijacked, and 10 remain in the hands of pirates along with nearly 200 crew members. The European Union announced it is sending at least four more warships, and a contingent of aircraft, to the area.

Meanwhile, the pirates who seized 10 oil workers last week have demanded that the Cameroon government enter into negotiations over the Bakassi peninsula.  A spokesman for the pirates said that any attempt to rescue the hostages would be met with violence. The workers were taken from BOURBON SAGITTA, an oil service boat, at midnight on Thursday. The Bakassi peninsula is an oil-rich region recently transferred from Nigeria to Cameroon after a protracted border dispute.

The MV YASA NESLIHAN, a Turkish ship with a crew of 20, is still being held by the pirates who hijacked it in the Gulf of Aden Nov. 2. A number of other vessels, including an Italian merchant ship with a crew of 26, managed to escape. The U.S. Navy reported that a Spanish patrol plane buzzed pirates attempting to hijack an oil tanker.


COAST GUARD ISSUES STATEMENT ON SEAFARERS’ ACCESS TO VISITORS AND SHORE LEAVE

The Coast Guard has issued a statement reminding port and facility operators that the ISPS Code and other international treaties require them to guarantee seafarers access to visitors and shore leave. USCG said it had received reports of regulated maritime facilities refusing to grant access to seafarers holding properly issued visas. In the statement, the Coast Guard also cited U.S. regulations that require facility operators and owners to provide means to facilitate shore leave access for mariners and visits to vessels by seafarers’ welfare organizations. In the statement, the Coast Guard said the denial of access to representatives of seafarers’ welfare organizations runs counter to the intent of USCG regulations.

The statement said artificial barriers imposed by a minority of facilities within its regulated stakeholder base could undermine crew morale and wellbeing. The statement, which was distributed to Captain of the Port Zones, suggests that chaplains be included in port community meetings to educate the Coast Guard on the issues involved.

MM&P has expressed its appreciation to the Coast Guard for issuing the statement and has suggested that labor representatives be involved in future Captain of the Port Zone meetings on shore leave and access to ships.


MSC MAGAZINE INTERVIEWS MM&P MEMBERS ON USNS GRASP AND USS MOUNT WHITNEY

Four members of MM&P’s Government Employees Group describe their participation in team-building and humanitarian missions in the two most recent issues of “Sealift,” the official magazine of Military Sealift Command (MSC). Rescue and salvage ship USNS GRASP completed an international outreach and security mission in the Caribbean in the late summer and fall. At seven ports in seven different countries, GRASP’s crew of 26 CIVMARS and 14 Navy divers carried out diver operations with partner nations and disposed of unexploded World War II ordnance. It was “a great opportunity to demonstrate the range of missions that this ship is capable of carrying out, from recovering gear to assisting a ship in distress, to towing vessels…” said Jose Delfaus, GRASP’s civil service master for the first leg of the deployment. Doug Casavant, GRASP’s civil service master for the second leg of the journey, was featured on the cover of the October issue of “Sealift” as he provided instruction to a sea cadet from the Barbados Coast Guard.

In the wake of Russia’s attack on Georgian troops in South Ossetia, USS MOUNT WHITNEY delivered more than 17 tons of supplies to displaced persons in the port city of Poti. MM&P members aboard the vessel at the time were Chief Mate Gene Lovitt and Cargo Mate Stephen McLaughlin. The relief cargo included blankets, juice and powdered milk. “It was a cargo of hope,” McLaughlin told “Sealift.” Lovitt seized the occasion to compliment the rest of the team aboard USS MOUNT WHITNEY, saying “It was a complicated operation but the deck department made it look easy.”


NEW AIS EQUIPMENT MAY NOT BE COMPATIBLE WITH OLD CLASS B DEVICES, COAST GUARD SAYS

The Coast Guard has announced the availability of lower cost, type-approved automatic identification system (AIS) Class B devices which are interoperable with AISClass A devices and make use of expanded AIS messaging capabilities. All existing AIS stations will be able to receive and process messages from a Class B device, the Coast Guard says, but they may not be able to display all Class B information on their minimum keyboard & display (MKD) or other onboard navigation systems. In most cases, a software update or patch will be required. For this reason, the Coast Guard cautions new AIS Class B users not to assume that they are being ‘seen’ by all other AIS users or that all their information is available to all AIS users.

The new Class B devices have the same ability to acquire and display targets not visible to radar. They report at a fixed rate (30 seconds) versus the Class A’s variable rate (between 2-10 seconds depending on speed and course change). They consume less power, thus broadcast at lower strength (2 watts versus 12 watts), which affects their broadcast range; but, they broadcast and receive virtually the same vessel identification and other info as Class A devices. For general info on AIS, carriage requirements, future AIS rulemakings and a list of Coast Guard type-approved AIS Class A devices which require a software update to display AIS Class-B info, go to http://www.navcen.uscg.gov/enav/ais.


MM&P JOINS OTHER ITF AFFILIATES IN PROTEST AIMED AT JAPANESE COMPANY DOWA

MM&P has joined other unions in a protest against DOWA, a Japanese shipping company not covered by any internationally recognized labor agreement. Under the auspices of the International Transport Workers Federation (ITF), unions representing seafarers and dockworkers worldwide have written to managers at the firm, which focuses on inter-North American trade. Eighty-five percent of Japanese flag-of-convenience ships are covered by ITF-approved agreements guaranteeing minimum standards for the crews. “Dowa’s refusal to have ITF coverage is in stark contrast to the conduct of the vast majority of Japanese FOC owners and operators,” the unions said. “The ITF and its affiliates take a strict approach to establishing and maintaining minimum conditions aboard FOC ships to ensure fair treatment of workers in the maritime industry,” the letter said. “We therefore urge you to accept these international labor standards and negotiate with the ITF-affiliated union in your country to ensure that seafarers aboard your fleet enjoy the same social and labor standards as others crews on FOC ships.”


FIRM PLEADS GUILTY TO CONSPIRACY IN PLASTIC PILINGS SCAM

A marine products supply firm has agreed to pay a criminal fine for participating in a conspiracy in connection with a project to repair New York’s Pier 86. American Composite Timbers (ACT), a company engaged in the sale of plastic marine pilings and related products, pleaded guilty to a one-count felony charge. ACT is charged with facilitating payments from a co-conspirator, a Virginia-based marine products firm, to a former employee of the city of New York. The employee allegedly acted in exchange for the money to guarantee that ACT kept the contract. According to prosecutors, the conspiracy began in 1999 and continued until 2003. The charge carries a maximum fine of $500,000.


2006 PENTLAND FIRTH DEATHS ATTRIBUTED TO TANKER MASTER’S BAD JUDGMENT

A tanker master showed poor judgment in leaving the safe harbor of Scapa Flow during a violent storm in 2006, according to a report by the Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB). Two mariners died when they were struck on the foredecks by massive waves; a third suffered life-threatening injuries. A report at the time by the British Coast Guard called the weather conditions around the Firth that night “horrendous.” The MAIB concluded that, given the weather conditions, the ship’s master should have delayed sailing. In response to the report, the company that operated the tanker, FR8 Ship Management of Singapore, released a statement saying it was modifying its safety procedures.


MALTESE SHIPOWNER, GREEK MANAGER AND ENGINEER GUILTY IN MAGIC PIPE CASE

A Maltese shipowner, a Greek ship management company and the chief engineer of the Maltese-flag cargo ship RIO GOLD have all pled guilty to conspiring to falsify waste oil disposal records. The shipowner, Casilda Shipping, was sentenced to pay a fine of $750,000 and to serve three years of probation. Genesis Seatrading Corp. was sentenced to serve three years of probation. The engineer was sentenced to serve three years of probation and pay a $5,000 fine. The defendants admitted that they had used a magic pipe to bypass the ship’s oil pollution equipment.


D-BOOK MEMBERSHIP COURSE FOR APPLICANTS TO BE HELD AT MITAGS

The course required for D-Book Membership in MM&P will be offered at MITAGS in Linthicum Heights on Nov. 14-15. The session on the 14th will take place in the evening. The session on the 15th will be held during the day. Applicants who plan to attend should notify the MM&P Atlantic Ports Vice President by e-mail (rmay@bridgedeck.org) as soon as possible.


MITAGS ACADEMIC NOTES

CLASS OPENINGS: Between now and the end of January, seats are available in the following courses:

AB � Able Bodied Seaman: 1/5
AIS-1 � Automatic Identification System (1 day): 11/21
ARPA � Automatic Radar Plotting Aids: 1/5

[CMM – Chief Mate and Master Courses]
CMM-ADVSTAB � Advanced Stability: 11/17
CMM-ADVWX – Advanced Meteorology: 12/01, 1/19
CMM-CHS I � Advanced Cargo Handling (week 1): 12/8
CMM-CHS II � Advanced Cargo Handling (week 2): 12/15
CMM-ECDIS � Electronic Chart Display and Information Systems: 1/12
CMM-MPP � Marine Propulsion Plants: 11/10
CMM-SHS-ADV-I � Advanced Shiphandling (week 1): 12/01
CMM-VPEN � Voyage Planning and Electronic Navigation: 1/5

FF-BADV � Basic and Advanced Fire Fighting Combined: 1/26
GMDSS � Global Maritime Distress and Safety System: 12/1
HAZ � Hazardous Materials (5 Day): 1/5

MED-PIC – Medical Person-In-Charge: 1/5
MED-PRO – Medical Care Provider: 11/05
MED-DOT-DA – Dept. of Trans Drug & Alcohol Testing: 11/15, 12/6
MEDIA RSP – Media Response: 11/20

[MSC – Military Sealift Command]
MSC-CBRD-1 � CBRD Orientation: 12/05
MSC-DC � Damage Control: 12/03
MSC-SMA � Small Arms Training: 12/01 Standby Only

[OICNW � Officer in Charge of a Navigation Watch Courses]
OICNW-CHS-BAS � Basic Cargo Handling and Stowage: 1/12
OICNW-EP � Emergency Procedures: 1/21
OICNW-SAR � Search and Recue: 1/18
OICNW-TCNAV/CO � Terrestrial and Coastal Navigation / Compasses

ROR-1 – Radar Observer Renewal: 1/5

SEC-VCF – Security Officer: Vessel, Company & Facility: 11/17
SEC-VSO-R � Vessel Security Officer Refresher (1 day): 12/02, 1/21

…remember: If you can’t make the class, make the call.  Be courteous, don’t be a “no show.”

Check the MITAGS website at www.mitags.org for course descriptions associated with the course title abbreviations, and schedule revisions. For class availability or info on MITAGS courses and programs, contact admissions toll-free at 866-656-5568 or by e-mail: admissions@mitags.org.


PMI ACADEMIC NOTES

PMI Web site at www.mates.org for more info

FOR REGISTRATION CALL JENNIFER PITZEN: 206 838-1126

SCHEDULE OF COURSES – (Course schedule also posted online at www.mates.org)

November 2008
17-19SEC VCF

December 2008
1-5MED PRO
1-12GMDSS
1-12MED PIC
8-19GMDSS

January 2009
7-11ENAV
7-11STB BAS
8-11ARPA
14-18WX BAS
14-25GMDSS
14-18ROP
14-2/1TC NAV
21-2/1WKP
21ROR
22-25ARPA
28-2/8GMDSS
28-2/1MED PRO

February 2009
4-8ROP
12ROR
11-12SAR
12-15ARPA
13-15EP
16FL
18-22ENAV
18-22MED PRO
18-22SHS BAS
18-29MED PIC
25-3/7 CNAV
25ROR

March 2009
3-14GMDSS
10-11SAR
10-12SEC VCF
12-14EP
17-28GMDSS
24-4/4 GMDSS
24ROR
25-28ARPA

For registration call Jennifer Pitzen 888-893-7829

PMI MERCHANDISE FOR SALE!!!

High-quality clothing embroidered with the NEW PMI logo! We can ship these items also! Acceptable forms of payment are check, credit card, money order and exact cash. Call Laura Bendixen at 888-893-7829 for prices and to order. If we don’t have your size, we’ll be glad to special order for you at no extra cost.


MM&P MARKET WATCH AS OF 11-7-2008

D O W N A S D A Q S & P 500
8,944 1,647 930.99
Fund Name & Trading Symbol
 Closing
Price
 Vanguard Asset Allocation Fund(VAARX)
43.14
 Vanguard 500 Index Fund (VFINX)
85.96
 Vanguard Extended Market Index Fund (VEXMX)
24.70
 Vanguard International Growth Fund (VWIGX)
13.64
 Vanguard Morgan Growth Fund (VMRGX)
11.87
 Vanguard Windsor II Fund (VWNFX)
19.73
 Vanguard GNMA Fund (VFIIX)
10.28
 Vanguard Growth Index Fund (VIGRX)
21.13
 Vanguard High Yield Corporate (VWEHX)
4.32
 Vanguard LifeStrategy Conservative Growth (VSCGX)
13.32
 Vanguard LifeStrategy Growth Fund (VASGX)
16.40
 Vanguard LifeStrategy Income Fund (VASIX)
12.11
 Vanguard LifeStrategy Moderate Growth (VSMGX)
15.29
 Vanguard Target Retirement 2005 (VTOVX)
9.88
 Vanguard Target Retirement 2015 (VTXVX)
9.79
 Vanguard Target Retirement 2025 (VTTVX)
9.57
 Vanguard Target Retirement 2035 (VTTHX)
9.63
 Vanguard Target Retirement 2045 (VTIVX)
9.94
 Vanguard Total Bond Index (VBMFX)
9.73
 Vanguard Total Stock Market Index Fund (VTSMX)
22.46
 Chase Growth Fund (CHASX)
14.37
 Fidelity Asset Manager (FASMX)
11.04
 Fidelity Growth and Income (FGRIX)
14.07
 Fidelity Intermediate bond Fund (FTHRX)
9.14
 Fidelity Magellan Fund (FMAGX)
47.10
 Fidelity Small Company Instl (FMACX)
13.07
 Fidelity Value Fund (FDVLX)
41.53
 Fidelity Equity-Income II Fund (FEQTX)
13.69
 Fidelity Blue Chip Growth Fund (FBGRX)
27.36
 Fidelity Diversified International Fund (FDIVX)
21.83
 Fidelity Dividend Growth Fund (FDGFX)
16.33
 Fidelity Freedom Income (FFFAX)
9.73
 Fidelity Freedom 2000 (FFFBX)
10.47
 Fidelity Freedom 2010 (FFFCX)
10.83
 Fidelity Freedom 2020 (FFFDX)
10.53
 Fidelity Freedom 2030 (FFFEX)
10.21
 Fidelity Freedom 2040 (FFFFX)
5.86
 Fidelity Freedom 2050 (FFFHX)
6.76
 Fidelity Total Bond Fund (FTBFX)
9.18
 Spartan Extended market Index Fund (FSEMX)
23.74
 Spartan US Equity Index Fund (FUSEX)
32.98
 Domini Social Equity Fund (DSEFX)
20.42





~ Reminders ~



 

T-AGS OCEANOGRAPHIC SURVEY SHIPS MANNING REQUIREMENTS

REQUIRED COURSEWORK

All MM&P members are reminded that to sail aboard the T-AGS ships that MM&P-contracted Horizon Lines will be operating, you must have the required training certification and your certificates must be current in accordance with Military Sealift Command requirements. Members are also required to have had a MSC pre-employment physical and to possess Ship Security Clearance (see below).

The MSC Contract calls for all training certificates required for manning of these vessels to be no older than 5 years and that all STCW-95 courses be renewed every 5 years, or annually, as applicable.

Five-year renewable courses include, but are not limited to:

  • Advanced Fire Fighting
  • Basic Safety Training, and
  • Damage Control

Small Arms certificates must be less than 1 year old and MUST NOT expire during your tour of duty.

Members interested in applying for one of the positions onboard the T-AGS vessels are advised to make sure your certificates are up to date. If not, contact Mary Matlock or Diane Ford at MITAGS Admissions, email: admissions@mitags.org, and schedule to take the course(s) needed.

Those MM&P members interested in obtaining more information and facts about the T-AGS Oceanographic Vessels are asked to email the Director of Special Projects requesting the “facts sheet”. It will be provided by return email in an Adobe Acrobat PDF format.

Members interested in employment on the T-AGS ships are asked to provide a 1-2 page resume. Please list the desired position you are seeking along with the certificates of training you possess and their dates. Upon receipt it will be forwarded to Horizon Lines and a confirmation sent back to the member. Vessel turnover commenced Oct.17, 2004. Positions for all ratings remain open.

The point of contact for sending a resume for employment on the Horizon Lines T-AGS Oceanographic Vessels is Richard Plant, MM&P’s Director of Special Projects. Send resumes in an email or as a Word file attachment to him at: rplant@bridgedeck.org, by fax to 410-850-0973 or by mail to:

Richard Plant, Director of Special Projects

IOMM&P
700 Maritime Blvd. Suite B
Linthicum Heights, MD 21090



SHIP SECURITY CLEARANCE NEEDED

Members who want to sail for Horizon Lines on the T-AGS Oceanographic Survey vessels the company is set to begin operating for MSC must have Ship Security Clearance before going aboard.

Special software must be downloaded from the US Government’s Defense Security Service to complete the Security Clearance application. You must have an Internet connection and a Windows-based computer to retrieve the application and run the program.

Go to https://sclient.dss.mil/download/w9xfull.htm to download the software titled “EPSQ SUBJECT2_2”.

After the software is installed and the program is launched, select “Create” from the menu bar at the top of the screen. You will be required to enter your Social Security Number and a case-sensitive password. A window titled “Type of Form” will appear.

All Deck Officers should select the first button titled “Request for Security Clearance (SF86)” and then click “OK” to go to the next screen, “Type of Investigation”.

From the “Type of Investigation” screen:

  • Masters and Radio Officers should select the first button, “Single Scope Background Investigation (SSBI)”.
  • All other Deck Officers (C/M, 2/M, 3/M) should click on the second button, “National Agency Check (NAC or NACLC)”.

After selecting the appropriate investigation type, click on “OK” to begin filling in the forms.



MSC PHYSICALS

Horizon Lines requests all mariners seeking employment aboard the T-AGS Oceanographic vessels to take their MSC Physical at specially-designated facilities only after being advised to do so by the Company. This is to assure that all requirements of the MSC Physical are properly met.


MM&P FCU NEWS

GET NEW WHEELS OR LOWER EXISTING PAYMENTS WITH MM&P FCU VEHICLE FINANCING

Is it time to replace that car you’re driving? Vehicle loan rates are looking great at MM&P FCU.

Drive away in a new or used vehicle for a standard loan rate of:

6.50 percent for terms up to 24 months.
Standard loan rates for longer-term loans are:

6.75 percent for 25-48 months;
7.50 percent for 49-60 months ($20,000 minimum); and
8.00 percent for terms extending from 61-72 months ($25,000 minimum).
You can lower your loan rate even more — by 0.75 percent — by becoming a Preferred Borrower.

Are you paying a higher rate on your current vehicle loan at another institution? Consider refinancing your outside loan at the MM&P FCU and taking advantage of our lower loan rates.

MM&P FCU will finance up to 100 percent of your new vehicle loan, and up to 90 percent of NADA Book Value on a used vehicle. Maximum vehicle loan amount is $30,000.

PREFERRED BORROWERS GET LOWER LOAN RATES
MM&P FCU members can reduce the interest rate they pay on any new loan even further by becoming a preferred borrower. What is a preferred borrower? That’s a member who deposits at least 10 percent of the original loan amount into their MM&P FCU savings account and keeps those funds on deposit until the loan is paid in full. By doing this you save twice – first, your deposit works for you by earning our regular dividend savings rate, and second, you save money by reducing the interest rate on your loan by 0.75 percent.

Contact the MM&P FCU for full details on all loan programs by email to mmpfcu@bridgedeck.org or call 1-800-382-7777 toll-free.



 

MM&P HEALTH & BENEFIT PLAN NEWS

MEET OUR NEW PRESCRIPTION BENEFIT MANAGER, PHARMACARE

As you know, effective July 1, 2007, MM&P will have a new Prescription Benefit Manager, PharmaCare. If you use the mail service and have not sent your Confidential Mail Service Enrollment Form to the MM&P Plan Office, you have until June 30 to do so. Otherwise, you can call PharmaCare’s customer service line and give them the information over the telephone or send the form with your first new mail prescription directly to PharmaCare. In the next couple of days, you will be receiving a letter with your new MM&P identification cards and a prescription booklet with information on how to obtain your prescriptions. PharmaCare’s customer service number is listed in the booklet. If you have any questions, please contact the MM&P Health & Benefit Plan Advisors.



NOTICE TO MM&P HEALTH & BENEFIT PLAN PARTICIPANTS

As you know, MM&P Health & Benefit Plan members have a new prescription benefit manager, PharmaCare. When you first obtain a prescription at your retail drug store, please show your new Health & Benefit Identification Card with PharmaCare’s information. If you do not show your card, please inform your pharmacist of the following information so you can receive your prescriptions through the Plan. Your identification number HAS NOT CHANGED. Please provide the pharmacist with your full member identification number. You will have to also provide the following numbers. RxGrp#- Z50136968, RxBin: 610468 and RxPCN: PC2 

If your pharmacist has any questions, he or she should call PharmaCare directly at (800) 503-3241.  If you have any questions, PharmaCare members can call the company directly at (888) 364-6815.


WWII USCG VETERANS OUTREACH

The U.S. Coast Guard has announced an initiative to identify and collect the oral histories of its World War II veterans. Coast Guard WWII veterans, including SPARS and merchant mariners, are encouraged to record their histories online with the Library of Congress Veterans History Project at www.loc.gov/folklife/vets.

Those veterans needing assistance in recording their stories can receive help from their local Coast Guard Auxiliary public affairs contact by leaving a message at 1-877-875-6296, a toll-free call.



 

COMPANY GIVES BUCKS BACK FOR BUYING SAFE SHOES

LMS Ship Management, the company that manages vessels for Central Gulf, Sulphur Carriers and Waterman Steamship, wants to remind MM&P members that they offer their crewmembers a $75 reimbursement on the cost of purchasing certain slip-resistant shoes and boots for use aboard ship.

This offer has been in place for some time and LMS reports that “we have been pleased with the participation to date, but feel a reminder may be in order.” Their goal is for every crewmember to wear slip resistant footwear during working hours aboard their vessels.

The $75 reimbursement is available to each crewmember who provides LMS with an original receipt for the purchase of slip resistant footwear. In order for the crewmember to obtain the reimbursement, they must wear the shoes while on duty. Upon presentation of the receipt, the crewmember will be reimbursed on their pay voucher. The receipt will be retained by the Master and will remain aboard the vessel.
 

Vessels in the LMS footwear reimbursement program are:

  • Green Cove
  • Green Dale
  • Green Lake
  • Green Point
  • Atlantic Forest
  • Sulphur Enterprise
  • Energy Enterprise
  • SGT Matej C. Kocak
  • MAJ Stephen W. Pless, and
  • PFC Eugene A. Obregon

LMS notes that in order to receive reimbursement, crewmembers must purchase one of the following recommended brands:

  • WORX by Red Wing Slip Resistant Footwear
  • Caterpillar (must have steel toe & slip resistant sole)
  • Wolverine (must have steel toe and slip resistant sole)
  • Dunham Sierra Work Boot EH
  • Steel Toe Voyager
  • Georgia Boot 6- or 8-inch Safety Toe Boot
  • Dr. Marten’s (must have steel toe & slip resistant sole)

LOOK FOR THE UNION LABEL:

Of the boots listed above, Red Wing, Caterpillar and Wolverine boots are produced by US union labor.

Redwing’s Union-made products are: Red Wing shoes and boots, Red Wing motorcycle boots and Craftsman (Sears).

Wolverine World Wide manufactures boots under the Caterpillar brand using US union labor. (Other union made safety-shoe brands by Wolverine are the company’s Hy-Test, Durashock and Bates Military labels. The company’s Wolverine brand combat boots are also produced using US union labor.)

Most Dr. Marten’s shoes and boots are produced in the UK.

To find US, union-made products, visit the AFL-CIO Union Label Service and Trades website at www.unionlabel.org and click on “Union Made Product Search”. To shop for union-made products online, go to www.ShopUnionMade.org.


 

WEBSITE OFFERS UNION-MADE GOODS AND SERVICES

The Union Label recently went digital with a new website offering shoppers an array of union-made gifts, from clothing and chocolates to computers, games and greeting cards.

The website, www.shopunionmade.org, launches on the eve of the fall and winter holidays, when shoppers will spend an estimated $1 trillion on gifts, food, drinks and other seasonal items, explained Matt Bates, Secretary-Treasurer of the AFL-CIO Union Label & Service Trades Department. The all-union shopping site, however, will be a year-round operation because that is what consumers demand, he added.

“Shoppers spent $56 billion in Internet sales last year, and on-line spending is doubling every two to three years. Everyday we receive Email and calls from people who want to support good jobs by buying union-made goods and services. The website will reach millions of people, 24 hours a day, with a quick convenient way to shop union,” Bates said.

“The public is ready for this. People have seen millions of good jobs disappear and they are looking for ways to take a stand and make a difference,” he added.

The AFL-CIO will target the peak of the holiday shopping season by promoting “Buy Union Week” Nov. 26 through Dec. 5. The newly-launched, all-union shopping site will be a cornerstone of that campaign. MM&P has a link to the Shop Union Site on this website under “Links and Other Sources”.



The MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly is the official electronic newsletter of the International Organization of Masters, Mates, and Pilots, ILA, AFL-CIO, 700 Maritime Blvd. Suite B, Linthicum Heights, MD 21090-1953. Phone: 410-850-8700; Fax: 410-850-0973; Email: iommp@bridgedeck.org. For further info or to subscribe contact Lisa Rosenthal at lrosenthal@bridgedeck.org. The Wheelhouse Weekly is sent via Email to MM&P-contracted vessels at sea and is posted on our web page.

© 2008, International Organization of Masters, Mates & Pilots. All the material contained in this publication is protected by copyright. For permission to reprint text from the Weekly, contact the MM&P Communications Department: lrosenthal@bridgedeck.org. For changes of address, contact Lisa Rosenthal at lrosenthal@bridgedeck.org.