News

Wheelhouse Weekly – November 17, 2005

November 17th 2005


 


THE MASTERS, MATES & PILOTS’
WHEELHOUSE WEEKLYonline

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

Volume 9 . . . . . Number 46 . . . . November 17, 2005


STORIES COVERED

Also

REMINDERS

T-AGS Oceanographic Survey Ships Info

Required Coursework

Security Clearances

MSC Physicals

MM&P Health & Benefit Plan News

Notice to Members who are taking Vioxx

NMHC Mail-Order Prescriptions Website Updated & Improved

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.




CENTRAL GULF/WATERMAN CAR CARRIER TALKS CONTINUE

MM&P Gulf Ports Vice President Capt. Robert Groh, lead negotiator for the Car Carrier and Energy Enterprise contracts, reports that talks are ongoing and some progress is being made. Attempts are underway to arrange new meeting dates for December.




 

A&G CONTRACT TALKS WITH MCALLISTER STALLED

MM&P United Inland Membership Group Vice President Capt. Steve Demeroutis reports that talks with McAllister for the renewal of the MM&P contract in Puerto Rico are very slow going because of McAllister’s demand that they withdraw from the MM&P A&G Pension Plan. More info on this will follow in future editions of the Wheelhouse Weekly.

 




 

USCG SOLICITING LABOR COMMENTS FOR LEGISLATIVE CHANGE

On November 10, MM&P Pilot Vice President George Quick and Executive Assistant to the President, Mike Rodriguez met with RADM Thomas Gilmour, USCG, Assistant Commandant for Marine Safety, Security and Environmental Protection and other USCG representatives. The meeting was to continue discussion of the USCG’s legislative change proposal (LCP) to rewrite parts of Title 46 USC, Issuance of Merchant Mariner Credentials.

As reported earlier this year, USCG had proposed a total rewrite of the statute. A broad section of the industry, including labor, opposed USCG’s LCP because of uncertainties surrounding the effects of the changes. Among other objections, MM&P opposed the original proposal because it seemed to eliminate licenses in favor of a “credential” that would have been the property of the US government.

“The Coast Guard has made a significant effort toward meeting the concerns we raised this past spring over their original proposal,” Rodriguez said. “The proposal we discussed last week was more clearly written which went a long way toward our understanding of the Coast Guard’s goals.”

More work remains to be done. “Earlier this year, we had good cooperation among the maritime unions,” Rodriguez said. “We need to reopen our discussions on this issue with the other unions with the aim of reaching consensus on the proposal.”

 


DOD UNION WINS TEMPORARY ORDER AGAINST NSPS IMPLEMENTATION

The American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE) has won a temporary restraining order against the Department of Defense (DoD) which prevents the department from implementing certain portions of its controversial National Security Personnel System (NSPS). A coalition of public and private sector unions has been engaged in a bitter fight with DoD over the new system.

Judge Emmet Sullivan’s November 16 order restrains DoD from implementing Subpart H (Appeals), Subpart I (Labor Relations) and Section 9901.712(c) (Mandatory Removal Offenses) of the proposed regulations until February 1, 2006.

Conditions placed upon DoD by Judge Sullivan allow DoD to begin issuances relevant to implementation of Subpart A (General Provisions) December 1, 2005 but the issuances must not take effect before February 1, 2006. AFGE and DoD have requested a hearing during the week of January 9-13.

MM&P Government Group members employed by Military Sealift Command (MSC) and Civil Service Pilots have been written out of all parts of the new regulations except for Subpart I. The greatest concern to MM&P regarding Subpart I remains the ability of DoD agencies to implement changes to working conditions unilaterally after 30 days if the agency and the union fail to reach agreement.


CSA ANNOUNCES 2005 ENVIRONMENTAL ACHIEVEMENT AWARDS

On Nov. 16, the Chamber of Shipping of America (CSA) awarded Certificates of Environmental Achievement to 264 vessels that achieved environmental excellence for at least a two-year period. RADM Thomas Gilmour, USCG, Assistant Commandant for Marine Safety, Security and Environmental Protection participated in the award ceremony along with Michael Bohlman, Director of Marine Services for MM&P-contracted Horizon Lines.

Bohlman, who also serves as Chairman of the Board of CSA commented that, “These awards are a testament to the dedication and professionalism exhibited by our seafarers and the shore-side personnel who are responsible for operating our vessels to the highest environmental standards. It is encouraging to see how many vessels continue to achieve environmental excellence year after year and it is with pride that we offer this recognition today. We in the maritime industry take our stewardship of the marine environment very seriously.

“The achievement of environmental excellence is a partnership and we thank the Coast Guard for their dedication with us in achieving this excellence. The companies recognized tonight work hard at making sure that their crews are well trained and provided with all the resources necessary to ensure safe carriage of their customers’ cargoes. The shore-side staffs have a responsibility that they exercise around the clock. Our congratulations go out to the hundreds of persons involved.”


US GOVERNMENT ISSUES SPECIAL WARNING FOR WATERS OFF SOMALI

Due to continuing conditions of armed conflict and lawlessness in Somalia and waters off its coast, mariners are advised to avoid the port of Muqdisho (Mogadishu) and to remain at least 200 nautical miles distant from the Somali coast. The US government does not have an embassy in Somalia and cannot provide services to US citizens.

Recent vessel hijackings off the east coast of Somalia demonstrate that pirates are able to conduct at sea hijackings from as far south as Kismaayo (Chisimayu) (00-22s), though vessels are advised to transit no closer than 02-00s, to as far north as Eyl (08-00n), and out to a distance of 170 miles. The first known attempt to hijack a cruise vessel occurred in November 2005. All merchant vessels transiting the coast of Somalia, no matter how far offshore, should increase anti-piracy precautions and maintain a heightened state of vigilance. Pirates are reported to have used previously hijacked ships as bases for further attacks.
Another reported pirate tactic has been to issue a false distress call to lure a ship close inshore. Therefore, caution should be taken when responding to distress calls keeping in mind it may be a tactic to lure a vessel into a trap.

Victimized vessels have reported 2 to 3 speedboats measuring 18 to 28 feet in length. Each vessel has a crew of three to six armed men with AK-47s and shoulder launched rockets, which are opening fire on vessels in broad daylight in order to intimidate them into stopping.

To date, vessels that increase speed and take evasive maneuvers avoid boarding while those that slow down are boarded, taken to the Somali coastline, and released after successful ransom payment, often after protracted negotiations of as much as 11 weeks.


ILA BOLSTERS REFORM EFFORTS

The International Longshoremen’s Association, AFL-CIO
has announced that it is strengthening its Code of Ethics by making the Code permanent, expanding the term of service of Judge Milton Mollen, as its Independent Ethical Practices Counsel, and retaining retired Federal Judge George Pratt as its Independent Appellate Officer. In his new position, Judge Pratt will serve an important role in hearing any appeals from decisions made by the ILA’s Executive Council from charges brought by Judge Mollen.

ILA President John Bowers said that, “This appointment of an Independent Appellate Officer bolsters our reform efforts and demonstrates the ILA is serious about ridding corruption from our union. In addition, by making the Code of Ethics and Ethical Practices Counsel a permanent part of our ILA Constitution, the ILA today demonstrates that its reform efforts will be serious and long lasting.”


SIU EXECUTIVE VICE PRESIDENT JOHN FAY DIES AT 73

Seafarers International Union is mourning the loss of Executive Vice President John Fay, 73, believed to be the longest-serving official in the organization’s history. Brother Fay passed away Nov. 8 in New Jersey. He had undergone surgery earlier that day for an aneurysm.

Brother Fay joined the SIU as a teenager in 1949 and sailed in both the deep sea and inland divisions. He came ashore in the mid-1950s and continued working for the SIU for the next 49 years. He served as executive vice president since 1997 after working as the union’s secretary-treasurer since 1990.
Previously, the Boston native held various port-level positions in Philadelphia, Baltimore, Boston, Brooklyn and elsewhere.

His contributions to the advancement in the US merchant marine were substantial. He played a pioneering role in fully involving all of American maritime labor in international efforts to promote and protect mariners’ wellbeing. Beginning in 1975, he participated in forums and other activities involving the International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF); the International Maritime Organization; and the International Labor Organization. He was the first American ever to serve as chairman of the ITF’s Seafarers’ Section, a position he held from 1995-2002.


MEMORIAL SERVICE SET FOR FORMER ILWU SECRETARY-TREASURER

ILWU International Secretary-Treasurer Emeritus Curtis McClain died Nov. 6 at the age of 80. A memorial service will take place on December 3. McClain served as ILWU Secretary-Treasurer from 1977 to 1991 under the leadership of International President James Herman. McClain was voted “Emeritus” status upon his retirement at the 1991 ILWU International Convention in Seattle.


DAVIS, HANDY, AND SCIOSCIA RECEIVE 2005 USS AOTOS AWARDS

Ron Davis, President of Marine Engineers’ Beneficial Association (MEBA), General John Handy, USAF (ret.), immediate Past Commander of the United States Transportation Command, and Anthony Scioscia, President of APM Terminals North America were recipients of the 2005 Admiral of the Ocean Sea Awards. The United Seamen’s Service (USS) presented the prestigious awards at the 36th annual AOTOS industry-wide gala dinner on Nov. 4 at the Sheraton New York Hotel and Towers.

The three recipients led the field of nominees for the award, a silver statuette of Christopher Columbus, the first Admiral of the Ocean Sea, sharing first place among a group that was solicited by USS from more than 200 maritime management, labor, and government officials. All proceeds from the event benefit USS community services for the US merchant marine and seafarers of the world.

As additional highlights of the program, USS presented four Honored Seafarer awards to heroic merchant mariners in the ceremony narrated by the Honorable Helen Delich Bentley and Julie Nelson, Chief Counsel for the Maritime Administration. H.”Whitey” Disley (ret.), President of the Marine Firemen’s Union, received the AOTOS Recognition Plaque for his many years of devotion to the sea.

John Bowers, Chairman of the USS AOTOS Committee, and President of the International Longshoremen’s Association, AFL-CIO said: “These three leaders represent the American maritime spirit in all vital areas in our industry. Our recipients have been selected by those who know them best, international transportation leaders who understand very well the challenges and issues which confront United States shipping and the American seafarers and recognize their leadership in this area.”

President George W. Bush was Honorary Chairman for this year’s event and sent a message as well, congratulating the three recipients and recognizing the mission of USS, which has been dedicated to meeting the needs of seafarers for 64 years. US Transportation Secretary Norman Mineta and Senator Mary Landrieu (D-LA), served as General Chairmen and offered their congratulations to the recipients.


MITAGS ACADEMIC NOTES

CLASS OPENINGS: Between now and the end of January 2006, seats are available in the following courses:


AIS – Automatic Identification System: 12/15
ARPA – Automatic Radar Plotting Aids: 12/12, 1/9
AZIPOD – Azipod Propulsion System (2 day): 12/5

BRM – Bridge Resource Management: 1/23
BRMP – Bridge Resource Management for Pilots: 12/12
BST – Basic Safety Training: 1/30

[CMM – Chief Mate and Master Courses]
CMM-CHS II – Advanced Cargo Handling (week 2): 11/14
CMM-ECDIS – Electronic Chart Display and Info Systems: 12/5, 1/9, 1/30
CMM-MPP – Marine Propulsion Plants: 12/5, 1/16
CMM-SHS-ADV-I – Advanced Shiphandling (week 1): 11/14, 1/23
CMM-SHS-ADV-II – Advanced Shiphandling (week 2): 1/16, 1/30
CMM-SHMGT I – Ship Management (week 1): 12/12, 1/9
CMM-VPEN – Voyage Planning and Electronic Navigation: 1/23
CMM-WKP – Watchkeeping: 11/28, 12/5

CONT-PLNG – Contingency Planning: 12/2, 12/16, 1/20

HAZ-Hazardous Materials (5-day): 11/14, 1/9

LAP – License Advancement Program: 1/9

MEDIA-RSP – Media Response: 12/1, 1/19
MED-DOT-DA – Dept. of Trans Drug & Alcohol Testing: 12/10, 1/14
MED-PIC – Medical Person-In-Charge: 12/5, 1/9
MED-PRO – Medical Care Provider: 12/5, 1/9


[MSC – Military Sealift Command]
MSC-SMA – Small Arms (4-day): 1/30
MSC-SMA-R – Small Arms Re-Qualification (2-day): 2/3 (must have proof of passing all 3 weapons within 2 years)

ROP-5 – Radar Observer Original and Renewal (5-day): 11/28, 1/16
ROR-1 – Radar Observer Renewal: 12/10, 12/12, 1/9

SEC-OFF-VCF – Security Officer, Vessel, Company & Facility: 11/28, 12/12, 1/16
SHS-BAS – Basic Shiphandling: 1/9

TRAC-TUG – Water Tractor and Azimuth Stern Drive Tugs (3-day): 12/8


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 Email: admissions@mitags.org.


PMI ACADEMIC NOTES

PMI is offering a USCG Crew Endurance Management Coaches Seminar in Seattle from October 26-27 in addition to its regular course offerings listed below. This training is designed to provide commercial mariners the knowledge and skills to develop, deploy, and assess Crew Endurance Management Systems (CEMS) within their companies.

As a Crew Endurance Coach, the employee is critical to the success of CEMS implementation. Coaches provide education and guidance on the principles of light and sleep management, assist with changes to the work and rest environment, make recommendations on schedule changes, and help create personal endurance plans for each crewmember. Once successfully completing the training the Coach will have the necessary training to educate personnel on a vessel, and the processes and practices specific to the USCG Crew Endurance Management Program. The training session spans two full days and includes a written exam. Cost: $425 per person To Register: Call Pacific Maritime Institute at 206-441-2880 or toll free 888-893-7829.

November 2005

11/21-23 Ship Security Officer
11/28-12/2 Radar Observer Unlimited
11/28-12/2 Emergency Shiphandling 5-day

December 2005

12/5-9 Medical Care Provider
12/5-9 ARPA
12/5 Radar Renewal
12/5-16 Basic Safety Training
12/5-16 GMDSS
12/5-16 Medical Person-In-Charge
12/12-16 Med Pro
12/12-23 Med Pic
12/13-16 Lifeboat/Survival Craft
12/19-21 Ship Security Officer
12/19-23 ARPA
12/19-23 Basic Shiphandling
12/26-30 Emergency Shiphandling 5-day

12/27-29 Ship Security Officer

January 2006

1/ 2-6 BST
1/9-27 TCNAV
1/9-12 Lifeboat/Survival Craft
1/9-13 Tankerman Person-In-Charge
1/9-20 GMDSS
1/9-21 100 Ton OUPV
1/16-20 ECDIS
1/16-20 ARPA
1/16-20 Emergency Shiphandling 5-day
1/23-27 MEDPRO
1/23-2/3 MEDPIC
1/30-2/1 Ship Security Officer
1/30-2/3 RADAR Observer Unlimited
1/30-2/10 GMDSS

February 2006

2/6-10 BST
2/6-9 Lifeboat/Survival Craft
2/6-10 ARPA
2/6 Radar Renewal
2/13-17 ENAV
2/20-3/3 CNAV
2/20-3/3 Advanced Shiphandling
2/20-3/4 100 Ton OUPV
2/27-3/3 Tankerman Person-In-Charge
2/27-3/3 ARPA
2/27 Radar Renewal

March 2006

3/6-10 BST
3/6-9 Lifeboat/Survival Craft
3/6-10 Basic Meteorology
3/6-18 100 Ton OUPV
3/13-24 GMDSS
3/13-17 CONSTB
3/20-24 CHS BAS
3/27-31 MEDPRO
3/27-31 ARPA
3/27 Radar Renewal
3/27-4/7 MEDPIC

For registration call Jennifer Fowler 888-893-7829

PMI Merchandise for Sale: High quality with embroidered PMI logo. All prices include tax. Navy Caps: $18.00; Button Down Long Sleeve Dress Shirts Blue or Khaki: $38.00; Coming Soon: Navy, Burgundy, Khaki T-shirts, high quality thick Hanes shirt with pocket $22.00; 15 oz. Beautiful Cobalt Blue Ceramic Mug $10.Call DeeDee Lazik 206-838-8328 or e-mail dlazik@mates.org.


MM&P MARKET WATCH AS OF 11-16

 

 D O W  N A S D A Q  S & P 500
10,686.37 +120.16 for the week 2,203.74  +28.72 for the week 1,236.49  +15.74 for the week

 

Fund Name & Trading Symbol
Closing
Price
Change
 Vanguard 500 Index Fund (VFINX)
113.70
+1.03
 Vanguard Extended Market Index Fund (VEXMX)
33.50
+.04
 Vanguard International Growth Fund (VWIGX)
20.08
-.16
 Vanguard Morgan Growth Fund (VMRGX)
17.29
+.22
 Vanguard Windsor II Fund (VWNFX)
31.99
+.17
 Vanguard GNMA Fund (VFIIX)
10.22
+.04
 Vanguard High Yield Corporate Fund (VWEHX)
6.11
-.02
 Vanguard Total Bond Index (VBMFX)
10.00
+.06
 Chase Growth Fund (CHASX)
18.95
+.30
 Fidelity Asset Manager (FASMX)
16.20
+.07
 Fidelity Growth and Income (FGRIX)
37.30
+.49
 Fidelity Magellan Fund (FMAGX)
106.82
+.83
 Fidelity Small Company Instl (FMACX)
22.53
-.32
 Fidelity Value Fund (FDVLX)
77.52
+.38
 Spartan US Equity Index Fund (FUSEX)
43.68
+.40

 





~ 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.
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:

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

5.00 percent for 25-48 months;
5.75 percent for 49-60 months ($20,000 minimum); and
6.25 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

NOTICE TO MEMBERS WHO ARE TAKING VIOXX

On Sept.30, Merck & Co. voluntarily withdrew Vioxx, a popular anti-inflammatory medication, from the market. As a result, individuals who are currently taking the drug have been asked to contact their health care professionals to discuss discontinuing use of Vioxx and possible alternative treatments.

MM&P Plans Administrator Valerie Verrecchio reports that, “We have gotten a number of calls from members who want to know what to do with their remaining supply of Vioxx and whether the Plan or NMHC will refund their co-pay for the unused portion.

“Unfortunately, neither NMHC nor the Plan was aware of the Merck decision prior to the public announcement on Sept.30. As of that date, all deliveries of Vioxx to our members was suspended in accordance with Merck’s announcement. Orders that had already been processed and were in transit could not be stopped.

“In regard to refunds, Merck has set up a website at www.vioxx.com where members can obtain information on how to recover refunds from Merck for the unused portion of medication. Members can also call following toll free number for information: 1-888-368-4699.

“We are sorry for any inc onvenience this may have caused to members currently taking this medication, however, the matter is out of the control of the Plans.”



NMHC MAIL-ORDER PRESCRIPTIONS WEBSITE UPDATED & IMPROVED

MM&P Plans Administrator Valerie Verrecchio reports, “Good news! NMHC mail has finally gotten their website upgraded and functioning properly. I went in and tested it myself and found it to be quite user friendly.”

To use NMHC’s upgraded service, go to the NMHC Mail website at www.nmhcmail.com and click on “MEMBER LOGIN” at the bottom of the screen.

First-time and Registered users may bypass the welcome screen and go directly to the log-in page at https://members.nmhcrx.com/Login/Login.aspx.

  • First-time users should then click on the link marked “NEW USER: REGISTER HERE”.
    This will take you to a page titled “MEMBER REGISTRATION” where you will need to enter demographic information and submit it by clicking on the
  • “CREATE ACCOUNT” button.

After creating your account, NMHC will email you a password to gain entry into your records. With your first sign-in, the NMHC system will prompt you to change the NMHC password to one of your own choosing.

Once you are registered at NMHC, you can check the status of open orders by logging-in to the system through the “MEMBER LOGIN” page and going into the “MAIL ORDER” menu. You can look up all prescriptions and get the price our members will pay for any medication. You can also view an order history of all of your medication transactions (both retail and mail) for the last 24 months, locate 24-hour pharmacies in your zip code region as well as access other helpful member education information.

“We hope this welcome improvement will assist our members. Although you cannot order refills on line if you don’t provide a credit or debit card number, you can phone in your refill. Once you register on the website, you will still have access to all of the other information including checking the status of your order once it is phoned in,” said Ms. Verrecchio.



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., Linthicum Heights, MD 21090-1941. Phone: 410-850-8700; Fax: 410-850-0973; Email: iommp@bridgedeck.org. For further info or to subscribe contact John Peige at jpeige@bridgedeck.org. The Wheelhouse Weekly is sent via Email to MM&P-contracted vessels at sea, broadcast worldwide via FEC marine telex and is posted on our web page.