News

Wheelhouse Weekly – May 14, 2007

 

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

Volume 11 . . . . . Number 19. . . .May 14, 2007

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.


USCG OFFERS ONLINE UPDATES ON THE STATUS OF APPLICATIONS FOR MERCHANT MARINER DOCUMENTS

The U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) has launched a new web-based service that provides real-time information on the status of applications for merchant mariner credentials. At any stage in the approval process, you can check the status of your application online. Just log on to http://homeport.uscg.mil/. Click on “Merchant Mariners.” Then click on “Merchant Mariner Application Status.” At that point, the system asks for your mariner identification number and application identification number. If you do not have that information at hand, you can also view the status of your application by entering your last name, the last four digits of your Social Security number and your date of birth. Once you have entered this information, you will be able to find out where your document is in the USCG pipeline. Information on credentials that have already been issued remains accessible on the site for 120 days.


HAVE YOU BEEN DENIED ACCESS TO A TERMINAL?

Mariners and shipowners report that limits on terminal access continue to interfere with the business of shipping and compromise seafarers’ right to shore leave.

In the first week of May, MM&P received new reports of U.S. terminals requiring ships to pay hundreds or even thousands of dollars for private contractors’ security services when members of the crew require passage between the vessel and the terminal gate.

At International-Matex Tank Terminals (IMTT), St. Rose, La., crewmembers reported they were allowed off the vessel and through the facility but were forced to take a launch to the offshore side of the ship when they returned. The cost of the launch was $65/trip.

At the Shell Terminal in Sewaren, N.J., crewmembers are only being allowed off ships for shore leave if they travel through the terminal by means of a private van service that charges $185/hour. The MM&P-contracted company involved in this case reported it is forced to pay about $3,000 for van service during each port call.

Service personnel have in some cases been barred from traversing terminals to board ships and ships have been forced to take on stores while underway in the channel.

MM&P and MIRAID continue to work in Washington to guarantee that our members and other seafarers have access to port facilities and terminals under terms that are consistent with international law and U.S. treaty obligations.

You can help by telling MM&P if you have been denied access to a terminal or port facility. Send details of what occurred to Mike Rodriguez, executive assistant to MM&P International President Tim Brown, at mrodriguez@bridgedeck.org or 410-850-8700 ext. 23. 


 

MM&P AND MIRAID URGE TAX CHANGE TO SPUR COASTAL SHIPPING

MM&P and MIRAID, along with other members of the Coastwise Coalition, have urged Congress to waive the Harbor Maintenance Tax (HMT) for the movement of waterborne cargo between domestic ports. At present, the HMT is imposed on cargo entering a U.S. port, then levied again when the same cargo arrives at a different U.S. port. This system of dual taxation, which does not apply to cargo moved domestically by truck or rail, discourages the transportation of domestic cargo by water.

In a May 7 letter to Reps. Charles Rangel (D-N.Y.) and James McCrery (R-La.), chairman and ranking member of the Committee on Ways and Means, the coalition urged quick, favorable action on legislation to waive the HMT.
HR 1499, introduced by Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) would waive the tax to encourage greater use of marine transportation for the carriage of intermodal cargo. 

“The maritime sector can help the national transportation system meet the future mobility needs of this country . . . through a modification in the Harbor Maintenance Tax,” the letter states. “For reasons that include its proven fuel efficiency and lesser land-side impact, coastwise shipping can and should be an essential part of that total system.”



 

TRANSPORTATION SECURITY ADMINISTRATION SUED OVER LOSS OF EMPLOYEE DATA

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA), the government agency with jurisdiction over the Transportation Workers Identification Credential (TWIC), was sued last week over the loss of a computer hard drive containing sensitive information on 100,000 of its own employees.

The agency, which is part of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) , discovered recently that the hard drive had disappeared from its headquarters personnel office. The data stored on the missing equipment includes the Social Security numbers, birth dates, payroll information and bank account numbers of all employees hired by TSA between January 2002 and August 2005.

The American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE) and four transportation security workers have filed a class action lawsuit against DHS and TSA, charging that they acted recklessly in not safeguarding the data. In the suit, the union asks the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia to order TSA to develop new security procedures that are in keeping with congressional mandates. The suit also asks that affected employees be given administrative leave time to put in place measures to protect themselves against potential identity theft and financial problems arising from the incident.

“The maintenance and safeguarding of personnel data is vital to the protection of security at our nation’s airports,” said AFGE National President John Gage. “If the stolen information were to fall into the wrong hands, false identity badges could easily be created to gain access to secure areas.”

The TWIC card is just one of numerous programs involving sensitive data that TSA has been tasked with administering. Merchant mariners and port workers will be required to have a TWIC card by Sept. 25, 2008. The program is now stalled indefinitely due to technical glitches and other problems, however.

MM&P, concerned about identity theft in conjunction with the TWIC, has argued from the inception of the program that the data carried on the card should be limited and that only the government should be able to write to the card. MM&P’s position has been that the card should carry only the information necessary to establish the holder’s identity. The union argues that the standard should be the International Labor Organization’s Convention 185, for a Seafarers Identity Document (SID). Convention 185 restricts the information carried on the card to: name; sex; date and place of birth; nationality; special physical characteristics; digital or original photograph; and signature.


 

MM&P PILOTS GROUP VICE PRESIDENT ADDRESSES NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF MARINE SERVICES

Ports and terminals are already instituting their own local identity cards and access control provisions, creating an “unacceptable burden” for mariners, ship suppliers and other support personnel who need access to secure areas to provide essential ship support services, MM&P Pilot Group Vice President George A. Quick told the audience in a speech delivered at the May meeting of the National Association of Marine Services.

A central focus of Quick’s remarks was the lack of a federal preemption provision in the regulations underpinning the Transportation Worker Identification Credential (TWIC). MM&P has argued since the outset that the TWIC should be the only identity document transportation workers and ship service providers should be required to hold in order to gain access to secure areas of ports and facilities nationwide. But the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) and the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG), in recently published regulations, are permitting local facilities to retain unique access control provisions and badging systems that will destroy the utility of the TWIC program as a uniform national system to control access to ships and terminals.  

Individual localized security programs, meanwhile, are already causing significant problems to crewmembers, ship support personnel and suppliers. Some terminals require crewmembers and others who do not have locally issued cards to hire “escort services,” whose exorbitant fees are turning “security requirements into new profit centers,” said Quick.


PROGRAM OF WASHINGTON MARITIME DAY COMMEMORATION

The National Maritime Day Observance in Washington, D.C., begins at 10 a.m. on May 22 at the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial. Secretary of Transportation Mary Peters will speak at the ceremony, to which Sen. Edward Kennedy and Rep. Patrick Kennedy have been invited. The observance at the memorial, which has been organized by the Maritime Administration (MARAD), will be followed by a luncheon, sponsored by the Propeller Club and the Kings Point Alumni Association, at Washington Navy Yard. At 2:00 p.m., also at Navy Yard, Military Sealift Command has organized the traditional wreath-laying ceremony.

On the evening of May 22, MITAGS is hosting a dinner organized by the Chesapeake Chapter of the Kings Point Alumni Association. There will be music, a maritime art display and tours of the MITAGS simulators. Awards will be given to merchant marine veterans of World War II, the Korean conflict and Vietnam.  For more information on the event, go to www.kpchesapeake.com.

On Monday, May 21, members of the maritime community are also invited to a panel discussion, sponsored by the North American Maritime Ministries Association, at the University Club in Washington, D.C. The panel is entitled, “The Ship and Her People: Crewing in the 21st Century.” To RSVP, contact Rosemary Lambert at Morgan Marketing & Communications. Her e-mail address is: rosebudsalmon@msn.com. The University Club is located at 1135 16th Street, N.W. Speakers at the event will include Maritime Administrator Sean Connaughton.  



COME TO MARITIME INDUSTRY DAY MAY 24 IN TEXAS CITY, TEXAS

A number of topics of importance to MM&P members, including the U.S. Coast Guard’s role in implementing the Transportation Worker Identification Credential (TWIC), will be discussed at an all-day conference May 24 in Texas City, Texas. MM&P Agent Gulf Ports Wayne Farthing will represent the union at “Maritime Industry Day,” which is being held under the auspices of the USCG Houston-Galveston Sector at the Doyle Convention Center. The conference is open to all and everyone is encouraged to attend. Among the topics to be discussed: the USCG’s proposals for new medical and physical evaluation guidelines for mariners; a 2007 hurricane overview; towing vessel inspection; and electronic submission of facility security plans into the USCG’s Homeport system.


OPENING IN SAN FRANCISCO PILOT TRAINEE PROGRAM

The Board of Pilot Commissioners is accepting applications for the San Francisco Pilot Trainee Program. Minimum requirements: USCG 1,600-ton master’s license with unlimited radar endorsement. Two years’ command of vessels over 1,600 tons and/or towing vessels engaged in ship assist or towing of vessels with combined GRT of 1,600 tons within the past five years. One year’s experience must be within the past three years. Applications must be received by June 15. Written exam administered at California Maritime Academy, Vallejo, on Aug. 13. Simulator exam for successful candidates Aug. 16 and 17. For more requirements,  go to: www.calregs.com, Title 7, Sections 213 and 214. For more information and an application, go to www.pilotcommission.org or write: Board of Pilot Commissioners, Pier 9, Suite 102, San Francisco, CA, 94111. Phone: 415-397-2253, fax 415-397-9463, e-mail: pilots@earthlink.net.

 


MEMORIAL SERVICE HONORS HENRI NEREAUX

A memorial service in April in New York for Henri Nereaux, the former MM&P Atlantic Ports Vice President, drew close to one hundred participants. In a moving three-and-a-half hour ceremony, the crowd, which included many MM&P members, paid tribute to the tireless campaigner for social justice. In lieu of flowers, participants were asked to make a donation to the Henri Nereaux Memorial Fund. Nereaux’s term as MM&P Atlantic Ports Vice President coincided with the political turmoil of the mid-1970s and 1980s. He also served the union as a convention delegate. 


LEGISLATORS VOTE TO QUASH DHS PERSONNEL SYSTEM

Language that would repeal a controversial personnel system implemented in stages over the course of recent years by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is included in the fiscal 2008 Homeland Security authorization bill that cleared the House of Representatives by a wide margin last week. President Bush has said he will veto the bill, HR 1684, because it would repeal the personnel changes implemented by DHS.

Unions that represent DHS employees have charged that the personnel system denies employees their due process rights, illegally circumvents collective bargaining and interferes with the ability of DHS to hire and motivate qualified employees. Although MM&P members are not affected by the DHS rules, maritime labor is closely monitoring the situation because the Department of Defense (DOD) has been working to apply other controversial personnel system reforms to a group of employees that would include civilian mariners. The DOD proposal was put forth under the name “National Security Personnel System (NSPS).” MM&P members and other civilian mariners are excluded from the human resource and appeals provisions of NSPS, but not from the labor relations provisions.


MITAGS ACADEMIC NOTES

CLASS OPENINGS: Between now and the end of July 2007, seats are available in the following courses:

AIS – Automatic Identification System: 7/13, 8/3
AIS ECDIS 3 for Pilots – Automatic Identification System and Electronic Chart Display Information System (3 day) for Pilots:  6/12
ARPA – Automatic Radar Plotting Aids: 6/5, 7/24
AZIPOD-KAM-2 – Azipod and Kamewa Steering and Propulsion Systems: 6/2

BRM – Bridge Resource Management:  5/28
BRMP – Bridge Resource Management for Pilots: 7/17, 8/1
BST – Basic Safety Training: 6/4

[CMM – Chief Mate and Master Courses]
CMM-CHS I – Advanced Cargo Handling (week 1): 6/25
CMM-CHS II – Advanced Cargo Handling (week 2): 7/9
CMM-MPP – Marine Propulsion Plants: 5/21, 7/30
CMM-SHMGT-I – Ship Management(week 1): 7/16
CMM-SHMGT-II – Ship Management (week 2): 7/23
CMM-SHS-ADV-I I-Advanced Shiphandling (week 2): 6/25

CSE-AWR-2 – Confined Space Entry Awareness (2 day): 7/12

FF-BADV – Combined Basic and Advanced Fire Fighting: 6/4

HAZ – Hazardous Materials (5-day): 6/11, 7/23

LAP – License Advancement Program: 5/28, 7/23
LEG – Legal Aspects of Pilotage(Evening): 7/17, 8/1

MEDIA-RSP – Media Response Workshop: 7/12
MED-DOT-DA – Dept. of Trans Drug & Alcohol Testing: 6/16, 7/28
MED-PIC – Medical Person-In-Charge:  6/11, 7/23
MED-PRO – Medical Care Provider: 6/11, 7/23

[MSC – Military Sealift Command]
MSC-CBRD-1 – Chemical Biological Radiological Defense Orientation: 5/24, 6/28, 7/21
MSC-DC – Damage Control: 5/22, 6/26, 7/19
MSC-SMA – Small Arms:  5/21, 6/25
MSC-SMA-R – Small Arms Re-Qualification (2-day): 5/25, 6/29 (must have proof of passing all 3 weapons within 2 years)

ROR-1 – Radar Observer Renewal: 6/4, 7/23, 7/30
ROP-5 – Radar Observer Original or Renewal (5 days): 7/9

SEC-OFF-VCF – Security Officer, Vessel, Company & Facility:  7/9
SHS-BAS – Basic Shiphandling:  7/23
SHS-EMR- Emergency Shiphandling: 6/18, 7/30
SHS-ESH- BRMP-3– Emergency Shiphandling & Bridge Resource Management for Pilots: 5/23, 7/10

TPIC – Tankerman Person-In-Charge: 6/4


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

Spring – Fall 2007

Due to the high demand for this program, PMI has now scheduled another that is already close to full enrollment for its 2007-start date. See the PMI Web site at www.mates.org for more info on this new development.

FOR REGISTRATION CALL JENNIFER FOWLER: 206 838-1126

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

May 2007
14-18  ARPA
14-25  GMDSS
14-15  BFF
14-19  WX ADV
16-18  AFF
21-25  ENAV
21-25  TPIC
21-25  CHS BAS
21st     FL
22-23 SHS ASS
21-25  BST
22-23 BFF
29th    RADAR RENEWAL
29-2    WX BAS
29-2    AB
29th    FL
30-31 SHS ASSESS

June 2007
1-2      SHS ASSESS
4-8      TPIC
4-8      MED PRO
4-15    MED PIC
4-15    WKP
4-22    TCNAV
5-8      LFBT
11-13  SEC VCF
11-13  WKP
11-15  BST
11-15  AB
11-29  TCNAV
18-22 ARPA
25-29 ROP
25-29 BAFF

July 2007
9th      FL
9-13    ARPA
9-13    BST
10th     RADAR RENEWAL
10-11  SIM ASSESS
10-13  LFBT
16-20 AB
16-20 MED PRO
16-20 ENAV
23rd     RADAR RENEWAL
23-27  SHS BAS
23-3    CNAV
30-3   ARPA
30-3   MED PRO
30-10 MED PIC      

August 2007
6-7      SAR
6-10    BST
7-10    LFBT
8-10    EP
14-17  LFBT
13-17  AB
13-17  CONSTB
13-17  SHS EM5
13-17  ECDIS
13-17  TPIC
20-24 AB
20-31 SHS ADV
20-24 CHS BAS
27-31  BAFF
27-31  ENAV
27-31  MED PRO
27-8    GMDSS
27-29  CSO/SSO

September 2007
4-7      LFBT
4-8      WX BAS
4-8      TCNAV
10th    RADAR RENEWAL
10-14  BST
10-14  AB
10-14  MED PRO
10-14  TCNAV
10-14  SHS BAS
17-21  MED PRO
17-21  ARPA
17-21  SHS BAS
17-21  TCNAV
17-28  GMDSS
19-21  AFF
24-5    WKP
24-28 ROP
26-28 AFF

For registration call Jennifer Fowler 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 5-11-2007

 

D O W N A S D A Q S & P 500
13,326.22 2,562.22 1,505.85
Fund Name & Trading Symbol
 Closing
Price
 Vanguard 500 Index Fund (VFINX)
138.92
 Vanguard Extended Market Index Fund (VEXMX)
42.17
 Vanguard International Growth Fund (VWIGX)
26.27
 Vanguard Morgan Growth Fund (VMRGX)
20.37
 Vanguard Windsor II Fund (VWNFX)
37.87
 Vanguard GNMA Fund (VFIIX)
10.21
 Vanguard High Yield Corporate Fund (VWEHX)
6.30
 Vanguard Total Bond Index (VBMFX)
10.00
 Chase Growth Fund (CHASX)
19.96
 Fidelity Asset Manager (FASMX)
16.88
 Fidelity Growth and Income (FGRIX)
32.82
 Fidelity Magellan Fund (FMAGX)
92.24
 Fidelity Small Company Instl (FMACX)
22.52
 Fidelity Value Fund (FDVLX)
89.93
 Spartan US Equity Index Fund (FUSEX)
53.38
 Domini Social Equity Fund (DSEFX)
36.17

.






~ 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 and is posted on our web page.

C 2006, 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 John Peige at jpeige@bridgedeck.org.

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