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Allstate Agents vote to affiliate with OPEIU Union

09.20.11

SEPTEMBER 2011 Scranton/Wilkes-Barre/Hazleton edition of The Union News

Allstate Agents vote to affiliate with OPEIU Union

BY PAUL TUCKER
THEUNIONNEWSSWB@AOL.COM

REGION- August 29th- Members of the National Association of Professional Allstate Agents (NAPAA), on August 16th voted overwhelmingly to affiliate with the Office and Professional Employees International Union (OPEIU).

Secret ballots were mailed to all 1,200 members of the National Association of Professional Allstate Agents and according to OPEIU when the ballots were tallied, more than 94 percent has voted in favor of affiliating with the Union. The vote was administered by the American Arbitration Association (AAA) and was counted on August 17th at the AAA’s New York City office.

“Our members have sent a message and we hear them loud and clear,” stated Jim Fish, NAPAA executive director.

The NAPAA Board of Directors is expected to meet in the near future to formally approve the affiliation. Once the agreement is approved, NAPAA members will be granted membership in the OPEIU. OPEIU is affiliated with the American Federation of Labor and the Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO) labor federation in Washington, DC.

“Affiliating with OPEIU is the first step toward ensuring that Allstate agents are treated as true independent contractors instead of employees. Currently, agents are subjected to unachievable quotas, the specter of reduced compensation and an ever-present threat of contact termination. Many companies today are circumventing IRS precepts regarding employees status and are now classifying these same people as independent contractors. This practice has to stop,” stated OPEIU President Michael Goodwin.

NAPAA is based in Mississippi and is a non-profit organization, whose members are predominantly insurance agents under contract with Allstate Insurance throughout the nation.

On August 25th, one week after the membership of NAPAA voted in favor of affiliating with OPEIU, the Board of Directors approved the affiliation. The effective date of the affiliation agreement is September 1st, 2011. NAPAA members will now be granted membership in OPEIU.

The OPEIU represents more than 125,000 members throughout the United States, Puerto Rico, and Canada. The Union represents employees and independent contractors in banking, insurance, higher education, shipping, hospitals, medical clinics, utilities, transportation, hotels, and administrative offices.

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