Cornell University

Past Webinar Programs

Time Management for Stressed Unionists 

April 25, 2013 from 1:00 - 2:15pm
Cost: $50.00 (15% discount if 3 or more from the same local union

This webinar will help you focus on getting the most important things done, staying on track, reducing time wasters and lowering your stress.
Topics covered include:

   * Lessons in time management from the triage scenes on the TV show MASH
   * When you are up to your neck in alligators don't forget you came to drain the swamp
   * The difference between urgent and important
   * Tools and techniques for better time management
   * Eliminating common time-wasters
   * Time-saving tips
   * Integrating time management into your daily routine 

Presenter:  Ken Margolies, Senior Associate, The Worker Institute at Cornell, formerly worked at SEIU, CWA, IBT


Public Worker Negotiations in Difficult Times

Part 1 – December 3, 2012
These are very difficult times for most public sector workers and their unions. Many politicians as well as the public are blaming the country's economic woes on public workers and their union-negotiated contracts.  This presentation is intended to give union leaders and members some tools for bargaining in this contentious environment.   

Topics include:
* Answering the challenge to collective bargaining rights for public workers.  Is it a privilege or a right?
* Preparing Your Community for Negotiations – What does the public need to know about your union and your contract?  What community needs does your contract address?
* Preparing Your Union Members for Negotiations – What role should members play in the bargaining process?   Do they understand and support the process?
* Preparing Your Negotiating Committee for Negotiations – What do you need to know before you begin the first bargaining session?  Have your negotiators been properly trained?

Part 2 – December 10, 2012
In this session we shall concentrate on rethinking several topics of negotiations that have proved the most difficult to resolve.  1. What are the problems with salary schedules, annual increments, and merit pay?
2. Are public pensions on their way out?  Is there a better way to pay for retirement?
3. How does the ACA impact your health care bargaining?
4. Should public services remain public?    Privatization and subcontracting of unit work is a growing  concern. 

  Mondays, December 3 and 10, 2012
Time:   1:00 - 2:15 PM (Eastern Time)
Cost:    $75.00

PRESENTER:  Jack Moody has worked with public sector unions for over 30 years. Formerly a Labor Relations Specialist with the New York State United Teachers (AFT, AFL-CIO), he has negotiated hundreds of contracts, represented members at countless grievance/arbitration hearings, and has organized many new bargaining units.  As a long-time adjunct faculty member with Cornell University's ILR School, Jack has taught courses in conflict resolution, arbitration, negotiations, and strategies in health care bargaining.

Diversity and Inclusion Issues for Activists

Whether you are organizing a workplace, coordinating an event for your local union, or involved with a community-wide social justice campaign, "cultural competence" is a necessary prerequisite to success.  Effective activists recognize that people's expectations and standards vary depending on their experiences and perspectives.  The way in which we communicate with others may suggest biases that we are unaware of until brought to our attention. 

Participants in this webinar will better be able to:

Understand what "Cultural Competency" is and what it is not
Recognize the dimensions of Diversity and Inclusion
Identify the pitfalls of unintended insensitivity
Reflect on your own cultural perspectives 

When: October 11, 2012

Presenter:  Arthur T. Matthews is a trainer and consultant on topics such as Diversity, Negotiations, Team Building, Leadership, Communication Skills, Conflict Resolution, and Workforce Development. He is an adjunct faculty member with Cornell University's School of Industrial and Labor Relations and is an Adjunct Associate Professor at New York University and the University of Arkansas.


Part Two - Union Strategies for Bargaining in Tough Times

Second in another occasional series of webinars.

Presenter: David Rosenfeld 

David Rosenfeld, partner in a respected California labor law firm, takes particular pride in developing creative and unusual tactics.  He speaks frequently to union audiences about his book "Offensive Bargaining."  The strategies he has developed have been used by unions throughout the country as effective tools against anti-union employers.

After a brief review of what was covered in part one, David will spend about 30 minutes on how to use information requests as part of the Offensive Bargaining strategy.  For the rest of the session he will give a variety of examples of how the Offensive Bargaining strategy has been used successfully.  As last time we will take some of your questions. You should be receiving an email soon with David's replies to the questions we couldn't get to during part one.

Date: Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Download and print the registration form (pdf)


Part 1: Offensive Bargaining

Presenter: David Rosenfeld

In this session union negotiators are offered techniques to meet particularly harsh or outrageous employer proposals and tactics.  You will learn methods of using information requests in ways you never thought of, how to prevent impasse and force employers to withdraw concessionary demands, strategies for bargaining a first contract, and much, much more. If you ever face negotiations with a difficult employer, you need to know about "Offensive Bargaining.

Originally presented:

Date: Thursday, June 14, 2012
Cost $65.00 -- Fee includes a copy of slides Rosenfeld will use in the Webinar, an electronic copy of his book, Offensive Bargaining: Negotiating Aggressively In Contract Campaigns and a discount on registration for future webinars on Strategies for Bargaining in Tough Times planned for the Fall of 2012.

The Role of the Union: When Members Experience Domestic Violence, Sexual Assault, Stalking

Join the Worker Institute at Cornell ILR for the first in an occasional series of Webinars.

Date: Thursday, June 7, 2012

Recent studies document the increasing prevalence of incidents of gender-based violence, which can impact your members' health, job performance, and workplace safety. Many workers experiencing domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking feel that they have to "cope" on their own. Unions can play a supportive role, as can employee or member assistance programs. In this session, you will learn about the scope and impact of domestic violence, sexual assault and stalking.

An overview of the root causes of gender-based violence:
• How representatives from the union, EAP, MAP or LAP can appropriately respond
• What kinds of contract language or workplace policies can help
• How to identify and make referrals to appropriate assistive services
• What can be done when the perpetrator and victim are both in the workplace
• What union and workplace resources exist for those victimized by violence and their workplace allies

• KC Wagner, Faculty, The Worker Institute at Cornell ILR
• Maya Raghu, Esq., Futures Without Violence
• Pete Navratil, Co-founder, Rochester's Stand Up Guys

Subsequent sessions in this series will be on topics such as:
• The Role of the Union: When Members Return from Active Duty
• The Role of the Union: When Bridging Generational Differences
• The Role of the Union: In Respecting A Diverse Membership

Accommodating Workers with Disabilities: What's Reasonable

From the convenience of your desk, you can attend this informative, practical webinar that will discuss:

The employment provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act, as amended:

    Rights and responsibilities of workers and employers

  What constitutes a reasonable accommodation?

   How to talk with the employer about accommodations

  How much disclosure is necessary

  Can a worker/union appeal an employer’s determination of undue hardship?

  Real-life examples of challenges

Grievance Handling for Stewards and Representatives

To order DVD's of the Webinars, download the order form here. (pdf)

From the convenience of your desk, attend four informative, practical and lively webinars on handling grievances in the public and private sectors from Cornell ILR, the leading university labor studies program

Cost: Attend the first session at no charge! We're convinced that you'll like this new method of learning well enough that you will want to sign up for sessions 2, 3, and 4 at the low cost of $50 per session.

  • The Basics –what is a grievance; types of grievances: contractual, disciplinary, group or class action; rights and responsibilities of union grievance handlers: equity rule, duty of fair representation, right to information, investigatory interviews (Weingarten); arbitration: what it is, who are arbitrators, why it matters to how you handle grievances at lower steps.
  • Investigation – what to do when members come to you; getting the facts: interviewing the grievant, witnesses, management, information requests, getting and using relevant documents; reading and interpreting contracts: how arbitrators decide cases, evaluating the facts and deciding on next steps; investigation checklist; writing grievances.
  • Meeting with Management – preparing for informal and official grievance meetings with management; effectively representing at meetings: assertively getting heard, sample language for presenting grievances, using strengthens, minimizing weaknesses, probe for settlements, meeting check list.

  • Handling Difficult Supervisors and Situations –dealing with stalling, stonewalling, intimidation, side tracking, promising but not delivering and other management behaviors; when the grievance procedure isn't working – mobilize members: what is mobilizing to build power, choosing issues, getting member participation, strategies and tactics.