The Entertainment Committee would like to welcome members and guest to this years upcoming Annual Picnic being held at the Fort Harrison State Recreation Area (State Park). The members of the Entertainment Committee have met monthly in an attempt to insure an enjoyable day for members and guest at one of Indiana’s newest and prettiest parks.
Every attempt has been made to insure that, in spite of budget constraints, we can put on the best possible picnic while staying within a very tight budget. We are accomplishing this not just by cutting cost, but by obtaining the donation of services and by fund raising.
Many hours have been put in by the Committee volunteers and as the picnic approaches their will be more hours devoted to this effort.
WHY ARE OUR PICNICS AND HOLIDAY PARTIES NOT AS EXTRAVAGANT AS THEY USED TO BE?
The easy answer would be money, but that would be inaccurate. There is no one reason. Of the several reasons the most important reason would be ‘membership’. Yes it cost money to put on these activities, but the amount of money that is available is based on membership. The membership controls the amount of money available to the Local union through their dues and their votes. Over the last 10 years our membership has declined by 50% from a high of 2500 to the current 1213. This decline in membership has devastated our annual budget and led to many cost cutting measure on both the grievance and membership services side of local union activities.
Most of the decline in membership has been due to attrition from early outs, normal retirement, deaths, and excessing to other crafts, but the most damage has been caused by Postal Workers who feel they have found an adequate reason to cancel their membership while taking advantage of the Union benefits for which they refuse to pay. They hurt the union more than other lost membership because they remain a burden on the Union that still must represent them. So if a non-member asks you to attend the picnic as your guest, remember they contribute nothing to the survival of the picnic or your Local.
In addition to declining membership, more so than the budget, lack of volunteers affects the picnic in an even bigger way. Gone are the days when we could have everything catered or pay entry fees to Old Indiana Fun Park; the days when we could take a gob of money and throw it into numerous door prizes. Now if we want to do something, we have to rely on volunteers and fund raising. It is unfortunate that we cannot get members to step forward and help with these events. When you attend the picnic, take notice of the people who are doing the work; they are the same people who worked the last event you attended. This is your picnic, but it is also their picnic. Notice that at your picnic, which is also their picnic, they are spending most of the day working as opposed to spending it all with their families and friends. This is in addition to the time they donated to attend monthly committee planning meetings and to gather up all the items needed to make the picnic pleasurable for you. These volunteers are not paid for their involvement, they have bad work schedules just like you, they have family obligations and problems just like you. So, please consider volunteering a couple hours a month, join a committee, and help with the next union event. The more people involved, the more work can be dispersed, the more effective the committee can be, and the same volunteers won't be burned out.
Editor, Indy Info