Page 12-Tuesday, January 23, 1979-The Michigan Daily
BY RONALD GIFFORD
With the memory of the 1977 strike+
still fresh in many people's minds, the
American Federation of State, County,+
and Municipal Employees (AFSCME)
Local 1583 began negotiating yesterday
with the University to determine the
terms of a new contract.
AFSCME represents over 2,100 cam-
pus service personnel, including main-
tenance and food service workers,
custodians, and nurses' aides.
The union, whose present contract
expires March 20, went on strike in 1977
when negotiations at that time broke
down. The ensuing 26-day walkout
disrupted dormitory and hospital ser-
vices, especially food and cleaning ser-
vices in the dorms.
YESTERDAY'S session in the
Michigan Union was a preliminary
meeting to establish the ground rules
for the actual negotiations. According
to AFSCME Local President Dwight
PIRGIM to protest
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Newman, the two sides agreed to the
size of the bargaining teams, the dates
of future sessions, and other
technicalities. The first official
negotiating session will be January 31.
The University expects the
negotiations to go well, according to
John Forsyth, assistant director of per-
sonnel and leader of the administration
bargaining team. "Historically, these
have been long, hard negotiating
sessions," Forsyth said. "We expect
the settlement to go well."
He would not comment on what he
expects to be the issues and problems of
this round of talks. "We're going in
blind at this point, because we have
seen no proposals yet," Forsyth ex-
plained. "It would be very hard to say
UNION OFFICIALS would not
disclose their specific demands, either.
However, Newman said AFSCME
would be seeking "real improvements"
over the present contract.
Neither side is seriously considering
the possibility of another strike.
However AFSCME officials would not
totally dismiss that possibility. "As a
labor union, the strike is our only real
weapon," Newman said. "We are not
looking forward to using it, but if it
becomes necessary, we may have to do
Forsyth said he doubted that the
negotiations would lead to another
walkout. "It is best for both interests to
have it (the settlement) resolved before
the contract expires," he said.
One possible strike deterrent may be
the minimal successes achieved in the
1977 strike. The final wage settlement,
the main point of disagreement then,
was a 60 cent per hour increase over a
24-month period, just five cents per
hour more than the University offered
before the strike.
In 1971 the union also struck the
University, but for only .three days.
AFSCME submitted to binding fact-
finding to settle the dispute in that
series of talks.
By BETH ROSENBERG
and ADRIENNE LYONS
The Public Interest Research Group
in Michigan (PIRGIM) has begun a
battle to block Detroit Edison's
proposed $69 million rate increase and
to prevent Edison from constructing
any new nuclear power plants in the
According to PIRGIM attorney Tracy
Dobson, the group opposes the rate in-
crease - which also requests a hike of
$97 million in 1980 - because the
proposal offers better savings to in-
dividuals using greater amounts of
"WITH THE rate structure the way it
is, you won't get them (consumers) to
turn off the lights," Dobson remarked.
At a hearing beginning February 20,
Detroit Edison will present witnesses
for cross-examination before the Public
Services Commission (PSC), which
regulates all utilities in Michigan. Op-
ponents of the Edison plan - PIRGIM,
State Attorney General Frank Kelley,
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and the Michigan Coalition on Utilities
and Energy (MCUE) will also present
their arguments before the PSC. After
hearing both sides, the PSC will decide
if the 4.4 per cent rate increase is
Detroit Edison expects to get the in-
crease regardless of PIRGIM's
blocking attempts, according to Ernie
Grove, Detroit Edison Senior Executive
Vice President in charge of finance:.
Grove will be a witness for Edison at
the PSC hearing.
"Our basic attack (in the Edison
case) is to cut out unnecessary expen-
ses and cut out nuclear projects," ex-
plained Steve Fredkin, PIRGIM
Dobson said that if the hike is ap-
proved, Detroit Edison intends to spend
the money on construction of nuclear
power plants called Greenwood II and
Greenwood III. She added that Edison
estimates that $3.8 billion will be
needed to build the plants, but that this
figure will probably increase.
rally in D.C.
WASHINGTON (AP)-An estimated
60,000 anti-abortion demonstrators
marched on the Capitol yesterday as a
feminist organization called for
meeting of leaders of both sides next
month to try and end their bitter dif-
ferences over the abortion issue.
National Organization for Women
(NOW) President Eleanor Smeal.
whose organization favors legal abor-
tions on demand, sent telegram in
vitations to 40 major organizations con-
cerned with abortion to attend the Feb
THE PURPOSE, the telegram said.
was to "seek ways to lessen the need for
abortion, to reducethe incidence of un-
wanted pregnancy and to end the
polarization and violence that surround
the abortion issue."
Both moves marked the sixth an-
niversary of the Supreme Court's lan-
dmark 1973 ruling that government has
no right during the first three-months of
pregnancy to interfere with a woman's
decision to have an abortion.
But even as Smeal was urging recon-
ciliation, the demonstrators who called
themselves a "new wave of pro-life ac-
tion" marched from the White House to
the West Front of the Capitol where
they chanted "No compromise . .. No
NELLIE GRAY, president of March
to Life, said of the invitation:
"We would not sit down and negotiate
with abortionists on anything. They a
in the business of killing babies and are
therefore not people of principle. We
demand of abortionists that they stop
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