Union workers, retirees prepare for pension fight in 2017 with unified front

National Unified Committee to Protect Pensions
Posted at 7:18 PM, Dec 18, 2016
and last updated 2016-12-18 23:09:54-05
Wisconsin union workers are joining with other states to bring a united message to Washington in the fight for their pensions.
Teamsters have now established the National Unified Committee to Protect Pensions. The group is working to educate lawmakers, especially newcomers on their mission.
"All that information has to be brought back again to those elected to these various positions in Congress," says NUCPP VP and Treasurer Sherman Liimatainen, "so, we know that there's a process that we're going to go through, and we're going to have to go back two years and share with them how we got in this situation."
"We have power in numbers and we have common sense. That's something that I feel Washington has lost, and we've been told that by Congressmembers," said National Unified Committee to Protect Pensions President Mike Walden, who made the trip from Ohio to Sunday's meeting in Green Bay. 
Wisconsin Democratic Senator Tammy Baldwin joined their rally in Milwaukee Saturday. Leaders add they're also looking forward to working with incoming political newcomer, Republican Congressman Mike Gallagher. 
The group says growing their grassroots effort and getting active workers more involved are goals in 2017.  
"We're going to continue what we're doing. We're going to step up the effort a little bit," explains Walden. "We have to get a little more professional, which is why the national committee was formed. And, we have some power on both ends now. But, the majority of our power is still power in numbers."
"Our mission statement clearly identifies that we're here.. in the purpose.. to exist to protect all pensions, and to bring transparency, if you will, to those who are contributing into these multi-employer plans," adds Liimatainen.
The organization's next meeting will be held on January 29th.