Original Date: 03/06/2006
Revision Date: / /
Best Practice : Community Relations
After being privatized, the employees at Raytheon-Louisville approached management expressing their interest in becoming more involved in the community. The Community Relations Program was established under the leadership of the Community Action Committee consisting of representatives from both bargaining unit and salaried employees as well as representatives from the leadership team. The Community Action Committee coordinates volunteer activities along with monetary assistance programs. These programs allow Raytheon-Louisville to have a positive influence on the local community.
After being privatized, Raytheon-Louisville employees felt that community involvement within the company had declined. Employees wanted to have a greater influence on the community by volunteerism and through corporate donations. Employees were donating personal time and resources but wanted to do more, so management was asked to support their request.
To meet the needs of the employees and the community, the Community Action Committee (CAC) was established. The CAC consists of representatives of the bargaining unit and salaried employees along with management representatives. To support volunteerism, corporate provided the committee a budget to be used for community needs. The committee is responsible for overseeing not only the volunteerism but corporate donations.
Volunteerism is one way in which the employees could become involved in the community both on company time and outside of work. Raytheon-Louisville has agreed to allow time for employees to participate in a variety of programs that include the American Red Cross Blood Drives (held on-site but outside the facility), the Big Brother/Big Sister School Mentoring Program, serving lunch at the local homeless shelter, and participating in the DADS school program. Employees called on to help the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) during times of national disasters are allowed to assist victims on company time (i.e., Hurricane Katrina responders).
Other volunteer efforts include keeping the area clean of trash and debris through the Green Mile project and building homes for the disadvantaged through the Habitat for Humanity. Employees assist the needy during the holidays by participating in the Salvation Army Angel Tree Program or by committing additional time to become a Big Brother or a Big Sister to a child in need of an adult role model. Employees also play a key role in the lives of disadvantaged children in the area by participating in programs at local area Title I schools with culturally diverse student populations. Other programs include the Everyone Reads Program, the DADs Program, and the Big Brother/Big Sister school program.
In addition to volunteerism, employees now have an avenue to help monetarily. The CAC has been given a corporate-funded budget called the Small Donations Program that allows employees to assist in ways other than volunteering time. To ensure the effectiveness of the program, the CAC has established rules governing the distribution of the funds, setting limits on the amount of funding being distributed to a single organization in a given year. To receive funds, an employee must sponsor the request and complete the necessary application on behalf of the area or organization needing funds through his or her CAC representative. The committee meets regularly to vote on requests. If the committee deems the request to be outside the scope of funding (i.e., requests for personal enjoyment versus a community need), the request is denied. The CAC reports quarterly to corporate what funds have been used and for what purpose. Among the many organizations assisted by the Small Donations Program are the DARE Drug Education Program, the Teenage Pregnancy School, Ministries United (South-Central Louisville), the Reading is Fundamental Program (Henryville, Indiana), and the Leukemia Society. The CAC recently received a budget increase because of the success and proper management of the program.
In addition to the Small Donations Program, employees can donate money to the annual metro United Way drive. To make donating easier for the employees, payroll deductions can be established. This program continues to see an increase in employee donations.
Raytheon-Louisville has other community relationships that include the Greater Louisville, Inc. (GLI), the Louisville Urban League (diversity recruiting), and the Sector Advisory Board (local police/business group). Raytheon- Louisville also partners with local academia including the University of Louisville, the University of Kentucky, and local technical colleges. Raytheon-Louisville has developed employee resource groups such as the Raytheon Women’s Network (RWN). The RWN sponsors social events for the employees and does charitable work in the neighborhood. The group has implemented a book exchange program and is also starting work with the Dress-for- Success Program.
Since the implementation of the CAC, Raytheon-Louisville and its employees have received numerous awards that recognize both individual employees as well as the company and include the GLI Business/Work Life Award (2003 and 2004), the Volunteer of the Year Award (Rutherford Elementary, 2003), and the United Way WOW Award (2004). These volunteer activities show the true compassion Raytheon-Louisville and its employees have for the local community.
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