March 2012
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IBEW organizes Mo.
GE plant

Boston members volunteer in Haiti

Hawaii local bridges the Pacific

Wind tower dumping charged

New at the App Store:
IBEW app

North of 49°
Toronto Mayor Launches Attack on Public Sector Workers

Au nord du 49° parallèle
Le maire de Toronto s'attaque aux travailleurs du secteur public







Facebook Project Brings Promise of Steady Work to North Carolina

For days in mid-January, the tree-flecked hills of North Carolina's Rutherford County were hit with hammer-and-nail rain. For the nearly one in five people who are out of work, it was the natural environment reflecting the bleariness of the rural economy — where a once-vibrant textile industry was decimated by outsourcing and low-road business approaches that left crumbling buildings, few prospects and diminished hope.

"These folks are facing economic oppression, plain and simple," said Asheville Local 238 Organizer Josh Rhodes, a lifelong resident of the Tar Heel State, which has the lowest union density in the nation. Rutherford County's unemployment rate recently pitched toward 16 percent. "When you take our so-called right-to-work laws and combine them with no work picture, what does that leave people?"

But thanks to Rhodes and a team of other organizers, activists and members of the business community, nearly 200 unemployed county residents saw a proverbial break in the clouds Jan. 12 at a job fair hosted by the local and California-based signatory contractor Rosendin Electric. Also hiring was local outfit Preferred Electric, Rosendin's subcontractor. The mission: hire qualified electricians for an enormous Facebook data center construction project.

The social networking giant — which boasts more than 800 million active users — broke ground for new data centers in rural Forest City a year ago. Since then, hundreds of IBEW members of various classifications have built and wired the area's first 373,000-square-foot facility responsible for converting ones and zeros into "likes," status updates, photo albums and fan pages.

As business is booming, more manpower is needed for expansion. And Local 238 is hungry to meet the challenge.

'Jobs are Priority'

Over the course of a bustling three hours, the temporary trailer housing Rosendin's on-site team swelled beyond capacity with eager job seekers from the county and beyond.


Hill: Imported from North America?
Chilia: Keeping Our Commitment

National Labor College Scholarships Available for
IBEW Members; Wis. Electrician Displays Courage, Skill in Afghanistan

Success in Missouri, continued; Words of Caution; Growing Strong Together

Jeremiah 'Jerry' F. Comer; Robbie Sparks; John Flynn; Keith Huyser

January 2012

IBEW Electrician Sets New Bar for Off-Road Racing Excellence