The Electrical Worker online
June 2014

Locals Chart Course to Manufacturing Success
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After two decades of offshoring and plant shutdowns, North American manufacturing is making a comeback. The U.S. economy added approximately 500,000 manufacturing jobs from 2010 through 2013, and expects to see more growth this year. That still doesn't come close to making up for the 6 million manufacturing jobs lost in the 2000s, but it does show that there can be a future for the Made in the USA and Made in Canada labels.

But as IBEW members, our concern isn't just bringing back jobs — it's creating good jobs that provide workers with a solid spot in the middle class. And that means reviving union manufacturing.

Articles in this issue of the Electrical Worker highlight success stories from the IBEW's manufacturing branch, shooting down conventional wisdom that union plants can't compete in today's global economy.

From actively promoting IBEW-made products to consumers and signatory contractors, to building links with manufacturing unions around the planet, to adopting the Code of Excellence in every IBEW-represented facility, local unions are taking the lead in renewing union manufacturing in the United States and Canada. At many of these facilities, the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers is a leading force in their success, working with management to win back even more work from overseas.

It continues to remain a rocky path to full recovery, but the articles in this and future issues of the Electrical Worker show that the IBEW is hard at work creating the blueprint for manufacturing success in the 21st century.


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The IBEW and SPX Transformer Solutions in Waukesha, Wis., are working together to grow union manufacturing.