The Electrical Worker online
April 2015

Letters to the Editor index.html Home    print Print    email Email

Go to
I'll Second That Motion

I can only agree with Brother Mike Lee Miera of Pocatello, Idaho, Local 449 in his letter in the February issue ("IBEW U?"). Having been a member of the IBEW since 1967, I spent a lot of that time traveling and following the work, and I've seen exactly what Bro. Miera is talking about.

I can't recall the number of times I rose to initiate a new member, and it's the same old procedure: "Raise your right hand and repeat after me," a shake of the hand, then: "Welcome to the local and take a seat."

In some cases the new member might get a copy of the local collective agreements and, if they are lucky, a copy of the IBEW Constitution, and maybe a copy of the local's bylaws.

I've never in my 35+ years, seen a copy of Robert's Rules of Order issued to a new member, or even a condensed issue of the Rules to make it easier to understand.

In all my years attending monthly IBEW meetings, I can recall the number of times I've seen members told they're "out of order" even though they might have a good idea, or sometimes they don't understand why things are done the way they are, and you end up with a member that's been embarrassed in front of his brothers and sisters. It's probably the last time you'll see that member at a regular IBEW meeting. The member becomes frustrated because he or she can't make changes or get answers to their questions, suggestions or ideas.

In my own local, I tried to initiate a study session to get into the basics of Robert's Rules of Order. If I recall correctly, the B.A.'s statement at the time was "what the heck do we want with a bunch of seagoing lawyers?"

Furthermore, one must understand that in numerous cases, lack of knowledge of Robert's Rules of Order makes it difficult for a member to stand for public office because he or she doesn't understand the basic rules of running or participating in a public meeting that follows Robert's Rules of Order.

Keith D. Kirkpatrick, 1003 retiree
Nelson, British Columbia

Nice Spots

I think the ads on the PBS programs NewsHour and Washington Week are great but they should also feature the educational programs the IBEW supports. It would give PBS viewers a better view of union workers. They may have never met one. I always hired IBEW electricians because of their education.

Alfred Lockett Sr., Local 9 retiree

IBEW_Facebook  From Facebook: Every month the IBEW Facebook page receives thousands of comments from our dynamic and engaged community of members and friends. Starting this month, the Electrical Worker will share some of the best with its readers.

Power Professionals

I'm praying for all those who are working in the severe cold to keep the power on and the people safe. I'm married to a retired IBEW brother, so I know the anxiety families go through when linemen are out doing their jobs.

Becki Myers
Austin, Texas

Self-Serving Politicians

[Illinois] Gov. Bruce Rauner is always looking out for himself. His actions speak loud when it comes to working people. We just don't matter. That's why we need to stay united and stand up to this guy.

Scott Garwick, Local 364 member
Rockford, Ill.