December 2019

  December Issue 

Tampa Wireman Takes Top Klein Tools Honor

Tampa, Fla., Local 915 member Fernando Guillen, a journeyman inside wireman who now teaches electricity full-time at nearby Plant City HighSchool, was honored in November by Klein Tools as its 2019 Electrician of the Year.

Two Major IBEW Priorities Finally Made Law

Several of the IBEW’s highest legislative priorities are expected to be signed into law Friday.

Employers Charged with Violating Labor Law in 40% of Union Campaigns

U.S. employers are charged with violating federal law in four out of 10 union election campaigns, according to a new Economic Policy Institute study that also found that the nation’s private sector spends at least $340 million a year on union-busting consultants.

Canadian Government Offers a Boost to IBEW Apprenticeships

Kitchener, Ontario, Local 804 is getting some help from the federal government in the form of approximately $5.5 million for its pre-apprenticeship program.

Search for Fairness Leads Florida Battery Recycling Employees to Tampa Local

Many of the workers at Gopher Resource’s battery and recycling plant in Tampa, Fla., were perplexed by the company’s message after it was sold last year. They were a little angry, too.

Tell Your Senators, Don’t Tax My Retirement

Weeks ago, two Republican senators unveiled a plan that threatens to destroy the multiemployer pension system that provides retirement security to hundreds of thousands of IBEW members.

IBEW Members Discover Historic Shipwreck in Great Lakes

When Bernie Hellstrom picked up an obstruction on his boat's sounder, he knew something big was there, but he had no idea how historic it was — or that he would discover it with an IBEW brother.

There’s a Terrible New Plan to Tax Your Retirement – Help Us Fight It Today

Senate Republicans are readying a radical plan to raise taxes on retiree pension benefits and put catastrophic burdens on union retirement plans, according to documents released last month.

A $14 Billion Facelift for One of America's Busiest Airports

Person A takes off from San Francisco for a 389-mile flight to Los Angeles International Airport's Terminal 4. At the same time, Person B exits the 405 freeway bound for the same destination just 2.5 miles away.

The Numbers Are In: Union Construction Jobs Are Safer Than Nonunion

It may not be news to those in the business, but new numbers back up what IBEW and other union construction members already know: there’s safety in a union.

November 2019

  November Issue 

NLRB Workers Forced to Fight for Their Own Rights Against Union-Busting Bosses

The National Labor Relations Board’s own workers rallied Monday against management abuses affecting their union’s ability to represent them, signaling new depths of the agency’s union-busting agenda.

Rail Workers’ Safety, Jobs in Jeopardy as Precision Scheduled Railroading Expands

An efficiency scheme being adopted by most large freight railroads threatens the safety and job security of members in the IBEW’s railroad branch, and International President Lonnie R. Stephenson is appealing to the Transportation Department to take a closer look at the practice and its potentially dangerous outcomes.

Massachusetts, Rhode Island Back Public Employee Unions in post-Janus World

Massachusetts and Rhode Island lawmakers took decisive action to lessen the impact of last year’s U.S. Supreme Court decision in Janus v. AFSCME. The new laws provide greater protections for unions and their members, and it’s thanks, in no small part, to IBEW efforts.

It’s National SAVE Apprenticeship Week: Here’s How to Celebrate

Every November the Department of Labor holds National Apprenticeship Week to raise the profile of certified training programs that provide a path to the middle class for working people.

We Stand Together: 500 California Municipal Workers Vote to Join the IBEW

More than 500 Long Beach, Calif., municipal workers are newly represented by Diamond Bar Local 47 after a multi-year effort to join the IBEW.

Honoring Our Veterans

This Nov. 11 we pay tribute to our brave servicemen and women in the U.S. and Canada. But honoring our veterans includes making sure they return home with the career opportunities they deserve, and for many, that means a career in the trades.

Business Manager ‘So Full of Energy’ Awarded Prestigious New Jersey Labor Award

Dan Cosner grew up in an IBEW home and followed his father into the trades. He decided early in his career a leadership position would be the right fit for him.

IBEW Wages Lost: $1.8 Billion in U.S. Military Construction Cut for Border Fence

The White House suspended more than 100 shovel-ready military construction projects in September to divert funding for a border fence, effectively killing hundreds of potential IBEW jobs.

The IBEW Changed My Life

This summer, IBEW leaders asked for your urgent help. Our apprenticeships were under attack, threatened by a nonunion contractor-backed Labor Department rule that would allow them to operate second-rate training programs and present them as equal to our own.

October 2019

  October Issue 

New Jersey Members Help Finally Make ‘Dream’ Mall a Reality

One of the largest entertainment and retail complexes on the planet opened its doors five miles west of New York City on Friday after decades of planning and delays and multiple changes in ownership.

FMCP Aids Organizing Success for Utility Electricians in ‘Right-to-Work’ Texas

The IBEW’s Family Medical Care Plan is more than just a health insurance plan; it’s also a surprisingly effective organizing tool.

Best Doctors Makes Getting a Second Opinion Easy

One of the programs offered under the IBEW’s Family Medical Care Plan can help members make important medical decisions with confidence.

IBEW Membership Turned into Her ‘Freedom Ticket’

Crystal Rourke says life wasn’t quite as tough two years ago as it now sounds.

Winnipeg Member Returned to Parliament in a Good Night for Working People

Working families scored big wins in Canada’s federal elections on Monday – and the IBEW held an especially important seat in Winnipeg’s Elmwood-Transcona riding.

Safety, Right-to-Work, Prevailing Wage at Stake in Virginia Election Nov. 5

With every vote counted in 2017, pro-worker lawmakers in Virginia were one botched ballot away from shared control of the House of Delegates.

Ohio Member Turns Fly Fishing Passion into Dream Trip, Television Appearance

Like many skilled trades workers, Paul Hughes wondered how he would make ends meet following the economic collapse in 2008. Construction came to a near standstill in his hometown, so the Columbus, Ohio, Local 683 member became a traveler and took to the road.

Sign Modernization Upgrades Manhattan Commute

Railroad branch members in New York and Connecticut have been installing modern electronic message signs that provide real-time service information to Metro-North’s customers.

Kentucky Race Gives Working Families Chance to Fight Back Against Governor Who ‘Hurts Us’

Labor and its allies have battled strong headwinds in Kentucky recently. The election of Gov. Matt Bevin in 2015 and a GOP takeover in the House the following year meant a single-party state government intent on rolling back union rights.

In Louisiana, an IBEW Friend in the Governor’s Mansion

John Bel Edwards is the only union-friendly governor in the Deep South, and he is on the ballot in Louisiana Oct. 12.

Federal Workers Under Attack as Agencies Told To Enforce Anti-Union Executive Orders

A court injunction that temporarily protected federal workers from a hostile government agenda expired last week, prompting the Trump administration to order agencies to enforce anti-union policies the president issued in May 2018.

Canadian Election Offers Chance for Members to Show Who ‘Shares Our Values’

Toronto Local 353 Vice President Jeff Irons views the upcoming Canadian federal elections much like an organizing drive.

IBEW Supports Nuclear Powers America Act

In an age of shrinking bipartisanship and climbing global temperatures, the Nuclear Powers America Act might just be the bipartisan legislation the country needs to cleanly and reliably power future generations.

Finalized Overtime Rule Leaves Out Millions of Working People

The Trump administration announced its final overtime rule on Sept. 24, ending a yearslong process that sought to undo the original, more generous, 2016 rule.

Study: West Virginia’s Prevailing Wage Repeal Lowers Wages, Not Costs

Students at Mountain Valley Elementary School in southern West Virginia’s Mercer County were forced to wait more than a month beyond the start of the school year for their facility’s grand opening. Construction delays were at fault, the state’s Affiliated Construction Trades reported in August.

Union-Busting App Backed by Billionaires

It’s an important signal that unions are working when the rich and powerful spend billions trying to silence them.

September 2019

  September Issue 

Anti-Worker Lawyer Eugene Scalia confirmed as Labor Secretary

After decades spent attacking the rights of workers struggling for justice and safety on the job, corporate lawyer Eugene Scalia is a vote away from taking the reins of the U.S. Department of Labor.

Landmark California Law Offers New Protections, Greater Economic Security for Misclassified Workers

A trailblazing California law that IBEW members fought for will extend job rights and benefits to hundreds of thousands of workers long misclassified by employers as independent contractors.

Colorado Member With Lifetime of Service Seeks Public Office

Service to others was central to Eppie Griego long before he became an active member of Pueblo, Colo., Local 12.

Pennsylvania’s New Juneteenth Holiday Extra Special to One IBEW Member

On June 19, 1865, Union soldiers finally arrived in Galveston, Texas, bearing news that had taken six long months to wend its way through the South: Congress had passed the 13th Amendment freeing American slaves.

Hotel Employees in the IBEW? In this Iowa Community, They’re a Perfect Fit

Dubuque, Iowa, Local 704 Business Manager Tom Townsend won’t take any credit for a successful organizing effort and first contract for workers at the city’s Hilton Garden Inn along the Mississippi River.

Gallup Says Union Support is at a Near-Five-Decade High

Reports of labor’s demise have been greatly exaggerated according to a new Gallup poll.

All in the Family: Trayer Workers Put ‘Rolls-Royce’ Switchgear in Linemen’s Hands

Every step of the way at Trayer Switchgear near San Francisco, IBEW members treat the products they make as if their own family will use them.

Delaware, Oregon Provide Protections for IBEW’s Public Employee Members

The IBEW joined with other unions in two states – one on the East Coast, the other on the West – to pass legislation that strengthens public employee unions following last year’s Janus decision by the U.S. Supreme Court.

Patience Pays as New Missouri Members Finally Get First Contract

Barack Obama still was president when Springfield, Mo., city employees votedin the fall of 2015 to join Springfield Local 753.

Has the NLRB Lost Its Way?

"Everybody needs a law that is precise and certain."

Standout Detroit Tree Trimmer is Special, But Not for the Obvious Reason

Lisa Bagalay was, by all accounts, an exceptional member of Detroit Local 17's Line Clearance and Tree Trimmer apprenticeship program.

August 2019

  August Issue 

VEEP Bridges the Gap Between the Military and What’s Next

The transition from military to civilian life can be a difficult one for servicemen and women. Gone are the regular paychecks, the structure, the camaraderie and the shared sense of mission. That first step after military discharge often feels like a leap into the unknown.

A Win in Ontario, but Labor’s Battles Continue

Toronto’s leaders stood defiantly in June against an anti-union attempt by Ontario’s Conservative Party to reclassify the city’s relationship with its construction workforce.

New Reports: Soaring CEO Pay a Growing Threat to U.S. Economy

CEO compensation has skyrocketed 940 percent over the past 40 years in the United States, 78 times the rate of growth in workers’ pay and benefits, according to one of two new studies that challenge the upbeat conventional wisdom about today’s economy.

Urgent Call for Action: Last Chance to Help Save IBEW Apprenticeships

Just days are left to help save the IBEW’s apprenticeships from greedy nonunion contractors who want to cut corners on training.

IBEW, Entergy ‘Sticking’ with Code of Excellence

A simple sticker on the side of a work truck could be easily overlooked, but for IBEW members at Entergy Arkansas, that bit of plastic represents something more: a sign of growing pride on the job and an improved relationship with management; a symbol of the values embodied in the IBEW’s Code of Excellence.

Union Plus Scholarships Awarded to 11 IBEW Family Members

A commitment to the values of the IBEW and organized labor, as well as academic achievement, personal character and financial need each were all factors in determining this year’s IBEW recipients of the Union Plus scholarshipsfor the 2019-2020 school year.

Washington, Tennessee Harden Penalties for Assaults on Utility Workers

Rick Luiten didn’t have to rely on abstract statistics or second-hand anecdotes when he testified in favor of Washington state’s new law imposing tougher penalties on people who assault utility workers.

New Senate Energy Bill Supports Union Jobs, Priorities

An IBEW-backed bill introduced in the U.S. Senate would ensure that the country’s growing number of clean energy construction jobs will be filled by unionized electrical workers and by highly trained brothers and sisters in other union trades.

In Boise, New Telecom Unit Sees Membership Rise in Right-to-Work’s Shadow

About 3,000 employees at DirecTV facilities across 13 states voted for IBEW representation and approved contracts in 2016, a major organizing win for a telecommunications industry that has weathered remarkable change over the last decade.

IBEW Effort Helps Move ‘Butch Lewis’ Closer to Passage

Intensive lobbying by activists from the IBEW and other labor unions paid off on July 24 when a bipartisan majority in the U.S. House of Representatives approved the Rehabilitation for Multiemployer Pension Act by a vote of 264 to 169.

$6.5 Billion Pa. Cracking Plant Puts a Region to Work

One of the largest projects in the IBEW is finally underway north of Pittsburgh.

Crisis in a Bottle: Opioids and the Construction Industry

Opioid deaths in the U.S. and Canada are at epidemic levels, ravaging communities across regional, ethnic and socioeconomic divides. But no industry suffers higher rates of addiction and death than one of our own: construction.

‘It Was Magic How Nine Electricians Meshed So Well’

Five thousand miles from the building codes and safety rules of Ontario, Canada, the team of IBEW electricians had never seen anything quite like the dormitories for older students from a Guatemalan children’s home.

July 2019

  July Issue 

Take a Bow: Study Shows Union Members are Better Informed

If knowledge is power, then political knowledge is the fuel of an informed democracy. And according to a recent study, unions are a valuable source.

N.J. Local’s ‘Good of the Union’ Commitment Bolsters Community

Members of Trenton, N.J., Local 269 put in long, hard hours during the week. But well-earned weekends aren’t just for relaxing; many members are also committed to the wide variety of community service activities the local sponsors through its “Good of the Union” committee.

Capitol Hill Lineworker Events Celebrate Recognition Resolution

In On July 10, Rep. Linda Sanchez of California formally introduced a House of Representatives resolution to designate that date as National Lineworkers Recognition Day.

Florida Activists Fight to Fend Off Deregulation Threat

In Florida, IBEW members are mobilizing to help kill a proposed constitutional amendment that aims to deregulate the state’s investor-owned electrical utilities — a law that, if implemented, could disrupt the livelihood of thousands of electricians who work and live there.

Atlanta’s Newest Local is Home for Gas Workers

The IBEW has its first new local in the state of Georgia in nearly 40 years. The birth of Atlanta Local 1997 on June 29 marks a major victory for the rights of working people in the Deep South.

Call for Action: Help Protect IBEW Apprenticeships

The IBEW urgently needs your help to protect our training programs from a pending federal rule that would let businesses run shoddy apprenticeships with minimal standards, oversight and pay.

House Votes Overwhelmingly to Scrap ‘Cadillac Tax’ on Health Benefits

The House of Representatives voted 419-6 to repeal punitive taxes on many union health plans, a major win for union workers and a rare moment of bipartisanship in Washington.

With Election Approaching, New Contract Secures Gains for Federal Workers

With the federal election on the horizon, Ottawa, Ontario, Local 2228 reached tentative agreement with the Treasury Board for a new four-year contract that will guarantee an 8% increase in salary for the more than 1,000 members covered.

IBEW, Unions Rally to Keep Pension Promises

Secretary-Treasurer Kenneth W. Cooper joined hundreds of labor activists representing the IBEW and other unions Wednesday to rally on Capitol Hill encouraging Congress to pass a bill aimed at rescuing troubled multiemployer pension plans.

Thanks to North America’s Lineworkers

An early summer thunderstorm had knocked out power in parts of northwest Washington, D.C.

Hitting the Legislative Jackpot: Nevada Unions Reap Rewards of Hard-Won Election Victories

Led by IBEW members, Nevada’s building trades unions hit a triple in the Legislature this spring, restoring prevailing wage and project labor agreement laws killed by the business lobby in 2015, and ensuring that apprentices from accredited programs fill a percentage of jobs at public construction sites.

Temps Heat up With No Federal Safety Standard

As summer temperatures soar to scorching heights, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration is here with recommendations and tips to stay safe on the job, even a smartphone app, but no federal standard as to what “safe” actually means.

The Electrician at the End of the Earth: An Antarctic Adventure

A globetrotter at heart, John Murphy was already adept at swapping his Queens apartment for digs in Europe, Asia, South America and the Caribbean.

The Battery Revolution: Fixing the Grid’s No. 1 Problem

The North American electrical grid is the largest machine ever built by human hands. The interconnecting web of power plants, end users and everything in between has an unknowable number of components that fuel the $20 trillion U.S. economy.

June 2019

  June Issue 

Ottawa-Area Members Pitch in for Flood Victims

When the Ottawa River swelled to record levels this spring, IBEW members were there to help.

First Contract Ratified by BGE Workers

After four failed organizing drives and two years of negotiation, the 1,400 members of Baltimore Local 410 ratified a first contract on Sunday with Baltimore Gas and Electric.

Wyoming Organizer Honored for Leading Local 322 Volunteers in Conservation Projects

Bruce Johnson, a Casper, Wyo., Local 322 organizer and avid outdoorsman, has been named the IBEW Conservation Steward of the Year for his leadership on volunteer projects protecting elk and their habitat.

‘It Matters’ Campaign Encourages Voter Registration, Participation

A major initiative is underway to ensure that every IBEW member eligible to vote is registered, aiming to educate members that participating in the electoral process directly translates to power on the job and at the negotiating table.

Free College, No Catch: IBEW Members Say Degree Program Hasn’t Cost Them a Nickel

With just four or five classes to go, Todd Bedard is on the verge of having an associate degree in business management – without accruing a penny of student debt.

IBEW Urges Congress to Get Moving on Nuclear Waste Storage

A trio of recently introduced bills before the U.S. House of Representatives could help unlock meaningful, long-term employment for IBEW members in Nevada — and beyond.

In Canada’s Election, a Call to Avoid ‘All-Out War on Unions’

When the Liberal Party took power in Canada in 2015, the IBEW and working families gained access to halls of power on Parliament Hill that hadn’t existed in the previous four years of Conservative rule and five years of coalition government before that.

$200M Agreement Brings Jobs, Stability in Pennsylvania

Steady and plentiful work is on the horizon for members of Chester, Pa., Local 654, thanks to a newly announced, multimillion-dollar project labor agreement covering the ongoing revitalization of the Marcus Hook Industrial Complex in suburban Philadelphia.

‘Rite’ Strategy Leads to Steady Work for New Jersey Local

For decades, Jersey City, N.J., Local 164 electricians were among the hundreds of union tradespeople who built nearly two dozen ShopRite grocery stores in New Jersey and New York.

Clock Ticking on Bill to Preserve Nuclear Jobs in Ohio

Hundreds of IBEW jobs in Ohio could be in serious jeopardy if the state’s Legislature fails to pass a bill to keep two nuclear plants open.

May 2019

  May Issue 

The Future of Organizing: New Technology Builds on the Tried and True

The future of organizing is here, IBEW leaders say, and new tools and technology will play a key role in recruiting the next generation to meet the needs of a growing electrical industry.

We Need Your Help: Call Your Congressman, Save Your Pension

Weeks before Christmas, hundreds of IBEW members swarmed Capitol Hill to kill a proposal that would have crippled multi-employer pension plans.

Chicago Partnership Promotes Apprenticeships as Alternative to College

Identifying and encouraging high school students who might benefit from a career in the electrical trades is the aim of a new partnership between Chicago Local 134 and a school district in the city’s northwestern suburbs.

Faces of the IBEW: Second-Chance Baltimore Wireman Headlines New Ad Campaign

Rico Albacarys didn’t sulk or stew when he was turned down for a Baltimore Local 24 apprenticeship back in 2010. Instead, he got back to work – and the right people noticed.

Syracuse, N.Y., Local 97 Members' 'Flawless' Replacement of Diesel Back-up at Nine Mile Point Nuclear Station

When back-up generators at nuclear power stations stop working, the clock starts ticking before federal rules require the main unit to shut down. So, when the 49,000-pound back-up diesel generator went quiet at the Nine Mile Point Nuclear Station in upstate New York, the nearly 75 members of Syracuse Local 97 in the maintenance department had a monumental challenge on their hands.

Even in Right-to-Work Era, Northern Michigan Manufacturing Local Grows Membership

Growing membership in a manufacturing local is a challenge under any circumstances. American jobs continue to move overseas at an alarming clip, so growth in a right-to-work state makes it even more of an achievement.

New Program Aims to Help Trades Recruit More Women

Expanding programs for women who might be considering a career in the skilled construction trades, or who are already in them, is the goal of a new joint initiative of Canada’s Building Trades Unions and the federal government.

Social Security Workers Fight For their Rights Against Anti-Union Attacks

The Social Security Administration has joined a growing list of federal agencies that are impeding the ability of unions to represent government workers and taking extreme positions in contract talks.

Tell Missouri Senators: Say ‘Yes’ to the Grain Belt Express

IBEW leaders are asking members and friends to contact Missouri state senators this week and urge them to vote against any bill that would derail construction of the Grain Belt Express, an environmentally friendly, electrical transmission project that will deliver wind power from the Midwest to the East Coast power grid.

Pro-Union PRO Act Accelerates Congressional Fight for Workers’ Rights

Pro-union lawmakers are pushing for landmark federal legislation that would pull the teeth of right-to-work laws and impose stronger, swifter penalties on law-breaking employers, ensuring that workers across the country have the right to join unions and bargain collectively for better wages, benefits and working conditions.

With More Allies in State Capitols, A Sunnier Forecast for Unions and Workers

IBEW activists have an extra spring in their step walking the halls of America’s statehouses this year.

Time Running Out for Thousands of Clean Energy Jobs in Pennsylvania

Hundreds of people rallied on the Pennsylvania Capitol steps this week, urging the Legislature to save thousands of clean energy jobs – and fast.

The 2019 Photo Contest is Here

Summer is almost here, and that means it’s time for this year’s IBEW photo contest.

America’s Underground Crisis: Aging Infrastructure Brings Opportunity for Gas Workers

Beneath nearly every American city, a crisis is unfolding. While talk of America's crumbling infrastructure focuses on bridges and roads, ports and airports, below ground the aging pipe networks that carry natural gas to homes and businesses grow more dangerous by the day.

Stay Safe with National Fall Prevention Safety Stand-Down Week

Every year, hundreds of construction workers are killed on the job and more than a third die from falls, the number one cause of accidental deaths in the industry. The tragic loss of our brothers and sisters is made all the more bitter because every death or injury from a fall is preventable with proper training and the use of appropriate fall protection.

Local 1212 Member Mentors Young Members after Stellar CBS Career

Iconic sports venues like Augusta National and Daytona International Speedway came to feel like second homes for Neil McCaffrey during an award-winning career as a CBS camera operator.

April 2019

  April Issue 

IBEW Members Power Parliament Hill’s West Block

The West Block section of Canada’s historic Parliament Hill recently underwent a major restoration and members of Ottawa, Ontario, Local 586 were there to power it.

Workers Memorial Day is a Time for Remembrance, Action

Union members across the U.S. and Canada will pause on April 28 to remember fellow workers who lost their lives on the job over the past year and to recommit themselves to the effort to prevent workplace deaths and injuries.

Illinois Bans Local Right-to-Work Zones as Elected Leaders Hit the Gas on Pro-Worker Agenda

An IBEW member’s bill to ban cities and counties in Illinois from passing local right-to-work ordinances has become law, two years after the state’s previous governor vetoed the legislation.

Fewer Inspectors, Less Enforcement: OSHA Trend Raises Risks for Workers

As the number of OSHA inspectors shrinks, enforcement action to safeguard workers is on the decline — at the same time that investigations into workplace deaths and injuries are rising.

IBEW Founders’ Scholarship Deadline is April 30

One of the legacies of the IBEW’s founding fathers isn’t directly related to organizing or pulling wire, but it remains very much in the spirit of the Brotherhood and unionism. It’s the IBEW Founders’ Scholarship.

Fastest Growing Jobs in the U.S. Look Good for the IBEW

The fastest growing jobs in nearly a quarter of U.S. states are IBEW jobs according to projections form the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

N.H. Nuclear Security Workers Making the Most of Membership

The IBEW has represented thousands of nuclear energy workers over the years, usually in either the construction or utility branches.

New Brunswick Local Receives National Recognition for Excellence

Fredericton, New Brunswick, Local 37 earlier this year won an award from Electricity Human Resources Canada for its Training Trust Fund, a program that offers members continuing education opportunities in a variety of areas including essential “soft skills” – the first time a union has earned the prize.

Texas Local Energizes the Next Generation

Last April, Houston Local 66’s young members group had four members. Today, they have close to 50 – and they’re showing no signs of slowing down.

Toledo Local Looks to Recruit from New Communities

The Latino population in northwestern Ohio has risen steadily over the last 40 years. For Toledo, Ohio, Local 8’s Ricardo Jiménez, this presents a rich recruiting opportunity that can help the IBEW grow as well.

IBEW Canada Lobbies for Fair Wages Policy’s Return

With Canada’s next federal election only six months away, IBEW leaders and activists are reminding Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his Liberal Party majority in Parliament that they have not yet made good on one of their 2015 campaign pledges: to bring back the country’s federal fair wages law.

Trump Budget Takes Aim – Again – at Federal Workers

For the federal workforce, the Trump administration’s budget proposal for 2020 reads like a roadmap to civil service demise, with calls for cuts to annual leave and retirement security, pay freezes and a weakening of collective bargaining rights.

Michigan Members Help Save Historic 'Rosie' Bomber Factory

W. Jeffrey Koepp is like many baby boomers who grew up in and around the Michigan cities of Ypsilanti and Ann Arbor. He’d long heard tales from older family members who’d worked at the nearby Willow Run Bomber Plant of how the B-24 bombers built there turned the tide of World War II against Germany.

March 2019

  March Issue 

IBEW Activists Work to Bring Back Prevailing Wage to New Hampshire

For more than three decades, New Hampshire has been the lone New England state lacking a prevailing wage law. But after voters in November’s elections sent labor-friendly majorities to the state’s Legislature, IBEW members in the Granite State are hopeful that such a statute could finally be making a comeback.

IBEW Helps Alabama Boy Check Wish Off ‘Vision Bucket List’

Ian Oliver has always wanted to know how things work. The nitty-gritty of machinery, how it’s engineered, and what happens mechanically when you pull a lever or flip a switch.

IBEW Helping Railroads Meet Critical Safety Deadline

U.S. railroads already are among the safest in the world. But over the past several years, IBEW members have helped install technology across the country that aims to make them even safer.

Lawmakers Want Answers About NLRB’s Plans to Outsource Work

Two members of Congress are pushing for answers about the National Labor Relations Board’s plans to contract out its unionized staff’s duties reviewing public comments on the controversial joint employer rule.

Stephenson, Richard Lay Wreath at Tomb of Unknown Soldier

There is nothing to break the stark view from the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. It floats like a white marble ark in a sea of green lawn and small, white-capped grave markers for the thousands of buried troops. All of Washington D.C.’s grand monuments are hidden from sight across the Potomac from Arlington National Cemetery.

‘Skills Need to Change’ for Energy Workers, IBEW Tells Lawmakers

Utility Director Donnie Colston testified before a House subcommittee on March 7, telling members the role the IBEW and other unions can play in meeting the nation’s increased demand for workers in the energy and nuclear industries.

Locals That Battled Energy Deregulation Scheme Share First-Ever Edwin D. Hill Award

Two IBEW locals and their employer have won the inaugural Edwin D. Hill Award for their expansive efforts to protect good jobs and Nevada power customers, a campaign that led to the landslide defeat of a deceptive state ballot measure last November.

Trump Administration Issues Weakened Overtime Rule

The Trump administration has issued its version of an Obama-era rule to extend overtime pay, one that leaves out millions of working people.

Like Father, Like Son: Two Generations of Broadcasting Excellence

Jay Willis is accustomed to making quick decisions as an audio mixer during major sporting telecasts, primarily while working as a freelancer for CBS.

Tax Season: Deductions Disappear for Working Families

Tax season is here, and tens of millions of Americans are finding an unpleasant surprise when they enter the final calculations on their return.

BC Member Selected for Canada’s Future Skills Council

The government of Canada has assembled a new council to address the future of jobs in the country, and Vancouver, British Columbia, Local 213 assistant business manager Lisa Langevin will serve as a member.

Salt Lake City Local Blends Skill-Building With Solidarity

When Salt Lake City Local 354 member Jared Brydson returned from the IBEW’s International Convention in 2016, he was looking for ideas to increase engagement among new members. Then, he and Business Manager Russ Lamoreaux landed on the idea of a boot camp.

Judge: Parts of W.Va. Right-to-Work Law Violate State’s Constitution

West Virginia’s working people scored a big win on Wednesday when Kanawha County Circuit Court Judge Jennifer Bailey ruled unconstitutional parts of the state’s 2016 right-to-work law.

February 2019

  February Issue 

New Law in Ontario Threatens Jobs, Worker Safety

Under the guise of modernizing apprenticeships and cutting red tape, Ontario’s provincial government recently pushed through a blatantly anti-worker measure that instead will end up putting skilled people out of work and placing workers’ safety at risk.

The Rising Tide Lifting Women into Leadership

Sally McKleinfeld has been helping female friends with their résumés for years. Now she’s developed a program to help even more women within New York Local 3.

20th Annual Photo Contest: Results

From long shifts in driving snow to moving portraits and Pacific sunset views, this year’s photo contest winners captured what it means to be a member of the IBEW.

The State of American Democracy

A little less than a year ago, the Electrical Worker told you about a crisis in our democracy. The picture was dark. Tens of millions of American citizens live in gerrymandered electoral districts with borders surgically created to keep incumbent politicians in office. Millions more voters are locked out of the voting booth entirely.

‘Good People Like You Make This World’ Local 465 Gas Worker Rescues Trapped Car Crash Victims

Bringing his utility truck to a stop at a traffic light south of San Diego on a late January morning, Martin Barraza was shocked to see an overturned sedan, its crushed hood and front roof pressing against the pavement.

Superior Training Sees IBEW Members Nab Top Honors at Annual Competition

IBEW electricians from New York, Illinois and Minnesota swept the top honors at the third annual 2018 Ideal National Championship, held Dec. 1-3 near Orlando, Fla.

Missouri Union Membership Up, Bucking National Trend

Missouri added 25,000 working people to its union membership last year, propelled by a major right-to-work win victory where Show Me State workers made a compelling public case for the value of unions.

Safety Standards Slide as OSHA Guts Workplace Injury Tracking

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has gutted an Obama-era rule that required employers to report on-the-job injuries and illnesses.

Longtime Illinois Member Tells New Southern Colleagues: We Need the IBEW

After 38 years in the telecom industry and 35 years as an IBEW member in his native Illinois, Randy Phillips wasn’t quite ready to call it a retirement when he left AT&T in 2011. He came from a strong union family with a tradition of fighting for working people.

IBEW Members To Be Official Guests at State of the Union

Retired Manchester, Maine, Local 1837 member Cynthia Phinney and Chicago Local 134 apprentice Lily Wu have been invited as official guests to attend President Donald Trump’s State of the Union address on Tuesday night from the Capitol in Washington, D.C.

Generation Z and the ‘Other’ Four-Year Degree

All parents want their children to get a good job that pays them a livable wage. For many, that means attending a four-year college institution. But for many others, there’s an alternate path.

For the 20th time, IBEW Members Work to Provide CBS With A ‘Super’ Broadcast

More than 100 million people in the United States alone will watch the Super Bowl Sunday night on CBS. And, as usual, the network will rely heavily on IBEW broadcasting members to provide a world-class viewing event.

January 2019

  January Issue 

Near the IBEW’s Birthplace, St. Louis Members Build Affordable Housing

The Ville neighborhood on St. Louis’s near north side is an historic one for the region and the IBEW.

IBEW Collaborates with Entertainment Unions to Fight Harassment on the Job

In support of broadcast members, the IBEW has joined with about a dozen other unions within the entertainment industry to share resources as part of a pledge to combat workplace harassment.

Tradeswomen Find Solidarity in Numbers at Annual Women Build Nations Conference

It took Briane Montoya two days, but she finally found another woman who was an outside lineman like her. For someone who’s often the only woman on her job site, it was a big moment.

Texas Local Helps Corrections Officers Impacted by Government Shutdown

As the federal government shutdown drags on with no end in sight, more and more federal employees are going without. IBEW members, including those at Corpus Christi, Texas, Local 278, are stepping in to help.

Agency Created to Protect Federal Workers’ Rights Slams Door on Staff Union

A little-known federal agency charged with protecting the right of government workers to organize is refusing to recognize its own union.

Closed Local’s Hall Gets a New Lease on Life

The union hall of a disbanded Ohio local is finding new life as a museum and learning center, thanks to an innovative partnership forged between the local’s former leaders and a nearby university.

Same Care. Less Time and Money

You have the flu. Modern medicine’s solution is for you to drag yourself to the car, try not to kill anyone as you drive through a pounding headache, then wait who-knows-how-long on a sticky plastic couch to see a doctor you don’t know for a prescription. And you’ll pay for the privilege.

Maryland Members Help Preserve a Historic Railroad ‘Station’

As Interstate 68 curves through Cumberland, Md., the speed limit drops from 70 miles per hour to 40, providing drivers an opportunity to glimpse a historic church that once served as a stop on the Underground Railroad.

BC Organization Looks Past Recruiting Women to the Next Step: Keeping Them’

Typically, the solution to the stagnant number of women in construction – it’s been stuck at roughly 3 percent for decades – is to recruit more women. The BC Centre for Women in the Trades is taking a different approach: retention.

‘Congress: Do Your Job So We Can Do Ours’

On Jan. 10, the 20th of day of federal government shutdown, employees gathered outside the AFL-CIO headquarters in Washington, D.C. and in cities across the country to issue a message to Congress and the White House: Do your job so we can do ours.

Team Effort Delivers IBEW Representation For 200+ at Eversource

Fed up with their deteriorating office environment, a majority of the employees at a utility call center in Connecticut recently voted to join the IBEW in a united effort to improve their working conditions.

Unions Rally to Reopen Government

On what is expected to be the 20th day of the federal government shutdown, the AFL-CIO is organizing a rally to call for an end to the partial government stoppage. More than 30 unions, including the IBEW, are co-sponsoring the event.

Federal Employees Start 2019 With Shutdown, Uncertainty

The new year has started off on a precarious, if all-too-familiar, foot for the nation’s federal employees.

Nebraska Wireman Wraps Up an 89-Year Career

Every year, the IBEW hands out hundreds –yes hundreds—of 70-year pins to men and women marking seven decades as members of the Brotherhood.

Department of Energy Program Could Help with Soaring Medical Expenses

For IBEW members employed by the U.S. Department of Energy and dealing with a work-related illness, there could be a new way to get help with your medical bills.