November ’20 Labor-Citizen

Brothers and Sisters:

As you read this in the second week of November, the IUEC Local 17 apprentices are nearing the end of the fall semester.  Since NEIEP has instituted distance learning, it is even more important to keep up on their studies.  The Joint Apprenticeship Committee receives regular reports on the status of apprentices advancement through the program.  If an apprentice falls behind the average of one unit per week, they run the risk of being asked to attend a JAC meeting.  

NEIEP has been receiving requests to hold a forklift class.  Since there is no face-to-face instruction, NEIEP will pay for an online course.  If you are interested in finding a  class, contact Business Manager John Driscoll Jr. at JEDriscoll@iueclocal17.org or call 216-431-8088.

Local 17 has placed Bluestone Apartments, 25450 Euclid Avenue on its list of two-man callbacks.  Bluestone is currently serviced by Thyssen-Krupp.  This list is compiled by the Local and distributed to signatories to represent jobs that may pose a safety risk to our members.

The trustees of the IUEC 401(k) and annuity plan have extended the COVID-19 related distribution eligibility to December 15.  This is the third extension of the program.

In the November issue of the Elevator Constructor, the IUEC monthly journal, the International Safety Committee used its space to discuss the topic of mental health awareness and suicide prevention.  This is an especially timely subject given the stresses placed on society by the pandemic and a time of year known to intensify depression and loneliness.  To counter this trend the IUEC offers the Members Assistance Program through Beacon Health.  It is covered by the Benefits Plan as are most mental health services.  If you know someone who is in crisis or you are yourself, you can call 800-331-4824.  The number is manned 24/7 and can give help on a number of topics.  There is also a link on the IUEC Local 17 website, iueclocal17.org

The December 13, 2020 and January 8, 2021 meetings are mandatory meetings for the election and installation of officers.  Fines will be levied for non-attendance.

The Brothers and Sisters of IUEC Local 17 send their condolences to the families of Brother Greg Seaman who lost his son Anthony and retired Brother John Lopiccolo Sr. who passed away.

As of this writing there are two mechanics on the bench.

November ’20 Constructor

Brothers and Sisters:

As I write this, the Cleveland Fire Department is extinguishing the hot spots from the fire at the Samson Pavilion of the Heath Education Campus of Case Western Reserve University and the Cleveland Clinic left by the conflagration between President Trump and former Vice President Biden.  

The only words I have for what took place on camera are ummm… Wow.  Really?  Wow.

The bright spots took place off stage and behind the scenes.  The protests were peaceful, with only four arrests for minor offenses noted.  The City of Cleveland took the occasion to show the rest of the country how a professional event of this importance is to be staged. From the venue to the support services and the highest level of security yet for an election event this cycle pulled off with pride and to perfection. 

Readers from other cities note that I can be a bit of a “homer” but, I am proud of my home town and the tremendous progress it has made over the years transforming itself from a heavy industrial city to one that boasts three of the best health care systems in the country within its borders:  The Cleveland Clinic, University Hospitals and MetroHealth.  I have family and friends that work and have been cared for in all three systems and am extremely grateful for the professionalism and cutting edge treatments they offer Northeast Ohio and the rest of the world.

Cleveland has once again set the bar high giving other host cities a standard to attain.  Let’s hope the rest of America takes this cue and holds our leaders to the same standard of excellence.

The fall semester started August 31 and is again online due to the COVID-19 concerns.  NEIEP is offering two instructors locally to assist apprentices with the course work as well as other instructors from around the country available online.  All other standards for distance learning are in place.  The school work must be completed by December 11 to be eligible for the finals during the week of December 14.

Local 17 has eleven apprentices eligible for the mechanics exam but due to the lockdown NEIEP is not paying for in person instruction for the exam.  Rick Meyers is donating his time setting up online meetings to review the material he has put together through his career.

All apprentices should have received raises in the first check in September.  Check your paystub and if you have any questions about your rate contact Business Manager john Driscoll Jr. at 216-431-8088 or email him at JEDriscoll@iueclocal17.org.

Congratulations to Brother Joel Reyes on passing the mechanics exam.

The November 13, 2020, December 11, 2020 and January 8, 2021 meetings are mandatory for the nomination, election and installation of officers.  Failure to attend will result in fines being levied by the Executive Board.

Remember to report to the hall when you are on a job that will last for more than two days.

If you or your family had a life event (birth, death, marriage, etc.), moved or changed your phone number or insurance beneficiary, take a few minutes and update your contact information with the hall.  You can call or email John at the numbers above.  

As of this writing there are two mechanics and one probationary apprentice on the bench.

Until next month,

Work smart, work safe and slow down for safety.

Don

DKnapik@windstream.net

October ’20 Labor-Citizen

Brothers and Sisters:

Laborers Local 310, in compliance with all safety recommendations in force since the March announcement of the COVID-19 pandemic, restricted access to the meeting hall out of concern for social distancing and possible transmission risks.  While the pandemic has limited the ability of IUEC Local 17 to hold regular member meetings, the officers met to conduct the normal business of the Local.  The first regular member meeting since March will be held October 13 at the hall.  All members are encouraged to attend and to keep in mind the need for masking and distance at the event.  This will be true for all meetings for the foreseeable future.

The November 13, 2020, December 11, 2020 and January 8, 2021 Local 17 meetings are mandatory for the nomination, election and installation of officers.  Fines will be levied by the Executive Board for non-attendance.

Apprentices started back to a virtual class experience on August 31.  Since NEIEP would not allow face-to-face instruction, Brothers Jerry Reitz and Tim Narowitz are available on Monday and Tuesday to answer questions about material.  NEIEP has also made available mentoring sessions with instructors around the country.  Students are reminded that they are required to keep on pace to be completed with their classwork by December 11 with finals week beginning December 14.

There are eleven apprentices eligible to take the Mechanics Exam.  Rick Myers is running a review class over Webex using the material he has accumulated over the years.  

Congratulations go out to Brother Joel Reyes on the accomplishment of passing the Mechanics Exam.

When this article reaches your door, there will be less than 30 days left before election day.  Whether you have chosen to vote by mail or will be going to the polls in person, you will be letting your voice be heard above the cacophony we have endured.  Be proud of your vote and remember those who fight in the trenches and the courts to maintain this obligation that is so fragile when practiced individually and so strong when practiced together.

As of this writing there are two mechanics and one probationary apprentice on the bench.

Until next month,

Work smart, work safe and slow down for safety

Don

Dknapik@windsttream.net

October ’20 Constructor

Brothers and Sisters:

This morning I was listening to NPR’s Morning Edition as host Noel King interviewed book editor Ilan Stavans about his anthology And We Came Outside And Saw The Stars Again.  According to Stavans the book is a combination of poetry and prose about living in times of radical change like the world is experiencing with the Covid-19 pandemic and the upheaval of society being felt across America and around the world.

King brought up three interesting points worth commenting on:  two about the content and a third about the title. 

The first point focused on one of the pieces written by a contributor from India.  The poem is about her first day in quarantine.  After bringing in the morning paper she noticed an ant crawling on the pillow where she placed the paper.  Her mission for that day, even if she did nothing more, was to find that ant and return it to the outside.  King and Stavans agreed the poet used the action as a metaphor for kindness as the ant was introduced into the home within the newspaper containing the dysfunction of the world.  The confinement of the poet to her home made it impossible to accomplish anything society would otherwise deem worthy but, by freeing this ant something good would be accomplished that day.

The second observation was that most anthologies, whether poetry or prose, focus exclusively on one form to the exclusion of the other.  Stavans made the point that  European bookstores do not make a distinction between fiction and non-fiction, poetry or prose.  Instead books are jumbled together in a randomness that would drive librarians and those with OCD to madness.  His point being there is a beauty to this entropy and it is based on the understanding of time in both a scientific and religious context.

There is an agreement between science and religion, and that basis grows greater with research into the true nature of time, that the concept of time as perceived by humans as linear is false.  Instead, time is as an ocean where all events, like droplets of rain, are in a state of simultaneous existence and one droplet becomes indistinguishable from the next.  Our perception of time as a linear progression of discrete events exists because our mental abilities are incapable of seeing the whole of existence as simultaneous.

This is a mind blowing concept and one FAR outside the space allotted to even begin to scratch.  

The last point, the title of the work, attempts to give perspective to the struggle of existence.   The line “and we came outside and saw the stars again.” is the last line of Dante Aligheri’s The Divine Comedy.  The line, and thus the overarching message of both Dante’s masterpiece and the Stavans anthology, is that through all the struggles of the individual and collective hell we face, there is an end.  

We will find the end.  

We will find the light.

For those looking for assistance, IUEC Local 17 has a web page dedicated to mental health, financial and substance abuse resources for members, non-members, friends and family.  The page is available on the Health and Wellness tab at the Local’s website, iueclocal17.org.  There are no trackers or cookies on the site so access is entirely anonymous.

By the time you read this, there will be about four weeks before the election.  Local 17 has a link to the Ohio Secretary of State voter website as well as the IUEC site created in conjunction with the North American Building and Construction Trades.  These are important sites for voter information.

No matter what your political persuasion, if you don’t vote, don’t complain.

Until next month…

Work smart, work safe and slow down for safety.

Don

DKnapik@windstream.net

September ’20 Labor-Citizen

Brothers and Sisters:

The National Elevator Industry Educational Program (NEIEP) has decided that all apprentice classes will be held virtually for the Fall 2020 semester with no in-person instruction.  

All apprentices should have received notification through Business Manager John Driscoll, Jr. and their NEIEP email on which classes they are enrolled in as well as instructions on how to access educational material.

Starting September 8, Brothers Jerry Reitz and Tim Narowitz are available Mondays and Tuesdays through Microsoft Teams to answer questions on course material.  Apprentices are expected to have read and reviewed the material prior to accessing Teams.  These sessions are encouraged but not required.

If you have any questions regarding your class assignment, you can contact John at JEDriscoll@iueclocal17.org or 216-431-8088.  For questions on technical issues with class laptops, software or access to material email NEIEP at support@neiep.org.

The International in conjunction with the North American Building Trades Union (NABTU) have established a voting information website for IUEC members.  The site, elevatorconstructorsvote.org, has tabs to allow the user to check their registration, register to vote and request a mail-in ballot.  This one-stop shop is designed to make the voting experience as easy as possible given the procedural uncertainties presented by the continued Covid-19 pandemic.  Look for this and other voter registration links on the IUEC Local 17 website, iueclocal17.org.  

The deadline to register for the November 3rd general election is October 5.

The next scheduled membership meeting is Friday, September 11. This is dependent on the availability of the hall by Laborers Local 310.  

VOTER REGISTRATION INFORMATION

Brothers and Sisters:

Below is a link developed in conjunction with NABTU customized for the IUEC Membership.

This site is now live!  https://elevatorconstructorsvote.org/

This link has three (3) tabs:  CHECK YOUR REGISTRATION, REGISTER TO VOTE and REQUEST A MAIL-IN BALLOT

For those who wish to see what their Congressman and Senators voting percentage are on issues important to unions and working families, follow this link to  www.aflcio.org/legislative-scorecard

This information is made available through the AFL-CIO.

Here is a link to the Ohio Secretary of State office for all Ohio voting related issues.

September ’20 Elevator Constructor

Brothers and Sisters:

By the time you read this there will be eight short weeks before the election. While most of the attention will be on the top of the respective tickets, I want to take a moment and talk about the down ballot races. These races represent the most direct way that government affects our lives. These elected officials decide how and where our tax dollars are allocated and their priorities decide more on a granular level than those broad policies of the federal system.

On the local level, the differences between party affiliations means little. These are the men and women we see at church, the park and grocery store and usually will stop to talk about an issue that affects their constituents. That direct face time and individual connection makes them more accountable to you and I.

The statehouse begins a level of insularity between the electors and elected. The elected work and live, for the most part, in the capitol and travel home on weekends or breaks to rest and meet with electors. They tend to socialize with other elected and form a thought bubble that can lead to an “us and them” mindset. Depending on the level of politicization, this can impede the ability to pass legislation. This mindset is only amplified in the echo chamber of Congress.

Your votes for governor, senate, house, state and local offices are just as important, if not more, than your vote for who heads the ticket. Pay attention.

IUEC Local 17 is moving its school from the Superior Avenue address Engle Road between Brookpark and Snow. The move increases the space available for classes and labs as well as giving an option to comfortably hold multiple classes on the same night. A large thank you to all the members who gave the time to make the move a reality.

After the spring semester finals, there are 11 apprentices eligible for the mechanics exam. Congratulations to those apprentices and good luck on your review and exam. The important takeaway is that even though this represents the end of your formal training, education in our trade is an ongoing affair. Take every advantage of those opportunities and you will see a long and prosperous career.

Apprentices advancing to their next pay level will have the new rates effective in the pay cycle after September 1. Business Manager John Driscoll, Jr. sent a letter to the signatories listing their apprentices and the appropriate pay scale as of that date. Vacation checks were due July 15. If there was a problem with your check, or a question on your status, contact John at the hall at 216-431-8088 or email him at JEDriscoll@iueclocal17.org.

The Memorandum of Understanding between the International and signatory companies represented by NEBA and ECA lapsed June 30. As a result, those that were furloughed are now on the out of work list.

While work remains strong in many areas, there is evidence that a slow down may be on the horizon. Otis asked for volunteers to go to Pittsburgh to work on a project for Amazon while Kone picked up an apprentice and probationary off the bench and Schindler is booked with work through the fall of 2021. ThyssenKrupp corporate completed their sale of the elevator division to an equity group July 31 and it is unclear how that will affect the local office.

The next meeting is scheduled for September 11. If the hall is not available, John will notify the membership through email.

The Brothers and Sisters of Local 17 send their condolences to the family of Brothers Walter and Brandyn Alley on the passing of their mother and grandmother respectively.
As of this writing there are four mechanics and two probationary apprentices on the bench.

Until next month…
Work safe, work smart and slow down for safety.

Don
dknapik@windstream.net

August ’20 Labor-Citizen

Brothers and Sisters:

IUEC Local 17 is moving its school from the Superior Avenue address to Engle Road between Brookpark and Snow. The move increases the space available for classes and labs as well as giving an option to comfortably hold multiple classes on the same night. A large thank you to all the members who gave the time to make the move a reality.

After the spring semester finals, there are 11 apprentices eligible for the mechanics exam. Congratulations to those 11 apprentices and good luck on your review and exam. The important takeaway is that even though this represents the end of your formal training, education in our trade is an ongoing affair. Take every advantage of those opportunities and you will see a long and prosperous career.

Apprentices advancing to their next pay level will have the new rates effective in the pay cycle after September 1. Business Manager John Driscoll, Jr. sent a letter to the signatories listing their apprentices and the appropriate pay scale as of that date. Vacation checks were due July 15. If there was a problem with your check, or a question on your status, contact John at the hall at 216-431-8088 or email him at JEDriscoll@iueclocal17.org.

The Memorandum of Understanding between the International and signatory companies represented by NEBA and ECA lapsed July 1. As a result, those that were furloughed are now on the out of work list.

While work remains strong in many areas, there is evidence that a slow down may be on the horizon. Otis asked for volunteers to go to Pittsburgh to work on a project for Amazon while Kone picked up an apprentice and probationary off the bench and Schindler Cleveland is booked with work through the fall of 2021. ThyssenKrupp corporate completed their sale of the elevator division to an equity group July 31.

The next meeting is scheduled for September 11. If the hall is not available, John will notify the membership through email.

The Brothers and Sisters of Local 17 send their condolences to the family of Brothers Walter and Brandyn Alley on the passing of their mother and grandmother respectively.
As of this writing there are four mechanics and two probationary apprentices on the bench.

Until next month…
Work safe, work smart and slow down for safety.

August ’20 Elevator Constructor

Brothers and Sisters:

As I sit down to write this article at the end of June 2020 for publication in the August issue it is no hyperbole to say the world has changed. George Floyd, COVID, the new civil rights movement, Russian bounties on US soldiers, the election, China arresting Hong Kong protesters, Putin changing the Russian constitution so he can retain power until 2036 and the cavalcade continues.

It is also hard to predict where we as an International and Local will be as these words reach you. NEIEP has worked to change the way it instructs the apprentices under their charge, the International has worked to keep as many members working as possible, the International organizations have attempted to make resources available to help cope with the changes and the Locals have worked to adapt to the situations to which they find their members entrenched.

It is also fruitless to report about the moves made to react to these changes because by the time you read them we will be four steps past and the world will be totally different.

Yes, this is crazy.

In crazy times, though, the only thing we have control over is how we individually respond to those events. It sounds simple, and to an extent, it is but the application is far harder to implement than that simple sentence when these events directly affect you.

My only advice is the simple maxim we teach when entering a car top or pit: stop, scan for hazards, evaluate the situation, minimize your personal risk and proceed.

Good luck and stay above the fray.
Where are they working?

DJ Spring, Deven Shields and Brandyn Alley installing three cars at the Lumen at Playhouse Square for Otis,

Joe Simcic and Al Ward running a car at The Lumen for Otis,

Craig Nolty and Dan Koprowski at Berea High School installing one traction and one hydraulic elevator for Otis,

Jim Thompson and Jack Finucan at The Carlyle in Lakewood doing a mod for Otis,

John Logue and Pat Pollock at Lutheran Hospital doing a mod for Otis,

Matt Pinchot and Andrea Rodriguez at Landmark Parking Garage doing two-car mod for Otis,

Ken Bowles and Shane Huff at Chestnut Lakes doing a mod for Otis,

Jerry Szmerekovsky and Pat Kelly at Lubrizol installing one car for Otis,

Dave Gnagy and Ernie Rodriguez at Kingspath doing a two-car mod for Schindler,

Joe Sumph and Dave Ford doing a mod at St. Clair Place for Schindler,

Felix DeJesus and Rob Timko doing a mod at Erieview for Schindler,

Shaun Yatsko and Dan Varga at the Rose Building doing a two-car mod for Schindler,

Ryan Todd, Brian Bond, Brian Siether, Gary Thompson and Jason Mays at Penton Media doing a 15 car mod for Schindler,

Mark Byram and Matt Weingart doing a mod at UH for Schindler,

Tom Peska and Jay Schaffer installing four four-stop cars at 6050 Kruse Road in Solon for Schindler,

Brendan Hyland and Russell Barrows replacing a machine at Harbor Light for Kone,

Drew Williams, Joel Reyes, Todd Ross and Morgan Armstrong doing a mod at May Company for Kone,

Bob Meyer and Joe Gauker installing three cars at Church and State for Kone,

Anthony Metcalf, Sean Canning, Bill Dudas and Andrew Daniels doing a mod at Columbus Park Apartments for Thyssen,

Tim Narowitz and Matt Harden doing a two-car mod at Huntington House for Thyssen,

Jason Fredrick and Chris Sipos doing a mod at Victoria Plaza for Thyssen,

Tony Kuhn and Matt Ramser installing a car at Village Green for Thyssen,

Scott Hicks and Tino Chaibai at 310 Lakeside doing a mod for Gable,

Jim Ehrbar and Wing Lui doing a mod at Lakewood Center North for Gable.

Congratulations go out to Brothers Marc Carollo, Chris Cook, Jacob Mullett, Chris Sipos and Rob Zadravec on passing the Mechanics Exam. Make the most of this opportunity to make a positive contribution to the trade.

As of this writing there are two mechanics, one apprentice and three probationary apprentices on furlough and two mechanics laid off.
Until next month…

Work smart, work safe and slow down for safety.
Don
DKnapik@windstream.net

Stop Use IMMEDIATE ACTION REQUIRED3M™ Fall Protection Specific DBI-SALA® Delta™ & Exofit XP™ArcFlash Harnesses

As part of 3M Fall Protections continued commitment to producing high quality safety and personal protective equipment, we conduct periodic testing of our products. Recent testing of specific DBI-SALA® Delta™ & Exofit XP™ Arc Flash harnesses have returned negative test results on some units. The Arc Flash Standard (ASTM F887) requires that all arc flash rated harnesses be subjected to an Arc Flash followed by a successful dynamic drop test. It should be noted that there is variability in Arc Flash testing of webbing based products. Although not fully understood, it can stem from several contributing factors including positioning, webbing gap to the test torso, environmental elements, arc path, input energy and other possible sources.

Issue #1 3M™ Fall Protection Specific DBI-SALA® Delta™ & Exofit XP™ Arc Flash Harnesses withan Integrated 18 in. Nylon D-Ring Extension

A recent review ofthe test results and subsequent retesting of specific DBI-SALA® Delta™ & Exofit XP™ Arc Flash harnesses that utilize an integrated 18 in. Nylon D-Ring Extensionhave found inconsistent performance results. As such,we are issuing a stop use noticeto all customers that have these harnesses which include an attached nylon d-ring extension.

We are not aware of any accidents or injuries related to this condition. We have not received any customer complaints regarding this but have identified it through an internal review.

Users/Owners: Immediately inspect your harness to determine if it is one of the affected part numbers. The harness part number can be found on the harness label. Although these harnesses will safely arrest a fall, you should not use these harnesses in an environment or application where there is a potential for an arc flash event. We are not aware of any arc flash related injuries in the field, but the potential exists for insufficient performance after an arc flash event.

If you have identified that you have an affected harness, please contact 3M Customer Service at1-833-638-2697 or at 3musfpserviceaction@mmm.comand provide us with contact information and we will have someone contact you to discuss your options. We are working to develop a retrofit D-Ring Extension to address the issue including re-certification to the product under the ANSI/ASTM Arc Flash standard. We anticipate that we will be able to provide this solution to you free of charge by June 2020.

Once available, a copy of the retrofit Instruction for Use (IFU) can be found at http://go.3M.com/specific-Delta-and-XP0-Arc-Flash-harnesses.

Issue #2 Certain 3M™ Fall Protection CustomDBI-SALA® Delta™ & Exofit XP™ Arc Flash Harnesses

Due to the very low volumes associated with these SKUs, we have chosen not to invest in the testing required to re-validate conformity to the ASTM F887 arc flash standard for the harnesses identified. As such, we have decided to discontinue offering these products to the market.

Most of these products were developed many years ago and we have not been able to establish a clear link to past test reports validating conformity to ASTM F887. Out of an abundance of caution, we are requesting that end users return these harnesses to us and we will provide a cash rebate, provided the harnesses pass a pre-use inspection as per our Instruction for Use.

 

We are not aware of any accidents or injuries related to this condition. We have not received any customer complaints regarding any of these units but have identified this situation through an internal review.

 

Users/Owners: Immediately inspect your harness to determine if it is one of the affected part numbers. The harness part number can be found on the harness label. You should not use these harnesses in an environment or application where there is a potential for an arc flash event. We are not aware of any arc flash related injuries in the field, but the potential exists for insufficient performance after an arc flash event.

 

If you have identified that you have an affected harness, please contact 3M Customer Service at 1-833-638-2697 or at 3musfpserviceaction@mmm.comand provide us with contact information and we will arrange for the product return and cash rebate.

 

A copy of this notice can be found at http://go.3M.com/specific-Delta-and-XP0-Arc-Flash-harnesses.Distributors: Please contact our Customer Service department at 1-833-638-2697 or at 3musfpserviceaction@mmm.comto obtain a listing of all affected harnesses sold to you. The affected part numbers are shown above.If you have any of the affected harnesses in stock, you should return them to 3M Fall Protection for credit.

 

Please immediately forward this Stop Use to any of your customers/users who have purchased affected product from you with a request that they read and comply with this Notice.

 

3M remains committed to providing quality products and services to our customers.  We apologize for any inconvenience that this situation may cause to you or your customers.  We appreciate your continued support of 3M Fall Protection products and services.3M Fall Protection