December Labor Citizen

Brothers and sisters:

The brothers and sisters of IUEC Local 17 extend the warmest Christmas and Holiday wishes to our fellow union tradesmen. In this season of giving take a few minutes to find a charity you resonate with and make a commitment to donate time, treasure or talent. These organizations need your help all year long and you never know when you or someone you love may be in need of their services.

IUEC Local 17 in conjunction with NEIEP is offering two courses targeted to demystifying today’s elevator and escalator control systems. The first is a six night course on microprocessor-based controls covering all aspects of the ubiquitous systems we install and service. The second is a five night course on solid state motor control. These classes are designed to give the student a comprehensive understanding of the modern control systems they deal with today and will for the rest of their career. These classes are being taught by retiree John Taylor.

Brother Rick Myers is teaching a two night course in CPR and first aid. Having these two important skills in your tool box could make the difference of life or death for someone on a job or who you meet in the street.

For more information on these classes or if you would like to suggest a topic for future classes, contact Business Manager Tim Moennich at 216-431-8088 or at The more you know the more valuable you are.

The 31st General Convention of the IUEC will be held July 11-15 in Chicago, Illinois. Local 17 will send three elected delegates in addition to Business Manager Moennich. Nominations for those delegate positions will be made at the December 11 mandatory meeting with elections held at the January mandatory meeting for the installation of officers. If a run-off election is needed it will be held immediately after the vote count.

In the vein of New Year’s resolutions, it is time to think about resolutions for the upcoming contract negotiations with NEBA. These resolutions will be the basis for the negotiations with signatory companies for the new contract in 2017. They do not need to be eloquent, only pertinent to the trade. Resolutions for the General Convention must be into the International no later than April 12, 2016.

The US Department of Labor analyzed data on 974 occupations to find the 27 most damaging jobs for your health. They factored in exposure to contaminants, disease and infection and radiation as well as the risk of burns, bites, cuts and stings and scored them from zero to 100. Elevator constructors came in 24 tied with metal refining, furnace operators and embalmers. The trade scored a 98 on exposure to hazardous conditions, 82 on exposure to contaminants and a 61 on risk of minor burns, cuts bite and stings. The number one most damaging occupation to your health? Dentists and oral surgeons.

The Volunteer Organizing Committee would like to thank all the trades that have been calling the hall with they spot a non-signatory company working around town. Through your vigilance we have been doing good work making contact with employees of these companies to tell them the true story of what union membership means. Please keep up your efforts.

I am proud to report that as of this writing all the members of IUEC Local 17 are employed. This means that this is a golden time for anyone interested in getting into the best trade in the trades. This was part of the message of IUEC International Organizer Jim Lowery at the November general meeting. Lowery reported on the affiliation agreement reached with the Union Los Gladiadores, the union representing elevator constructors on the island of Puerto Rico. This affiliation agreement in conjunction with the communications opened with company unions representing constructors in Europe expands the reach of the IUEC and facilitates the exchange of ideas among the groups to truly emphasize the International in IUEC.

Lowery also spoke about the organizing videos shot and edited by NEIEP for Local 10 (Washington, DC). They feature members stripped from non-signatory companies telling in their own words why they took the plunge and what they found on the other side. “As we interviewed these members, without any poking or proving from us, they all said the same thing: education, wages and benefits.” Lowery also told about one member he stripped who was injured shortly after starting and was able to get financial relief from the union while he was out. “He said that if it had been his old employer, he would have been out of luck, but he really appreciate what the IUEC did for him to keep him and his family going through the tough time.”

Look for these videos soon at the Local 17 website,

The December meeting will feature International General President Frank Christensen.

The Brothers and Sisters of the local send their condolences to Brother Jim Sinclair whose mother passed away October 10th.

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