April ’16 Labor-Citizen

Brothers and sisters:

The recruitment for the Local is closed. As of March 9th we had 123 people request applications for the apprenticeship program. The applicants are graded on a written and tool aptitude test and an oral interview. All applicants will be slotted according to the results and offered employment in the order of their ranking. Best of luck to all that apply.

The bench is clear and IUEC Local 17 has 24 probationary apprentices working in the Cleveland area.

Instructor John Taylor is currently teaching a class on solid state motor control. The class covers the theory and application of these ubiquitous pieces of equipment and attempts to demystify their operation.

Brother Rick Myers is teaching a combined first aid and CPR class in one night. The goal is to give the student the knowledge to safely assess and react in an emergency situation. The class covers the how to do CPR and use an Automatic External Defibrillator (AED). If you are interested in this or any other class, contact Business Manager Tim Moennich at 216-431-8088 or email him at TMoennich@iueclocal17.org.

In February, two IUEC members lost their lives in on the job accidents. Brother Eric Martel, Local 89 (Quebec) lost his life in an escalator accident. The 28-year-old leaves behind a wife 13-weeks pregnant with their first child. Local 89 started a GoFundMe page for Martel and his family. On February 24, Brother Brent Hutchins, Local 79 (Little Rock), was killed doing preventative maintenance at the University of Arkansas Medical Center. He worked for Schindler and he leaves behind a wife, 12 year-old daughter and six year-old son.

Nothing else is known about these fatalities at this time. I encourage all those reading this piece to take a few minutes and search for the article “In the Shadow of the Super Bowl” by Lars Anderson which was reprinted in the March issues of the IUEC’s journal, The Elevator Constructor. The article covers the death during the construction of Levi Stadium, the home of the 49er’s, of Schindler mechanic Don White. The article is not about him per se but, about the affect of his death, both immediate and almost a year out, on his family and those closest to him. It is a powerful insight into the dangers that all who work in the skilled trades face and the consequences to those we leave behind. In my humble opinion, it should be required reading for all in the trades.

The Cuyahoga County Board of Elections is rolling out a messaging tool for those who wish to vote by mail. The service, VoterNotify, is designed to keep the voter informed on events with their request to vote by mail including when the ballots are mailed out to the voter and received by the Board, alerts about possible issues with the ballot and reminders on when to have the ballot returned. For more information go to voternotify.i3ballot.net.

In case you haven’t noticed, there is an election coming up in November and Cleveland is going to be center stage in the fight over who the Republican Party will send to the ballot. As long as Governor John Kasich is in the fight, do not look for the state GOP majority to take on any controversial issues that would cast the governor is a bad light with the general public. The time to watch is going to be after the election and going forward into the new term when anti-labor legislation like Right-To-Work-For-Less and language banning project labor agreements can come to the forefront once again.

One way that labor has sought to fight this battle is through Community Benefit Agreements (CBA) that outline what the community receives relating to project development. These benefits could be local or minority employment on the job, woman or minority owned business involvement or any number of benefits. As of January there are eighteen construction projects totaling $1.8 Billion in investment embracing this CBA concept. This puts all members of the Cleveland Building and Construction Trades in the mix and serves to benefit all of the organized trades.

Regardless whether your state and local representative is a D or an R, pay attention to how they vote on labor related issues. If you don’t know, find out.

There is still time to get your reservation in for the Annual Local 17 Retiree’s Dinner to be held on May 20th at Frank Sterle’s Slovenian House Restaurant, 1401 East 55th Street. Festivities start at 5:30 with food served at 6:30. All members, active and retired, are invited to attend. The cost at the door is $30 for active members and retirees are free. Contact Entertainment Chairman Bill Yuhas or Business Manager Tim Moennich at 216-431-8088 or email Tim at TMoennich@iueclocal17.org.