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Updated: 27 min 18 sec ago

USW, WH Digital Announce Partnership to Help Freelance Tech Workers

Mon, 05/03/2021 - 13:02

Contact: Jess Kamm Broomell, (412) 562-2444, jkamm@usw.org

The United Steelworkers (USW) union and WH Digital, a product of the Work Hard Pittsburgh Cooperative, are proud to announce a new initiative, Freelancers Organized for Change, Unity, and Strength (FOCUS), aimed at helping area freelance tech workers thrive. 

The first phase of the project, which launched May 1, provides opportunities for tech workers to connect with one another to discuss common concerns and explore potential solutions.

“Freelance workers face a number of unique challenges, from nontraditional employer-employee relationships to the need to ensure their work is properly valued,” said USW District 10 Director Bobby “Mac” McAuliffe. “The USW welcomes the opportunity to help workers explore creative options so that they can better advocate for their own interests.”

FOCUS was made possible by a two-year grant from the LIFT Fund, which supports innovative labor union/worker center partnerships. Planned events include listening sessions, trainings, workshops and community outreach.

“We work with a number of tech freelancers, many of whom enjoy their flexibility and the opportunity to work on a variety of projects,” said Maddi Love, director of marketing at WH Digital and Work Hard Pittsburgh executive committee member, “But workers still need a voice on the job. Providing a space in which workers can learn from each other and work collaboratively will improve conditions across the board.”

The initial stages of FOCUS will center largely on identifying and connecting area tech freelancers so they can start an open dialogue.

“We want to hear from workers across this sector so we can better understand their needs,” McAuliffe said. 

The USW represents 850,000 workers employed in metals, mining, pulp and paper, rubber, chemicals, glass, auto supply and the energy-producing industries, along with a growing number of workers in health care, public sector, higher education, tech and service occupations. 

WH Digital is a full service creative and technical agency committed to equity and worker empowerment. We organize the Pittsburgh region's best tech and tech adjacent talent to solve problems for organizations big and small.

USW Slams ExxonMobil Decision to Lock Out Workers in Beaumont, Texas

Sat, 05/01/2021 - 12:31

Contact: Richard Hoot Landry, 409-284-9807 

The USW today condemned ExxonMobil’s decision to engage in an unfair labor practice lock out impacting more than 650 members of USW Local 13-243 in its Beaumont, Texas refinery and blending and packaging plant.

“It’s deeply disappointing that ExxonMobil would take such a drastic step and keep its dedicated workforce off the job when our only goal throughout this whole process has been to bargain a fair agreement,” said USW Local 13-243 President Darrell Kyle.

The local began bargaining a new contract with ExxonMobil on Jan. 11. On April 23, the company provided written notice of its intention to lock out workers starting May 1 unless they accepted a proposal which included major changes impacting members’ safety, security and seniority. Contrary to this notice, management began escorting workers out of the blending and packaging plant the evening of April 30.

“Our members deserve to stay safe on the job, and having skilled, experienced workers operating our facilities keeps our community safe as well,” Kyle said.

The USW urged the company to end its unfair labor practice lock out quickly and come back to the bargaining table so the two sides could continue negotiating.

“Over the past year, the company was perfectly willing to tell us we were essential as we performed our jobs through the Covid-19 pandemic, hurricanes, floods and most recently an unprecedented freeze,” Kyle said. “Now, it’s rewarding our hard work and sacrifice by forcing us off our jobs.”

The USW represents 850,000 workers employed in metals, mining, pulp and paper, rubber, chemicals, glass, auto supply and the energy-producing industries, along with a growing number of workers in health care, public sector, higher education, tech and service occupations.

USW Condemns U.S. Steel Decision to Cancel Investment in Mon Valley Works

Fri, 04/30/2021 - 11:27

Contact: Jess Kamm Broomell, (412) 562-2444, jkamm@usw.org 

United Steelworkers (USW) International President Tom Conway issued the following statement in response to U.S. Steel’s announcement that it will be cancelling a $1.5 billion upgrade at its Mon Valley Works:

“We are extremely disappointed in U.S. Steel management’s decision to abandon the Mon Valley project and the community. It was just two short years ago when U.S. Steel touted the project and the dedicated workforce there as essential to the future of the Mon Valley Works and Pennsylvania steelmaking.  

“The company then moved its attention to Arkansas when a shiny new object caught its attention in the form of Big River Steel. It further shut down its steelmaking operations at Great Lakes Works in Michigan, eliminating more than 1,500 jobs.

“U.S. Steel management advised the union of the Mon Valley decision by text minutes before the public announcement.

“We believe that in spite of this betrayal of the workforce at the Mon Valley Works, the co-gen project at a minimum should proceed at Clairton.

“These broken promises don’t go unforgotten. Our contract with U.S. Steel requires a minimum amount of capital to be spent in our plants. The USW intends to enforce that.”   

The USW represents 850,000 workers employed in metals, mining, pulp and paper, rubber, chemicals, glass, auto supply and the energy-producing industries, along with a growing number of workers in health care, public sector, higher education, tech and service occupations.

USW Backs Biden’s Call for Bold Action

Wed, 04/28/2021 - 14:04

Contact: Jess Kamm Broomell, 412-562-2444, jkamm@usw.org

Investment in Physical, Social Infrastructure Key to Shared Economic Gains

United Steelworkers (USW) International President Tom Conway issued the following statement today in anticipation of President Joe Biden’s address to a joint session of Congress: 

“Over the course of his first 100 days in office, President Biden laid out decisive plans to not only combat the Covid-19 crisis head-on, but also to make bold investments in our physical and social infrastructures so that we can put our country on a path toward widespread economic security and shared prosperity.

“President Biden understood that the only way to rebuild our shattered economy and create good, family-sustaining jobs was to first address the pandemic and invest in public health, schools, unemployment benefits and other vital services.   

“But our nation is facing other challenges, including rapidly increasing economic inequality, that extend well beyond the past year.

“Our union agrees with President Biden that transformative infrastructure investment is one of the most effective ways to revitalize our manufacturing sector, create good paying jobs, rebuild the middle class and keep our communities safe now and into the future.

“Investing not only in our crumbling roads, bridges, waterways and other transportation networks, but also in our schools, communication systems, public health and much more, will create jobs and make our workplaces safer.

“Providing resources for services like child care, paid family leave and continuing education will make our families more secure.

“There’s still a great deal of work to do to make President Biden’s vision a reality. As Congress begins fashioning legislation around these vital issues, we urge them, like the president, to keep workers and their families at the forefront so that we lift up all Americans.”

The USW represents 850,000 workers employed in metals, mining, pulp and paper, rubber, chemicals, glass, auto supply and the energy-producing industries, along with a growing number of workers in health care, public sector, higher education, tech and service occupations.

Pitt Grad Student Workers Call for Additional Financial Support

Wed, 04/28/2021 - 13:05

Contact: R.J. Hufnagel, 412-562-2450, rhufnagel@usw.org

Administration’s Late Decision to Extend Funding Doesn’t Go Far Enough

Graduate student workers at the University of Pittsburgh are celebrating a decision by the university to support grads facing possible funding shortfalls, while calling for more support for other graduates who are not eligible for that limited program.

The university announced last week that it would provide one semester of additional funding to a narrowly defined group of graduate students in danger of running out of funding in part due to the limitations placed on their work as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

That decision followed a year of activism by graduates, including a petition with nearly 900 graduates’ signatures delivered to the administration last summer, calling for a one-year extension of funding for all graduate students, as well as other types of assistance.

“While the administration’s decision is a welcome one, it is woefully late in coming, and does not go nearly far enough in protecting graduate workers,” said Kess Ballentine, a PhD candidate in Pitt’s School of Social Work. “What this also shows is that grassroots activism gets results.”

Ballentine and thousands of other Pitt grads have been organizing to become members of the United Steelworkers (USW) union for the past several years, despite the administration’s relentless, costly union-busting efforts. The grads say that unionized students at other universities have already secured funding protections through the collective bargaining process.

“At unionized schools, graduate workers are involved and engaged in decisions like this that affect them and their work,” Ballentine said. “Sadly, Pitt continues to spend millions of dollars on union-busting attorneys instead of allowing grads a voice in determining their own futures.”

The USW represents 850,000 workers employed in metals, mining, pulp and paper, rubber, chemicals, glass, auto supply and the energy-producing industries, along with a growing number of workers in health care, public sector, higher education, tech and service occupations.

USW: Biden Plan Puts Working Families First

Wed, 04/28/2021 - 08:55

Contact: Jess Kamm Broomell, 412-562-2444, jkamm@usw.org 

United Steelworkers (USW) International President Tom Conway issued the following statement today in response to President Joe Biden’s American Families Plan:

“The USW applauds President Joe Biden’s American Families Plan, which will provide significant funds for child care, prekindergarten, paid family leave, health care subsidies, tuition-free community college, and other family-friendly priorities.

“The Covid-19 pandemic and its economic challenges reinforced how much Americans need access to these services and the dire consequences they face when these vital lifelines are cut.

“The past year also revealed how tenuous these systems are in our country and how easily disruptions in family life can impact workers’ jobs.

“Ensuring Americans have easy access to resources like dependable child care and quality education should not be controversial. These are essential services that enable workers to continue providing for their families, as well as ensuring the best possible outcomes for our next generation.  

“If we want our nation to continue to thrive, we must attend to workers and their families. The American Families Plan puts us on a path toward a brighter future for all Americans.” 

The USW represents 850,000 workers employed in metals, mining, pulp and paper, rubber, chemicals, glass, auto supply and the energy-producing industries, along with a growing number of workers in health care, public sector, higher education, tech and service occupations.

USW Commends Choice of Celeste Drake as Made in America Director at OMB

Tue, 04/27/2021 - 12:31

Contact: Jess Kamm Broomell, 412-562-2444, jkamm@usw.org

United Steelworkers (USW) International President Tom Conway issued the following statement today in response to the announcement that former AFL-CIO trade and globalization policy specialist Celeste Drake was appointed as the nation’s first Made in America director at the Office of Management and Budget (OMB): 

“President Joe Biden has a wide-reaching agenda on economic revitalization that will ensure working families come first now and into the future. To achieve these ambitious goals, he will need officials in key agencies to help make this vision a reality.

“Celeste Drake is a great pick for this critical job shaping and implementing federal procurement at the OMB. As a long-time advocate for domestic production and union workers, no one understands better how important it is to keep working people at the center of our economic policies and practices. 

“As President Biden seeks to rebuild our infrastructure, prioritize domestic procurement and accelerate investments to create a strong economy and workforce, Celeste will be a crucial addition to his team.”

The USW represents 850,000 workers employed in metals, mining, pulp and paper, rubber, chemicals, glass, auto supply and the energy-producing industries, along with a growing number of workers in health care, public sector, higher education, tech and service occupations.

USW Welcomes Executive Order on Worker Organizing and Empowerment

Mon, 04/26/2021 - 14:28

Contact: Jess Kamm Broomell, 412-562-2444, jkamm@usw.org

United Steelworkers (USW) International President Tom Conway issued the following statement today in response to President Joe Biden’s executive order establishing a White House task force to evaluate and encourage greater unionization in the United States:

“The USW welcomes President Biden’s interagency task force on worker organizing and empowerment and his efforts to pave the way for more workers to access their rights to organize and collectively bargain. 

“Union membership helps keep workers safe on the job, affords greater access to retirement and health benefits and provides a ticket to the middle class through higher wages and greater job security.

“For too long corporations have leveraged their political influence to increase their profits and erode workers’ rights, resulting in stagnant wages and rampant economic inequality.

“It’s past time that we reset the scales.

“As we continue to urge the Senate to pass the Protecting the Right to Organize (PRO) Act, we applaud President Biden’s initiative to help empower workers through the executive branch.”

The USW represents 850,000 workers employed in metals, mining, pulp and paper, rubber, chemicals, glass, auto supply and the energy-producing industries, along with a growing number of workers in health care, public sector, higher education, tech and service occupations.

USW Local 13-243 Braces for Lockout at Beaumont Refinery, Blending and Packaging

Mon, 04/26/2021 - 14:26

Contact: Richard Hoot Landry, 409-284-9807

ExxonMobil Rejects Union Offer of One-Year Extension.

Members of USW Local 13-243 today urged ExxonMobil to continue bargaining rather than making good on its April 23 notice to lock out more than 650 workers in its Beaumont, Texas refinery and blending and packaging plant starting May 1.

The local’s bargaining committee has been negotiating with ExxonMobil over the terms for a new collective bargaining agreement since Jan. 11, 2021. Negotiations between the parties have been very contentious because the company seeks major changes in the existing contract that impact members’ safety, security and seniority. 

“These negotiations are not about wages,” said Darrell Kyle, president of USW Local 13-243. “Our greatest concern is making sure our lives and our jobs are safe and secure. Safety in our workplaces also protects our families and community.” 

The existing contract requires that the union and the company must give each other 75 days advance notice before a strike or a lockout. The USW and ExxonMobil each provided their respective 75-days notices to each other on Feb. 15, 2021.

However, providing the 75-days advance notice does not mean there would necessarily be a work stoppage, and the two sides continued to negotiate over the terms for the new collective bargaining agreement.

This changed on April 23 when ExxonMobil rejected the USW’s offer to extend the current contract an additional year and provided a written update to its 75-day notice to indicate that it intends to lock out workers on May 1 unless they accept the company’s current proposal.

“A one-year extension would benefit both sides,” Kyle said. “It would allow our members to maintain their job security and safely operate the facility while the two sides continue to bargain for a fair and equitable agreement, without the risk of a work stoppage.” 

Kyle called on the company to reconsider its plan and instead continue bargaining. 

“The union is committed to reaching a mutually acceptable, fair and equitable agreement,” Kyle said, “but that agreement should come at the bargaining table, without locking out the dedicated, skilled workers at the Beaumont Refinery and Beaumont Blending and Packaging Plant.”

The USW represents 850,000 workers employed in metals, mining, pulp and paper, rubber, chemicals, glass, auto supply and the energy-producing industries, along with a growing number of workers in health care, public sector, higher education, tech and service occupations.

USW VP Roxanne Brown Promotes Jobs, Infrastructure at Biden Climate Summit

Fri, 04/23/2021 - 09:21

Contact: Jess Kamm Broomell, (412) 562-2444, jkamm@usw.org

USW International Vice President Roxanne Brown today was among international, industry and labor leaders to address urgent climate concerns at President Joe Biden’s Leaders Summit on Climate.

The summit, which took place April 22 and 23, facilitated a dialogue between stakeholders from across the globe to discuss ways that together they could confront climate change, while also continuing to focus on ensuring widespread economic benefits for workers and their communities in meeting these ambitious goals.

“Our union has long advocated for climate and energy policies that will both help make our communities healthier and prioritize good, family-sustaining jobs,” said Brown. “It’s good to know that President Biden shares these goals and that he’s listening not only to his counterparts across the world but to workers themselves.”

Brown participated in a roundtable event during Friday’s session “Economic Benefits of the Net Zero Transition.” She highlighted both the environmental and economic benefits of robust infrastructure investments, which she argued would increase efficiency and create jobs.

“USW members literally supply America every day with the components, critical materials and services for our nation’s physical and social infrastructure,” Brown said, making them poised and ready to help combat global climate challenges. 

The USW launched its own infrastructure campaign, We Supply America, earlier this year, to identify and advocate for its members who contribute to meeting America’s infrastructure needs: pouring steel used in bridges, maintaining municipal water systems, making cement, manufacturing electric buses, working in the energy sector and much more.

The USW represents 850,000 workers employed in metals, mining, pulp and paper, rubber, chemicals, glass, auto supply and the energy-producing industries, along with a growing number of workers in health care, public sector, higher education, tech and service occupations.

USW Welcomes West Virginia House Passage of H.R. 24, Calls on Governor to Help Save Former Mylan Facility

Fri, 04/09/2021 - 16:30

Contact: J.D. Wilson, 304-489-3961, jwilson@usw.org; Jess Kamm Broomell, 412-562-2444, jkamm@usw.org

The United Steelworkers union (USW) today applauded the West Virginia House of Delegates passage of House Resolution 24, urging Gov. Jim Justice to help save the Viatris generic pharmaceutical facility in Morgantown, W. Va.

The plant, formerly owned by Mylan, is slated to close July 31. The current owner, Viatris, was established on Nov. 16, 2020, when Mylan combined with Upjohn, a business spun off from Pfizer. Viatris announced on Dec. 11 that it would permanently close the Morgantown facility and lay off approximately 1,500 workers, including some 850 members of USW Local 8-957.

The resolution that passed the West Virginia House today urges the governor to form a task force with congressional representatives, labor organizations, and other industry leaders to call on the president to invoke the Defense Production Act and save jobs at the plant. The resolution passed in the state Senate on March 19.

“We’re proud of what we do and remain committed to using our skill, dedication and hard work to help supply our country’s critical needs,” said USW Local 8-975 President Joseph G. Gouzd. “We are grateful to our representatives in both chambers for recognizing how vital this plant is for our community. We now call on Gov. Justice to intervene to help save our jobs.”

Echoing the union’s national security concerns over losing a major domestic source of generic pharmaceuticals, the resolution also recognizes how essential it is to make medical supplies in the United States, particularly in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic. 

“Our country has pressing needs that we are well equipped to help meet,” said Gouzd. “We just have to have the chance.”

The USW represents 850,000 workers in metals, mining, pulp and paper, rubber, chemicals, glass, auto supply and the energy-producing industries, along with a growing number of workers in health care, public sector, higher education, tech and service occupations.

United Steelworkers Union: Build Back Better Through Infrastructure Spending on Both Sides of the Border

Thu, 04/01/2021 - 11:01

Contacts: Ken Neumann, USW National Director for Canada, 416-544-5951; or Shannon Devine, USW Communications, 416-894-7118 (cell), sdevine@usw.ca

PITTSBURGH, PA / TORONTO, CANADA, April 1, 2021 – As the largest private-sector union in North America, representing more than 850,000 members on both sides of the border, the United Steelworkers union (USW) sees U.S. President Joe Biden’s American Jobs Plan as an opportunity to maintain and create jobs, bolster manufacturing and make our communities safer.  

It is clear that a massive investment to rebuild, upgrade and repair critical infrastructure systems has long been necessary. President Biden’s bold plan to invest in transportation, broadband, water and other systems will draw on the products, components and services USW members make and supply each day, making workers and their communities the direct beneficiaries of this spending. 

This plan represents a massive opportunity to harness and revitalize the critical supply chains that decades of unbalanced trade policies and the unfair trading practices of bad actors severely damaged.

Like the United States, Canada needs aggressive investment in infrastructure, and both countries must strive to ensure procurement policies that reflect the unique trading relationship between the two countries. 

Previous efforts by the U.S. and Canadian governments to ensure suppliers on both sides of the border benefit are models which can be replicated again today. The USW will encourage leaders of both countries to review the mutually beneficial agreement signed after the passage of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) and urge them to adopt this government procurement approach.

“A decade ago, the USW worked with the Obama administration and the Canadian government to create a North American strategy that benefited workers in the United States and Canada,” said USW International President Tom Conway. “Canada is not the problem facing U.S. manufacturing and workers. Co-operation between Canada and U.S. will build on our longstanding and productive trading relationship.” 

USW National Director for Canada Ken Neumann pointed to the need to improve Canadian infrastructure and the benefits of a mutual procurement strategy between Canada and the United States. 

“Canada’s bridges, buildings and public transportation systems are all in need of upgrades and development. With a clear procurement strategy, Canada must prioritize the use of environmentally sustainable, low-carbon materials that will create and maintain jobs,” said Neumann.

“On top of enforcing better procurement protections in our own country, the Canadian government must also employ stronger tools to address the trans-shipment of illegally dumped imports, and take pride in the products that Canadians harvest, mine, manufacture and produce,” added Neumann. 

USW members in both the U.S. and Canada are ready to supply the infrastructure needs of their respective countries and to promote co-operative and co-ordinated trade enforcement strategies.

The United Steelworkers union represents workers in nearly every economic sector, with 850,000 members strong in Canada and the United States, with close ties to unions around the world. 

USW Applauds Biden Infrastructure Plan

Wed, 03/31/2021 - 13:52

Contact: Jess Kamm Broomell, (412) 562-2444, jkamm@usw.org

Members Ready to Supply Goods, Services Needed to Rebuild Nation

The United Steelworkers (USW) International President Tom Conway released the following statement welcoming President Joe Biden’s multi-trillion-dollar jobs and infrastructure package:

“It’s fitting that President Biden chose Pittsburgh to announce his ambitious, far-reaching jobs and infrastructure plan. This city and so many like it across our nation are the homes of not only the industries that will fuel this initiative but also the union members who stand ready to do the work.

“A large-scale investment is certainly long overdue, but more importantly President Biden has made it clear that he, like our union, takes an expansive view of infrastructure.

“This is one that, in addition to repairing our crumbling roads, bridges, waterways and other transportation networks, also ensures that we have state-of-the-art schools, reliable communication systems, robust public health and much more.

“The USW launched a union-wide infrastructure initiative earlier this year called We Supply America to identify and advocate for all our members who contribute to meeting America’s infrastructure needs, from pouring steel used in bridges to maintaining municipal water systems, from making cement to driving school buses.

“Aggressive investment coupled with strong Buy American provisions will create long-term economic resiliency, strengthening our domestic supply chains and providing a secure economic base for generations to come.

“We welcome President Biden’s infrastructure plan and look forward to working with him as it becomes a reality.”

The USW represents 850,000 workers employed in metals, mining, pulp and paper, rubber, chemicals, glass, auto supply and the energy-producing industries, along with a growing number of workers in health care, public sector, higher education, tech and service occupations.

USW on Strike against ATI’s Unfair Labor Practices

Mon, 03/29/2021 - 19:15

Contact: Tony Montana, tmontana@usw.org or 412-562-2592

The United Steelworkers (USW) today said that the union engaged in a strike against ATI (NYSE: ATI) over unfair labor practices at 7 a.m. (EDT) at nine facilities.

In negotiations that started in early January 2021, the company sought major economic and contract language concessions from roughly 1,300 union members who have not had a wage increase since 2014.

USW International Vice President (Administration) David McCall, who chairs the union's negotiations with ATI, called on the company to stop breaking the law and bargain in good faith for a fair contract.

“We are willing to meet with management all day, every day, but ATI needs to engage with us to resolve the outstanding issues,” McCall said. “We will continue to bargain in good faith, and we strongly urge ATI to do start doing the same.

“Through generations of hard work and dedication, Steelworkers at ATI have earned and deserve the security of a union contract,” McCall said. “We cannot allow the company to use the global pandemic as an excuse to reverse decades of collective bargaining progress.”

The USW represents 850,000 workers employed in metals, mining, pulp and paper, rubber, chemicals, glass, auto supply and the energy-producing industries, along with a growing number of workers in health care, public sector, higher education, tech and service occupations.

Steelworkers Intend to Strike ATI over Unfair Labor Practices

Fri, 03/26/2021 - 14:10

The United Steelworkers (USW) today said that the union has given ATI (NYSE: ATI) management a notice of the union's intent to strike over unfair labor practices beginning at 7 a.m. (EDT) on Tuesday, March 30, 2021.

The USW and ATI are negotiating over a labor agreement that will cover roughly 1,300 union members at nine facilities, and the company has persistently tried to force workers to accept contract concessions.

USW International Vice President (Administration) David McCall, who chairs the union's negotiations with ATI, said that the company has no excuse for committing unfair labor practices in its drive to force workers into accepting unnecessary concessions.

“In addition to protesting the company’s serious unfair labor practices, it is the utmost desire of the union to achieve a fair and equitable contract, and we are prepared to meet with management all day, every day if it helps us reach a fair agreement,” McCall said. “We will continue to bargain in good faith, and we strongly urge ATI to do start doing the same.

“We've stood together to survive during hard times in the past and know that we can accomplish great things through solidarity and collective action,” McCall said. “After years of loyalty, hard work and sacrifice, workers deserve more respect and consideration than ATI has shown at the table.”

The USW represents 850,000 workers employed in metals, mining, pulp and paper, rubber, chemicals, glass, auto supply and the energy-producing industries, along with a growing number of workers in health care, public sector, higher education, tech and service occupations.

USW Lauds Ohio House Passage of H.R. 13, Calls for Continued Operation of Enbridge Line 5

Thu, 03/25/2021 - 14:49

Contact: Jess Kamm Broomell, (412) 562-2444, jkamm@usw.org

(Toledo, Ohio) – The United Steelworkers (USW) union today commended the Ohio House of Representatives’ passage of H.R. 13, urging Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer to help maintain economic stability across the Midwest by allowing Enbridge Line 5 to continue operating. 

In November, Whitmer and Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel filed suit to revoke and terminate the 1953 easement that allows Enbridge to operate its dual pipelines through the Straits of Mackinac. H.R. 13 calls for Whitmer to reconsider this decision until the planned tunnel and replacement line can be permitted and completed. 

“The futures of hundreds of USW members and their communities hang in the balance in this decision,” said USW District 1 Director Donnie Blatt. “H.R. 13 recognizes that ending access to Line 5 jeopardizes these workers’ ability to safely and efficiently provide energy to our communities, and that losing these good-paying jobs will have a ripple effect that will stifle economic recovery across the region.”

The impact would be particularly stark on the roughly 350 USW members at PBF Energy’s Toledo Refining Company, which relies heavily on Line 5 for its crude oil. There are currently no viable alternatives to supply the refinery, which the union estimates adds $5 billion of economic activity to the surrounding areas. 

“While we understand the concerns about the existing line, the fact is that it is not only safe to operate but a necessary part of the fabric of our industry,” said USW Local 912 President Justin Donley. “And the replacement project is a common-sense solution that will protect and create jobs, keep a steady energy supply, ensure a secure future, and maintain the economic viability of the region.”

Four USW members, including Donley, testified in support of H.R. 13, which the union intends to keep backing as it heads to the Ohio Senate.

The USW represents 850,000 workers employed in metals, mining, pulp and paper, rubber, chemicals, glass, auto supply and the energy-producing industries, along with a growing number of workers in health care, public sector, higher education, tech and service occupations.

 

USW Affirms Pennsylvania AFL-CIO endorsement of Amanda Green Hawkins for Commonwealth Court

Thu, 03/25/2021 - 14:09

Contact: Chelsey Engel, cengel@usw.org, 412-212-8173 

The United Steelworkers (USW) union International President Tom Conway released the following statement in support of the Pennsylvania AFL-CIO Executive Council’s endorsement of Amanda Green Hawkins for Commonwealth Court Judge:

“The USW welcomes the Pennsylvania AFL-CIO Executive Council endorsement of the union’s own civil and human rights director Amanda Green Hawkins for Commonwealth Court Judge.

“We know Amanda’s experience as a union lawyer and advocacy for everyday people will serve our communities well, and that she will bring a balanced, empathetic approach to her work.

“The Commonwealth Court engages with a number of vital issues impacting working people including unemployment and occupational safety and health. It’s imperative that the court reflect workers’ values and voices.

“Amanda is the right person for this role.

“Each of us has a role to play in our democracy, and we encourage all Pennsylvanians to exercise their hard-earned rights to vote this spring and beyond.”

The USW represents 850,000 workers employed in metals, mining, pulp and paper, rubber, chemicals, glass, auto supply and the energy-producing industries, along with a growing number of workers in health care, public sector, higher education, tech and service occupations.

USW Welcomes EPI Report Highlighting Need for Continuing Section 232 Relief

Wed, 03/24/2021 - 11:09

Contact: Jess Kamm Broomell, (412) 562-2444, jkamm@usw.org

Trade Remedies Remain Vital to National Security, Economic Recovery

United Steelworkers (USW) International President Tom Conway issued the following statement in response to today’s Economic Policy Institute (EPI) report on the continuing need for Section 232 relief:

“The USW welcomes the EPI’s rigorous research into the impacts of the steel 232 measures and the dire consequences of lifting them prematurely.

“Tens of thousands of USW members depend on a robust U.S. steel industry for good, family-sustaining jobs, doing vital work that helps ensure our national security.

“Our members take pride that our steel is used in military vehicles such as tanks, ships and airplanes, as well as supplying the components that make up our nation’s critical infrastructure.

“The Sec. 232 measures helped significantly curb imports, allowing domestic producers a chance to expand production, employment and capital investment. It is especially important that they are able to continue this work, given the fragile economic recovery in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic.

“Excess global steel capacity also remains a significant problem, as it was before the Sec. 232 measures were enacted.

“It is imperative that these protections remain in place until the administration is able to find a permanent, multilateral, enforceable solution to address steel overcapacity and unfair trade.” 

The full report can be found here.

The USW represents 850,000 workers employed in metals, mining, pulp and paper, rubber, chemicals, glass, auto supply and the energy-producing industries, along with a growing number of workers in health care, public sector, higher education, tech and service occupations.

USW Applauds Confirmation of Labor Secretary Marty Walsh

Mon, 03/22/2021 - 17:57

Contact: Jess Kamm Broomell, (412) 562-2444, jkamm@usw.org

USW Welcomes Opportunity to Work with Biden Cabinet

The United Steelworkers (USW) union today applauded the confirmation of Marty Walsh as secretary of labor, hailing his appointment as yet another victory for working people.

“As a longtime member of the labor movement, Marty Walsh understands what’s at stake for working families as we seek to rebuild our economy in the wake of the pandemic,” said USW International President Tom Conway. “He’s proven that he’s willing to fight to ensure workers’ needs and rights are always top priorities.” 

With Walsh’s confirmation, President Joe Biden’s cabinet is now nearly full, and the union also said that it looked forward to working with all of President Biden’s recently confirmed cabinet members: Pete Buttigieg as transportation secretary, Jennifer Granholm as energy secretary, Gina Raimondo as commerce secretary, Michael Regan as head of the Environmental Protection Agency, Katherine Tai as United States Trade Representative, Janet Yellen as treasury secretary, and many others. 

“This is an experienced and extremely capable team. Individually, each of these members of the new administration have proven their commitment to advancing the interests of workers and their families,” said Conway, “but collectively they will be a formidable force as we work to rebuild our nation’s crumbling infrastructure, revitalize our long-neglected supply chains, revive our country’s manufacturing muscle, and ensure widespread, shared prosperity for all Americans.”

The USW represents 850,000 workers employed in metals, mining, pulp and paper, rubber, chemicals, glass, auto supply and the energy-producing industries, along with a growing number of workers in health care, public sector, higher education, tech and service occupations.

USW Condemns Atlanta Attacks, Calls for Unity with AAPI Community

Thu, 03/18/2021 - 07:53

Contact: Chelsey Engel, cengel@usw.org, 412-562-1178

The United Steelworkers (USW) union released the following statement mourning the deaths of eight in the March 16 shootings in Atlanta:

“We are appalled and heartbroken by the recent murders of eight people, including six Asian women, in Atlanta.

“Regardless of the motives of this killer, it’s clear that there has been an alarming increase in violence and discrimination against Asian-American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) people in recent months and years.

“This is sadly unsurprising. The previous administration espoused xenophobia at every turn and specifically scapegoated Asian Americans to cover for its own inaction and ineptitude that led to widespread misery and loss of life over the past year.

“Words, like actions, have consequences.

“We must all do our part to combat this hatred, an American epidemic of its own for more than a century, and stand shoulder-to-shoulder with our AAPI siblings.

“An attack on one of us is an attack on us all.”

The USW represents 850,000 workers in metals, mining, pulp and paper, rubber, chemicals, glass, auto supply and the energy-producing industries, along with a growing number of workers in health care, public sector, higher education, tech and service occupations.

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