The Electrical Worker online
January 2013

Letters to the Editor
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Thanks for the Assist

Thank you to all the IBEW members who came to our aid.  If it wasn't for the skill and dedication of our IBEW members we would still be in the dark.

Jim MacKenzie, New York Local 3 member
Millstone, N.J.

Why We're Union

I am appalled at some of the beliefs of some of the membership who are conservatives or Republicans. These are the people who are creating an avenue to the demise of unions, by assisting the same people who would like to get rid of collective bargaining, which allows the membership to enjoy a middle class standard of living, a retirement package with a pension related to work salary, medical coverage and an annuity.

This is madness. A hundred years ago, people were maimed, brutalized and even killed to have unions. A hundred years later, we are willing to give it all back, only this time they are focused on making it an amendment. I think we need to make it mandatory for our apprentices to learn the reasons and suffering for the forming of unions. Also newspaper clips, film clip footage and books to the membership who are not aware of the reason for unions beyond collectively bargaining wages.

Stephen Williams, Local 26 retiree
Washington, D.C.

Education as Inspiration

I am proud to be part of a great organization as the IBEW. I am so glad that President Obama got a second term and that Tim Kaine got to the Senate. They had my vote from the beginning and I'm glad that my union had the same thoughts too. After years of going in and out of school, mainly because of different jobs and money, I have successfully graduated from Strayer University with an associates degree in arts for business administration, cum laude, and am pursuing my bachelor's in business administration. I think that what I accomplished will help or inspire others to do the same.

Jerome Perry, Local 1142 member
Norfolk, Va.

Tool Discounts?

would like to comment about the article regarding the NJATC's partnership with Thomas & Betts ("NJATC Partnership Enhances Training," November 2012) and the display boards being used at IBEW training centers. What a great idea but better yet, why not encourage this company to give IBEW members some real discounts on the tools they sell in return for all the exposure and free advertising they will be getting with these display boards?

John Vojtko, Local 213 member
Vancouver, British Columbia

[Editor's Note: The point of the Thomas & Betts partnership is to provide tools and equipment to train the current and future generations of IBEW members. In fact, the company primarily sells termination devices like crimps and lugs, not hand tools.]

100 Years of Brotherhood

Here is a picture of three in one family whose membership in the IBEW totals 100 years: Father: Benjamin Unger, 62-year member of Burnsville, Minn., Local 949, retired from NSP. Son: Bruce Unger, member of Huron, S.D., Local Union 1959, with 34 years in the IBEW. Grandson: Steven Unger has been a member of Minot, N.D., Local 714 for four years.

I think this is a good record for the IBEW. We are very proud of this total!

Benjamin Unger, Local 949 retiree
Burnsville, Minn.