IBEW LU 354
Delegate Report – 39th Annual Convention
St Louis, MO
September 17-23, 2016
Submitted by: Delegate Gary Beckstrand
Election of IBEW Leaders:
Lonnie R. Stevenson, International President
Salvatore “Sam” Chilia, International Secretary-Treasurer
Christopher Erikson, International Executive Council, Chair
Jerry Bella, 8th District Vice-President
Patrick Lavin, 7th District International Executive Council
Day of Service:
400 volunteers reported on September 15, for “A Day of Service”. Twenty-six (26) different sights in and around St Louis accounted for 1,600 hours of service in a single morning. A church building converted unused space for at-risk children. St Louis LU 1 and LU 1439, provided more than$7,000 in LED lighting and lamps for improved safety and function ability. The project materials and labor donation was in excess of $100,000 to the church and community center. Community leaders praised the IBEW for their kindness and generosity stating the work never would have been possible without the dedication and kindness of the IBEW.
Political Caucus Report:
Woman’s Caucus: About 400 delegates attended the caucus. IP stated that our sisters honor our history and continue to make significant contributions to it. It is what the woman’s caucus does every day. Women are a vital part of the IBEW and its progress. But we have a long way to go. Other leaders of the caucus lead discussions on inclusion, organizing, and shared personal stories.
General Political Caucus: About 350 delegates attended the caucus. An IBEW member of congress, House of Representatives, addressed the body. He encouraged the membership to run for office, work to pass favorable legislation for workers, and be involved in the political process. He told members that laws take lots of work and do not change overnight. A proclamation from the Missouri General Assembly honoring the IBEW was read. He stated that since 1945, at least 13 members of IBEW Local 1 have represented the IBEW in the Missouri legislature.
Minority Caucus (Electrical Workers Minority Caucus, EWMC): Several hundred attended the caucus. The discussion addressed the past, present, and future, of diversity in the IBEW. Today’s workforce is becoming more diverse than ever. We need more women and people of color in our industry. “Talkers did not build this union. Critics didn’t either. It was the people who put their butts on the line, who did the work, who sacrificed lots of blood, sweat and tears to make the IBEW everything it is. It was built by people who when they saw injustice, they fought to change it. When they saw opportunity, they worked to seized it.” Keith Edwards, EWMC President. The six EWMC chapters then provided reports and the caucus closed with a panel focused on LGBTQ IBEW members.
DELEGATE RECOMMENDATION: The LU President of IBEW LU 354 is encouraged to organize a EWMC committee representing IBEW LU 354 and send delegates to the upcoming national EWMC meetings.
Resolutions Regarding Safety and Health
Resolution 18, NATIONAL SAFETY COUNCIL
THEREFORE, be it resolved that the delegates of this 39th Convention go on record in support of continuing to work with the National Safety Council in their efforts to improve workplace safety for our members; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that local unions are encouraged to join the National Safety Council and to utilize the resources available to them as members.
Resolution 18 received a CONCURRENCE recommendation from the resolution committee. This resolution was supported by the delegates. IBEW LU 354 continues its membership in the National Safety Council.
Resolution 19, IBEW SAFETY CAUCUS
THERFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that this Convention go on record, as recommending that the IBEW Safety Committee establish and enforce a curriculum that would require all members of the construction industry to take a minimum of sixteen (16) hours of safety training every three (3) years, over and above any OSHA requirement.
Resolution 19 received a NONCONCURRENCE recommendation from the resolution committee. The delegates agreed with NONCONCURRENCE and so voted to not support the resolution. An attempt was made on the floor to revise the language of the resolution but was also rejected by the delegates.
Resolution 20, IBEW Safety Caucus
THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the delegates to this 39th Convention go on record encouraging all local unions to affiliate with and participate in the IBEW SAFETY CAUCUS.
Resolution 20 received a CONCURRENCE recommendation from the resolution committee. This resolution was supported by the delegates. IBEW LU 354 continues its support of the IBEWW Safety Caucus with provides education, training, support, and resources to IBEW Local Union safety and health committees and representatives to assist those Local Unions with safety related responsibilities.
Resolution 47, Reporting of Injuries and Fatalities.
THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the delegates to this 39th International Convention go on record supporting the constitutional requirement to use the web-based accident reporting system to report all serious lost time accidents and fatalities to the International Office as outlined in the IBEW Constitution.
Resolution 47 received a CONCURRENCE recommendation from the resolution committee. This resolution was supported by the delegates. The IBEW Constitution requires all serious accidents and deaths be reported to the International Office. IBEW LU 354 supported this resolution and will so advise the IBEW LU 354 Safety Committee.
Resolution 49, Radio Frequency Radiation
THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the delegates to this 39th International Convention go on record to encourage all workers working on or near any live radio frequency radiation emitter to document that they have been exposed through use of their employer’s accident reports and forward such report to the International Office Safety Department.
Resolution 49 received a CONCURRENCE recommendation from the resolution committee. This resolution was supported by the delegates. Certain environments present unknown hazards at the time work is performed and these hazards are known to cause server illness and injury at later times. Examples of Silica and Asbestos exposure are widely present and cause respiratory hazards. Cell antennas, smart inverters, and backpack and camera mounted transmitters all emit radio frequency radiation, whose effects of exposure are current unknown.
Delegate Note: The 39th Convention Delegates observed a moment of silence for six (6) IBEW members that were killed on the job during the week of the convention.