The Good Times Remembered
Our International President spoke to all union members in a video appearing on the IAM website goiam.org regarding the lost of life to our fellow members and the hardships and physical threat to health and life that the present Corona Virus poses. There is no way anyone could have imagined this type of life interruption would occur. Everything the union does is based on unity and strength in numbers. Our entire mission success is dependent on coming together to strategize, mobilize, protest, lobby, educate and motivate our members so that we can effectively influence the establishment of laws to protect this nation’s working class and through organizing the unorganized create better and safer working conditions and with livable wages and benefits such as great affordable healthcare and defined pension plans.
I can’t help but reflect only a couple of months ago. Our lodges were actively conducting membership meetings, participating in community events, planning to send delegates and representatives to conferences and training at the Harbor and looking forward to creating a better world for their children and looking forward to a family gathering at grandmas house during Easter weekend. The college students were planning beach trips and our local lodge legislative committee-persons were preparing to develop political strategies that would result in the election of labor friendly candidates seeking our support and our vote.
Unfortunately, this new reality has all of us unsure of what tomorrow will bring. This is definitely not what we expected or want but this is the hand that got dealt to us and it is up to us to figure out how to get through this so we can build our future even-though it may not resemble our past.
The picture above was taken at the 2016 Grand Lodge Convention in Chicago, Illinois. The IP is embracing a member who was attending his first convention. As we arrived in Chicago the members were engaging in discussions and based on what was being said I expected a confrontational convention but thanks to the great leadership of Robert Martinez, Jr., the convention resembled a “love festival” and on the final day of the 2016 G.L. Convention the delegates were united and committed to building an even more powerful union that has compassion for all working men and women and the fight was once again put back into the “Fighting Machinist”.
May God comfort the families of those who have and will suffer the lost their loved ones to this unforgiving virus and we urge everyone of our union brothers and sisters to follow the CDC guidelines, wear that P.P.E. and remain safe both on and off the job.
I pray for a way forward out of this horrible Pandemic and I love all of my union brothers and sisters because God made you a Machinist and he doesn’t make mistakes.