IAM Headquarters this week is officially launching the Organizer’s Toolkit, a library of both customizable and static materials designed specifically for organizing campaigns. The toolkit, which is being run by the Organizing and Communications Departments, will include access to a customizable campaign website, organizing meeting presentations, handbills, banners, social media graphics and more.
“Growing our membership continues to be priority No. 1 for our Union,” said IAM International President Robert Martinez Jr. “That means giving our organizers every resource possible to encourage them to become more aggressively involved in organizing and to help them win campaigns.”
Organizers have faced unprecedented challenges in recent years, including multi-million dollar anti-union campaigns, the most hostile labor board in modern history and, most recently, the COVID-19 pandemic. The Organizing Toolkit is designed to help organizers address these challenges.
“Organizing is and always has been one of the most difficult tasks facing the labor movement,” said IAM Organizing Director Vinny Addeo. “Our aim is to help organizers by providing them campaign-proven, professional materials to help them navigate their way through their organizing campaigns. Not to mention open them up to focus more on the ground portion of their campaign, as well as perform servicing and other union-related tasks.”
For access to the Organizer’s Toolkit, please contact your Territorial Organizing Lead.
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Newly-elected district officers of IAM District 751 were sworn in by International President Robert Martinez Jr this week during their district council meeting. Martinez joined the meeting via video chat.
President and Directing Business Representative Jon Holden and 16 District 751 Business Representatives also took their oath of office that evening for their four year terms that begin on February 1, 2021. The contract with District 751’s largest employer, Boeing, expires in 2024.
Following the swearing in ceremony, Martinez and Western Territory General Vice President Gary Allen addressed the officers, delegates and alternates.
“Myself, GVP Allen and our entire union are incredibly proud of the resilience the leadership of District 751 has shown during this pandemic,” said Martinez. “In addition to the COVID-19 crisis, we have also had to deal with the grounding of the 737 MAX. You can be assured that we are doing everything in our power to get our members back on the job and doing everything possible, including securing swift TAA help, for those who remain on layoff. District 751 and our union are going to make it through this crisis stronger than ever.”
Martinez also congratulated retiring District 751 Secretary-Treasurer Sue Palmer on a historic career and welcomed incoming Secretary-Treasurer Richard Jackson in his new role.
“This is a significant chapter in the history of District Lodge 751,” said IAM Western Territory General Vice President Gary R. Allen. “Brothers Jon Holden and Richard Jackson have always displayed great leadership and sincere dedication to the membership of the district. I congratulate them both as well as those with the wisdom to elect these two dynamic leaders. I wish the very best to Sister Sue Palmer in her well-deserved retirement and sincerely thank her for her commitment and leadership in her service to our members. Negotiations with Boeing in 2024 will be here before you know it and the entire district will be ready.”
“It is an honor to be sworn in by International President Bob Martinez and to continue working on behalf of the strong and proud membership of District 751,” said District 751 President Jon Holden. “We have much work to do and we will succeed together.”
District 751 didn’t let the COVID-19 pandemic keep them from organizing and giving other working people the opportunity to have a voice in their workplace. In December, more than 150
from the CHI Franciscan Hospice Care Center in University Way, WA voted for IAM representation.
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The Machinists Union was recognized Saturday by the Presidential Inaugural Committee (PIC) during its programing
. The video congratulates the incoming administration and pays tribute to IAM essential workers who have been on the frontlines during the pandemic.
The PIC hosted a welcome event to celebrate America, reflect and honor its history, and highlight the incredible diversity of the nation. It featured musical performances, celebrity appearances and remarks from some of the most popular leaders from across the country. The event kicked off five days of programming leading into Wednesday’s inauguration of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris.
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Sisters, Brothers, and Friends of the IAM,
This is normally a time when our union assembles for marches and community activities to recognize and celebrate the life and beliefs of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., social justice and labor rights champion. These times, however, are far from normal.
While our country is unable to gather to show our gratitude and respect for Dr. King, we are still able to honor his legacy by practicing what he preached. King knew that any inequality and injustice were dangers to our democracy. He dedicated his life to fighting for economic and social justice, no matter your race, gender, religion, or ethnicity.
The recent political violence and hateful rhetoric show that our country still has a lot to learn from his teachings. Our union and the labor movement will always stand for the union principles of democracy, unity, and peaceful dialogue. Hatred and violence have no place in civil society.
The Machinists Union is proud to carry on Dr. King’s fight for those who are vulnerable and need a collective voice. Together, we will make Dr. King’s dream for equality on the job and respect for all working people a reality.
Robert Martinez Jr.
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Handcrafted artwork from two IAM members appeared in a 2021 SUNY Empire State College calendar. The pieces were part of an annual calendar distributed by the Harry Van Arsdale Jr. School of Labor Studies in New York, an associates, bachelors and master’s degree program that includes prominent IAM alumni.
“Everyone who has received a copy of the calendar loves it – not only because it celebrates the incredible creativity of our students but because it also offers a snapshot of labor history at your fingertips,” says university spokesperson Solomon Syed. “Too many people are not familiar with labor’s rich history and how it has benefitted all working people.”
A photo of an album cover for a re-mixed version of the popular labor song “Solidarity Forever” represents the month of January and was created by IAM Organizing Grand Lodge Representative Gabrielle Rogano. The original image is a collage composed of union literature, images of women workers and colorful font.
“It took me a full day of crafting. The center piece is made from a canvas which is glued onto a piece of cardboard,” said Rogano. “It feels phenomenal to have my artwork featured.”
IAM District 141 member Victor Acosta’s artwork appeared on the back of the calendar. The painting entitled “Helping Hand” shows a greyish white background with two brown arms extending and shaking hands. Acosta says it represents the relationship between union members and the district’s Employee Assistance Program (EAP), an employee benefit program that assists workers with personal problems such as mental and emotional well-being.
“The artwork is an oleo or oil as it is known and took three hours to complete. The canvas size is 18×24 inches,” said Acosta, District 141 EAP Department Regional Coordinator. “I’ve been an artist since early childhood. Early in my youth I learned how to produce acrylic, watercolors, pastel and oil art.”
The first calendar was released by SUNY Empire State College in 2020 and the university plans to create another edition in 2022. Invitations to submit artwork are offered to students who are enrolled in the Labor Studies program. Since 2014, the IAM has partnered with SUNY Empire State College to offer degrees in labor studies through the Harry Van Arsdale, Jr. Center for Labor Studies.
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