The IAM Organizing Department succeeded in expanding the IAM’s footprint in the health care industry when an overwhelming majority of doctors, dentists, nurses, dieticians and other health care-related professionals at the Overton Brooks Veterans Affairs (VA) Medical Center in Texarkana, AR voted to join the IAM.

The clinic serves veterans in southern Arkansas and east Texas and takes care of an average of 22,000 veterans each year.

This VA Medical Center in Texarkana is the first of three sites that work in conjunction with each other that total more than 120 health care professionals. The other two sites are located in Monroe, LA and Longview, TX.

“I am extremely grateful to see these hardworking health care professionals get what they deserve,” said Grand Lodge Organizer Juan Eldridge. “This has been a long time coming for them. They spend so much of their time taking care of our veterans and now they can have a little more piece of mind being represented by us and having one of our contracts.”

“These professional employees deserve the same rights under a collective bargaining agreement as all working Americans do, and today they took that first step forward towards achieving that goal,” said IAM Organizing Director Vinny Addeo. “Special thanks to GLR Juan Eldridge and Apprentice Organizer Chris Casteel for a job well done in educating these professional employees on the importance of belonging to a union like the IAM.”

“Healthcare professionals throughout the United States and Canada are realizing they need a collective voice in their workplace,” said Headquarters General Vice President Brian Bryant. “Those who take care of our nation’s veterans deserve to have the best working conditions possible, and these VA employees took that first step by joining the IAM. I welcome them to the IAM family and thank all those involved in bringing a voice to our newest members.”

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