Business Manager Christopher Erikson (3rd from left) sits with fellow officers of the Public Employee Unions at their Conference held December 3-7.
This past December, Local 3, IBEW Business Manager Christopher Erikson attended the 39th annual New York State Public Employees Conference Legislative Event, along with Business Representatives Sean Fitzpatrick and James Bua. Business Manager Erikson is an officer of NYSPEC, an organization consisting of over 80 unions representing 1.5 million members in the public sector throughout New York State. He is the first officer of NYSPEC to come from the Building Trades and his active participation and trade unionist background expands Local 3’s influence in the public sector.
During the four-day conference, the NYSPEC officers spoke about a number of important issues facing today’s labor workforce particularly in the context of the election of Donald Trump and the continued war on workers. Business Manager Erikson spoke at length about the critical importance of preventing a Constitutional Convention in New York State that would potentially be held in 2019. If the public calls for a convention through referendum in 2017, a number of labor protections and basic rights of the citizens of New York would be threatened: collective bargaining, prevailing wage, workers’ compensation, guaranteed public sector pensions and public education, among other things. He went on to discuss the war being waged against working people and how it will be exacerbated by president-elect Trump’s choices for the Supreme Court and other political appointments. They would undoubtedly attempt to undo the gains attained by unions so far -- fair wages, benefits, and a decent standard of living for all working people.