Lincoln Electric, located in Union City, New Jersey, has adopted the IBEW Code of Excellence program for its factory workers in the bargaining unit represented by Local Union No. 3, IBEW. Lincoln Electric is a union signatory employer under the Switchgear Division of Local 3. More than 35 members of Local 3’s Manufacturing Division are employed by Lincoln Electric, where they build and assemble commercial switchgear equipment for the electrical industry.
The IBEW Code of Excellence program was instructed to the workers over a two-day period in January and February by Business Representative Anthony Esponda. In the class, factory workers were shown a video on the IBEW Code of Excellence - Manufacturing with a powerful message from former International President Lonnie Stephenson, who expressed that the IBEW Code of Excellence ensures that we will once again commit to the most fundamental principles of our union: “A fair day's work for a fair day's pay.” President Stephenson spoke about how the IBEW Code of Excellence will send a strong message to the employers in the manufacturing branches of the IBEW that we will live up to our obligation under the collective bargaining agreement, that we will be on the job every day, that we will be on time, and that we will be ready to work. He emphasized that the IBEW Code of Excellence must be embraced to ensure we have the best and smartest workforce available for our current and future employers.
The class was also shown powerpoint presentations with charts and graphs displaying the decline of manufacturing over the last 30 years and the simple things we can do under the IBEW Code of Excellence to reverse this pattern. The class concluded by having an open discussion about the implementation of the program and the benefits it can bring to the company, their customers, our membership, and our union as a whole.