Date Posted

A Message from Business Manager Chris Erikson

The IBEW held its annual Construction & Maintenance Conference in Washington, D.C. last week. Hundreds of delegates from across the United States and Canada attended, and the news was all good. International President Kenneth Cooper reported on the growth of IBEW membership, now over 870,000 members, and his goal to top 1,000,000. Given the work opportunity in our industry, primarily because of the efforts of President Joe Biden, this goal is within our reach.

The first three years of Biden’s administration have been nothing short of transformative. The surge in manufacturing in the United States and the need for industrial power is driving up the demand for IBEW electrical workers beyond our capacity, and the unique opportunity to organize is here and now. With all the focus and work on the electrical grid, IBEW jobs in generation and transmission are exploding. Chip plants, data centers, energy storage, electric vehicle charging stations, and high-speed rail projects are putting IBEW members to work all across the country.

President Biden’s Infrastructure ActCHIPS and Science Act, and Inflation Reduction Act have added over 15 million new construction and manufacturing jobs since he took office in January 2021. Union jobs, mind you, that include prevailing wage and apprenticeship requirements. Trillions of dollars of work. He strengthened Davis-Bacon and prevailing wage regulations for the first time in over 40 years, and he passed the Butch Lewis Act that saved defined benefit pension plans for millions of Americans.

Despite his schedule, our President, the most pro-union President ever, took time to come and address the conference. The first thing he said, like he does every time, was that he is the President because of the IBEW. I keep saying this because the members need to hear it: Donald Trump couldn’t care less about you or your economic interests. He would roll back the progress that Joe Biden has done for our economy and working Americans. Some of our members in New York and across the IBEW need to “WTFU” and we need to do everything possible to continue the work by re-electing Joe Biden for the next four years.