A stool needs three legs to hold you up. Take away one and it falls on its side, sending you sprawling on the floor.
Our union is also built on three legs: Organizing, Training and Jurisdiction. All three must be equally strong, working in tandem, to lift up our members to greater heights. But weaken any one of the three and the entire edifice comes crashing down.
Consider: We cannot protect our jurisdiction if we cannot organize enough trained workers. We cannot organize if we do not have the jurisdiction to put people to work or the training to produce the skilled workers needed to convince contractors they’re better off building union. And we cannot grow if we are not recognizing new craft jurisdiction, developing and providing training for our new craft jurisdiction ,and organizing workers and employers in the new craft jurisdiction.
To put it simply, Organizing, Training and Jurisdiction are not separate efforts. They must work in tandem, producing synergies that benefit our members at levels far greater than the sum of three independent parts.
That’s why my top priority as your General President to restructure the charge of the Organizing, Training and Jurisdiction Departments to ensure they are working together seamlessly and that they are meeting the needs of every proud OPCMIA member. No longer will these departments operate in isolation from one another. All will be put in service of our mission: To organize the unorganized and to elevate the living standards of all workers.
That’s why teamwork, communication and cooperation must be our guideposts.
For we cannot grow as an organization unless the International, Conferences, District Councils and Local Unions are working together as a team, communicating and cooperating with each other. We cannot grow as an organization unless all OPCMIA leaders work together as a team, communicating and cooperating with each other.
Together, we’re going to fight for every last man-hour for our members. Together, we’re going to fight to increase pay and benefits. Together, we’re going to fight to ensure health and retirement security. Together, we’re going to fight for the best training in the world. Together, we’re going to fight for the safety and health of every member and every jobsite.
That, brothers and sisters, is my pledge to you.
Daniel E. Stepano