Philly sheet metal worker discusses Biden endorsement, pro-worker policies
SMART GP Coleman visits Ford Blue Oval City megaproject in Stanton, Tenn.
Union railroaders negotiate historic tentative agreements
Union leaders, elected officials highlight infrastructure jobs in Boston
Ohio sheet metal worker discusses Juneteenth
Minnesota railroaders win two-person crew, passenger rail funding
SMART released the latest episode of SMART News on Thursday, July 6. Episode 10 features an interview with Local 19 apprentice Elena Farina on the Biden administration; coverage of SMART General President Mike Coleman’s visit to Ford Blue Oval City in Tennessee; an overview of SMART-TD’s recently negotiated railroad agreements, which include paid leave; infrastructure funding and jobs in Boston; and another two-person crew victory for railroaders in Minnesota.
Watch individual videos from this episode:
- Philly sheet metal worker discusses Biden endorsement, pro-worker policies
- GP Coleman visits Ford Blue Oval City megaproject in Tennessee
- SMART-TD railroaders negotiate historic agreements with paid leave
- Union leaders, elected officials highlight infrastructure jobs in Boston
- Ohio sheet metal worker discusses the history and importance of Juneteenth
- Minnesota railroaders win two-person crew, passenger rail funding
Farina, a second-year apprentice with Local 19, joined her fellow Philadelphia sheet metal workers and members from across organized labor for an event with President Biden in June. During her SMART News interview, she explained the impact of pro-worker policies implemented by the Biden administration, including the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. She also emphasized the importance of voting for candidates who have materially acted in the interests of the working class.
“Vote with your pocket, you know what I’m saying,” Farina said. “Everyone has their own personal issues, but at the end of the day your livelihood is what’s going to sustain you.”
Longtime sheet metal worker and union leader Mike Coleman assumed the position of SMART general president on June 1st, 2023. He immediately began emphasizing the extraordinary opportunities on the horizon for SMART members, including work at megaprojects like Ford’s Blue Oval City in Stanton, Tennessee.
“There’s just so many things to be excited about, but what I think I’m most excited to do is answer the call for these megaprojects: getting our members on those jobs, and making sure we get every hour out of those projects,” Coleman said.
Following on last year’s national rail negotiations, SMART-TD members have gained paid sick leave benefits for train & engine workers at some of the Big Four U.S.-based carriers. SMART-TD Alternate National Legislative Director Jared Cassity provided an overview of some of the historic agreements — both tentative and ratified — that have been made.
Workers, union leaders and elected officials came together during a May event at the Local 17 training center in Boston to highlight the union jobs created by ongoing infrastructure investments. SMART Northeast Regional Council Business Rep. Shamaiah Turner spoke with SMART News about how infrastructure funding is creating unprecedented opportunity for sheet metal workers in New England.
“The future for sheet metal workers in Boston is very bright,” she explained. “Right now we have a LOT of work … we’re out there every day, talking to people who work at open shops, we’re organizing new shops every day, and we’re organizing new journeypeople every day.”
Finally, SMART-TD Minnesota State Legislative Director Nick Katich called in to SMART News to discuss how Minnesota railroaders were able to finally secure two-person crew and passenger rail funding in the state (as well as a slew of pro-worker bills). Long story short, he explained, the victory had everything to do with putting pro-worker elected officials in office — something union members achieved when they helped the Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party take control of the state house, senate and governor’s office.
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- Union sheet metal leaders prepare for bright future on conference’s final day
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