Executive Vice President’s Report, Winter 2017

Join Us at the P4A Conference

Our members are the safest, most productive, highest skilled workers in the world. And we are keeping it that way by being the go-to organization for skills and safety training in our industries.

That’s why we started the Power for America Training Trust in 2009. Little did we know how successful it would be. We did know that no one else was taking on the training of the next generation of utility workers and, even if they were, no one could train utility workers better than we could.Steven VanslootenSteven VanSlooten, UWUA Executive Vice President

October 18-20, 2017, we will hold our third UWUA P4A National Conference in Las Vegas, Nevada — and you need to be there!

The P4A conference is geared to share useful, practical information so local officers and rank-and-file members who attend will enhance their ability to represent their co-workers and build their local union when they return home.

There will be a variety of different plenaries and industry breakout sessions — gas, water, electric, call center, and office/professional.

We will also conduct the all-important union building workshops on grievance handling, contract cost-outs and negotiations, duty of fair representation, and union history.

Our guest list includes speakers on equality and inclusion, how the words we use matter, and how to develop personal techniques to improve our memory and use our brains better.

Additional workshops will explain what our other National Trust Funds provide — the Health & Welfare Trust Fund and the Deferred Compensation (401k) Trust Fund — and how they can be negotiated for as part of collective bargaining agreements to ensure our members’ benefits and training needs are comprehensively addressed.

The last P4A conference, in 2013, brought together 400 UWUA members and was a big success. We want to build on that this year to ensure our members are up-to-date on what is happening in their industries so that they are prepared to meet the challenges ahead.

And then there are the often intangible benefits of coming together as UWUA members. At the P4A conference, we take time away from the daily grind to reflect and remember where we came from. We challenge each other to take a close, hard look at where we are today and plan for making things better for our families, our communities and ourselves. We strengthen each other and our union when we share valuable information and build lifelong relationships with our union brothers and sisters. We leave refreshed, united and armed with new tools to move forward to build a better future.

As we move forward training today’s and tomorrow’s work force, here’s a snapshot of the Power for America Training Trust’s training successes since it started:

Skills and Health, Safety & Environment

These include OSHA trainings, CPR/First Aid, Slip/Trip simulator trainings and job-specific skill training.

• 1,102 (95% union/5% management) received skills & HSE training for a total of 45,542 training hours since January 2015.

Utility Workers Military Assistance Program

• 338 veterans trained between the two programs (Chicago and MI) for a total of 196,560 training hours since 2012.

OSHA/Susan Harwood

Last year was the first year the P4A was awarded an OSHA grant to do Susan Harwood training. To date, here’s what’s been accomplished:

• Systems of Safety Hazard Awareness/Focus – 856 people trained (union and employer) for 6,420 training hours;

• Train the Trainer – 56 union members trained for 1,344 training hours;

• We surpassed our goal by 209% for our training numbers under the grant.

We are facing tough times as unionized American workers. By participating in the P4A conference we will be better prepared to take on the challenges we face at our job sites, in our communities, in our industries, and as a union.

I cannot stress enough the importance of this conference and I look forward to seeing you in October!