UWUA was well-represented at the 2023 Inter-Union Gas Conference (IUGC) held October 23-26 in Niagara Falls, Ontario. Our union sent 64 delegates from 20 locals to this forum for gas workers to share ideas and information and participate in workshops on safety; service; clerical; distribution; and transmission, storage and field operations.
This year’s theme, Natural Gas Workers in an Ever-Changing Working Environment, generated discussions on safety, use of contract workers, mental health, employers use of GPS and other forms of electronic worker monitoring, and electrification.
The IUGC is hosted annually on a rotating basis by a group of six national and international unions and draws delegates from the UWUA as well as the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW); Unifor; the United Steel Workers (USW); the United Association of Journeymen and Apprentices of the Plumbing, Pipefitting, and Sprinkler Fitting Industry of the United States and Canada (UA); and the United Food and Commercial Workers/International Chemical Workers Union (UFCW/ICWU).
UWUA’s National Safety Director Scotty MacNeill co-led the conference’s safety workshop with Unifor’s Ryan Rodrigues. Brook Lauber and Melissa Suarez of Michigan Local 129 and Lynn Knowlton of Unifor led the conference’s popular clerical workshop. “These two have directed this workshop for the past eight years and always do a great job,” said UWUA National Representative Jim Gennett. “We owe them a debt of gratitude for their continued willingness to share their expertise with the broader labor movement.”