The term “Millenials” refers to those who were born between the early 1980’s and the early 2000’s.
Recently, while visiting various locations that we represent, I had the privilege to spend time speaking with some of our brothers and sisters who fall under that classification. These young, energetic workers are the future of our Union.
Through our conversations, we discussed the accelerating growth of technology which results in the constant improvement in our workplaces. While there have been numerous changes benefiting efficiency and safety, the one thing that has not been improved upon is the workers’ struggles.
I listened as I heard these Millenials discussing the concept of unity and sticking by one another. However, I was totally amazed to learn that no one had ever fully explained to them what a labor Union is and the benefits of belonging to a Union.
One young man’s father was nearing retirement and was entitled to his own Union Pension. Even with this proximity to a Union member, he had never been taught all of the perks of belonging to an organized Labor Union.
I urge all members to reach out to young workers. Let them know your first-hand accounts of Union membership. Explain to them the process of filing a grievance, in order to right a wrong. Help them understand what it truly means to belong to a group that is there to stand up for their rights, as well as others’. Teach them what it is like to firmly believe in something and feel proud to stand up for that belief.
Growing our Union and keeping Union labor alive is a priority. Pass along the knowledge and wisdom you have obtained during your time with Local 1996. Teach our future members, and leaders, what awaits them and let’s keep our Union strong.