Executive Officer's Forum - Get ready for round two
Bob Alvarado, Executive Officer
en Espanol >
"Make the commitment to get active in building this union."
Thanks to all the members who stepped up this Primary election season! Thousands of phone calls, hundreds of homes visited, signs installed—rallies attended—it all adds up, on campaigns large and small and makes a difference. I especially want to offer my congratulations to the members who worked on the Auburn campaign. Thanks for helping the residents of Auburn resoundingly defeat Measure A.
Many of the candidate campaigns were just primaries, and we will have to help our friends fight another round in the fall. But one initiative that passed this election may help our efforts. The change in term limits, although it limited further the time a person can serve, means that some elected officials will choose to stay in one office for 12 years. This will give us a better chance to build long-term relationships, and help legislators further understand carpenter politics.
We saw success on several bond measures as well, that will help put carpenters to work, but a big campaign is coming up in November, with Alameda County's Transportation Sales Tax. This measure will provide billions in transportation funding for Alameda County, including lots of work for UBC members if it passes. Once again, the Carpenters will step up to support measures that create jobs, and put our members back to work.
STAY ACTIVE, STAY INVOLVED
So, the reality is that we can take a few days to enjoy our victories on the campaign trail, but we need to continue being active, supporting candidates that support us, and supporting or opposing measures that affect us as carpenters and union members. There are two such initiatives on the November ballot; one is Governor Brown's revenue proposal, and the other is an attack on our rights as union members. The Governor has been working hard to balance the budget, but it can't all be done with cuts without destroying our public education system and threatening public safety. We'll be providing lots more information between now and the fall, but this proposal deserves your careful consideration.
The other measure is the third try at silencing our voice in the political arena, by limiting our (and all unions') ability to support or oppose candidates. It claims to do the same to corporations, but in fact would have no impact on business or wealthy donors—just working people and the unions that represent them. They can't beat us, so they are trying to take us off the field. Once again, we will stand up and defend our rights, and beat back this attack.
So thanks again to all who participated in our political efforts—take a little time to enjoy the victories, but get ready for a bigger fight in the fall. I also want to thank to all of you who attended one of the recent CIA meetings. I traveled all around the Council and spoke with hundreds of members who wanted to hear more about what we are doing to build this union, and how to get involved.
Whether or not you have a chance to attend one of those meetings, I have a request of you: make the commitment to get active in building this union. This is your union, and it is only and will be only as strong as you make it. Together, we can do great things: when we fight as one, the fight is won!