Just ahead of Thanksgiving, Mechanical Insulators Labor Management and Cooperative Trust Executive Director Pete Ielmini discussed the importance of labor unions and outlined some of the most important accomplishments of the labor movement on a labor-focused podcast.
Ielmini is a regular, monthly guest on America’s Work Force Union Podcast. In his Nov. 25 appearance he gave thanks to the Insulators Union and the labor movement.
As the COVID-19 pandemic remains present in our lives, Ielmini said unions 'have taken a spotlight position for protecting their members.'
The COVID-19 pandemic has shown what can happen when workers do not have the backing of a union. He said the Insulators Union has done a great job throughout the pandemic. They have worked to educate members on how to best protect themselves and have worked to provide the proper personal protective equipment to the membership.
The labor movement has made much progress throughout the past 150-years. Ielmini highlighted what he believes to be the 15 most important of those accomplishments.
First and foremost, Ielmini celebrated the right to organize as a workforce. Without this advancement and right, workers would still be working dangerously long conditions in less than safe environments.
Next, he focused on the industrial revolution and the collective action that came with it. Most importantly he celebrated the child labor laws that were established, making it illegal to use the cheap labor of children.
Working in the construction industry is dangerous if workers are not properly trained. The establishment of registered apprenticeship programs was a big step for the labor movement.
He said these training programs are vital to the trades. Not only do these programs establish high standards for the quality of work done by union tradesmen and tradeswomen, but they also teach safety practices so everyone can go home at the end of the work day.
You can listen to his list of accomplishments by the North American labor movement and the rest of the segment: