June 28, 2018
Dear IUJAT member,
As some of you may have already heard, a Supreme Court decision this week has threatened the pay, pensions, healthcare, job security and livelihoods of public sector workers. To protect everything you have gained through collective bargaining, we must stand united and fight back.
The case, called "Janus," was backed by special interest groups seeking to weaken public sector unions by encouraging division among union brothers and sisters. Attempting to "divide and conquer" workers is not a new strategy for the super wealthy. In fact, the infamous industrial era robber baron Jay Gould once famously said, "I can hire one half of the working class to kill the other half." But we're better than that. IUJAT members will stand together, united, to protect our rights.
Let me be clear: these are dangerous times for working people, as we are under attack across our country. The rich have gotten richer. The voice of the American worker is heard less and less in the halls of power, and the working middle class is in danger of becoming a fond memory.
IUJAT defends you against being terminated or disciplined unjustly by management. We have full time business agents devoted to your needs, and attorneys who, at no cost to you, spring into action to defend your jobs and contractual rights. Through our collective bargaining agreements, we have the ability to challenge unreasonable management rules. Your employer is required to negotiate with us if they want to make changes to your working conditions, and wages paid to our members are some of the highest for comparable workers. Everything you have is guaranteed in a legally binding agreement. Without the union, nothing is guaranteed.
History is full of tragic chapters in which people collectively failed to recognize impending danger and act decisively to avert it, until it was too late. That is not going to happen to us. We must act together to overcome any threat to our wages, healthcare, job security and pensions. In the coming months and years, I will ask you to suppo11 our union's plan to meet this challenge. I will ask you to stay strong and remain a member of IUJAT. Your collective bargaining agreement and union representation are precious resources upon which you, your family and your co-workers depend. I have no doubt that you will do what is necessary to protect them.
Steven R. Elliott, Sr.