|Andy Buffenbarger addressed the Ohio State Machinists Council meeting in Cleveland and provided an update on the IAM’s Young Machinists Program.|
Members of the Ohio State Council of Machinists met on April 30 in Cleveland, OH, to coordinate their efforts on behalf of members in the Buckeye State and to review the unprecedented assault on collective bargaining taking place in Ohio and elsewhere.
International President Tom Buffenbarger, General Secretary-Treasurer Warren Mart and Eastern Territory GVP Lynn D. Tucker, Jr. were among the IAM leaders who addressed the group and spoke about the importance of resisting the anti-union agenda being pushed by Ohio Republican Gov. John Kasich.
“In little more than a year, we’ve gone from a solid ally in Gov. Ted Strickland to John Kasich, a former investment banker for Lehman Bros. and Fox television host, and the results have been disastrous,” said IAM President Tom Buffenbarger. “Don’t ever let anyone tell you that elections don’t matter, because Ohio is proof how much difference a single election can make.”
GST Mart echoed Buffenbarger’s remarks, calling on members to be leery of watered-down proposals from anti-union lawmakers that are only slightly less odious than the frontal assaults in Wisconsin. “It will be up to us to keep our members advised about subtle changes that would gut their collective bargaining rights, just over a slightly longer period of time,” said Mart.
Delegates at the annual meeting were updated about the AFL-CIO Union Veterans Council and the IAM’s Young Machinists Program, an organizing and outreach effort designed to build connections with new members and potential new members. “We have an obligation to educate the next generation about the value and importance of union membership,” said Andy Buffenbarger from the Young Machinists. “The Young Machinists Program is intended to do exactly that.”