What is a Union

Everyone has the right to work, to free choice of employment, to just and favorable conditions of work and to protection against unemployment. Everyone, without any discrimination, has the right to equal pay for equal work.  Every one who works  has the right to just and favorable remuneration ensuring for himself and his family an existence worthy of human dignity, and supplemented, if necessary, by other means of social protection. Everyone has the right to work and to join trade unions.  A union is an organization of workers joined together for a common purpose, for mutual aid and protection, to engage in concerted activity and collective bargaining, to elevate their conditions of life and labor. It is an organization by which ordinary people come together to accomplish extraordinary things.

Why We Join

Unions by joining together, we have more of a say in our working lives.   With a union we can negotiate with our employers for better wages and benefits, fair treatment, safe working conditions and a harassment-free workplace. These goals can be achieved because of the strength, which comes from our unity - a very old and widely used concept. The unions of the world join the United Nations, employers join the Chamber of Commerce and doctors join the American Medical Association. All such groups recognize the power that comes from joining together to work toward common goals. Working people recognizing that there is  strength in numbers. We  join unions to further our common goals. Through unions we achieve a strong voice, one that cannot be easily dismissed by management

The IBEW (International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers) is Your Union

The IBEW is an organization that relies on members' support and involvement for strength.  The more active the members are, the stronger the union is.  It is a union with a clear record of dedication to the principals of fairness and dignity at the workplace.  It is the largest, strongest and oldest union devoted to electrical workers. IBEW local unions are spread over the United States, Canada, and the Canal Zone.  IBEW International Officers are nominated and elected by duly elected delegates at the International Convention. Eleven International Vice Presidents, assisted by International Representatives, and under the supervision of the International President, assist the local unions in their respected districts with Organizing, Training, Collective Bargaining, and Contract Administration.

Local 180 IBEW, Napa-Solano County, is Your Local Union You and your co-workers have the right to elect the officers of Local 180, attend union meetings where the members set policy for their officers to carry out, and vote on contracts that your representatives negotiate.  Local 180 has the main responsibility of enforcing your rights under the union contract. Your Union Contract IBEW members working for signatory employers are covered by a union contract.  Contracts cover such rights and benefits as Wages:  Fair rates of pay for each job, etc. Working Conditions:  Job security, safety and health, personal rights, and fair treatment. Hours:  Rest periods, holidays, vacation, overtime pay, etc. Benefits:  Hospitalization, pensions, etc.  The benefits of membership.

How To Join

First off, please understand that membership in the I.B.E.W. is not required to sign the out of work list; everyone starts out the same as unrepresented workers.  Additionally, applicants for the apprenticeship are not offered membership until they past their apprenticeship probation period.  Which path you take to membership is subject to your experience as an electrical worker. 

The apprenticeship is the path for people with little to no background or experience.  Please visit the Apprenticeship’s website. For people with three or more years experience at the trade the path would be with the Union Office; this webpage.

The first step is come on in with information documenting your experiences so we can place you on the highest out of work book you qualify for.  These out of work books are: Inside, Residential, Sound & Communications.  The collective bargaining agreements covering these books cover a number of classifications.  Each of the three agreements covers apprentices.  The Sound & Communications agreement covers installers, technicians and senior technicians.  The Inside and Residential covers journeymen and foremen.  The Inside agreement also covers the newest classifications of construction electrician and wiremen.

The “Journeyman Inside Wireman” classification is defined as having passed a Journeyman Wireman’s Examination given by a duly constituted Inside Construction Local Union of the I.B.E.W. or have been certified as a Journeyman Wireman by any Inside Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee.

What if you have not passed the exam or completed an inside apprenticeship; can you go to work?  Not a major concern as a large number of people have gone to work and become members.  In fact, our former Business Manager, Bruce Gourley, came into the IBEW after being discharged from the Navy as a marine electrician and signed inside book four.  However, since then the IBEW has provided additional options.

The Referral Test is option one for people who are State Certified with over 8,000 hours as an electrician.  Pass this short test and meet the other requirements for the referral then you can be placed on book one for up to one year in which time you must take and pass the Journeyman Inside Wireman’s Examination to remain on book one.

The Construction Electrician classification is option two for people who are State Certified with less than 8,000 hours as an electrician.  Training is offered and the Journeyman Inside Wireman’s Examination given at the end.  However, any person can elect to remain at the Construction Electrician classification as long as they wish.

The Construction Wireman classification is option three for people who are uncertified with less than 8,000 hours as an electrician.  This classification requires enrollment in an Electrician Trainee program to allow the person to work under State law.  The program offers the Journeyman Inside Wireman’s Examination at the end.  The goal is to offer advancement to the Construction Electrician classification.

The first step to joining the I.B.E.W. is, and has always been, yours to take.

Grievance Procedures

Your contract is negotiated with management by your co-workers and IBEW leaders.  Every member has the right to make suggestions about what should be in the contract and to vote on the final agreement.  To win a good contract, members have to show management that they are united in support of their negotiating team. The working conditions and benefits in the contract are guaranteed.   During the term of the contract, management cannot legally change it without negotiating with the union.

NECA and the IBEW Working Together NECA (The National Electrical Contractors Association) and the IBEW are partners in this industry.  Management (NECA) and Labor (IBEW) have a relationship in which we both respect and recognize our individual needs.  We work together as industry partners. Our vision in partnering, are establishing the electrical standard, committed to customer satisfaction, honesty, quality, public safety and continually seeking and pursuing opportunities to build better communities. Our mission is to exceed our customers expectations by providing a quality electrical installation on time and within budget, utilizing the best-qualified workforce trained to national standards by NECA and the IBEW working together.

I.B.E.W. L.U. 180 CONSTRUCTION ORGANIZING MISSION STATEMENT

To assure that every electrical worker in the Electrical Industry enjoys the full benefits of I.B.E.W. representation and membership for a better quality of life.

To achieve the power to negotiate the terms and conditions of employment of every electrical worker for a better standard of living.

To educate and elevate the economic, political, and social standing of every electrical worker in our community and society.

To enable the I.B.E.W. to plan a positive and stabilizing role for the benefit of the industry’s participants, customers, and community-at large.

To assume a leading role in the revitalizing for the labor movement.

To provide and continue education to empower the membership through education and information.

Move, second to adopt. Motion carried.

To join the IBEW, call Mike Smith or Stan Nelson at 707-251-9180 or stop by the office at 720 Technology Way, Napa