Monday, December 19, 2011

Doug McCarron: You Do Your Work - We'll Do Ours!

Local Union No. 3, IBEW - Official Website:
In a tough economy, all the building trades need to pull together to protect our work and turn more projects into union jobs.
But that’s not the way it is in St. Louis.

The head of the Carpenters District Council in that town, Terry Nelson, with the support of UBC General President Doug McCarron, is wasting time and money attacking the IBEW and stealing its work.
While nonunion carpenters are working and UBC members sit on the bench, WHY is Nelson spending his members’ dues signing sweetheart deals with nonunion electrical contractors and lowering wage and benefit standards set by St. Louis IBEW Local 1 over generations?
And now they are going after IBEW union contractors. So we ask: Where will McCarron try to pull this next? Which other trades will be next in line for raiding?

In this town, we respect each other’s jurisdiction—for the Carpenters
and everybody—and resolve our disputes in a way that makes sense.
We don’t go for sweetheart deals and company unions.
Shame on Doug McCarron.
We ask ALL good trades men and women, especially Carpenters: Tell Doug McCarron to do his job and focus on his work, not everybody else’s.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Amalgamated Carpenters Union and IUPAT "meet and greet"

click to read the full press release:
This is to advise you that the Amalgamated Carpenters and Joiners Union (“Amalgamated”), in conjunction with the International Union of Painters and Allied Trades (“IUPAT”), are having a “meet and greet” gathering on December 20, 2011 at 6:30 p.m. at Leonard’s, 555 Northern Boulevard, Great Neck, NY 11021-5103, to officially announce the formation of an affiliation agreement with IUPAT and a Charter from the AFL-CIO, and impending membership with the Building and Construction Trades Department, Washington, DC. IUPAT General President Jim Williams will also be in attendance on the 20th.

Friday, December 16, 2011

CAW working on biggest union merger ever

read full article at
Two of the country’s most prominent unions are quietly holding merger talks in what could become the biggest consolidation in Canadian labour history.

In a response to harder times for organized labour in a tough economy, leaders of the Canadian Auto Workers union and the Communications, Energy and Paperworkers union revealed Thursday that discussions have started and will probably accelerate during the next few months.

“There’s a lot of work left to do,” said CAW president Ken Lewenza. “We’re moving along but we’re still at a preliminary stage and far off from a deal.”

Labour watchers say a new union between the CAW, which represents about 200,000 workers, and CEP, which has about 125,000 members, would mark the biggest single merger in the history of the labour movement here. The CAW and CEP are already among the 10 biggest unions in Canada.

Monday, November 21, 2011

More Like a Bank Than a Union

read the full article by David Correia at CounterPunch :
Douglass McCarron: Union Boss or Ponzi Schemer?
More Like a Bank Than a Union

But one notable absence from the Occupy/organized labor alliance, the Carpenters Union, offers another reminder that some leaders in the labor movement are on the side of the bankers against working people. While many rank and file carpenters have shown support, the union, particularly Carpenter’s President Douglass McCarron has been silent. There are a number of possible reasons for the silence.

The Carpenters union under McCarron’s leadership is without question among the most conservative unions in today’s labor movement. Over the last decade McCarron has dragged the Carpenters union into an malevolent alliance with conservative Democrats and Republican politicians, demonstrated most clearly by McCarron’s sycophantic courtship of George W. Bush during both of Bush’s terms in office.

Even more, the anti-authoritarian, non-hierarchical structure of the Occupy movement contrasts starkly with the consolidated leadership structure of the Carpenters, a structure defined by McCarron’s dictatorship over every facet of union life and administration.

But perhaps more importantly, the Occupy movement’s laser-like focus on the social and economic costs of financialization on the lives of working people has revealed McCarron for what he is: a fugitive Wall Street ponzi schemer disguised as a labor leader. McCarron, it turns out, has more in common with Bernie Maddoff than he does with the rank and file members in his union.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

B.C. court orders arrest of contractor for alleged asbestos scheme

read full article at Vancouver Sun: VANCOUVER — The British Columbia Court of Appeal has ordered the arrest of a contractor who thumbed his nose at a court injunction ordering him to stop operating an asbestos removal business that employed teenagers and recovering drug addicts without proper training or protective equipment.

The injunction was obtained against Arthur Moore of AM Environmental by WorkSafeBC in August, 2010, after an investigation disclosed Moore was employing young people to demolish homes that he had cleared as being asbestos-free.

WorkSafeBC inspectors found Moore had no qualifications as an asbestos inspector and that reports he produced showing premises free of the dangerous substance were forgeries — using letterheads stolen from legitimate laboratories — that concealed the danger to workers.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

New Shipbuilding Contract a Big Win for Trades Workers

The federal government's awarding of a major part of its shipbuilding strategy to BC shipyards will create "hundreds and hundreds" of new jobs for CMAW members, says President Jan Noster.

The $8-billion contract, awarded to Seaspan's Vancouver Pemberton yard in North Vancouver, is expected to result in several hundred carpentry and scaffolding jobs for CMAW Local 1995 members and hundreds more for the Shipwrights Local 506. It is also expected to create over 3500 direct jobs and around 8500 indirect jobs in total over the next 15 years.

"It's great for us and it's great for the province," says Local 506 Business Agent Percy Darbyson. "We'll start off slowly, and as things progress we'll end up with over 800 jobs there."

He adds this new work is a real boom for the 200-member local, which has been struggling to get work over the past 30 years of stagnation and downsizing in the shipbuilding industry.

"It starts off with $150 million in infrastructure upgrades into the yard," Darbyson said. "Added to this is that there likely will be 15-year maintenance contracts for the ships we build."

Both Darbyson and Noster insist that the long-term prospects of this new work are the most exciting. They both worked diligently as key lobbying agents along with other maritime union reps and industry officials to get the contract.

"Once the infrastructure is done on the yard, it means it will be able to bid on more work," Darbyson, says, adding that the infrastructure work alone is a long-overdue development for what was until now a largely stagnant industry. "It means we can bid on BC Ferries other work."

"This is really a big win," Noster said. "It means BC has a shipbuilding industry again."
The contract accounts for the non-military portion of the federal government's $35 billion National Shipbuilding Procurement Strategy, which is aimed at refitting and upgrading the entire naval fleet. It represents a substantial departure from previous federal Conservative and Liberal government policies of promoting the down-sizing (which they called "rationalization") of the Canadian shipbuilding industry as part of their implementation of NAFTA.

These policies, started by the Mulroney government in the 1980s, helped drive the industry across the country into depression-like conditions, including yard closures and mass layoffs. The industry in BC suffered an additional blow in 2002 when the BC Liberal regime ordered BC Ferries to tender contracts for new ships abroad.

The new federal shipbuilding procurement plan is the first major federal government in over 30 years. The larger military-related projects in the plan will go to Irving Shipyard in Halifax.

Jan Noster
President, CMAW
cell 604.785.4904
office 604.437.0471
fax 604.437.1110
Follow us on Twitter: @CMAWunion

Wednesday, October 05, 2011

Saturday, October 01, 2011

Unions slam NDP as dangerous to workers and Canada

read the full Calgary Herald editorial by Licia Corbella: James Smith, international vice-president and Canadian director of the 65,000-strong United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America, asked: “What message are working people in my union to take from their no show?”
Smillie, however, says the fact that the NDP opposes the pipeline shows how out of touch it is with the majority of labour members.

“The messaging has been hijacked by small labour organizations,” said Smillie. “The CEP (Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union of Canada) gets on the air and says organized labour is opposed to the Keystone pipeline because Canada will lose jobs. Well, I can tell you right now, our labour organization is much larger than the CEP or the Alberta Federation of Labour and we back the pipeline 100 per cent,” said Smillie.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Saturday, September 03, 2011

AFL-CIO 9/11 Honor Roll of Union Victims

click for list by union: AFL-CIO Honor Roll of Union Victims
United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America
Sean Canavan •  Martin Coughlan •  Matthew Diaz •  Paul Gill •  Mauricio Gonzalez •  Maurice Kelly •  Chris Kirby •  Benjamin Millman •  Joseph Mistruilli •  Brian Monaghan •  David Ortiz •  Joseph Piskadlo •  John Rizzo •  Daniel Rosetti •  David Ruddle •  Stephen Russell •  Erick Sanchez •  Robert Vecario •  Patrick Woods

Tuesday, August 09, 2011


click to download the form as a pdf

this is for BC jobs only, we are no longer paying for training workers heading to Alberia

Sunday, July 24, 2011

CWPP trustees letter to members: Pension Plan Update and Plan Changes

Participants in the Carpentry Workers Pension Plan of BC which manages the pension plan for the Construction Maintenance & Allied Workers (CMAW) have been informed that continuing significant reductions in the solvency level of their plan have forced a 30% reduction in pension benefits.

Retirees have been told that as of August, 2011, their pension payments will be reduced by 10%, and an additional 10% in each of the two following years until they reach the 30% reduction effective immediately for working members.

Solvency levels are a measure of what would happen if the plan were to be terminated today, and the assets were used to buy annuities to satisfy the plan's current liabilities to all of its participants. In 2007, the plan would only have been able to fund 88% of its then-current future liabilities. That figure has since fallen to only 72%.

In a letter to plan members, the plan's trustees say that to bring the plan to full solvency would require them to almost triple the current hourly contribution rate from around $4 to somewhere in the neighbourhood of $12.

Their only other option was to cut pension payments under the plan. This change will create a 100% fully funded plan.

To read the full trustees' letter (as a pdf), click here.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Scaffolding falls at Hendrick construction site; OSHA inspectors traveling to scene

UPDATED WITH PHOTOS at Abilene Reporter-News

Greg Kendall-Ball/Reporter-News Abilene,Texas
An Abilene firefighter inspects the damage caused when several floors of scaffolding collapsed at a construction site at Hendrick Medical Center on Monday. Two men were injured in the collapse, and both were treated in Hendrick's emergency room.

Monday, June 27, 2011

so you want to be a carpenter?

Doc's last shutdown; it was one of the best. Johnny V looked worse but is camera shy.

photo by Mark Miller, VP Local 2300

Thursday, June 23, 2011

IBEW Tells Carpenters’ Head: Stop the Raids

IBEW Local 1 in St. Louis has provided the best trained and most professional electrical work force to the Gateway City since 1891. But now local Carpenters’ union head Terry Nelson, with the support of UBC President Doug McCarron, is attacking Local 1 and trying to stealing its work. Instead of organizing nonunion carpenters, Nelson is signing sweetheart deal with nonunion electrical contractors and lowering wage and benefit standards set by the IBEW over generations. But the IBEW and the Building Trades are fighting back, telling Nelson and McCarron to do their jobs and stop wasting rank-and-file carpenters’ dues money raiding other unions.

Thursday, June 02, 2011

Chinook advanced scaffold course

CMAW Castlegar Local 2300, Feb. 2011

all photos by Paul Wilkinson Local 2300
more photos

Friday, May 27, 2011

CMAW Local 2300 Confined Space Course at Kinnaird Hall

Instructor Paul Nedelec Jr. taught the fall arrest and confined space courses on May 18 and 19 at the Kinnaird Hall. Here he operates the hoist as each participant experiences being suspended in a harness. Thanks to Trowelex Castlegar for the equipment.

photos by doc livingston cmaw2300/cep2040

Monday, April 25, 2011

Death rate drops as B.C. loggers embrace safe practices on the job

read the full article by Gordon Hamilton at The Vancouver Sun
There’s no single event that brought down the death rate, said Reynold Hert, president of the B.C. Forest Safety Council, an agency formed in 2004 to specifically address what loggers called the dirty little secret: The industry killed people. Everybody, from fallers to CEOs, had accepted that as part of a dangerous job.

“People are now coming to the belief that nobody needs to get hurt seriously to do this job, and that it’s a mark of professionalism to do this job without injury,” Hert said.

The industry is much smaller. WorkSafeBC estimates employment has fallen by 40 per cent since 2005, obviously a factor in the declining injury toll.

But the smaller workforce is seeing a lower rate of injury. The number of injuries per hundred person-years of employment is down 31 per cent since 2005.

“The forest industry used to be three times the provincial average severe injury rate; it is now two times. It’s still high but now it’s lower than some of the other industrial groups,” said Hert.

Hert attributes much of the change to the United Steelworkers union, which took over the old IWA in 2004. The union had successfully lobbied for the so-called Westray amendment to the Criminal Code, under which executives could be held criminally liable if their company was shown to be demonstrating a reckless disregard for safety. Steelworkers have launched a private prosecution in B.C. against Weyerhaeuser over a 2004 worker death.

“Quite frankly, the change from IWA to Steelworkers was a key point where a fresh perspective came in; there was a new look and people going, ‘How can this be?’”

Non-union fallers also became vocal about the number of them being killed.

“All of a sudden it wasn’t acceptable any more for people to get killed. It became headlines,” said Ron Corbeil, health and safety coordinator for the Steelworkers. He said news stories, led by The Vancouver Sun, had a strong impact.

“That started to change people’s psyche towards being a logger. It’s just not a price of doing business to injure and kill workers.”

Read more:

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

new screw McCarron website: "Respect our Crafts"

click: Building and Construction Trades Dept, AFL-CIO
Welcome to “Respect Our Crafts.”

The purpose of this website is two fold:

1. To commemorate and reaffirm the one singular ideal that gives strength to the union construction industry. And that ideal is UNITY.

2.To prevent the spread of an insidious and poisonous plague of “raiding” the work of other crafts that is being perpetrated by the United Brotherhood of Carpenters under the leadership of its General President, Doug McCarron. Read More>>

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Wikipedia: Nepotism is favoritism granted to relatives regardless of merit.

Coles Labour Association Canada

CMAW Local 1928 Lockout going into third month

read full article at BurnabyNow
Pat Haggerty, the negotiator for Local 1928, says the situation is at a standstill.

'The company is saying, you've got our offer,' he said.

'They're not hungry enough to negotiate,' Haggerty added.

The request by the union, to hold off on contract negotiations until this June, would not have cost the company any additional money, he pointed out.

'Our position was, there's not going to be an increase,' Haggerty said. 'And that wasn't good enough.'

Friday, February 25, 2011

Could final nail come down on Bremerton WA carpenters' local 1597?

read full article at Kitsap Sun: "The threatened consolidation comes as the carpentry trade continues to suffer in the recession. UBC's national membership of 522,416 in 2005 had shrunk to 473,777 by 2009."

Saturday, January 29, 2011

VANOC hit with $75,000 scaffold safety penalty

read the full article at The Globe and Mail:
WorkSafeBC has fined VANOC $75,000 for less than Olympian safety practices during the post-Games dismantling last year of the snowboard stadium at weather-plagued Cypress Mountain.

According to a safety inspection report dated last March and disclosed this week, workers were climbing to the top of scaffolding by using footholds on vertical poles, rather than by ladder, as required by provincial construction regulations.

Although the workers were employed by a subcontractor, VANOC was listed on the safety report as the site’s prime contractor and hit with the penalty.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

CMAW Scaffolders featured in WorkSafe Magazine

read the full article at
Mike Moore, owner of the Prince George-based Chinook Scaffold Systems, says he rarely sees falls from scaffolding on the larger industrial sites his company oversees. But since he began in the scaffolding business 25 years ago, he's been more concerned about the absence of training in the industry overall.

'In Europe,' he points out, 'not only does scaffolding have an apprenticeship; they're the highest paid of all the trades.'

Learn the ropes...and tubes and clamps

In B.C., however, Moore says it's usually up to individual scaffolding companies to provide their own training in the safe use of scaffolding. 'When we put out a call for workers, we may or may not get people trained in using a scaffold,' he says.

To address this problem, Moore recently asked two of his staff (one of them certified in scaffold training) to create a six-week scaffolding training course. Now when he hires carpenters for temporary construction work, he says he can rest assured they will first be trained to work safely around scaffolds.

The Chinook course, developed in 2009, is now widely available in B.C., and the Construction Maintenance and Allied Workers Union sponsors its members to take the training. 'Proper training in the construction and use of structure scaffolding is long overdue,' says Local Unit 1998/1237 business manager Ron Knellar.

WorkSafe Magazine - January/February 2011 - WorkSafeBC "High maintenance Scaffold safety and training"
click here to download the WorkSafe article directly as a pdf

Monday, January 24, 2011

Worker who died after fall at Canada Place hadn't tied off his safety harness

read full article By Gerry Bellett, Vancouver Sun
The worker who died two days after falling 14 metres while working on the sails at Canada Place Dec. 2 "was not using a personal fall protection system" at the time of the accident, according to an initial report by WorkSafeBC.

It appears that Diego Herrera, 30, was wearing an unattached safety harness when he fell through what is described as a "mouse hole" in the sails. The inspection report found there had been a number of violations of safety regulations at the work site and said there were grounds for imposing an administrative penalty against Birdair Inc. of Amherst, N.Y.

The company was hired to replace the sails at Canada Place by Ledcor Construction Ltd., which is managing the project on behalf of Canada Place Corporation.

"Further action on this administrative sanction will be delayed until Fatal and Serious Investigations has concluded its investigation and issued its findings," said the inspection report written by Stephen McCollum.

Karen Mathews, general counsel for Birdair Inc., said the company was cooperating fully with WorkSafeBC's investigation of the incident. She said Herrera was well trained in fall and safety procedures and was wearing a rope-access harness at the time of his tragic fall.

"While there were several tie-off points available at the location no one has the answer at this time as to why Mr. Herrera failed to tie-off," she said.

Read more:

Saturday, January 22, 2011

CMAW Local 2300 Stewards Course at Kinnaird Hall

CMAW President Jan Noster gives an overview of the duties of the Shop Steward.

Business Agent Paul Wilkinson, left, in front of the new Local 2300 training sign as CMAW Executive Board member Paul R. Nedelec, right, discusses jurisdictional work assignments.

Jan Noster hands out CMAW pins.

CMAW Financial Secretary Mike Fenton outlines grievance criteria and procedures.

From top left counter clockwise to top right: Mike Fenton, Paul Wilkinson, John Post, Dean McKellor, Jodie Lemieux, Braeden McPhee, Dave Kutzner, Richard Steer, Jessie Gregory, Eric Salo, Ian McNeil, Darryl Cowen, Bob Laktin, Carey Bagg, Joe Hetherington, Stan Rilkoff, George Stevens, Myles Stearn, Kevin Blackman

Thanks to the instructors and members that spent the weekend improving our union.

photos by doc livingston cmaw2300/cep2040

Friday, January 21, 2011

CMAW 1928 Locked out

British Columbia Federation of Labour:
Date Commenced: Locked Out December 23, 2010
Local: 1928
Type: Strike
Employer: Cove Top & Flash Cove Employees
Issue: Concessions, Wages
Status: Current