Social Media has changed the very nature of news. It gives the user the ability to tell their own story from their perspective — for anyone to “be the media.” Such is the case with the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 110 which is utilizing their website and social media to tell their side of the story in ongoing contract negotiations with St. Paul NECA contractors.
The union electricians have meet with the contractor 15 times without a fair contract being negotiated. The stalling tactic has meant that these Minnesota workers have gone three long years without a raise. In creating their own website, the IBEW 110 can get their story out to concerned parties unfiltered. The union contends that stall tactics by NECA are simply a ploy to sustain maximum profits for the longest amount of time:
Let me break this down for you…
Let’s say contractor “A” has 100 employees and an offer that we want is around $1.50 per hour.
$1.50 x 8 = $12.00 per day
$12.00/day x 100 employees = $1,200 per day extra “profit”
We have now been without a contract for 52 working days.
52 days x $1,200 = $62,400
So you see, our contractors are making money, and lots of it, to delay! While our members continue to struggle putting gas in the car, food on the table and pay for our mortgages, our contractors continue to make more and more money off of our hard work!
With union attacks unabated in the traditional media, new platforms allow the less-represented a chance to fight back and rally their supporters online. Kudos to IBEW Local 110 for taking advantage of the possibilities that come from emerging social media.