The issues we have been facing for some time now have been challenging for all our members to say the least, the adversities we have faced and continue to face makes me reflect on the lessons I learned when I played hockey as a youth. I recall it like it was yesterday when our team would be winning games and everything was going great, our morale was high, solidarity among my team mates was strong and everything seemed to work in our favor, life was good when we were winning. But when things didn’t go our way and nothing seemed to go right and everything seemed hopeless, the coach would always say to us in the locker room, “ We need to get back to the basics, keep it simple and don’t get to fancy, work together and do your job!”
This advice is a good one and is still used today, when the opposing team throws everything they have at you and tries to shake you off your game mentally and physically it can affect your team’s morale, solidarity and ultimately affect your performance. No question it’s easy to be part of a winning team when everything is going great, but during times when the chips are down and you’re losing. Well this is the time when the true character of any team and as a person is put to the test.
During those times is when we need to make choices, we can kneel and bow our heads as individuals and accept defeat, or we can stand up and fight back together as Steelworkers by continuing to apply relentless offense to anything that may jeopardize our way of life and our objective of Good Jobs, Strong Union. All the while never forgetting to defend and protect the goals we have already achieved.
I ask for all our members to look at ourselves and see that we are all brothers and sisters of our great union the United Steelworkers. Even though we all come from different walks of life and different parts of the globe, we all have one universal thing in common. We all as people aspire for a healthy and prosperous future for ourselves, our children and for our families. We come to work today to financially support our way of life and to secure our future, but let us never forget. We have the privilege as a union of being able to leave behind a bright future and legacy for the next generation of Steelworkers and their families that will follow behind us, and I believe that’s worth preserving and fighting for.
We have a great membership at USW Local 6673, we are battle hardened and strong. Let’s get back to basics and do what we do best by producing the best pipe and tubing in the world.