By a letter dated June 26, 2019, I notified you of the Department of Labor's Industry
Recognized Apprenticeship Program (IRAP) proposed regulation. This proposal established a system in which a non-union contractor could recognize its own "apprenticeship program" that would not be subject to many of the same requirements that our DOL recognized apprenticeships are. At this time, the construction industry is temporarily exempted from the proposal. However, I am very concerned that this exemption will note be part of the final regulation. I am asking that you mobilize all your members, regardless of classification, and ask them to submit comments to the DOL in support of the construction industry exemption.
A website has been set up for all rank and file members, their families, and friends to easily submit individualized comments to the DOL. Comments are due by midnight on August 26, 2019. Please direct your membership to www.saveIBEWapprenticeships.org where they will be asked several required background questions and then have the ability to self-select prewritten paragraphs to form a comment letter to the DOL. It is possible to edit these prewritten paragraphs by choosing "edit message" from the list of available options. I encourage members to edit their comment letters if they feel comfortable doing so.
While this proposed regulation directly impacts all members of the construction branch, it indirectly impacts all members, their families, and friends. The IBEW prides itself on its electrical training ALLIANCE training probrams, these programs have graduated hundreds of thousands of journeyman wiremen and journeyman lineman. These individuals are our members; each day they perform their job duties safely and efficiently. They are in part responsible for ensuring our country's critical infrastructure and emergency response systems are powered, their training allows them to do so and impacts us all. It is my expectation that at least 50% of your membership submit comments to the DOL in support of the contruction industry exemption by midnight of August 26, 2019. I will be providing each vice president regular reports showing all local unions participation. Should you have any questions or require additional information please contact firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you in advance for mobilizing your membership.
Lonnie R Stephenson