February Update from SOAR Director Julie Stein

SOARing Into a New Year!

Well, it is 2021, and like most Americans I had a significantly scaled-back holiday season compared to what I’m used to.

While the holidays were uncharacteristically low-key, that certainly doesn’t mean nothing happened since our last publication.

We have surpassed the harrowing reality of more than 400,000 Americans dying from COVID-19.  Fortunately, vaccinations are finally in circulation and millions of Americans have already been inoculated.

On January 5, Georgians voted in a highly-contested runoff election that flipped the United States Senate to a narrow pro-union majority after the victories of Jon Ossoff and Reverend Raphael Warnock.  Both candidates were endorsed by the USW.

On January 7, President-elect Joe Biden announced he will nominate Marty Walsh to be the next Secretary of Labor.  If appointed, Walsh would be the first union member in nearly 40 years to hold the position.  Walsh is currently the Mayor of Boston, was a proud, card-carrying member of the Laborers International Union (LIUNA) and headed the Boston Building and Construction Trades Council.

After the announcement, Walsh said, “Working people, labor unions, and those fighting every day for their shot at the middle class are the backbone of our economy and of this country. As Secretary of Labor, I’ll work just as hard for you as you do for your families and livelihoods. You have my word.”

Lastly, Congress certified the results of the November 2020 election in spite of an unprecedented and violent attack by Trump-loyalists on the U.S. Capitol leaving at least six people dead.  I don’t know when I’ll be able to put my sense of disbelief about it all into words.  Right now, it just feels surreal and incomprehensible.

I believe it goes without saying that in the wake of the last four years America is ripe for change and healing.  Countless Americans are suffering, and our only way out of this is together.

Much needs to be accomplished, and without delay.  Stay tuned because there is going to be plenty of work ahead.

Wishing you all peace, safety and solidarity in the early months of this new year.

Press Inquiries

Media Contacts

Communications Director:
Jess Kamm at 412-562-2446

USW@WORK (USW magazine)
Editor R.J. Hufnagel

For industry specific inquiries,
Call USW Communications at 412-562-2442

Mailing Address

United Steelworkers
Communications Department
60 Blvd. of the Allies
Pittsburgh, PA 15222