Monday Morning Minute: Dec. 16, 2019

Union Work

USW Women of Steel Paperworkers Honored at Jefferson Awards

USW Local 2-21 – Verso – Escanaba, Wis., and USW Locals 1226 & 13-725 – Packaging Corporation of America – DeRidder, La. – On Tuesday, December 5, the winners of the 2019 USW Cares Jefferson Awards from each district were announced, and on Dec. 10, the winners were honored at the joint USW and foundation’s annual awards ceremony. In 2015, the USW partnered with the Jefferson Awards Foundation, now called Multiplying Good, to celebrate Steelworkers who do amazing works of community service—showing the world that Steelworkers have big hearts. Winners for the 2019 USW Cares Jefferson Awards have been chosen from every district, SOAR and USW staff. The highest scoring of these winners is named the USW Champion Volunteer.  This year, sisters from the USW paper sector were honored with this award: Donna Dams from Local 2-21 at Verso Paper in District 2 and the Women of Steel (WOS) committees from Packaging Corporation of America in Deridder, La. We will highlight Sister Dam’s work this week and the WOS committees’ work next week.

District 2 USW Cares Jefferson Award winner, Donna Dams, is involved in Local 2-21’s Women of Steel committee by volunteering more than 100 hours, helping raise thousands of dollars, and collecting hundreds of donations for a variety of community service efforts. Those community service efforts include a back-to-school back pack drive and a pancake breakfast for fellow workers who were ill or going through cancer treatment. Donna also made over 100 blankets by hand and collected pajamas to donate to local nursing homes and a veteran’s hospital.

Remember to nominate a fellow USW Paperworker for next year’s USW Cares Jefferson Award! We will send out a link to the nomination form as soon as it opens up for the 2020 awards.

Demopolis Christmas on the River Day Parade

USW Locals 1835 & 719 – WestRock – Demopolis, Ala. – The two USW locals present at WestRock in Demopolis, Ala., participated in the town’s annual Christmas on the River day parade on December 7. According to USW Local 1835 President Clayton McVay, this is the first time that the locals participated in the event. Both locals built a float together, and six members from both of the local executive boards participated.

Pictured with the float, from left to right, are: Local 9-719 President Charles Fisher, Local 9-719 Financial Secretary Robert Day, and Local 1835 President Clayton McVay.

USW Rapid Response Info Alert

USW Supports Adoption of Improved USMCA – As union members, we know all too well that bargaining is a difficult process. We don’t always get everything we hope to, but the idea is to make progress. Last week through the diligence of our union and our allies, and decades of our union demanding a fair playing field when it comes to trade, we made progress on a renegotiated NAFTA, known as the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA).

USW International President, Tom Conway, said: “…we have been deeply involved in identifying essential changes to help working people, coordinating with our allies and other key leaders to address significant problems. The revised deal is better than the original USMCA and certainly better than NAFTA.  It should be adopted. The leaders of all three countries must diligently enforce the provisions, however, and we intend to hold them accountable to ensure that workers, the environment and consumers are protected.” 

To view the entire Info Alert, click here:


Stop Use Notice – Crosby Products Shackles

Crosby Group Products released an important safety notice for the use of certain shackles in the company’s portfolio of products. The shackles may have a condition that can reduce the ultimate load capacity from the published catalogue values. The shackle bow may have a previously undetected defect, and continued use may result in loss of load, property damage, severe injury, or death.

These Crosby Products, with production identification codes (PIC) 5VJ as located on the shackle bow, are affected: 1019542 7/8” 6.50t S-2130 Shackle; 1019533 7/8” 6.50t G-2130 Shackle; 1018151 7/8” 6.50t G-213 Shackle; 1018160 7/8” 6.50t S-213 Shackle; 1018516 7/8” 6.50t G-209 Shackle; 1018525 7/8” 6.50t S-209 Shackle; 1262031 7/8” 6.50t G-2130OC Shackle.

Crosby requests that you identify all such 7/8” 6.5t shackles with PIC 5VJ, remove them from service, and arrange for return and replacement. To return these products, please contact your Crosby distributor. For more information concerning this Important Safety Notice, contact Technical Support at 1-800-772-1500.

Industry Update

USW Manufacturing Update

USW Collective Bargaining, Research and Benefits staff compiled a monthly report of the state of manufacturing among the industries that the USW represents. A few highlights from the most recent November 2019 issue include:

Tell Us Your Stories!

Has your local done something amazing? Have you had a great solidarity action? Done something huge to help your community? Made significant connections with other labor groups? Is your Women of Steel or Next Gen committee making waves? Have you had success in bargaining, major accomplishments? We all stay so busy working to improve our workplaces and communities that we often do not take 5 minutes to reflect, share and celebrate our accomplishments.

Tell us your story so we can all be part of it! Contact Laura Donovan at, or at 412-562-2504.

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