1 min read

Season 3, Episode 44

Education is key to organizing in So-Called ‘Right to Work’ states


Guest Name:

Jon Brian

Guest Website:


Guest Social Media:



Supportive Documents:

Ironworkers Local 22 Business Manager John Whitaker and Western Region Organizer Jon Brian joined the America’s Work Force Union Podcast to discuss the struggles of organizing workers in Indiana, a So-Called “Right to Work” state, and their efforts to educate politicians about what unions can do for working people.

Local 22 represents over 1,300 Ironworkers in the Indianapolis area.

Many politicians do not understand what unions do, nor the fact registered apprenticeship programs are entirely self-funded, Whitaker said. He has taken numerous Indiana politicians on tours of Local 22’s training center.

Last month, representatives from Local 22 sat down with Indiana state legislators and discussed issues and concerns related to the Ironworkers, Whitaker said. It was a good opportunity to let these politicians know what Local 22 is about and the value apprenticeship programs provide in creating a more qualified workforce, he added.

Brian explained many workers in Indiana do not understand the benefits unions can offer. Organizing is particularly challenging when there are numerous misconceptions about union pay and benefits, he said. When workers are educated about the quality of the healthcare and retirement benefits union members enjoy, joining a Local Union becomes much more enticing, he added.

Lastly, the two discussed the Bridge Formula Program which, provides $27 billion to improve bridges as part of the $1.2 trillion Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act. The program will help repair numerous bridges in Indiana, Whitaker said.

Listen to the entire episode to learn more about these topic.

America’s Work Force is the only daily labor podcast in the US and has been on the air since 1993, supplying listeners with useful, relevant input into their daily lives through fact-finding features, in-depth interviews, informative news segments and practical consumer reports. America’s Work Force is committed to providing an accessible venue in which America's workers and their families can hear discussion on important, relevant topics such as employment, healthcare, legislative action, labor-management relations, corporate practices, finances, local and national politics, consumer reports and labor issues.

America’s Work Force Union Podcast is brought to you in part by our sponsors: AFL-CIO, American Federation of Government Employees, American Federation of Musicians Local 4, American Alliance for Manufacturing, Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield, Columbus/Central Ohio Building and Construction Trades Council, Communication Workers of America, International Association of Heat and Frost Insulators and Allied Workers, International Association of Heat and Frost Insulators and Allied Workers Local 50, International Brotherhood of Teamsters, International Federation of Professional and Technical Engineers, International Union of Bricklayers and Allied Crafts, International Union of Painters and Allied Trades District Council 6, Ironworkers Great Lakes District Council, The Labor Citizen newspaper, Laborers International Union of The National Labor Office of Blue Cross and Blue Shield, North America, North Coast Area Labor Federation, Ohio Federation of Teachers, Survey and Ballot Systems, United Labor Agency, United Steelworkers.


Group 342

Group 341

Group 343

Group 339

Group 397

Group 397


Memorial Day with veteran and UA VIP Program Manager Mike Hazard

In honor of Memorial Day, Mike Hazard, the program manager for the United Association Veterans in Piping program, joined the America’s Work Force...

Read More

World War I Memorial will unveil a new feature in fall 2024

United States Army veteran John “Jack” Monahan, who also serves as a World War One Centennial Commission representative, joined the America’s Work...

Read More

USW improving member education on union’s decision-making process

Assistant to the Director of the United Steelworkers District 1, Teresa Cassady, joined the America’s Work Force Union Podcast to discuss the...

Read More