1 min read

Season 4, Episode 166

Increased workload has Ironworkers Local 17 looking at a bright future



Guest Name:

Rich Jordan

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Ironworkers Local 17 Business Manager Rich Jordan joined the America’s Work Force Union Podcast and discussed his Local and its plans for future growth. Jordan also spoke about the apprenticeship program and why believes the Local has a bright future.

Ironworkers Local 17, located in Cleveland, is currently made up of 900 members. When Jordan became the Business Manager in 2017, there were just under 700 members. With the help of their year-round apprenticeship program, Jordan’s goal is to have membership pass the 1,100 mark in the next three to five years. In order to help meet this goal, Local 17 has established a program for schools in the State of Ohio that creates a pipeline from high school into the trades. This program is a big help to those students who do not want to go to college.

Jordan said the Local’s apprenticeship program is for anyone who is ready and willing to work. The year-round block program not only educates apprentices, but also pays them to learn the work. In the first year of the program, the apprentices are not expected to do many facets of the work, but they are expected to learn all aspects of an Ironworker's job and the safety requirements to do it properly. First-year apprentices make about $24 per hour, and eventually work their way up to become a journeyman and earn about $65 per hour in wages and benefits. This is something Jordan believes should incentivize anyone looking for a career.

There is a lot of current and upcoming work for Local 17 members. Right now, about 70 members are working on the new Sherwin-Williams headquarters in downtown Cleveland. There is also a separate Sherwin-Williams Research and Development facility and a Ford EV plant being built just west of the city. These projects will require several hundred members to fill in the required man hours, which is why Jordan has hopes for a bright future at Local 17.

To learn more about the apprenticeship program with Local 17, press play and visit iw17.org.

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.


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