Labor and Environment Coalitions: A Must for Survival of Both

June 8, 2019 1:30 pm
The Historic Pump House at the Waterfront
880 East Waterfront Drive, Munhall 15120

It is imperative that the labor and environmental movements work together to confront the challenge of climate change head-on,” BHF President John Haer said. “It’s a problem that’s already affecting millions of Americans through increasingly common severe storms, flooding, droughts, fires, and other disasters. Now is the time to push for a transition to a green economy that will create jobs ― good union jobs ― while hopefully providing us with a chance to avert global catastrophe.”

Keynote Speaker: Joe UehleinLabor Network for Sustainability: dedicated to Making a Living  on a Living Planet!

Master of Ceremony: Mike Stout, Battle of Homestead Foundation Board member, President of the Izaak Walton League, Allegheny County Chapter, former Grievance Chair, USWA Local 1397 Homestead Works. “This is a do or die moment,” event organizer and retired steelworker Mike Stout said. “We either work together toward the common goal of collective survival, or time is going to run out very quickly for the human race, and the planet.

Keynote Address: Joe Uehlein is the President of the Labor Network for Sustainability. Joe previously served as Secretary-Treasurer of the AFL-CIO’s Industrial Union Department, and as Director of the AFL-CIO Center for Strategic Campaigns. Joe also served on the United Nation’s first commission on global warming from its inception in 1988 until 2003. Joe started his trade union work at an aluminum extrusion mill in Mechanicsburg, PA as a member of the United Steel Workers (USW), and then worked heavy and highway construction as a member of the Laborers Union, LiUNA Local 158 in Central Pennsylvania.

Panel Response to Keynote address:

Chris Petrone has served as the Legislative Director for the International Union of Operating Engineers (IUOE) Local 66 since 2013. The IUOE is a trade union that represents more than 350,000 members who operate heavy equipment and maintain that equipment in the construction industry. Local 66 specifically represents almost 8,000 members in Western Pennsylvania and Eastern Ohio.

Rosemary Bezy, a 25 year United Steelworker, is the Vice President of USW Local 1557, Clairton Works. She previously served as Safety Committee chair, Trustee, Legislative Committee chair, Negotiating Committee, and International and District Delegates to their respective conventions.
” I believe the Union has the responsibility to protect workers rights and to work in harmony with the surrounding community. No one has the right to make a living at the expense of others but we all deserve to make a living.”

Eva Resnick-Day, Community Organizer with the Sierra Club’s Ready for 100 Campaign. Based in Pittsburgh, Eva works to bring the City to 100% renewable clean energy through means centered on equity to meet the concerns of both workers and those historically negatively impacted by industrial pollution. A proud, lifelong Pittsburgher, Eva found her way into the climate movement at the start of the PA fracking boom in 2009, and then went on to work with Greenpeace to help restore a functioning Democracy by delegitimizing the influence of big money, and particularly fossil fuel money on our government.

Tina Doose, President of Braddock Borough Council. She has represented Braddock residents on borough council since 2006 and was elected council president in January 2013. As part of Braddock’s council, Tina helped secure development funds to build recreational spaces, guided new housing development, and supported a number of community initiatives and programs. Tina has served since 2004 on the board of the Braddock Economic Development Corporation (BEDCO), which has brought over $22 million in new development into the community.

After the Panel discussion, Patty DeMarco will direct breakout into small group sessions to discuss ideas and proposals drawing on the participants’ work experience, knowledge and ideas to begin filling in the blanks in the Green New Deal: what kind of jobs we want to create in renewable energy, weaning the economy off fossil fuels, environmental clean-up, changing the way energy is used, redesigning transportation systems, etc.; ensuring that green jobs are good-paying union jobs; and that the needs workers and communities that are losing in the move away from dirty energy be addressed, but also that the Green New Deal has to be a new deal for communities and populations who never really benefited from the economic opportunities in the fossil fuel economy.

Patty DeMarco, Author: “Pathways to Our Sustainable Future-  Global Perspective from Pittsburgh”, Forest Hills Borough Council, 2016-2020

Program Co-Sponsors: Izaak Walton League of America Allegheny County, United Electrical Workers Union (UE), Pittsburgh DSA Eco-Socialism Committee, Pittsburgh Human Rights City Alliance.