Virus Crisis Shows Union's Value

Uncertainty has been at the center of this strange experience. But Local 8888 President Charles Spivey has been in the company’s ear constantly – raising questions about safety in the yard, complaints about the liberal leave policy and growing economic jitters. He participated in a conference call with Senator Mark Warner and sent him a list of questions from folks in the shipyard to ask company officials whenever they met.

That led to President Spivey urging the company to follow Sen. Warner’s advice to take advantage of an economic lifeline in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act that would benefit workers taking liberal leave.

Now, because of the consistent push from Local 8888 members and leaders, shipyard workers who meet the criteria can take liberal leave without taking a hard, financial hit to protect their health or to care for their families. That is the union difference in dollars and “sense.”