June 5, 2020
EST Wayne Jennings answers members' questions
Last week, EST Wayne Jennings answered 14 questions members had for our council.

In part 1 of the video, EST Jennings answered members’ questions regarding annuity and pension withdrawals, upcoming work, unemployment assistance, and online training.

In part 2 of the video, he answered questions related to work hours and health insurance, the stock market and pension funds, face masks on jobsites, unemployment assistance, and how COVID-19 is affecting work opportunities.

If you have a question for our council, please text it to 855-57-SSMRC (855-577-7672), call us at the same number, or email your question to info@southernstatesmillwrights.org.
Local meeting updates for June
  • Eastern Region: Locals are holding meetings utilizing Centers for Disease Control guidance.

  • Central Region: Local 1192's June meeting is cancelled due to a 7 p.m. curfew in Birmingham. Local 1554 will hold its meeting as planned.

  • Western Region: Meetings are being held as scheduled.
UBC shares statement regarding recent protests
In these difficult times, we urge our members to be a force for what is right and fair and to work toward peace and justice. To read a statement by our parent organization, the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America, regarding recent protests, violence, and destruction, click here.
Spring 2020 nuclear outage season ends with no jobsite-related COVID-19 cases
The last nuclear outage of the spring 2020 season (Catawba Nuclear Station in York, South Carolina) finished in late May with no jobsite-related cases of COVID-19 among our millwright workforce.
Approximately seven outages are scheduled for the fall season, with ramp-up schedules in mid-August through early October.
One-time withdrawal possible for members enrolled in Central South Carpenters and Millwrights Defined Contribution Fund
Image by rawpixel.com
Members who have been affected by COVID-19 and are enrolled in the Central South Carpenters and Millwrights Defined Contribution Fund are being granted a one-time withdrawal from their retirement funds, without penalty. If eligible, you can withdraw up to $10,000 from your account, but you must leave at least a $500 balance. Distributions are available through Dec. 31, 2020.

Are you eligible?
There are five federal guidelines to be considered affected by COVID-19. If you meet any of these, you should qualify for the one-time withdrawal. Those requirements are:

  1. You have been diagnosed with COVID-19 or SARS-CoV-2 by a test approved by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
  2. Your spouse or dependent has been diagnosed with COVID-19 or SARS-CoV-2 by a test approved by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
  3. You have experienced adverse financial consequences as a result of being quarantined due to COVID-19.
  4. You have experienced adverse financial consequences as a result of being unable to work due to lack of child care due to COVID-19.
  5. You have experienced adverse financial consequences as a result of being furloughed or laid off or having your hours reduced due to COVID-19.

For more information about the possibility of a retirement account withdrawal, click here:  https://bit.ly/2Z240pO or call the fund office at 800-831-4914.
How to stay healthy at work
As more of our members get back on the job, we know safety measures like keeping 6 feet apart are challenging. But it is important to practice social distancing and protect yourself in other ways such as:

  • Wearing personal protective equipment like gloves and face coverings
  • Sanitizing your tools, phone, and anything else you touch frequently
  • Washing your hands frequently with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds. If you don't have access to soap and water, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Avoiding touching your face, especially your eyes, nose, and mouth
  • Eating your lunch by yourself
  • Avoiding crowded break areas
  • Not carpooling
  • Taking stairs when possible
  • Limiting interactions by working with the same group of people whenever possible

June is National Safety Month in the United States! We will continue to provide updates on ways to protect yourself during this pandemic, and we'll also share more general safety tips in this newsletter and online.
Regional work updates
Western Region:
Local 216
Work is returning to normal. Jobs have started at Georgia Pacific in Muskogee, Oklahoma, and our members have returned to work at Goodyear in Lawton, Oklahoma. We have work picking up in Arkansas at BSCI in Morrilton and Kimberly Clark in Maumelle as well.
Local 729
Work in Louisiana looks like it will be picking up in June. We have been informed of an upcoming maintenance project, and contractors are bidding work. There is possible work at the Big Cajun power plant, and a project at Air Liquide is ongoing.
Local 1421
Power-generation work is still going strong, with several jobs ongoing. We also just picked up a major project at the DFW Airport as well, and work is returning to normal.
Local 2232
Work is on track to return to normal beginning in June, with a large portion of our maintenance millwrights going back to work. Multiple projects from the spring that were pushed into June will be manning up soon. We also have ongoing work and new work starting up at several Calpine facilities as well as compressor work for Enterprise Products.

Central Region:

Work across the region is picking up slowly. Plants are opening their doors allowing contractors to bid on work.

  • Redstone Arsenal members returned to work on May 18.
  • The Toyota/Mazda project continues as scheduled with safety guidelines in place for members.
  • U.S. Steel Fairfield Works has ceased work due to falling gas prices.

  • Nissan in Canton is re-opened its doors June 1.
  • The Toyota plant in Blue Springs re-opened June 1.
  • Plant Daniel work is ongoing as planned.

  • The Bridgestone manufacturing plant in LaVergneis has delayed production temporarily.
  • Arconic has shut its doors temporarily.
  • The Forest Resolute outage is scheduled for June 1.
  • Nissan is resuming work as planned.
  • General Motors is back to business.
  • Tennessee Valley Authority is resuming work.

Eastern Region:
Local 1000
  • SGS picked up a small job for four millwrights at Okeechobee Clean Energy Center that runs through approximately June 15.
  • Work with Walbridge at the Amazon facility is ongoing.
  • There is airport work in Ft. Lauderdale, Tampa, Orlando, and Miami.
  • Airco is working at Big Bend for an outage.
  • GCI and Central Maintenance have work at the Big Bend outage and maintenance and phosphate mines.
  • Siemens is working at Sanford.

Local 1263
  • Western Industrial was awarded an expansion of a FedEx distribution center in Atlanta and will begin hiring around 30 millwrights in June.
  • Vulcan is at the Plant Bowen outage.
  • Cleveland is at Toyo tire, Wrigley’s, and General Mills.
  • RCC and TurbinePROs are at Vogtle (reduced numbers).
  • SRS is starting to filter a few at a time back to the site.
  • Walbridge Equipment installation group is working at the BorgWarner plant.
  • CR Meyer is at Kimberly Clark and Graphic Packaging, and will be doing new machine installation in Macon.
  • Doral is at Dr. Pepper and Keurig.
  • Georgia Power’s Plant Vogtle Units 3 and 4 construction project is continuing with the precautions noted below due to COVID-19 cases among workers. During the past nine days, 1 new case was reported. This brings total cases to 233.

Additional information for Vogtle workers:

Local 2411
  • WW Gay is at U S Gypsum, GP Perry, Rayonier and GP Palatka and at Duke Energy in Gainesville
  • Milton J Wood finishing up at U S Gypsum, International Paper Port Wentworth and GP Palatka
  • Coker Industrial Columbia Grain, WestRock in Fernandina and Jacksonville and Rayonier in Fernandina
  • APM has small outages at JEA energy Stations
  • Siemens is finishing a Generator replacement at Gainesville Regional Utilities Deerhaven
  • Vogtle should be LU 1263
  • Outages at the Paper mills have been postponed because of the corona virus and will be rescheduled.
We want to recognize and reward you!
We recently launched two recognition programs for members and want to reward those who participate.

With both programs described below, any member who sends in verifiable information suitable for publication will receive a free “Essential Union Worker” T-shirt. If we use your story in our newsletter, on social media, or on our website, we will send you a lunch cooler and thermos set.

Wright Moves Community Service Challenge
  • Let us know how you are volunteering in your community. If you would like to help your community respond to COVID-19, you can find a list of volunteer resources by state here.
  • See participation instructions here.
Essential: On the Job and at Home
  • Tell us about essential work you are performing as a millwright.
  • Or let us know what challenges you and your family have been facing during the COVID-19 pandemic.
  •  See participation instructions here.
See daily updates of COVID-19 cases, deaths, and more in your county and state
The Johns Hopkins University Coronavirus Resource Center is one of the most comprehensive sources of COVID-19-related data. You can stay up to date on the number of cases and deaths in your area and learn about local health-care resources and more through this site. Zoom in on the map and click your county.