Resolution No. 23: Healthcare, Service Sector, Education, Security, Telecommunications, Office, Technical, Professional and Public Employees

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WHEREAS, our Union has recognized since its founding that all workers deserve a decent wage, a safe workplace and dignity on the job. Based on this principle, our Union organizes professional, education, healthcare, telecommunications, public sector and service sector workers to empower them through collective bargaining; and

WHEREAS, the over 130,000 members of our Union in the healthcare, education, office, technical, professional, telecommunications, public and service sectors in the United States, Canada and the Caribbean comprise a significant and growing portion of our membership and have sector-specific concerns and needs; and 

WHEREAS, in recognition of these needs, our Union in the United States created a Health Care Workers Council and a Public Employees Council to provide additional support to the roughly 50,000 healthcare members and 25,000 public employee members in a wide variety of healthcare and public sector jobs and workplaces; and  

WHEREAS, in Canada, the USW created the Health Care Council and an Education Sector Council to provide ongoing assistance, research and to coordinate key bargaining issues; and

WHEREAS, in recognition of the global health crisis experienced during the Covid-19 pandemic, there has never been a more important time to empower health care workers with the tools required to provide care safely and professionally. Front line workers put their own safety on the line to help our families. They must be able to negotiate fair contracts that protect their lives and interests; and 

WHEREAS, in Canada in 2015, the 13,000 members of the Telecommunications Workers Union (TWU) joined our Union to become TWU United Steelworkers Local Union 1944; and 

WHEREAS, pursuant to that merger the Union has committed to create a telecommunications workers council which will bring together over 25,000 members in telecom and call centers from across North America and will seek to provide ongoing support, research and assistance to these members; and 

WHEREAS, there are many facilities at which our Union represents production and maintenance employees, but where white-collar employees remain unorganized. A concerted effort must be made to organize non-represented office, technical and professional employees working in our core industries so that everyone has a seat at the bargaining table, particularly where we have negotiated neutrality clauses; and

WHEREAS, we have been successful in Canada in organizing in many service related sectors including higher education, security, airport screening, call centers, nursing and retirement homes and hotels where our Union now represents tens of thousands of service sector workers and has a strong established track record of representing service sector workers; and

WHEREAS, in Canada in particular, the Union has organized over 10,000 new members in higher education over the last 20 years; and

WHEREAS, in Canada, the Union recently organized over 900 new members at 3 nursing homes; and  

WHEREAS, although our Union has successfully organized thousands of public sector workers throughout the United States, Canada and the Caribbean, public employees are still denied the right to organize and bargain collectively in far too many U.S. states; and        

WHEREAS, successful organizing of healthcare, education, office, technical, professional, public sector and service sector employees requires a strategic approach, utilizing skills and techniques that have been refined, and continue to be refined, in scores of organizing campaigns throughout the United States, Canada and the Caribbean. 


  1. Our Union pledges its continued commitment to organizing and servicing healthcare, education, office, technical, professional, security, tele-communications, public sector and service sector employees. 
  2. We pledge to continue to explore innovative new policies and programs that will provide our staff and members with the tools and strategies needed for organizing and servicing in these rapidly growing sectors of our two countries.
  3. We call upon each Local Union, as well as upon our members in workplaces where office, technical and professional employees are unrepresented, to help organize these workers in their facilities. 
  4. The USW will vigorously promote and fight to retain legislation granting public employees meaningful bargaining rights, and will seek means to assist public employees who are denied the right to organize and bargain collectively.
  5. We will promote legislation on the state, provincial and national level to achieve comprehensive safe staffing standards in both the United States and Canada. Such legislation will benefit all healthcare workers and help address not only the quality of care our members strive to provide, but the health, safety, and quality of life issues so important to USW healthcare sector workers. 
  6. We will continue to build power in the workplace for healthcare workers by organizing workers who provide care and support to patients, residents and citizens in the broad facets of our sector and to provide strategic support to our members by bargaining the strongest possible contracts, advocating for legislation that empowers healthcare workers to provide their patients with the highest level of quality care, and by training healthcare workers to utilize their strength in numbers to become decision makers in all aspects of their work.
  7. The USW will continue to strengthen a structured, active, and member-driven USW Health Care Workers Council in the United States and the Health Care Council in Canada, who are focused on members through education on bargaining trends, communications, legislative issues, health and safety, and organizing through a Health Care Workers Council Conference held not less than every two years and a communication network led by District Coordinators who will coordinate regularly with International staff and each other to enable communications and support networks between local unions in the healthcare sector in each USW district. 
  8. We will continue to build power in the telecommunications sector by providing support and assistance to our telecommunications workers to address specific health and safety issues in this sector, legislative reforms, contracting out and offshoring and to provide education and support to ensure that we bargain the best possible contracts that improve the working lives of our members in the telecommunications sector.
  9. We will continue to build power in the higher education, security, hotel and airport screening sectors by providing strategic support to our members, by bargaining the strongest possible contracts and advocating for legislation that empowers workers to improve their working conditions and their quality of life.

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