About the Transport Workers Union Utility Division
A Tradition of Labor Power and National Leadership
From the labor history book written by the International's Robert Wechsler "Burning Bright: The Story of Local 101," published in 1990.
"Local 101 was born on December 30, 1941 at a mass meeting held in the Labor Lyceum in downtown Brooklyn. On that day, 4,000 blue-collar and clerical workers, all employees of Brooklyn Union Gas Company, voted overwhelmingly to affiliate their Independent Gas Union with the Transportation Workers Union of America.
All of these are simple facts of history, and yet they seem so remote today. But this is not unimportant. Today we have certain concerns about our jobs—pay, working conditions, benefits, retirement, supervisors, and family pressures... [Seventy] years ago our predecessors on the job had similar worries. Only there was one important difference. They kept their complaints to themselves. Having no union to support them, gas workers made individual arrangements with the company and its foremen. Without a contract and a union behind them, these people were at the mercy of BUG."
Today, Employees of National Grid Are Stronger Than Ever in a Time of Crisis for Unionism
In the decades since its founding, Local 101 has stood with BUG employees as the company jumped from one corporate owner to the next. 1,500 strong, and now employees of National Grid, we're still fighting the good fight. More than that, our Union is more unified and active than ever before.
President's Message in Response to Hurricane Sandy, November 11, 2013
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
When Hurricane Sandy hit the city last Sunday, we were at its mercy. More than a week later, we are still working day and night to restore service, assess the damage, and ensure the safety of our families and friends. For many of us, the force of the storm destroyed our homes in whole or in part. And as many of you already know, one of our own, sister Anna Gesso, tragically lost her life when her home in Staten Island flooded. She had been with the union since 1993, and her presence at the Metrotech call center will be greatly missed. We want to offer her family and coworkers our deepest condolences. Our thoughts and prayers are with all who have suffered.
We all know that the work we do is tough, demanding, and often unpredictable. And it’s at times like these that the whole city can see how important our work is. We are first responders. Local 101 members are out there at all hours making sure that families are safe and businesses can run.
When tragedy strikes, the job of the union is to get involved immediately. We did that. The officers of Local 101 have been assisting fellow members in all of the zones. We’re working hard to ensure that members are fed, clothed, and safe—making sure you are taken care of while you take care of others. We know that many of you have been working 12-hour shifts. And with everything else going on, we had to deal as a workforce with the gas shortage. We brought the problem to the attention of National Grid’s NY President Ken Daly, and together we made sure that members could get work and continue their efforts.
If you have been harmed in any way by the storm and have not yet informed us, please call the local. We are here for you and your family. We offer our sympathies, and we can help.
President, TWU Local 101