November 11, 2016
By WNYLaborToday.com Editor-Publisher Tom Campbell
Honolulu, HL – According to the Hawaii Tourism Authority, a record total of 8.6 million visitors arrived by air or by cruise ships to the Hawaiian Islands in 2015, and unless you’re a Member of a Union or Organized Labor, and even then you might have not realized it, you were visiting paradise – a Union Paradise.
If you didn’t know, Hawaii is ranked as the second-most Unionized State in the U.S.A., according to Wikpedia, with a Union percentage of 20.4% – coming in only behind the State of New York with 24.7% (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Union_affiliation_by_U.S._state). But if you want to split hairs, a June 2015 ranking had Hawaii at #3 with 21.8%, behind #1 New York with 24.6% and Alaska with 22.8% (www.cheatsheet.com/personal-finance/10-states-with-the-highest-union-membership.html/?a=viewall).
Overall, there’s a total of 120,000 Workers who are Union-represented in Hawaii, according to Hawaii AFL-CIO President Randy Perreira (pictured below/WNYLaborToday.com Photo), who also serves as Executive Director of the 42,000-Member Hawaii Government Employees Association (HGEA)/American Federation of Municipal Employees (AFSCME) Local 152.
Forty-five State Fed-affiliated Member Unions account for 80,000 of that, according to Perreira, who met with WNYLaborToday.com at HGEA’s Headquarters in Honolulu – Unions such as American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE), the Communications Workers of America (CWA), the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW), the Hawaiian Building & Construction Trades, Flight Attendants, Hawaii Nurses Association, Hawaii Pilots Association, Hawaii State Association of Letter Carriers, International Longshoreman and Warehouse Union (ILWU), the Sailors Union, the United Public Workers, as well as array of other Private- and –Public-affiliated Unions (http://www.hawaflcio.org/Affiliates.htm).
“We’re ‘good and stable,’” said Perreira, a second-generation HGEA Leader (His father, Herbert, served as HGEA’s Hawaii Island Division Chief for almost 10 years). “We’ve ‘long had high’ Union density, which can be ‘attributed to a positive image and reputation’ that Unions have had with the general public ‘when it comes to the movement and the issues we stand for.’ While (Hawaii’s Union Density Level) had ‘slipped a bit,’ we’re now seeing a ‘build-up’ in Union Membership because of ‘more’ Governmental Employees and Hotel Workers (becoming Union Members) and the ILWA (International Longshore & Warehouse Union) on the neighboring islands – ‘we’re doing well.’” To read more click on the following link