My Dear Brothers and Sisters;
As we close out 2013, I want to thank you all for working safely this year and striving to be excellent and professional Union members. I stand tall with you as we proudly proclaim that our IBEW members are the most professional, most efficient, most productive and safest work force in our industry. Our IBEW members have the highest integrity and Duke Energy needs us here in Florida as we provide our excellent service to our customers throughout the state.
I want you to always remember: You’re braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think. You were born with potential. You were born with goodness and trust. You were born with ideals and dreams. You were born with greatness. You were born with the ability to achieve your goals. You are not meant for crawling, so don't.
Never be bullied into silence. Never allow yourself to be made a victim. Accept no one's definition of your life as only you can define yourself and your life. We must look for the opportunity in every difficulty instead of being paralyzed at the thought of the difficulty in every opportunity. You are not here merely to make a living. You are here in order to enable yourself, your family and the world to live more amply, with greater vision, with a finer spirit of hope and achievement. You are here to enrich your Brothers and Sisters and you diminish yourself if you forget that mission. Every human being is intended to have a character of his own; to be what no others are, and to do what no other can do.
If you despair, please remember that throughout history, the way of truth and fairness has always won. There are those who are in positions of power, and for a time they may seem invincible, but in the end they always fall. Some of those individuals have no sense of honor and do not comprehend “human value”. They have no apparent ability to distinguish the difference between their need and their greed. They are unworthy and are not deserving of our time.
Samuel Gompers once stated; "What does labor want? We want more schoolhouses and less jails; more books and less arsenals; more learning and less vice; more leisure and less greed; more justice and less revenge; in fact, more of the opportunities to cultivate our better natures." This statement has more meaning now than ever before.
As strong Union members, our basic instinct is not merely to survive, but to advance our future employment for the benefit of our family. Most of us would give our own life for the survival of a family member, yet we tend to lead our daily life in the moment, as opposed to considering the long-term impact the workplace has on our family. We can’t take our family or our negotiated benefits for granted. Neither are a guarantee and maintaining both are vital to insuring a happy and fulfilling life for our families.
Our Union Family and Friends are like strong and sturdy walls. Sometimes you lean on them, and sometimes it's good just knowing they are there. Your System Committee wishes you and your families a Blessed, Happy and Healthy 2014. God Bless.
Ed Mobsby, Business Manager
IBEW, System Council, U8