Washington, D.C. – The International Association of Bridge, Structural, Ornamental & Reinforcing Iron Workers ((IABSO&RIW) today assumed operational and financial oversight of Local Union No. 401 in Philadelphia.
Walter W. Wise, general president, said the Iron Worker international leadership has “invoked its authority under our International Constitution to place Local No. 401, Philadelphia, PA, under trusteeship.”
This action by the International Association comes following the arrests on Tuesday by Federal Bureau of Investigation agents of nine members of Local No. 401. The FBI alleges that the nine members of Local No. 401 engaged in activity that violates RICO statutes.
Local No. 401, like the more than 150 affiliated Iron Worker local unions across America and Canada, had operated autonomously from the umbrella organization, the International Association.
This morning, representatives from the International Association entered the offices of Local No. 401 at 11600 Norcom Rd. in Philadelphia, removed the existing leadership, and assumed responsibility for the operations of the Local Union.
“Our Job One right now is to proactively work to restore the full faith and trust of the members, our contractor partners, and the public,” Wise said. “We take the Government’s allegations of criminal conduct at Local No. 401 extremely seriously.”
Wise said that beginning today, temporary leadership and an operational team will be installed at Local No. 401, led by the International Association’s representatives.
The Philadelphia local union affiliate of IABSO&RIW was founded in 1925. It is among dozens of Northeastern locals responsible for historic, iconic structures in the region, including the Comcast Center in Philadelphia, the George Washington Bridge in New Jersey, and the Empire State Building in New York.
Wise said the FBI’s allegations, if borne out, “can never be condoned or tolerated.”
Our members in Philadelphia and throughout North America compete daily based on their skills and work ethic to deliver quality projects safely, on time and on budget. We will not let the actions of a few tarnish our hard-earned reputation. We are focused completely on regaining the trust of our business partners and the public here in Philadelphia – and on ensuring that professionalism and ethical conduct are the driving force at Local No. 401 and for all our affiliates.”
About the Iron Workers:
Founded in 1896, the International Association of Bridge, Structural, Ornamental and Reinforcing Iron Workers Union, AFL-CIO, represents more than 120,000 members throughout the United States and Canada. The men and women of the IABSO&RIW have worked on nearly every major construction project you can think of—the Golden Gate Bridge, the Sears Tower, the St. Louis Arch, the World Trade Center and the Freedom Tower.
It represents trained, highly skilled and safe Ironworkers who specialize in structural steel, ornamental, architectural, miscellaneous metals, industrial maintenance, welding, and rebar. Its mission is to work closely with members and the construction community to continuously provide superior construction expertise throughout North America.