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Honolulu IUPAT members paint safety line during the Labor of Love at Iao Intermediate School.

Across the United States, Port Maritime Councils took advantage of the warmer spring weather to help their communities in various ways.

Hawaii PMC are among the trade unionists calling for Hawaii to increase its minimum wage.

It might be hard to justify the need for spring weather to the affiliates to the Hawaii Ports Maritime Council, but with the calendars turning to April and May, that PMC was active on several fronts.

In April, delegates joined with other trade unionists to urge the Hawaii legislature to increase the state’s minimum wage. They also fought to end the need for tipped jobs so all would benefit from the better wage scale. Shortly after that, the PMC took part in the state’s Labor Community Services’ Labor of Love event to brighten and upgrade the Iao Intermediate School. Dozens of union members joined school personnel and students to clean, repair and paint the facility.

Hawaii-based maritime unions present the industry to those looking for a new career.

In late May, the council’s maritime affiliates held a Maritime Career Pathways Expo to introduce the industry to those looking for a new job or career path. The council reported this event was very successful.

In Houston, the West Gulf Ports Council honored state Senator John Whitmire for his 50 years of service to the state of Texas and its working people. More than 100 people, including representatives from several PMC affiliates, gathered for a lunch on May 25 at the Seafarers Union hall in Houston to salute Whitmire.

West Gulf PMC honors Texas Senator John Whitmire (center) for his 50 years of service for Texas workers. From the left, Steve Flores of the CWA, US Rep Gene Green, Whitmire, SIU Gulf Coast VP Dean Corgey and Texas AFL-CIO Pres Rick Levy.

Due north (and a little east), the Chicago and Western Lakes Port Council held its annual golf fundraiser on June 14 near Lake Michigan. Almost 150 trade unionists and allies came out to recognize Michael D. Volpentesta, president of the Bricklayers District Council 1, as Labor Leader of the Year; Illinois Secretary of State Jess White with the Friend of Labor Award; and Maurice King of IBEW Local 134 with the Able Helmsman of the Year Award.

Chicago PMC officers gather with Able Helmsman of the Year Maurice King (center). From the left, PMC Sec-Treas Bryan Powell, Illinois House Speaker Chris Welch, King, PMC VP John Grande and PMC Pres Bob Howard.

Just a few days later, delegates and friends of the Cleveland Port Maritime Council hit the links near the shores of Lake Erie to hold its annual golf outing. Almost 50 people took advantage of the beautiful weather for fellowship and fun.

Members of the Cleveland PMC gather before its annual golf outing.