Wayne Spence Head Shot By Wayne Spence

I hope every PEF member had a relaxing and engaging Labor Day!  It was great to see so many smiling faces at the Albany, Massena, Rochester and Syracuse parades.  We feature a write-up of the largest gathering, the Capital District Labor Parade, in this issue, as well as dozens of photos from the other celebrations across the State.  I also want to point out this cool video we created from the Albany event.  Those of you who were there probably noticed the guy with the funny helmet cam riding his hoverboard.  This is the kind of video you get when you do that sort of thing.

It is time now for PEF to focus on the 44th annual Convention, to be held Oct. 23-26 in Niagara Falls.  Planning has been underway for months and I’m looking forward to another great gathering as we conduct the vital business of our union together.  At this month’s Executive Board meeting, members voted to hold the 2023 and 2024 Conventions in Syracuse.  The board also approved PEF’s political endorsements for the General Election in November.  We have complete coverage of the board meeting in this issue, as well as copies of the two Constitutional Amendments that will be considered at Convention, and PEF’s audited financial statements, as required by PEF policy this time of year.

We also have the second installment in our “What Can PEF Do For You?” series, featuring the hard-working men and women of PEF Organizing.  I spent a lot of time on the road with them these last few months during the Statewide Officers Tour, and I can truly say they work extremely hard to engage and thank members.  Nothing we do is more important.  If you ever have a chance to help them out at your worksite or in your region, please do.

Lastly, a pair of features to recommend in this issue: First, meet marine biologist Christopher Scott, who works for the DEC on Long Island, helping educate New Yorkers about sharks! I know summer is almost officially behind us, but it’s amazing to read about the work that goes into tracking shark activity and making sure the beaches are safe for human enjoyment while at the same time the water is a healthy environment for sharks.

Also, a shout-out to the winners of this year’s Joseph Scacalossi Scholarships.  Since 1988PEF has awarded hundreds of thousands of dollars to students in tribute to one of the union’s founding fathers who worked at the state Department of Labor.  Congratulations to this year’s recipients.

Thanks for reading and I wish you all a safe and healthy start to the Fall.

In Unity,
Wayne Spence