On August 15, 2012, the United Association and the Plumbing Trades Employees Union (PTEU) of Australia signed a historic affiliation agreement to incorporate joint skills training and employment initiatives in North America and Australia. The affiliation—the first of its kind between two unions—is a bold, strategic step for the future and advances the relationship between plumbing, pipefitting, sprinker fitting, and HVACR service industries across the globe.
Whether we realize it or not, our industry is part of a global economy. The companies we work for are often internationally managed and financed, and project owners and contractors are increasingly expanding and launching global operations beyond the borders of their home nation. This historic affiliation agreement between the UA and PTEU protects both U.S., Canadian, and Australian workers and keeps them employed and prevalent worldwide.
In the new global economy, it is critical that we work to protect labor rights on an international scale and maintain workforce standards worldwide. This groundbreaking agreement has enabled the exchange of knowledge and skills between the United States, Canada, and Australia. This ensures that all three countries remain at the forefront of change and well-equipped for the challenges of a constantly evolving industry—keeping all of our union workforces relevant and world-class in a global market.