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• Elected UAW Region 9A director in 2006. The region covers eastern New York (including the New York City metropolitan area, the Hudson Valley and the Capital District area), Connecticut, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, New Hampshire, Vermont, Maine and Puerto Rico.
• Appointed assistant regional director in 1989. Involved in numerous contract negotiations. Played a key role in organizing UAW workers in Puerto Rico.
• Joined UAW Local 376 in 1964, when he began work as a machinist at Emhart Mfg. in Windsor, Conn. Served as recording secretary, shop chair, financial secretary-treasurer and president.
• Involved in political campaigns in Connecticut. Served as chair of Local 376’s Community Action Program (CAP).
• Born Dec. 3, 1945, in Hartford, Conn. Bob and his wife, Diane Daigle Madore, have two sons, Robert and Mark, and four grandchildren. The Madores live in Bolton, Conn.
Our organizing focus is on public and private sector worksites, including sister locations of currently organized facilities and competitors to currently organized worksites. We just added 2,600 casino workers, for example, to the UAW’s existing 6,000 in Detroit and Atlantic City when workers at Foxwoods in Connecticut voted by 60 percent for the UAW.
Organizing also involves strengthening our current membership in negotiating the best contracts possible. This is particularly true in Puerto Rico, where our government employees are struggling with a bankrupt Commonwealth.
Every Region 9A member is an organizer. Our servicing representatives help workers organize in the geographic areas of their assignments. We also train rank-and-file members to further develop our regional skill base.
Growing our membership makes our union more powerful, and that helps all of us. It means we carry more strength at the bargaining table and in the political arena.
It’s been exciting to see how 9A members from all different industries have risen to this challenge. Locals are organizing, identifying workers interested in organizing and sending members for organizing training.
Diversity is about a lot more than race. In Region 9A we are made up of older workers and new hires; Latino, African-American, Asian and white workers; immigrants and citizens; independent parts suppliers and dealership workers; LGBT and straight; nonreligious, Protestant, Buddhist, Catholic, Jewish and Islamic; machine operators and skilled trades, women and men. If we let our differences divide us, we will never be a united labor movement.
Celebrating our diversity is vital to our success. It’s not about being politically correct. Simply, we are not as powerful as we could be unless everyone is involved. Every member brings something unique to the labor movement.
Labor’s motto is, “An Injury to One is an Injury to All.” If we think “all” only means “people like me,” that hurts our chances for success.
If we conduct a bargaining survey and only ask day shift workers, we are missing part of the truth. If people talk about CAFE standards with only autoworkers, we are missing part of the truth. If we talk to members who speak one language but not another, we are missing part of the truth.
The challenges labor faces today are far too great not to be the best we can be. All our members deserve it.
Political action can’t be something that happens every two to four years. It’s a constant component of our work. When some of us were arrested in Connecticut for sitting in for state universal health care, that was political action, too. Through direct action you can educate the public and push politicians to do the right thing.
We train leaders and members about issues affecting working families all year round. If you wait until two months before an election to talk to folks, you are too late. You have to talk about keeping manufacturing jobs in America, the right to organize and universal health care all year round.