Members of the UBC are stepping up and taking charge when it comes to
politics and legislative action. Southern States Millwright Regional
Council member Matthew Nowlin is running for the 5th District seat of
the Oklahoma House of Representatives, which covers Delaware and Mayes
counties. The seat is currently held by Representative Doug Cox who is
not running for re-election.
Matthew is hoping to restore many of the values the members of the SSMRC share and bring to the table a mindset that is labor positive and family positive.
Matthew, 33, was raised in Grove, OK and graduated from Grove High School in 2001. He attended Northeast Oklahoma A&M and is currently enrolled at Oklahoma State University studying Business local 216's Matthew nowlin Has Eyes on Protecting Workers as an Oklahoma State Rep Administration. He joined Millwright Local 216 in 2010 and has served as trustee for four years and is a current delegate to the Council. Before that he worked at Pig Trail Harley Davidson. Like many other members, Matthew realized that the being a Union millwright offered him things such as job security and benefits that he couldn't get anywhere else.
"I enjoy the challenge of being a millwright. It is a unique trade," Matthew said.
Not only has the Union offered him and his family benefits and a good income, Matthew says that the training he received in the UBC has given him the confidence to run for office. Frustration with the current situation has driven his desire to join the legislature and push his ideals and family standards to the forefront of the legislative attention.
"Republicans have taken control of the state, and they aren't concerned with the important issues," he said.
"People no longer have any say in what goes on in their government. The people who are currently in office are not listening to their constituents. Something has to change!"
There has been an attack on the teacherss Union, and Matthew says he stands behind theirs and other Union bodies' right to collective bargaining.
"Education is the cornerstone of our society. The continued attacks on our teachers and the under-valuing of their efforts and contributions disgusts me," Matthew adds. "The median wage in Oklahoma has decreased by $4,000 since Right-to-Work was established in Oklahoma. There needs to be someone who stands up for labor and the families that rely on it," he said, adding that his focus is on returning manufacturing jobs to Oklahoma.
Matthew has been working hard and is running a very grass roots campaign. He had this to say to the SSMRC: "I would like to thank the SSMRC Executive Board, the Delegates and all the members for the generous donation to my campaign. This donation will allow me to take the next step toward winning. I plan to use the money for signage throughout the district. With the support from my SSMRC brothers and sisters I am confident we will be strong in this election. We must win this fight for the people and for labor."
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