IUOE locals across the country have launched a #Ready2Work campaign and website aimed at rallying Canadians to tell their MPs it’s time to build pipelines.

The campaign is funded by all of the IUOE locals in Canada that have members working in the pipeline industry.

Click here to visit the website.

“The name says it all,” IUOE Canadian director Lionel Railton said in a press release. “The pipeline proposals currently on the table are undergoing the most rigorous and comprehensive review process in Canadian history. They are ready to go, and we are ready to work.

“There’s no time to delay. It’s time to build. We are asking Canadians to join us in sending that message loud and clear.”

Local 793 business manager Mike Gallagher said pipeline projects will create employment for thousands of Operating Engineers and other pipeline trades workers across the country and generate billions of dollars in tax revenues for the federal and provincial governments.

“I am asking that Local 793 members support this important initiative, as building pipelines like the Energy East project will create numerous jobs for our members.

“We have invested in a pipeline-training program at the OETIO in Morrisburg and the IUOE has signed a memorandum of understanding with TransCanada Corp. to build the entire Energy East project using only Operating Engineers, Labourers, Pipefitters and Teamsters.

“Pipeline construction is vital to the Canadian economy and is proven to be the safest and least greenhouse-gas-intensive-way of transporting oil.”

Assistant business manager Alex Law said Local 793 and other Operating Engineer locals across the country have been preparing their members for pipeline projects.

“We have the most skilled workers around and our Operating Engineers are ready, willing and able to build these pipeline projects in a safe and efficient manner,” he said. “There should be no further delays.

“Projects like Energy East will be built to the highest safety standards and the construction work will be done by well-trained and experienced Canadian unionized pipeline trades workers.”

The website notes that 99.999 per cent of crude oil moved by pipeline arrives safely at its destination because of Canadian Operating Engineers – a world-class workforce, trained through programs supported by millions of dollars in investment by IUOE locals.

“But our commitment to safety comes from much more than training,” notes IUOE Canadian director Railton. “Operating Engineers live in the same communities where these pipelines are built. We are your next-door neighbours – so when we build, we build right, we build safe, and we build to last.”

The #Ready2Work campaign is also highlighting the fact that pipelines are the most environmentally responsible choice for moving oil, as shipping it by rail or truck produces more greenhouse gas emissions.

The IUOE says the need for pipeline projects has never been stronger, as the collapse of oil prices has led to an economic crisis.

Canada lost more than 31,000 jobs in July of this year. In Alberta alone, the oil crisis made 2015 the worst year for job losses since 1982. Thousands of working class Canadians are out of work.

“This is a crisis – families can’t put food on the table,” said Railton. “Building pipelines will create thousands of good union jobs, right when Canadians need them most.

“No more delays – I ask Canadians to visit the website and tell their MP we are ready to work.”