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#34264 - 02/06/04 03:20 PM Unindentured helper
mighty_thor Offline
Member

Registered: 05/18/03
Posts: 13
Loc: san jose, ca, usa
I just want your opinion.

Ok, I applied for an apprentice in
one local union , and I past their exam.
Now I am able to work with them as an unindentured helper. I work 3 months
with a contractor as a helper, and was
laid off. Start of the year , work is slow
and I have been waiting for months to
get another job.

Last December they pick 25
new apprentice, to replace the one
who quit last year. I was not one
of them, but the local said that my name is in the list of candidates.

My question is,
1. Do I have a chance to be accepted
as an apprentice, and how long will my
waiting period be ?
2. Could I know my ranking as a candidate
in the pool of applicant for apprentice ?
I knew for sure that they keep on giving
test and new candidate is coming in and
being interview. I want to know now
what my chances is and how this pool
works.

3. Also why, in the job line ,
they don't announce if the job is for
apprentice person only, or this job
list is not for unindentured helper.
Doing so will help unindentured helper,
to report or not in the office or keep looking for a job elsewhere.

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#34265 - 02/06/04 05:05 PM Re: Unindentured helper
Nick Offline
Member

Registered: 08/13/01
Posts: 603
Loc: Riverside, CA
Thor,
As an unindentured apprentice you are at the bottom of the barrel as far as getting a job goes. If work is slow your chances are almost zero. I worked as an unindentured apprentice for about a year before I officially got into the program. I was lucky work was good then and I only spent 1 month of that year out of work. You only work if there are no indentured apprentices available. Even if you are working, if indentured apprentices become available you can be removed from the job so they can take your place. You can only work unindentured for a maximum amount of hours. Usually 2000. You can't work on public work projects because not being an indentured apprentice violates the Davis-Bacon Act. (This is all stuff you signed on to when you started I'm sure). If there are indentured apprentices on the book I wouldn't wait around long if I were you. Find something else until work picks up or you get into the program.
As far as where you stand and if you will get accepted, you will have to consult with your local JATC on that one.

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#34266 - 02/06/04 06:52 PM Re: Unindentured helper
mighty_thor Offline
Member

Registered: 05/18/03
Posts: 13
Loc: san jose, ca, usa
Thanks Nick for the quick replied.

Your right, I am in the bottom of this
process, and I understand that.
The best thing for me is to look for a
temporary job,which I am doing,
until the busy season comes.
But my name is already in the top of
book and not signing on the designated day,
could eventually loose my spot.

Any advice that you people out there
could give me, to maintain my name
on top, while I am working another job.
The fact is, the work I am doing right
now is temporary and one day I will again
come back to sign the book.

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#34267 - 02/06/04 11:19 PM Re: Unindentured helper
u2slow Offline
Member

Registered: 09/18/03
Posts: 198
Loc: Salt Spring, BC, Canada
With my IBEW local you are indentured from the day they find work for you - no ifs, ands, or buts. I thought that was part of working Union. Is this really at discretion of the individual Union local?

My biggest fear when entering the trade was leaving an 'okay' job only to end up as an unindentured helper while getting teased with the possibility of an apprenticeship that might never come.

The dispatch system at my local is a basic first-in, first-out (FIFO) queue. One for apprentices, one for journeyman. Companies simply ask for an apprentice or a journeyman. The only exception is the company can make a "name request" for a particular journeyman, (but no more than every other request may be a named one.)

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#34268 - 02/07/04 08:56 AM Re: Unindentured helper
electure Offline

Member

Registered: 12/24/00
Posts: 4226
Loc: Fullerton, CA USA
My younger brother worked for about a month when he first started, and then was out of work for almost a year. He now works steadily.

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#34269 - 02/07/04 04:18 PM Re: Unindentured helper
Nick Offline
Member

Registered: 08/13/01
Posts: 603
Loc: Riverside, CA
 Quote:
Is this really at discretion of the individual Union local?


Unindentured apprentices are hired at times when work is good and they don't have enough apprentices to man the work. Either it is a temporary surge in work or a new apprentice class won't be hired for a wile to fill the void. Tis way when work slows down there aren't too many people on the book. It's a balancing act. There is no guarantee that a person will be accepted to the program just because they are working unindentured although it definitely doesn't hurt.

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#34270 - 02/07/04 05:01 PM Re: Unindentured helper
johnd24 Offline
Member

Registered: 07/11/01
Posts: 66
For the most part if you want to get in the union that bad i would say get a job with a non union shop.
When the union see's that they are losing money by not having your dues they will gladly accept you.
At least thats the way my local union works.

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#34271 - 02/07/04 07:00 PM Re: Unindentured helper
mighty_thor Offline
Member

Registered: 05/18/03
Posts: 13
Loc: san jose, ca, usa
I think you are right Johnd24, I see some
people or apprentice in a jobsite working
harder than a journeyman. I see a lot
of journeyman, who have the "I don't care
attitude ".

Now I know it is the dues that the
apprentice bring to the union, thats why
they are preferred.

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#34272 - 02/08/04 04:40 PM Re: Unindentured helper
johnd24 Offline
Member

Registered: 07/11/01
Posts: 66
Lets face it.....it is not the 1930's...and bottom line for unions is to keep membership high so as to collect more dues.There are other apprentice training schools like the IEC.
If you want to be an electrician the union is not the only way to go,and im not condeming the union their training is excellent but it does not meen that they are the best electricians.
Just get your foot in the door at any shop and soak up as much as possible.Make yourself an asset and union or not you'll always find work. good luck !!

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