With a sense of pride and duty, GCC/IBT union members at the U. S. Government Publishing Office produced material – somehighly sensitive – for the inauguration of President Joe Biden.
“It gives you a real sense of pride to know you had a direct impact on freedom and the Democratic process,” said Melvin Prailow, building representative and chairman of the GPO Joint Council. “Work like this makes you proud to be American.” Prailow, of Local 1-C, Washington, D.C., said union members – all required to submit to background checks and gain security clearance – printed invitations, seating charts and credentials in addition to classified items that he could not discuss.
“This was truly a team effort by all of our hard-working members,” Prailow said.
For decades, Prailow said, the GPO has handled materials for various inaugural and White House events.
While the pandemic has forced many companies to either lay off workers or shutter completely, production demands have increased at the federal facility during the past year, leaders say.
“Covid caused many people to be off work, but we were pressed into working overtime and six to seven days per week,” said Danny Whitmer, Local 1-C president. Whitmer said union GPO workers take great pride in their work.
“This is what we consider an honor and a duty to the United States,” he said. “Whether it be printing money at the Bureau of Engraving or material for an inauguration at GPO, we consider it an important mission for us to serve the
people of this country.”
*This article was originally published in the GCC’s Graphic Communicator publication.