Today, let’s stop and take a moment to recognize the men and women that help build our nation. From welders and mechanics to electricians and pipefitters, the skilled trades that workers across this country perform everyday are integral to our way of life. On this National Skilled Trades Day, we should all reflect on the hard-working Americans who keep the nation running.
As a former pipeline worker, I have had the privilege of working with the admirable men and women who make sure we are able to heat our homes and fill up our cars. Working on energy projects across the country is an exhausting but rewarding experience. Knowing that my work is essential for our energy security is not a responsibility I take lightly.
For National Skilled Trades Day this year, I’d like to emphasize how important these jobs are to people like me. Many of the day-to-day things we all take for granted would not be around if not for the millions of skilled workers in America. As a potential skilled labor shortage looms, it is time we started treating every day like National Skilled Trades Day.
Jason Jernigan is a pipeline worker based in Bald Knob, Arkansas, who lost his job after Keystone XL was canceled. He is affiliated with Pipeliners Local Union 798.