I'm in Edmonton. I started welding in 1981 just before the recession. The tank shop I worked for in Nisku went under in 1982 as well as hundreds of other mostly oilfield shops. It was a really good place to work too (Recon Manufacturing). Nisku was a ghost town. Things were slowly starting to pick up when I got a welding job at Go Getter in 1985. With hundreds, even thousands of welders out of work, companies could pick and choose who they wanted and treat the workers like crap. I had heard Go Getter had a bad reputation but figured it couldn't be that bad. They went through 9 guys a week on average and used to have an ad running all summer long looking for welders. Since the economy has turned around, companies can no longer treat the employee's like crap. The employee's can pick and choose when things are really booming. There are a lot of good non union jobs and most of the bad places to work have had to smarten up. There was little recession a few years ago but not anything like 1982. The union isn't the be all end all as they would make people believe. Getting into a union shop can be good though but there's still issues in union shops.
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