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‘State of the Unions’ Podcast: Healing a Community

Wed, 2020-01-22 13:30
‘State of the Unions’ Podcast: Healing a Community AFL-CIO

On the latest episode of "State of the Unions," podcast co-hosts Julie and Tim talk with Rev. Leah Daughtry, CEO of "On These Things," about Reconnecting McDowell, an AFT project that takes a holistic approach to revitalizing the education and community of McDowell, West Virginia, and how her faith informs her activism.

Listen to our previous episodes:

State of the Unions” is available on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher and anywhere else you can find podcasts.

Kenneth Quinnell Wed, 01/22/2020 - 12:30

Tags: Podcast

Get to Know AFL-CIO's Affiliates: Plasterers and Cement Masons

Tue, 2020-01-21 09:31
Get to Know AFL-CIO's Affiliates: Plasterers and Cement Masons AFL-CIO

Next up in our series that takes a deeper look at each of our affiliates is the Plasterers and Cement Masons.

Name of Union: Plasterers and Cement Masons (OPCMIA)

Mission: To protect and promote the quality of the industry and the livelihood of members, to promote cement and plaster, to recruit and train skilled craftsmen to meet the demands of the industry, and to hold the union responsible to this commitment for the future of the industry and the welfare of all those who earn their living in it.

Current Leadership of Union: Daniel E. Stepano serves as the general president for the OPCMIA, a role he has served in since 2016. He first joined the union as a plasterer in 1980 in Pittsburgh for Local No. 31. After many years of service to the local and beyond, he was appointed international vice president in 2004. At that year's international convention, he was elected to serve as vice president. In 2007, he became executive vice president for the OPCMIA and was re-elected to the role before becoming president. 

Kevin D. Sexton serves as general secretary-treasurer. 

Members Work As: Plasterers, masons and shop hands.

Industries Represented: Members work in two major construction fields, concrete and plaster.

History: The OPCMIA is the oldest building and construction trades union in the United States, beginning during the Civil War. Leaders sought to unify various local craft unions in the trade. Once the union became active, it endorsed the eight-hour workday and instituted apprentice training and regulation. In 1887, the union became international by allowing Canadian workers to join. In 1951, Operative Plasterers were added to the name as a reflection that members did more than finish cement. For more than a century, the OPCMIA has lived by the principles upon which it was founded and upon which the OPCMIA will continue to be proud, strong and united.

Current Campaigns/Community Efforts: OPCMIA Veterans spotlights members who have transitioned from military service to their country into the industry. Plasterer and Cement Mason magazine provides news and information. The OPCMIA provides training to help working people expand their skills and pursue their goals. OPCMIA Gear offers branded merchandise for members and supporters.

Learn More: WebsiteFacebookTwitter

Kenneth Quinnell Tue, 01/21/2020 - 08:31

A Win for Nurses and Patients: Worker Wins

Fri, 2020-01-17 11:52
A Win for Nurses and Patients: Worker Wins

Our latest roundup of worker wins begins with nurses banding together to make patients' lives better and includes numerous examples of working people organizing, bargaining and mobilizing for a better life. The end of 2019 saw a flurry of wins for working people, so this is the first in several posts over the next week that will cover the victories of the last quarter of the year.

California Nurses Win New Master Contract: Nearly 4,000 registered nurses at eight Tenet hospitals in California approved a new master contract. The nurses are members of California Nurses Association/National Nurses United (CNA/NNU). The new agreement enhances recruitment and retention, assures eight-hour rest periods between shifts, adequate breaks, scheduling improvements, better health and safety, wage increases, and protections for the nurses' health care. “We are very proud of what we’ve achieved with this new contract. It is a testament to what registered nurses can accomplish collectively when we stand together as committed patient advocates,” said Ginny Gary, an registered nurse at the Los Alamitos Medical Center. “This new agreement is a win for the nurses and our patients, for our families and for the communities we serve across the state.”

University of Chicago Nurses Avert Strike with Tentative Deal: The nurses, members of National Nurses United (NNU), planned for a one-day strike and the hospital said it would lock out the nurses in response. The strike was canceled when the the agreement was reached. “Both sides have been working since March on a contract that not only recognizes the valuable contributions our nurses make to our organization, but also ensures [the University of Chicago Medical Center] remains at the forefront of medical care and scientific research for years to come,” said Debra Albert, the hospital’s chief nursing officer.

Last of the Big Three Detroit Auto Makers Reaches Agreement with UAW: UAW and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) reached a tentative four-year agreement that would cover hourly workers at the company. The deal secures $9 billion of company investments that will create nearly 8,000 jobs. "FCA has been a great American success story thanks to the hard work of our members. We have achieved substantial gains and job security provisions for the fastest growing auto company in the United States," said Rory Gamble, the acting president of the UAW.

Philadelphia Public Defenders to Become UAW Members: A majority of the 200 lawyers at the Defender Association of Philadelphia voted to be represented by the UAW. The lawyers represent some 70% of those arrested for criminal offenses or probation violations in the city. In a petition to management, the attorneys said: “We have all chosen this work because we are passionate about protecting the constitutional rights of our clients and giving them a voice in a system that otherwise does not. We believe that by collectively improving our workplace, we will better serve our clients.”

New Mexico Faculty Vote to be Represented by AFT: More than 70% of faculty at the University of New Mexico (UNM) voted to be represented by AFT. More than 1,600 full- and part-time faculty across five campuses will also be members of the American Association of University Professors. The new unit, United Academics of the University of New Mexico, will begin bargaining with the university on its first contract. Hilary Lipka, a temporary part-time faculty member in religious studies, said: "This is a historic moment for faculty at UNM. Our victory reflects how important it is that the university treats faculty with dignity and respect. We look forward to sitting down with the administration and negotiating a contract that acknowledges the work and value that part-time faculty contribute to the university."

Zoellner Arts Center Stagehands Join IATSE: In a unanimous vote, stagehands who work at the Zoellner Arts Center at Lehigh University in Pennsylvania voted unanimously to join Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE) Local 200. The workers support the 200-plus annual events held at the arts center. The new unit will meet with Lehigh to begin negotiations on a collective bargaining agreement.

Los Angeles Times Newsroom Employees Reach Tentative Agreement: Nearly 500 members of the Los Angeles Times newsroom will now be represented by the L.A. Times Guild, an affiliate of The NewsGuild-CWA (TNG-CWA). The contract is more than a year in the making and will provide raises and other benefits over the life of the three-year contract. “We’re really proud of what we’ve achieved together,” said Carolina A. Miranda, co-chair of the L.A. Times Guild. “It’s a difficult time in the industry, but we’ve landed significant pay increases and a broad safety net of job protections that are some of the best in the industry. We’re grateful that Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong is actively reinvesting in The Times. This is a win for journalism and a win for L.A.”

Hormel Workers Across the Country Approve New Contract: Thousands of Hormel workers nationwide approved a new contract that strengthens wages, expands health care and increases pension security. The United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW), which represents the Hormel workers, said: “By strongly voting for a new contract that improves wages and benefits, thousands of our hardworking members sent a powerful message this week about the power that comes from workers standing together."

Houston Mayor Signs $12 Minimum Wage for Airport Workers: After months of workers demanding that city leaders raise the minimum wage at George Bush Intercontinental Airport and William P. Hobby Airport, Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner signed an executive order raising the minimum wage for all airport workers in Houston to $12 an hour. The rate is a first step in pursuit of $15 an hour minimum wage at the airports in Houston. “We are excited that Mayor Turner met with airport workers and listened to their struggles, and thankful that he took action to raise wages," said Willy Gonzalez, secretary-treasurer of UNITE HERE Local 23. "This is a great step forward for Houston’s airport workers. For many of our members, this will make the difference between whether or not they can pay rent at the end of the month.

Actors' Equity Reaches Agreement with The Broadway League: An overwhelming 95% of Actors' Equity (AEA) members voted to approve the new production contract with The Broadway League. "This negotiation resulted in not only great compensation increases for our members but created new terms and conditions that provide further protections for stage managers and swings," said Mary McColl, executive director of AEA. "This is the third negotiation we have completed with The Broadway League this year. Thanks to the solidarity and support of our members, all three have been successful."

Kenneth Quinnell Fri, 01/17/2020 - 10:52

Tags: Organizing

Greater Boston Labor Council Makes History with Latest Election

Mon, 2020-01-13 09:26
Greater Boston Labor Council Makes History with Latest Election

The Greater Boston Labor Council (GBLC), AFL-CIO, made history last week with the election of the first woman of color to its top office. Darlene Lombos takes over as executive secretary-treasurer, replacing Richard Rogers, who officially retired after leading the GBLC for the past 16 years.

Lombos brings more than 20 years of community and youth organizing experience in the labor movement to the position. She served as vice president of the GBLC and has been the executive director of Community Labor United since 2011. A vital asset to the greater Boston community, her work continues to protect and promote the interests of working-class families and communities of color in greater Boston and throughout the commonwealth.

“I am honored to lead such an amazing group of dedicated workers in the Boston area,” said Lombos. “Rich was a true mentor and I look forward to continuing his legacy of empowering working families for years to come.”

Rogers, a member of Painters and Allied Trades (IUPAT) Local 391, leaves behind an impressive legacy in the labor movement. Prior to leading the GBLC, Rogers served on the staff of the Massachusetts AFL-CIO for 21 years, 12 of those as the state federation’s political director. He was the chief organizer for several influential political campaigns, including Ted Kennedy’s 1994 U.S. Senate race and the elections of Jim McGovern and John Tierney to the U.S. House of Representatives. He played an integral role during his four terms as GBLC executive secretary-treasurer in growing and strengthening the Boston-area labor movement.

In recognition of his lifetime of hard work and dedication to the movement, The Labor Guild awarded the prestigious Cushing-Gavin Award to Rogers in December 2019.

Dennis Loney Mon, 01/13/2020 - 08:26

Economy Gains 145,000 Jobs in December; Unemployment Unchanged at 3.5%

Fri, 2020-01-10 14:11
Economy Gains 145,000 Jobs in December; Unemployment Unchanged at 3.5%

The U.S. economy gained 145,000 jobs in December, and the unemployment rate was essentially unchanged at 3.5%, according to figures released Friday morning by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Preliminary data from BLS also shows, for the first time since 2010, the majority of workers on U.S. payrolls are women, underscoring the importance of addressing the gender wage gap.

In response to the December job numbers, AFL-CIO Chief Economist William Spriggs tweeted:

@BLS_gov continues to show modest wage gains, up only 2.9 percent over the year. Combined with modest employment growth, clearly the @federalreserve was correct to reverse course on interest rate hikes it had planned beginning back in 2018. @AFLCIO #JobsReport

— William E. Spriggs (@WSpriggs) January 10, 2020

The industries with the lowest wages (moving down the graph below the dotted horizontal line) and the greatest job gains (moving to the right from the dotted vertical line). This composition effect helps to slow overall wage growth. @AFLCIO #JobsReport pic.twitter.com/QFrHWlT2M7

— William E. Spriggs (@WSpriggs) January 10, 2020

At 3.1% for Leisure & hospitality (mostly food service workers) and 4.2% for Retail trade, both industries where the minimum wage increases have been important, saw higher year-over-year wage growth than the average. @ernietedeschi @AFLCIO #JobsReport pic.twitter.com/D6XgCROogR

— William E. Spriggs (@WSpriggs) January 10, 2020

The weakness in wage growth, and the deceleration in job growth contribute to this sad statistic: Employment in motor vehicle production fell from 1.005 million in December 2018 to 986,900 last month. At 3.5% unemployment selling cars should be easy. @UAW @AFLCIO @bencasselman

— William E. Spriggs (@WSpriggs) January 10, 2020

State government (on left) and local government employment continue their climbs back to restoring the needed public investment for sustained growth. But, in December state government employment took a small dip, losing 8,000 while local employment grew 14,000. @AFSCME @AFTunion pic.twitter.com/YgVBb1QB9d

— William E. Spriggs (@WSpriggs) January 10, 2020

Last month's biggest job gains were in retail trade (41,000), leisure and hospitality (40,000), and health care (28,000). Mining lost jobs (-8,000). Employment in other major industries—including construction, manufacturing, financial activities, transportation and warehousing, wholesale trade, information, professional and business services, and government—showed little change over the month.

Among the major worker groups, the unemployment rates for teenagers (12.6%), blacks (5.9%), Hispanics (4.2%), adult men (3.1%), whites (3.2%), adult women (3.2%) and Asians (2.5%) showed little or no change in December.

The number of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27 weeks or more) was unchanged in December and accounted for 20.5% of the unemployed.

Dennis Loney Fri, 01/10/2020 - 13:11

‘State of the Unions’ Podcast: Collective Heroism

Wed, 2020-01-08 15:20
‘State of the Unions’ Podcast: Collective Heroism .

On the latest episode of “State of the Unions,” AFL-CIO podcast co-hosts Julie Greene Collier and Tim Schlittner talk to Fire Fighters (IAFF) General President Harold Schaitberger about the union’s one-of-a-kind behavioral health treatment facility in Maryland dedicated to treating IAFF members struggling with addiction, post-traumatic stress disorder and other related behavioral challenges. They discuss the toll of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on firefighters and their families, the response of the IAFF in its wake, and the life of a firefighter.

Listen to our previous episodes:

State of the Unions” is available on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher and anywhere else you can find podcasts.

Dennis Loney Wed, 01/08/2020 - 14:20

A Future That Works for Workers

Mon, 2020-01-06 12:22
A Future That Works for Workers

At this year’s Consumer Electronics Show, the AFL-CIO is partnering with SAG-AFTRA to host the second annual Labor Innovation & Technology Summit. The summit, led by AFL-CIO Secretary-Treasurer Liz Shuler, SAG-AFTRA President Gabrielle Carteris and UNITE HERE International President D. Taylor, brings together union, technology, entertainment and media leaders to explore how these industries intersect and the potential impact for America’s workers and for the country’s creative culture. 

As the voice of working Americans, unions play a critical role in ensuring that rapidly evolving technology, which will bring so many great things to humanity, doesn’t roll over humans in the process. Recognizing that this can only be accomplished by partnering with the tech industry, the second annual Labor Innovation & Technology Summit brings together diverse voices for a frank conversation about where we are, where we’re going and the critical milestones along the way.

About the AFL-CIO Commission on the Future of Work and Unions

For the better part of four decades, workers have been more productive than ever, creating massive amounts of wealth—but rigged economic rules, unmitigated corporate greed and unrelenting political attacks have weakened our voices, stifled our wages and eroded our economic security. Yet, as we write this report, a wave of collective action is sweeping the nation. Working people across industries and demographics are joining together for a better life. This uprising comes at a critical moment, as the astounding technologies of the digital revolution have the potential to improve workers’ lives but also threaten to degrade or eliminate millions of jobs.

The AFL-CIO Commission on the Future of Work and Unions, formed by a unanimous vote of the 2017 AFL-CIO Convention, is putting working people where we belong—at the center of shaping the economy, work, unions and the AFL-CIO.

Report AFL-CIO Commission on the Future of Work and Unions September 13, 2019 A report of the AFL-CIO Commission on the Future of Work and Unions, an initiative focused on bringing workers’ voices into the future of work debate and rebuilding worker bargaining power in an economy that is leaving too many people behind. Related Articles

An Open Letter to Game Developers from America's Largest Labor Organization
Kotaku
By Liz Shuler, AFL-CIO Secretary-Treasurer

Now it’s time for industry bosses to start treating you with hard-earned dignity and respect. While you’re putting in crunch time, your bosses are ringing the opening bell on Wall Street. While you’re creating some of the most groundbreaking products of our time, they’re pocketing billions. While you’re fighting through exhaustion and putting your soul into a game, Bobby Kotick and Andrew Wilson are toasting to “their” success.

America’s Biggest Labor Federation Asks Game Developers to Unionize
Variety
By Emily Gera

A leading figure from America’s biggest labor organization penned an open letter to game developers encouraging unionization across the games industry. AFL-CIO secretary-treasurer Liz Shuler took to Kotaku with a post that asks workers in the games industry to fight for adequate pay, sensible work hours, and against toxic work conditions.

Amid Game Industry Layoffs, AFL-CIO Says It’s Time for Workers to Organize
Polygon
By Charlie Hall

On Feb. 15, just days after massive layoffs at Activision Blizzard, the AFL-CIO issued a powerful public statement of support to game developers in the United States. Also known as the American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations, the AFL-CIO represents more than 12 million workers in 50 different labor unions, including a unit here within Vox Media. Its message, published in an open letter at Kotaku, was both simple and profound.

Activision Blizzard CEO's $30M Pay Under Fire from Labor Union: 'Like Legal Highway Robbery'
Hollywood Reporter
By Patrick Shanley

The AFL-CIO, the nation's largest federation of unions, has taken aim at Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick and his annual compensation in 2018 following a massive round of layoffs earlier this year which saw nearly 800 employees lose their jobs. AFL-CIO secretary-treasurer Liz Shuler, in a statement published Tuesday, highlighted Kotick's financial compensation in 2018—which was $30.8 million, the majority of which came from stock options ($19 million)—saying, "This is like legal highway robbery."

Dennis Loney Mon, 01/06/2020 - 11:22

Get to Know AFL-CIO's Affiliates: OPEIU

Mon, 2019-12-30 09:32
Get to Know AFL-CIO's Affiliates: OPEIU

Next up in our series that takes a deeper look at each of our affiliates is the Office and Professional Employees.

Name of Union: Office and Professional Employees (OPEIU)

Mission"To improve the lives of working families by bringing economic justice to the workplace and social justice to our communities. Acting as a strong and united voice in the workplace and in the communities in which we live, OPEIU seeks to bring the benefits of representation to all working people and their families."

Current Leadership of UnionRichard Lanigan serves as president of OPEIU. He was first appointed president by the OPEIU executive board in 2015 and was elected to the position in 2016. Lanigan worked his way through college as a union member before joining OPEIU Local 153 in 1980. After law school, he served as assistant to the OPEIU general counsel. In 1994, he was elected both as secretary-treasurer of Local 153 and joined the international executive board as vice president. Mary Mahoney has served as secretary-treasurer since 2010. OPEIU has 17 vice presidents.

Number of Members103,000.

Members Work AsHealthcare employees, including registered nurses and podiatrists, clerical workers, credit union employees, nonprofit employees, teachers, Minor League Baseball umpires and helicopter pilots.

Industries RepresentedOPEIU members work at credit unions, hospitals and medical clinics, insurance companies, higher education, nonprofits, transportation, shipping, utilities, hotels, administrative offices and more.

HistoryThe American Federation of Labor granted the first clerical federal charter to Local 1 of the Stenographers, Typists, Bookkeepers and Assistants Union in Indianapolis, Indiana, in 1906. Membership grew slowly until the passage of the Wagner Act in 1935. The legislation granted collective bargaining rights to working people and propelled thousands of clerical employees to form dozens of clerical unions. In 1936, Mollie Levitas called for a resolution recognizing an international union of office workers. Nine years later, AFL granted a charter to the Office Employees International Union (OEIU), which had 22,000 members. In 1965, after the AFL merged with the Congress of Industrial Organizations, the OEIU rebranded as the Office and Professional Employees International Union. In the following decades, the union grew at a fast rate, reaching 110,000 members by 2010.

Current Campaigns/Community Efforts: White Collar Magazine provides news and information for office workers. The OPEIU Nurses Council brings together members of the union who work in nursing to address mutual concerns. OPEIU members have access to a free college assistance program and national 401(k) and health plans for local unions to negotiate into their employer contracts. The Rising Stars initiative seeks to create and network OPEIU youth programs across the country. The OPEIU Store sells merchandise branded with the union's name and logo.

Learn More: WebsiteFacebookYouTubeInstagramTwitter.

Kenneth Quinnell Mon, 12/30/2019 - 08:32

Get to Know AFL-CIO's Affiliates: NFL Players Association

Thu, 2019-12-19 09:10
Get to Know AFL-CIO's Affiliates: NFL Players Association

Next up in our series that takes a deeper look at each of our affiliates is the NFL Players Association.

Name of Union: NFL Players Association (NFLPA)

Mission: "To pay homage to our predecessors for their courage, sacrifice and vision; [to] pledge to preserve and enhance the democratic involvement of our members; [to] confirm our willingness to do whatever is necessary for the betterment of our membership—to preserve our gains and achieve those goals not yet attained."

Current Leadership of UnionDeMaurice Smith serves as executive director of the NFLPA. He was elected unanimously in 2009 and re-elected in 2012, 2015 and 2017. Prior to serving the NFLPA, Smith was an assistant U.S. attorney for the District of Columbia and counsel to former Deputy Attorney General Eric Holder. Eric Winston is currently serving his third term as NFLPA president. Mark Herzlich serves as treasurer and the NFLPA has nine vice presidents: Sam Acho, Lorenzo Alexander, Zak DeOssie, Thomas Morstead, Russell Okung, Richard Sherman, Michael Thomas, Adam Vinatieri and Benjamin Watson.

Number of MembersMore than 2,000.

Members Work AsActive or retired members of the National Football League (NFL).

Industries RepresentedPlayers in the National Football League and retirees.

HistoryThe NFLPA began in the mid-1950s, when disgruntled players asked Creighton Miller, the general manager of the Cleveland Browns, to help them form a players' association. Miller was reluctant at first, but soon began working with key players across the league and by November, the majority of players had signed authorizations to allow the new NFLPA to represent them. They met that month and came up with a few proposals–among them: a minimum salary of $5,000, a requirement for teams to pay for players' equipment and the continued payment of salaries for injured players. 

The NFL refused to respond to the early proposals until the 1957 Supreme Court ruling in the case Radovich v. NFL, which found that the league was subject to antitrust laws. As a result, the owners quickly and quietly granted many of the NFLPA's demands out of fear that the players would file another antitrust suit if the owners didn't start to cooperate. Still, the owners continued to drag their feet on implementing the new proposals and player frustration grew again. Owners also ignored new proposals from the NFLPA, such as the creation of a pension plan, hospitalization and other benefits. The NFLPA threatened another antitrust suit and the owners again responded immediately, establishing hospitalization benefits, medical and life insurance and a retirement plan.

In the 1960s, labor relations between players and the NFL became strained because of the new American Football League (AFL). The owners attempted to prevent players from using the AFL as leverage by adding a clause that revoked pensions for players who went to other leagues. Another threatened lawsuit forced pension coverage to be provided to all 110 players who were in the league when benefits were introduced. When the NFL and AFL merged in 1966, the former AFL players weren't represented by the NFLPA. The next time the NFL rejected pension demands, the players were locked out and then went on strike. That strike led to the first collective bargaining agreement (CBA) for NFL players, although the former AFL players were still not included in the agreement. The two players associations joined together in 1970 and filed a petition with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) to become a recognized union.

The ensuing decades saw a continuous back and forth as players looked to build more leverage in the growing sport where their play on the field drove the massive financial gains of the owners. In 1971, the NFLPA hired its first executive director and established a headquarters in Washington, D.C. In 1976, the NFLPA won a court case that eliminated the Rozelle Rule, which prevented player movement from team to team, even when contracts expired. Beginning in the late 1970s, the CBAs were often surrounded by strife, with players engaging in several strikes and owners responding in 1987 by fielding teams of replacement players while the NFLPA was on strike.

A shift occurred when Gene Upshaw was elected as the NFLPA’s executive director in 1983. The future of the organization was now driven by the players, who finally were gaining the full voice they had long asked for. Free agency was a top issue, particularly during the 1987 strike and afterward. In another antitrust suit filed in the wake of the strike, the courts ruled that if players were in a union and using their right to strike, they didn't have the right to pursue antitrust lawsuits as individuals. In response, the NFLPA de-certified in 1989 and re-formed as a professional association. This allowed various antitrust lawsuits to go forward and, after years of conflict, a compromise settlement was finally reached in 1993. As a result, the players finally won meaningful free agency and a guaranteed percentage of gross NFL revenue.

That year, the NFLPA re-certified as a union and things were relatively calm for nearly two decades until the collective bargaining agreement expired in 2011. Once again, the NFL rejected player requests, the NFLPA de-certified and filed another antitrust lawsuit against the league. The owners proceeded to lock out the players. When the 2011 CBA was agreed upon, the re-certification of the NFLPA was a part of the agreement.

The current CBA, which expires in 2020, features a major shift toward player health and safety. The NFLPA also established the Trust as a separate organization dedicated to helping former players and the NFL created the Legacy Benefit, which will pay $620 million to former players for their contributions to the NFL.

Current Campaigns/Community Efforts: The NFLPA offers a variety of programs to help players with continuing education, personal finance, healthy lifestyles, maximizing on-field performance, career development and business opportunities. The NFLPA also sponsors programs for former players.

The NFLPA highlights the many charitable efforts by NFL players through its Community MVP season, honoring one player per week for his off-the-field outreach while donating $10,000 to his foundation or charity of choice.

Learn More: WebsiteFacebookYouTubeInstagramTwitter.

Kenneth Quinnell Thu, 12/19/2019 - 08:10

The Backbone of This Country: In the States Roundup

Tue, 2019-12-17 12:25
The Backbone of This Country: In the States Roundup AFL-CIO

It's time once again to take a look at the ways working people are making progress in the states. Click on any of the links to follow the state federations on Twitter.

Alaska AFL-CIO:

Our ferry workers aren't waiting around to get a lay-off notice. They are taking early retirement or leaving our beautiful state entirely to escape @GovDunleavy's self-imposed budgetary instability. This is NOT leadership.

Read the story —> https://t.co/yOH5HVsn1P#akleg #akgov pic.twitter.com/Q5rJsIrZi3

— Alaska AFL-CIO (@AKAFLCIO) December 6, 2019

California Labor Federation:

Our *NEW* legislative scorecard is up! Congratulations to all those legislators who stood with working people

Get to Know AFL-CIO's Affiliates: National Association of Letter Carriers

Mon, 2019-12-16 14:24
Get to Know AFL-CIO's Affiliates: National Association of Letter Carriers AFL-CIO

Next up in our series that takes a deeper look at each of our affiliates is the National Association of Letter Carriers.

Name of Union: National Association of Letter Carriers (NALC)

Mission: To unite fraternally all city letter carriers employed by the U.S. Postal Service for their mutual benefit; to obtain and secure rights as employees of the USPS and to strive at all times to promote the safety and the welfare of every member; to strive for the constant improvement of the Postal Service; and for other purposes. NALC is a single-craft union and is the sole collective-bargaining agent for city letter carriers.

Current Leadership of Union: Fredric V. Rolando serves as president of NALC, after being sworn in as the union's 18th president in 2009. Rolando began his career as a letter carrier in 1978 in South Miami before moving to Sarasota in 1984. He was elected president of Branch 2148 in 1988 and served in that role until 1999. In the ensuing years, he worked in various roles for NALC before winning his election as a national officer in 2002, when he was elected director of city delivery. In 2006, he won election as executive vice president. Rolando was re-elected as NALC president in 2010, 2014 and 2018.

Brian Renfroe serves as executive vice president, Lew Drass as vice president, Nicole Rhine as secretary-treasurer, Paul Barner as assistant secretary-treasurer, Christopher Jackson as director of city delivery, Manuel L. Peralta Jr. as director of safety and health, Dan Toth as director of retired members, Stephanie Stewart as director of the Health Benefit Plan and James W. “Jim” Yates as director of life insurance.

Number of Members: 291,000 active and retired letter carriers.

Members Work As: City letter carriers.

Industries Represented: The United States Postal Service.

History: In 1794, the first letter carriers were appointed by Congress as the implementation of the new U.S. Constitution was being put into effect. By the time of the Civil War, free delivery of city mail was established and letter carriers successfully concluded a campaign for the eight-hour workday in 1888. The next year, letter carriers came together in Milwaukee and the National Association of Letter Carriers was formed.

The first NALC convention took place in Boston in 1889. At this point, NALC had more than 50 branches, representing 4,600 letter carriers. In 1905, the National Ladies Auxiliary was founded, allowing women to participate in the union for the first time. In the early 1900s, postal workers won the right to organize and affiliated with the American Federation of Labor. Women were first allowed to work as temporary letter carriers as many men went off to fight in World War II.

In the postwar years, NALC has focused on wages and benefits for members. In 1950, NALC began its health benefit plan. In 1964, the Nalcrest retirement community for retired letter carriers opened in Florida. The Great Postal Strike of 1970, which led to the Postal Reorganization Act, brought collective-bargaining rights to letter carriers and other postal employees. In recent decades, NALC has focused in part on legislation and on seeking commonsense legislative and regulatory reform, including the unfair 2006 congressional mandate to pre-fund future retiree health benefits decades in advance, which threatens the viability of USPS by posing an unsustainable—and unique—financial burden. NALC also has continued to regularly negotiate national agreements between letter carriers and the USPS while working to protect the safety, jobs and well-being of letter carriers. Broadly put, NALC is very active in the federal legislative and political arena to protect the interests of its members and to secure the long-term future of the Postal Service.

Read Carriers in a Common Cause, the official history of NALC.

Current Campaigns: NALC stays in regular touch with its members through The Postal Record, the monthly membership magazine; the semi-regular NALC Bulletin and the NALC ActivistThe union also sends out regular notifications to members via the NALC Member App for smartphones. NALC members have access to a number of members-only benefits, such as the NALC Health Benefit Plan (though other federal employees also can join the plan), the Mutual Benefit Association insurance company, the NALC Auxiliary and the letter carrier retirement community known as Nalcrest. Union-made clothes bearing the NALC logo and other items can be purchased through the online NALC store. 

Community Efforts: The NALC Disaster Relief Foundation helps those in need after disasters. The Letter Carriers' Food Drive, held the second Saturday each May, is the largest one-day food drive in the country. Letter Carrier Heroes recognize the acts of bravery and compassion that letter carriers engage in on a daily basis. NALC’s official charity is the Muscular Dystrophy Association, with letter carriers raising funds to Deliver the Cure. Carrier Alert is a community service program to monitor the well-being of elderly and disabled mail patrons. The Postal Employees’ Relief Fund helps active and retired postal employees, both management and craft, whose home, as a result of a major natural disaster was completely destroyed or left uninhabitable. The Combined Federal Campaign allows federal employees to donate to community service groups of their choice through paycheck deduction.

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Kenneth Quinnell Mon, 12/16/2019 - 13:24

A 'Vast Improvement' on Trade: The Working People Weekly List

Fri, 2019-12-13 14:13
A 'Vast Improvement' on Trade: The Working People Weekly List

Every week, we bring you a roundup of the top news and commentary about issues and events important to working families. Here’s the latest edition of the Working People Weekly List.

‘State of the Unions’ Podcast: The Far Right Today: "On the latest episode of 'State of the Unions,' podcast co-host Tim Schlittner and guest host AFL-CIO International Director Cathy Feingold talk to Cas Mudde, a political scientist from the University of Georgia. Mudde has a new book, The Far Right Today, which takes a look at the resurgence of right-wing politicians and activists across the globe, much of it cloaked in populist, worker-friendly rhetoric."

Economy Gains 266,000 Jobs in November; Unemployment Down Slightly to 3.5%: "The U.S. economy gained 266,000 jobs in November, and the unemployment rate was essentially unchanged at 3.5%, according to figures released Friday morning by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics."

5 Things You Can Do to Celebrate Our Birthday with Us: "You said it's our birthday! And it is. If you've always wondered what you'd do with the AFL-CIO when we're 64, now's your chance! On this day in 1955, the American Federation of Labor and the Congress of Industrial Organizations came together after a long and winding road."

A Matter of Life and Death: Labor Podcast and Radio Roundup: "In addition to the AFL-CIO's own 'State of the Unions,' there are a lot of other podcasts out there that have their own approach to discussing labor issues and the rights of working people. Here are the latest podcasts from across the labor movement in the United States."

Solidarity Forever: What Working People Are Doing This Week: "Welcome to our regular feature, a look at what the various AFL-CIO unions and other working family organizations are doing across the country and beyond. The labor movement is big and active—here's a look at the broad range of activities we're engaged in this week."

How Labor Beat Mexico on Trade: "For AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka to declare victory on the North American trade agreement reached this week, Mexico had to lose. The point of contention was whether the AFL-CIO could send American inspectors into Mexican factories where workers weren’t being given their full union rights. Mexico hated that idea, saying it would violate Mexican sovereignty. But in the end, Mexico agreed to a small tweak: multinational three-person inspection teams that would include Mexican and American independent labor experts."

Bipartisan Support for New NAFTA Is Rare Achievement in Trade Policy: "'We have secured an agreement that working people can proudly support,' the AFL-CIO’s Trumka said a statement giving his blessing to USMCA, a contrast with his withering attacks on prior free-trade proposals. 'The trade rules in American will now be fairer.'"

AFL-CIO Endorses USMCA as 'Vast Improvement' Over NAFTA: "The AFL-CIO gave a ringing endorsement of the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Trade Agreement on Tuesday when House Democrats announced they were satisfied with the trade deal. 'I am grateful to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and her allies on the USMCA working group, along with Senate champions like Sherrod Brown and Ron Wyden, for standing strong with us throughout this process as we demanded a truly enforceable agreement,' AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka wrote on Twitter on Tuesday.'"

Low Unemployment Rate Contradicts the Truth: No ‘Good Jobs’ and Low Wages: "The latest jobs report showed a robust 266,000 workers were hired last month, an impressive figure that kept the country’s unemployment rate at 3.2%, the lowest it's been in decades. Likewise, black unemployment was hovering around its lowest levels ever, with November’s 5.5% unemployment rate inflating by just one-tenth of a percentage point from the month prior."

Kenneth Quinnell Fri, 12/13/2019 - 13:13

Tags: Podcast

‘State of the Unions’ Podcast: The Far Right Today

Wed, 2019-12-11 11:47
‘State of the Unions’ Podcast: The Far Right Today AFL-CIO

On the latest episode of “State of the Unions,” podcast co-host Tim Schlittner and guest host AFL-CIO International Director Cathy Feingold talk to Cas Mudde, a political scientist from the University of Georgia. Mudde has a new book, The Far Right Today, which takes a look at the resurgence of right-wing politicians and activists across the globe, much of it cloaked in populist, worker-friendly rhetoric.

Listen to our previous episodes:

State of the Unions” is available on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher and anywhere else you can find podcasts.

Kenneth Quinnell Wed, 12/11/2019 - 10:47

Tags: Podcast

Economy Gains 266,000 Jobs in November; Unemployment Down Slightly to 3.5%

Tue, 2019-12-10 16:43
Economy Gains 266,000 Jobs in November; Unemployment Down Slightly to 3.5%

The U.S. economy gained 266,000 jobs in November, and the unemployment rate was essentially unchanged at 3.5%, according to figures released Friday morning by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

In response to the November job numbers, AFL-CIO Chief Economist William Spriggs tweeted:

A large part of the job growth (15.4%) came from the returning @UAW workers from their strike against GM. So, motor vehicle employment was up 41,000, but remains 2,000 lower than the month before the strike. @AFLCIO #JobsDay #NumbersDay

— William E. Spriggs (@WSpriggs) December 6, 2019

 

Once again, big gains (moving to the right) in lower wage industries (moving down). Leisure & Hospitality gained 45,000 last month (219,000 in the last four months). The 25,300 in food services puts that industry at 12.33 million compared to manufacturing's 12.87 @AFLCIO pic.twitter.com/YIyFDCnadQ

— William E. Spriggs (@WSpriggs) December 6, 2019

 

Why is full employment important? Again the unemployment rate for Latino men (over age 20) at 3.0% in November equaled white men's unemployment rate. Economists insisted the unemployment gaps reflected skill gaps; @federalreserve must realize its impact on inequality @AFLCIO

— William E. Spriggs (@WSpriggs) December 6, 2019

 

Another reason for concern about Retail: average weekly hours and average weekly payrolls fell in November. Amidst negligible job gains, this isn't a good sign for the month that includes Black Friday. @UFCW @AFLCIO #JobsDay #NumbersDay pic.twitter.com/iAn7v2GdYA

— William E. Spriggs (@WSpriggs) December 6, 2019

 

Thanks to all the states marching to a $15 an hour minimum wage, wages in leisure and hospitality were up 4.3% over the year. @BobbyScott led the House in passing a federal minimum wage hike, but from silent Mitch and Republican Senate crickets. @AFLCIO #FightFor15

— William E. Spriggs (@WSpriggs) December 6, 2019

 

In addition to tepid Retail numbers, gains in transportation for package delivery related work was good, but not great, up 8,000 for warehousing (logistics centers), 5,100 for couriers and messengers, 1,800 for support activities. @AFLCIO #JobsReport pic.twitter.com/J3yXuvDHso

— William E. Spriggs (@WSpriggs) December 6, 2019

With tepid wage growth, this puzzle of lingering long term unemployment with low overall unemployment lingers. And, NO the long term unemployed are not a homogenous group of low skilled workers. @AFLCIO #JobsReport pic.twitter.com/GrF7Rqm1KH

— William E. Spriggs (@WSpriggs) December 6, 2019

Last month's biggest job gains were in manufacturing (54,000), health care (45,000), leisure and hospitality (45,000), professional and technical services (31,000), transportation and warehousing (16,000) and financial activities (13,000). Mining lost jobs (-7,000). Employment in other major industries—including retail trade, construction, wholesale trade, information and government—showed little change over the month. 

Among the major worker groups, the unemployment rates for teenagers (12.0%), blacks (5.5%), Hispanics (4.2%), adult men (3.2%), whites (3.2%), adult women (3.2%) and Asians (2.6%) showed little or no change in November.

The number of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27 weeks or more) declined in November and accounted for 20.8% of the unemployed.

Kenneth Quinnell Tue, 12/10/2019 - 15:43

5 Things You Can Do to Celebrate Our Birthday With Us

Thu, 2019-12-05 14:55
5 Things You Can Do to Celebrate Our Birthday With Us AFL-CIO

You said it's our birthday! And it is. If you've always wondered what you'd do with the AFL-CIO when we're 64, now's your chance! On this day in 1955, the American Federation of Labor and the Congress of Industrial Organizations came together after a long and winding road.

You said you wanted a labor revolution, and we all still want to change the world. And over those 64 years, together, we have achieved something to be proud of. Under the leadership of the fab five presidents, we've refused to let it be and championed critical fights for workplace safety, trade fairness, fair wages, secure retirement and equal pay!

A wise person once said "all you need is love," but we know that working people also need a way to express their voices on the job. From the beginning, that's been our goal, and here's how you can help us celebrate our 64th birthday!

1. Sign our petition supporting pro-worker legislation: You should let your mother (and everyone else) know about bills like the PRO Act, which would help level the playing field between mean Mr. Mustard and his friends on Wall Street!

2. Subscribe to our podcast: In my life, I haven't found a better way to dig deeper about the stories important to working people than to listen to State of the Unions, the podcast of the AFL-CIO!

3. Subscribe to our YouTube channel: Money can't buy me love, but the good news is you won't need money to get the latest video content from the crew aboard our yellow submarine!

4. Follow us on social media: A great day in the life would include you following us on our social media accounts (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram) to keep up with the latest news and information!

5. Sign up for text messages: While you're twisting and shouting, text WORK to 235246 to receive periodic text alerts from the AFL-CIO (message and data rates may apply) to know when your fellow working people need your solidarity!

We've accomplished a lot from yesterday to today and I've got a feeling the future is bright for working people. Whatever challenges we face, we can work it out as long as we work all together now!

(With apologies to the Beatles!)

Kenneth Quinnell Thu, 12/05/2019 - 13:55

A Matter of Life and Death: Labor Podcast and Radio Roundup

Wed, 2019-12-04 11:37
A Matter of Life and Death: Labor Podcast and Radio Roundup

In addition to the AFL-CIO's own "State of the Unions," there are a lot of other podcasts out there that have their own approach to discussing labor issues and the rights of working people. Here are the latest podcasts from across the labor movement in the United States.

AFT in Action: "AFT Connecticut President Jan Hochadel is joined by our state federation's vice president for this second of three episodes addressing rising levels of workplace violence. John Brady, RN, brings his years of experience in the healthcare industry to a conversation focused on the risks in hospitals, medical clinics and social work settings. Their guest is U.S. Rep. Joe Courtney, who for years has led congressional efforts to require employers report incidents of assault on health professionals to federal workplace regulators. He answers' members questions about the current lack of protections in place and proposed legislation that would establish enforcement standards for the Occupational Safety and Health Administration."

America’s Work Force: High Tech Training: "John Kearney, CEO of Advanced Training Systems, spoke with America’s Work Force on Nov. 18 about his company and the training that they provide. Mike Polensek, city council member for the city of Cleveland, discussed getting more people involved in vocational education and the trades. America's Work Force host Ed 'Flash' Ferenc spoke about nurses and how the dangers that they may face from patients on the job."

Building Bridges: It’s a Matter of Life and Death: Environmental Racism and Its Assault on the American Mind: "Harriet Washington (#MedicalApartheid) speaking about her new book A Terrible Thing to Waste." Listen to Part 1 and Part 2.

CTU Speaks!: 11-Time to Ratify?: "Co-hosts Andrea Parker and Jim Staros talk with bargaining team members Quentin Washington and Kirstin Roberts about what it was like to spend weeks (and even months!) at the negotiating table with Chicago Public Schools, how the wins in the contract came to be there, and what some of the strategic considerations are when striking to increase leverage at the bargaining table."

Heartland Labor Forum: "Do you think the Supreme Court’s 2018 anti-worker Janus Decision killed public sector unions? Nope. They have survived and the show talks about how unions fought back. This special Thanksgiving show is a replay of the August 30, 2018 show, which won first prize for radio from the International Labor Communications Association. Kudos to it’s producer, Cris Mann. Thursday at 6 p.m., rebroadcast Friday at 5 a.m. on KKFI 90.1 FM or streaming....Also: More on 'disappearing' the poor and the Tenants Bill of Rights hits the City Council."

Labor History Today: Making the Woman Worker: "Eileen Boris on 'Making the Woman Worker: Precarious Labor and the Fight for Global Standards' from the Working History podcast. Plus this week’s labor history highlights!"

State of Working America: "Native Americans Too Often Left Out of Economic Debate."

UCOMM Live: "National Save Apprenticeship week for the IBEW; Steelworkers are on strike in Minnesota, 25k are organizing at Delta, and we look at what a bad place Alabama is to live in. The Huffpost wrote a 5,000 word story about how the word scab is becoming mainstream, Kaepernick is getting a tryout, and Mets win the Cy Young and Rookie of the Year awards. Listen to UCOMM Live Thursdays at 4 on Facebook,Twitter and YouTube."

Union City Radio: "Weekdays 7:15 a.m. on WPFW 89.3 FM. Recent shows: Airline workers sit-in, grocery workers picket today; 'When We Fight, We Win' say fed-up workers; the Thanksgiving Dirty Dozen; Black Friday union shopping guide."

Union Strong: Treatment of Gig Economy Workers: "How will New York State treat workers in the gigeconomy? It is a question that will be the subject of debate in the upcoming legislative session. In this episode, we take a look at what is at stake and hear from the legislative director of the New York State AFL-CIO on the federation’s position on gig economy workers."

Your Rights At Work: "Labor news headlines: House Votes Today on H.R. 1309—Workplace Violence Prevention for Health Care and Social Service Workers Act; Hearst staffers decide to unionize; 'Newsies' onstage at Arena Stage...; Popeyes’ employees report being forced to stand until their legs go numb for 10-hour shifts; Google hires firm known for anti-union efforts. Guests: Jackie Jeter, Metro Washington Council: live report from the ATU demonstration at WMATA headquarters; Joyce Gibson, SEIU 1199: Nearly 1,000 nurses vote union in West Virginia; Al Neal: U.S. Women’s Soccer Team's discrimination lawsuit granted class status; Daoud Kuttab: produces Jordan radio show Workers of the Country; Case Closed: David Schloss."

Kenneth Quinnell Wed, 12/04/2019 - 10:37

Tags: Podcast

Solidarity Forever: What Working People Are Doing This Week

Mon, 2019-12-02 16:15
Solidarity Forever: What Working People Are Doing This Week AFL-CIO

Welcome to our regular feature, a look at what the various AFL-CIO unions and other working family organizations are doing across the country and beyond. The labor movement is big and active—here's a look at the broad range of activities we're engaged in this week.

Actors' Equity:

Happy #GivingTuesday! While everyone is getting ready to find gifts for loved ones, we ask that you consider donating to our friends whose work supports the theatre community! (1/4)

— Actors' Equity (@ActorsEquity) December 3, 2019

AFGE:

Protecting TSOs in the workplace is one of our top priorities, and we need your help. #ThankATSO

Call (833) 710-2924 today and ask your representative and senators to cosponsor H.R. 1140 and S. 944. pic.twitter.com/kZQGsalF4A

— AFGE (@AFGENational) November 29, 2019

AFSCME:

The Marciano family fired their workers who were earning minimum wage after they filed to form a union. Meanwhile, their private jet has cost an est. $1 million on flights this year ALONE. Join us TOMORROW to demand they reinstate their workers: https://t.co/RBafLWwv16#MAFUnion pic.twitter.com/u4uw72nDQK

— AFSCME (@AFSCME) November 28, 2019

AFT:

Q: Do you have an endorsement process?

.@rweingarten: Yes! After 2016, the bottom line became engagement. We’ve had #AFTvotes town halls that are an 1-2 hours where members can grab a microphone and ask the candidate any question. pic.twitter.com/gPlqklHwZm

— AFT (@AFTunion) December 2, 2019

Air Line Pilots Association:

The FAA blew past an Oct. 5 deadline set by Congress last year to fully implement #SecondaryBarriers on all newly-manufactured commercial aircraft to prevent another 9/11-style terrorist attack. Tell @FAANews to secure the flight deck to #keepflyingsafe: https://t.co/tXi74VQyrL pic.twitter.com/GUQP5431ND

— ALPA (@WeAreALPA) November 25, 2019

Alliance for Retired Americans:

High drug prices are so pervasive that many Americans have either struggled to afford lifesaving medicine themselves, or know someone else who has. The system can be fixed. Congress just needs to step up and take action. https://t.co/ZCGAu8Iy5b #HR3 #LetMedicareNegotiate pic.twitter.com/G1r26padoy

— Alliance Retirees (@ActiveRetirees) December 2, 2019

Amalgamated Transit Union:

International President John Costa and JIC Locals with @TransdevNA contracts hold a spirited and raucous rally at the picket line of striking @ATULocal689 Transdev workers at @WMATA's Cinder Bed Road Bus Garage. #1 #UnionStrong #TogetherWeFightTogetherWeWin! pic.twitter.com/za3S4kcOHg

— ATU, Transit Union (@ATUComm) November 29, 2019

American Federation of Musicians:

Big radio gets away without fairly paying artists for playing our music on the radio. The #AMFM Act introduced by @RepJerryNadler & @MarshaBlackburn would fix this by allowing artists to control their own work & finally get paid. https://t.co/VCEbn3e0Eo pic.twitter.com/8D3JvgPVXJ

— AFM (@The_AFM) November 22, 2019

American Postal Workers Union:

Can you name the two states in the United States that have laws to establish public banking? #postalbanking #justeconomy #PeoplesPostOffice @bankpostal #popquiz https://t.co/hFCReMQIg3

— APWU National (@APWUnational) November 26, 2019

Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance:

While @AmericanAir pulls in billions in profits, airline catering workers who provide food & beverages served aboard AA flights face poverty wages & unaffordable health insurance. https://t.co/1NawXVA8Gt | #1job | #1u pic.twitter.com/wLtDx8SrZy

— APALA (@APALAnational) November 26, 2019

Association of Flight Attendants-CWA:

When tragedy strikes, the @afa_cwa Disaster Relief Fund strives to have an immediate, positive impact on as many active and retired Flight Attendants as possible. On this #GivingTuesday, make your donation matter: https://t.co/YGYcmrWkP0 pic.twitter.com/xx5DXjU6Z3

— AFA-CWA (@afa_cwa) November 26, 2019

Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers:

BCTGM Intl. Pres. @DavidBDurkee is a member of the AFL-CIO Retirement Security Working Group and has worked tirelessly to push legislation that will provide retirees with their hard-earned benefits and help stabilize the multiemployer pension system. #SaveOurPension

— BCTGM International (@BCTGM) December 2, 2019

Boilermakers:

IBB stands with UMWA against Grassley-Alexander multi-employer pension plan proposal. With UMWA, we urge the House and Senate to put partisanship aside and pass the Bipartisan American Miners Act. Read UMWA IP Cecil E. Roberts' statement ➡️ https://t.co/4xu1Zw72OP

— Boilermakers Union (@boilermakernews) November 30, 2019

Bricklayers:

It looks like our two members 112 years ago wanted to make sure that people knew this building was built #Union.https://t.co/r30VIGKGVU#MondayMood #mondaythoughts #UnionStrong#1u

— Bricklayers Union (@IUBAC) December 2, 2019

California School Employees Association:

13% of students enrolled in our nation's public schools receive special education services. Dedicated classified employees work alongside teachers and other educators to help provide these essential services on a daily basis. #EveryChild pic.twitter.com/PCjdQ9Yr5k

— CSEA (@CSEA_Now) December 2, 2019

Coalition of Black Trade Unionists:

It’s with great sadness that we inform the CBTU family and trade unionists around the world of the death of Harold Rogers, who transitioned at his Chicago home on Sunday, Dec. 1, 2019, with his loving wife at his side. More information will be provided soon. #1u #Chicago #Unions pic.twitter.com/As1YRv0Vns

— CBTU (@CBTU72) December 3, 2019

Coalition of Labor Union Women:

Red for Ed: The Working People Weekly List

Mon, 2019-12-02 16:07
Red for Ed: The Working People Weekly List AFL-CIO

Every week, we bring you a roundup of the top news and commentary about issues and events important to working families. Here’s the latest edition of the Working People Weekly List.

Red for Ed: In the States Roundup: "It's time once again to take a look at the ways working people are making progress in the states."

Trade Unions Demand Governments Address Gender-Based Violence in the World of Work: "This week marked the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, and trade unions around the world are demanding governments ratify and implement International Labor Organization Convention 190 (C190), on ending violence and harassment in the world of work."

‘State of the Unions’ Podcast: A Future Where People Will Have Jobs: "On the latest episode of 'State of the Unions,' podcast co-host Tim Schlittner talks to Guy Ryder, the director-general of the International Labor Organization, about the international labor movement, the idea of 'decent labor' and the future of work."

Native American Heritage Month Pathway to Progress: Ojibwe Women Transform Working Life in Minneapolis: "History has long been portrayed as a series of 'great men' taking great action to shape the world we live in. In recent decades, however, social historians have focused more on looking at history 'from the bottom up,' studying the vital role that working people played in our heritage. Working people built, and continue to build, the United States. In our series, Pathway to Progress, we'll take a look at various people, places and events where working people played a key role in the progress our country has made, including those who are making history right now. In honor of Native American Heritage Month, we will take a look at a group of Ojibwe women who helped transform the world of work in Minneapolis-St. Paul throughout much of the 20th century."

Colombian Workers Launch General Strike: "Colombia's workers, students, and rural, indigenous and Afro-descendant communities [joined] together in a national general strike Nov. 21. Unlike the strikes many of America's workers have participated in increasingly in the past five years, Colombians are not striking against any single employer or industry."

Work Doesn't Hurt: Labor Podcast and Radio Roundup: "In addition to the AFL-CIO's own 'State of the Unions,' there are a lot of other podcasts out there that have their own approach to discussing labor issues and the rights of working people. Here are the latest podcasts from across the labor movement in the United States."

Protect Survivors: What Working People Are Doing This Week: "Welcome to our regular feature, a look at what the various AFL-CIO unions and other working family organizations are doing across the country and beyond. The labor movement is big and active—here's a look at the broad range of activities we're engaged in this week."

Get to Know AFL-CIO's Affiliates: National Nurses United: "Next up in our series that takes a deeper look at each of our affiliates is National Nurses United."

Building the Battleground Bench: Union Members Elected to Office Across the Great Lakes Region: "While the labor movement was busy helping to elect pro-worker candidates in important elections in Kentucky and Virginia this week, union members themselves were on the ballot, and they were elected to local offices across the country at an impressive rate. This result was especially pronounced in the battleground states in the Great Lakes region, where an energized union candidates program helped carry union members to victory."

Trump’s SEC Chairman Proposes to Disenfranchise Investors and Reduce Shareholder Democracy: "In a partisan 3-2 vote, the Trump administration’s Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) proposed to curtail the rights of investors to file proposals for a vote at company annual meetings. If adopted, these changes will hinder shareholder proposals by union members and their pension plans to hold corporate management accountable."

Kenneth Quinnell Mon, 12/02/2019 - 15:07

Trade Unions Demand Governments Address Gender-based Violence in the World of Work

Wed, 2019-11-27 12:47
Trade Unions Demand Governments Address Gender-based Violence in the World of Work

This week marked the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, and trade unions around the world are demanding governments ratify and implement International Labor Organization Convention 190 (C190), on ending violence and harassment in the world of work.

Read the statement from the International Trade Union Confederation in English, Spanish or French.

C190 was adopted last June at the International Labor Organization. The AFL-CIO and trade unions around the world campaigned for more than a decade to win this important new global standard, and now are leading the fight to see its framework adopted by governments and employers.

Gender-based violence and harassment is a particular threat to women, LGBTQ workers and other marginalized groups. Homicide is one of the leading causes of death on the job among women in the United States, accounting for almost a quarter of workplace deaths among women, while it accounts for only 8% of workplace deaths among men. It is also a particular threat to workers in low-wage, precarious working arrangements, as poverty and marginalization can prevent workers from escaping or challenging dangerous conditions.

The C190 framework emphasizes that everyone has the fundamental right to be free from violence and harassment at work, and requires governments adopt an inclusive, integrated and gender-responsive approach to end it. C190 requires governments and employers address the root causes of gender-based violence at work, including discrimination and unequal power relationships. Violence is a tool that both reflects and reinforces a gendered power hierarchy at work and in society, and ending violence requires allowing women workers to take collective action to confront this hierarchy directly.

C190 also calls for investigating sectors and occupations that are more likely to experience violence and harassment. In the United States, the U.S. House of Representatives recently passed legislation to adopt specific violence protections for nurses, medical assistants, emergency responders and social workers. These workers are predominantly women, and they face extremely high rates of violence on the job. The law would require employers to develop an enforceable, comprehensive violence protection program in U.S. workplaces.

Learn more about the global C190 ratification campaign. Learn more about the law on workplace violence.

Kenneth Quinnell Wed, 11/27/2019 - 11:47

‘State of the Unions’ Podcast: A Future Where People Will Have Jobs

Wed, 2019-11-27 12:06
‘State of the Unions’ Podcast: A Future Where People Will Have Jobs AFL-CIO

On the latest episode of “State of the Unions,” podcast co-host Tim Schlittner talks to Guy Ryder, the director-general of the International Labor Organization, about the international labor movement, the idea of "decent labor" and the future of work.

Listen to our previous episodes:

  • A discussion with Union Veterans Council Executive Director Will Attig about his work connecting the labor movement and the veterans community. 
  • A conversation with union member and Congressional Progressive Caucus Co-Chair Rep. Mark Pocan (Wis.) about strikes, trade, health care, LGBTQ equality and the freedom to form a union. 
  • A chat with Maine Senate President Troy Jackson (IUPAT, IAM) about his path to power and the experiences that have shaped his life and career.
  • Talking to Sen. Sherrod Brown (Ohio) about worker power, automation, trade and his decision to stay in the U.S. Senate. 
  • Checking in with AFL-CIO Industrial Union Council Executive Director Brad Markell about the UAW strike at General Motors and interviewing Veena Dubal, an associate law professor at UC Hastings College of the Law, whose work helped pave the way for passage of A.B. 5, the landmark pro-worker legislation in California.
  • SAG-AFTRA President Gabrielle Carteris discussing the future of work, sexual harassment and her journey from young actor to labor leader. 

State of the Unions” is available on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher and anywhere else you can find podcasts.

Kenneth Quinnell Wed, 11/27/2019 - 11:06

Tags: Podcast