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NewsFeed - Labor
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Last week we interviewed Oshawa, Canada, auto worker Tony Leah about the plant occupation that rank-and-file workers organized to protest the planned shutdown of their General Motors factory. Meanwhile their national union, Unifor, held a rally on January 11 in Windsor, described below and in a separate report by Labor Notes Business Manager Adrian Montgomery.
Last week we interviewed Oshawa, Canada, auto worker Tony Leah about the plant occupation that rank-and-file workers organized to protest the planned shutdown of their General Motors factory. Meanwhile their national union, Unifor, held a rally on January 11 in Windsor, described below by Labor Notes Business Manager Adrian Montgomery.
What would you do if management could force you to work without pay, lock you out with no consequences, and fire you for going on strike?
That’s the situation facing 800,000 federal workers—and their unions—during the longest government shutdown in U.S. history.
Forty percent of the government’s civilian workforce besides postal workers are being deprived of money to pay for rent, gas, groceries, and car and student loan payments.
They include 420,000 workers who are being forced to work without pay and 380,000 who are locked out.
Four Labor Notes staff members are in Los Angeles helping out with the strike by 34,000 teachers against the billionaire-backed school board's privatization agenda.
In this speech, Labor Notes staff organizer Bianca Cunningham tells L.A. teachers about her own experience on strike against Verizon for 49 days in 2016, during the largest private-sector strike of the decade.
It’s day four of the Los Angeles teachers strike, and the big news is that the district and the union will meet today at noon to resume negotiations for the first time since the strike began. Mayor Eric Garcetti, who has been urging the district to come back to the table, will mediate.
A new CWA report reveals dangerous conditions affecting agents at Envoy Air that should raise red flags for the flying public.
As wireless workers build power in their industry, Verizon Wireless is showing that it's terrified at the idea of workers joining together to have a voice in the workplace.
Ask your member of Congress to support the For the People Act to ensure a fair and functioning democracy for us all.
CWA members from across the state came to the Texas Capitol to build support for a bill to help stop businesses from outsourcing Texas call center jobs.
At a series of public hearings on the proposed T-Mobile/Sprint merge, CWA members and allies have been highlighting how the merger would hurt California workers and consumers.
Members of United Campus Workers-CWA Local 3865 at the University of Memphis are making progress on seeing a substantial pay raise.
CWA Local 9415 heads into bargaining with KPFA 94.1 FM in Berkeley, Calif., today.
Thanks to the hard work of CWA members and retirees to bring new leadership in the state legislative chambers, legislators passed a much-needed wave of voting reforms.
CWA members in District 9 are showing strong support for the 32,000 teachers across Los Angeles who are on strike.
Across the country, working people are marching and rallying for an immediate end to the government shutdown. Already the longest funding lapse in American history, this manufactured crisis has put the weight of ideological extremism on federal workers and their families. As we continue fighting to reopen the government, the labor movement also is joining together to support our brothers and sisters as they go without a paycheck.
If you have been impacted by the shutdown, there are a number of resources available to you. We are engaging a network of United Way/AFL-CIO labor liaisons and labor-associated community service organizations across the country to organize support; furloughed workers can call 2-1-1 to talk to a live, trained professional to find support and identify critical services.
Additionally, as a union member, you may be able to access a range of Union Plus benefits, including a $300 furlough grant, mortgage assistance, credit counseling, personal loans, auto insurance, and life and accident insurance.
Other resources available to those affected by the shutdown include:
- Surviving the Government Shutdown: A guide provided by the Community Services Agency of the Metropolitan Washington Council, AFL-CIO.
- Money Management International and UnionPlus' presentation: When the Income Decreases but the Bills Don’t: Financial Help During and After Furlough.
- United Way partner Familywize offers a pharmacy discount card, whether or not you have health insurance.
- Furloughed employees may be eligible for unemployment compensation. The requirements vary by state, so visit your individual state office's website.
- Utility companies around the country have announced programs to assist workers affected by the shutdown. Contact your local utility company for more details.
- Veterans can apply for financial assistance through the American Legion or Veterans of Foreign Wars.
Here's Why Los Angeles Parents Are Standing with Striking Teachers against Billionaire-Backed Charters
Yesterday for the second day in a row, 50,000 people rallied in support of the striking teachers of Los Angeles.
This time our target was the California Charter School Association, the lobbying arm behind the rapid expansion of unregulated charter schools in Los Angeles. It’s funded by billionaires like Eli Broad and Netflix CEO Reed Hastings.
The CCSA has pursued a plan to move one million students from public schools into charter schools by 2022.
Thirty-four thousand teachers in Los Angeles are out on strike to defend public education against the privatization agenda of Austin Beutner, the former investment banker and current Superintendent of the Los Angeles Unified School District.
United Teachers Los Angeles (UTLA) is demanding class size limits, more funding for counselors, social workers, and nurses, and a moratorium on charter school expansion. The school district is hoping to hold on to its $1.9 billion in reserves and continue defunding, dismantling, and privatizing the city's 900 public schools.
The streets of Los Angeles are packed with the sights and sounds of collective action this week. Braving the cold rain, some 30,000 United Teachers Los Angeles (UTLA) members turned out for picket lines across the city yesterday, joined by more than 10,000 parents, students and community members. Every L.A. school site—more than 900—participated in the strike, culminating in a 50,000-person march to the Los Angeles Unified School District’s (LAUSD’s) headquarters.
Teachers and their allies aren’t letting up. From the leaders of the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor and California Labor Federation to working people across the country, the entire labor movement is showing solidarity with UTLA’s fight for better lives, schools and communities. Here are just a few of the realities they’re working to change:
The cost of living has increased 27% since 2008.
California’s student-to-teacher ratio ranks 48 out of 50 states.
Students in transitional kindergarten to sixth grade take more than 100 standardized LAUSD tests.
California is the richest state in the nation, yet ranks 43 out of 50 in per-pupil spending.
California’s student-to-counselor ratio is 945:1.
L.A.’s charter school industry has grown by 287% since 2008, draining nearly $600 million from public schools each year.
As the government shutdown became the longest in U.S. history, thousands of working people took to the streets of Washington, D.C., to send a clear message to the president and Congress to stop the shutdown and let federal government employees get to work. Thousands more rallied at other locations around the country.
Facing a politically motivated crisis, federal workers desperately need the solidarity and backing of our brothers and sisters. Leaping into action over recent days and weeks, the AFL-CIO has mobilized the full resources of the labor movement behind them.
With the support of affiliates, AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka (UMWA) successfully lobbied senators in halting consideration of any legislation until the government is reopened. Using our toll-free hotline, thousands of union members have contacted their senators to strengthen that effort.
In addition to the rally in D.C., we mobilized our state federations and central labor councils to turn out members for satellite rallies in dozens of communities across the country—from Colorado and Pennsylvania to Utah and Texas—demanding an immediate end to the shutdown and highlighting the fact that many of the workers locked out during the shutdown live outside of the nation's capital.
With each day that the shutdown drags on, the federation will expand and escalate our efforts. Working people won’t allow our brothers and sisters to be left out in the cold. We’re angry, we’re loud and we will be heard.
Here are what attendees said about the rallies in D.C. and around the country, using the hashtag #StopTheShutdown:
“If this shutdown continues to Saturday it will be our largest shutdown in history and this isn’t a record that anyone should be proud of, let’s call this shutdown what it is: It’s a Lockout. And this has to end NOW!” - @RichardTrumka at #StopTheShutdown Rally #1u— AFL-CIO (@AFLCIO) January 10, 2019
“Stop playing politics with our lives. End this lockout. Do your job and open the government so we can do our jobs.” -@RichardTrumka, @AFLCIO #StoptheShutdown #TrumpShutdown #Shutdown pic.twitter.com/X2xVsZyyyg— PFAW (@peoplefor) January 10, 2019
Outside the @IRSnews building in Kentucky telling Senate @gop to end this senseless government shutdown! All #Union members stand with our @AFGENational @AFLCIO sisters and brothers! pic.twitter.com/kbeHexc8cX— Ohio AFL-CIO (@ohioaflcio) January 10, 2019
Members of @IATSELocal22 spent the morning setting up for today's #StopTheShutdown rally outside the @AFLCIO. We stand in #solidarity with all working people and demand an end to this unnecessary government shutdown! pic.twitter.com/hEgdGFymyV— IATSE (@IATSE) January 10, 2019
NALC rallying in solidarity with our brothers and sisters at the AFL-CIO to end the government shutdown! pic.twitter.com/pE6PbG8yEQ— Letter Carriers (@NALC_National) January 10, 2019
#Teamsters are standing with federal workers and other trade union allies at a rally in Washington, DC right now to demand an end to the government shutdown. Hundreds of thousands of our union brothers and sisters are locked out or working without pay. #StopTheShutdown pic.twitter.com/TKzcQfUE9o— Teamsters (@Teamsters) January 10, 2019
Y’all, the wind chill is 26F in D.C. right now, and an enormous crowd of federal workers and allies have gathered in front of @AFLCIO to demand Trump reopen the government. Proud to be here.#TrumpShutdown pic.twitter.com/Zp7T3GJJln— Charlotte Clymer🏳️🌈 (@cmclymer) January 10, 2019
Working people have had enough of this federal government lock out. Enough of the partisan games that are playing with people’s lives! RT to show what #1u solidarity looks like as workers march to the White House now! #StopTheShutDown pic.twitter.com/l78YfjBPJj— Liz Shuler (@lizshuler) January 10, 2019
The principle of “just cause” is the keystone of the collective bargaining agreement. By imposing rigorous qualifications for discipline, the just-cause standard protects everyone in the union.
If an employer could fire workers for trivial or manufactured reasons, it could easily rid itself of militant officers, stewards, and rank and filers.
Our latest roundup of worker wins begins with several newsrooms using collective action and includes numerous examples of working people organizing, bargaining and mobilizing for a better life.
Onion Creative Staff Approve New Contract: The creative staff at The Onion, which includes various other related publications, voted to approve a new contract. Nearly 70 employees are covered by the two-year contract. The Onion Inc. Union, affiliated with the Writers Guild of America, East, wrote: "We’re elated to have reached a first union contract for the members at Onion Inc. In addition to the gains made in our contract, we experienced immediate workplace improvements while organizing, including increased interdepartmental communication and a gender pay parity analysis. As part of the WGAE, we have access to resources and the solidarity of thousands of union members across media and entertainment. We’re proud to be part of a wave that’s raising standards across the industry and we encourage everyone to organize their workplaces."
Law360 Editorial Staffers Unanimously Approve First Contract: After a two-year battle, members of The NewsGuild-CWA who work as editorial staff at LexisNexis-owned Law360, a legal news site, unanimously approved their first contract. The four-year agreement includes a 22% raise and a minimum annual salary of $50,000. In a statement, the unit said: "Last night, we unanimously (168-0!) ratified a remarkable first contract that fiercely protects and improves the working conditions of everyone in the newsroom at Law360. For years, we have been adamant about protecting the editorial integrity of the newsroom and of our bargaining unit. We successfully negotiated language that prevents the company from reinstating non-compete agreements and onerous daily story quotas. We also achieved a provision that preserves the contract in the event of a sale or acquisition of the company."
New York Media Editorial Employees Join NewsGuild: After nearly 80% of eligible staffers signed on, editorial employees of New York Media voted to be represented by The NewsGuild of New York-CWA. The new unit would cover 160 full- and part-time staffers and has asked the company for voluntary recognition of the union. A mission statement from the new unit said: "We believe that unionizing is the best way to address our grievances in the workplace and allow us to continue publishing stories as honest, gritty, and exceptional as this city. We hope that New York Media will recognize our union so that we can begin an amicable collective-bargaining process and build a stronger, more equitable company for another 50 years."
New York City Rideshare App Drivers Win Historic Pay Rules: After a campaign by the Independent Drivers Guild (an affiliate of the Machinists) that involved rallying 16,000 drivers to events, lobbying days and thousands of calls and letters, drivers for rideshare apps in New York have won a minimum pay rate that is equivalent to the city's $15 per hour minimum wage. "Today we brought desperately needed relief to 80,000 working families. All workers deserve the protection of a fair, livable wage and we are proud to be setting the new bar for contractor workers’ rights in America," said Jim Conigliaro Jr., founder of the Independent Drivers Guild. "We are thankful to the Mayor, Commissioner Joshi and the Taxi and Limousine Commission, City Council Member Brad Lander and all of the city officials who listened to and stood up for drivers."
Nurses at NewYork-Presbyterian Hudson Valley Hospital Win Union Election: Nurses at the hospital in Cortlandt, New York, voted to join the New York State Nurses Association after an anti-union campaign that led to state officials vowing to investigate labor abuses alleged against the hospital. Nurse and organizer Susan Beck said: "We got an email from our president that said respect will be at the center of how we will continue to work together. That’s what nurses really wanted in the first place."
Educators at Acero Charter Schools Reach Agreement to End Strike: Educators at Acero charter schools in Chicago ended the first strike in charter school history by reaching a tentative agreement with the school network. The 500 educators won pay improvements, reductions in class sizes and language that makes the school a sanctuary for the schools' immigrant students, including protection against federal immigration enforcement on school grounds. Chicago Teachers Union President Jesse Sharkey said: "This was the culmination of our vision over more than a decade of organizing. Our vision is that educators at charter schools and at Chicago Public Schools have common interests. We live in the same neighborhoods, we teach the same kids, and we wage the same struggles over resources and underfunding. We are now a movement that commands national attention and can stop a city."
Environmental Charter School Educators Vote to Join AFT: Educators at Environmental Charter School in Pittsburgh voted to join the AFT. The new unit will represent teachers, nurses, counselors, social workers, academic coaches and educational assistants. They will now proceed with negotiations on their first union contract.
Steelworkers Ratify Contract with ArcelorMittal: Some 15,000 United Steelworkers members have a new four-year labor agreement with ArcelorMittal USA that increases wages and benefits. The workers in six states had voted to authorize a strike during the acrimonious negotiations. David McCall, lead negotiator for USW District 1, said: "We successfully defended all of the rights and protections that management sought to reduce, restrict and eliminate. On top of that, we were able to make improvements, fill gaps and fix the parts of our contracts that members identified as top priorities."
Oregon Mental Health and Addiction Recovery Workers Join AFSCME: Nearly 270 mental health and addiction recovery workers at Cascadia Behavioral Healthcare in Portland and Milwaukie, Oregon, voted to join AFSCME. The workers are pushing for better pay and lower case loads. The fight for unionization at the clinics was a unwelcome one from management, which held numerous anti-union meetings and AFSCME has filed charges against Cascadia for improperly firing a union supporter.
Laid Off Toys 'R' Us Workers Secure $20 Million in Severance Fight: In the process of Toys "R" Us filing for bankruptcy in 2018, 31,000 employees were laid off and did not get severance payments. Meanwhile, some top executives got bonuses. The laid-off workers fought back and have negotiated a settlement with Bain Capital and KKR, private equity firms that owned part of the toy retailer, to pay $20 million in severance payments.
Every week, we bring you a roundup of the top news and commentary about issues and events important to working families. Here’s this week’s Working People Weekly List.
State of the Unions: Special #StopTheShutdown Episode: A Conversation with AFGE President J. David Cox: "With the government shutdown in its third week, Julie and Tim talk to J. David Cox Sr., national president of AFGE. Cox says his members are being held hostage by extremist politics and is calling on all working people to demand that Congress and the White House reopen the government and put federal employees back to work."
Our Paycheck Is Not a Bargaining Chip: "It’s day 20 of the government shutdown, and the AFL-CIO has called upon the entire labor movement to fight for our affected brothers and sisters."
End the Shutdown: 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."
Economy Gains 312,000 Jobs in December; Unemployment Rises to 3.9%: "The U.S. economy gained 312,000 jobs in December, and the unemployment rate rose to 3.9%, according to figures released this morning by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. This report shows an increase in unemployed workers and while wage gains are stronger, they are not consistent with a tight labor market. This ongoing financial and economic volatility means that the Federal Reserve needs to hold off on more rate increases."
AFL-CIO's Top 10 Blog Posts of 2018: "Today, we are taking a moment to reflect on a historic year for collective action by highlighting the top 10 most-read posts on the AFL-CIO blog in 2018. Throughout the year, working people across the country joined together to build a better America. These are our stories."
New Congress Begins with Influx of Worker-Friendly Members: "The 116th Congress begins today and it features a diverse group of members who are more friendly to working people than their predecessors in recent Congresses. Not only does the new class of incoming senators and representatives have the largest group of women ever and the first Native American women, the first Muslim American women and the first openly bisexual senator, it features a dozen union members and even more worker-friendly members."
Stop the Shutdown: "The government shutdown is now in its 12th day, meaning some 800,000 federal employees are still without a paycheck because President Donald Trump refuses to sign a federal budget that doesn’t include $5 billion for a border wall. Working people—and their livelihoods—should never be used as political pawns. As congressional leaders prepare to meet with Trump later today, take action now to stop the shutdown."
UAW Releases 2019 Union-Made Vehicle Buying Guide: "No matter when you are buying a new vehicle or for what purpose, you have the opportunity to use this substantial buying power to support working people. The UAW releases a guide every year that lets consumers know which cars are union-made in America. Here is this year's list."
Ohio’s Ironworkers Local 290 Invests in the Future: "One of the country’s best-kept secrets is that the American labor movement trains more workers than any organization other than the U.S. military. Apprenticeships and job training programs represent a powerful, life-changing opportunity that unions are in a unique position to provide. When those resources are made readily available to working people, membership growth often follows."
Last spring a teacher uprising swept the red states. Today it reached the West Coast, as the 34,000 members of United Teachers Los Angeles began a long-anticipated strike in the nation’s second-largest school district.
Teachers, parents, students, and community supporters hit the picket lines in their fight against the budget cuts and privatization being pushed by the school board and Superintendent Austin Beutner, a former investment banker.
A new report drawing from a nationwide survey of 800 passenger service agents at Envoy Air (American Eagle), data from company injury logs and OSHA inspections reveals dangerous conditions affecting agents at the American Airlines subsidiary that should raise red flags for the flying public.
General Motors has announced it will end production at five North American plants, just a decade after the company received billions of dollars in U.S. and Canadian taxpayer money and won sweeping concessions from auto unions as part of the bailout.
All told, about 6,700 hourly and salaried employees stand to lose their jobs as the lines stop at Oshawa Assembly in Ontario, Detroit-Hamtramck Assembly in Michigan, and Lordstown Assembly in Ohio. Meanwhile the company is posting billions in profits.
Despite the number of victories in congressional and gubernatorial races across the country in 2018, many of the top labor-endorsed candidates in Ohio lost their elections. The losses were a disappointment to Ohio AFL-CIO President Tim Burga, but he recognized the need to get to work to make the best of the situation. "It was a tough loss in the election, we had higher hopes," Burga said. "We didn’t have any time to waste lamenting the loss, we had to get to work preparing for a new incoming governor and a new legislature." And prepare they did.
Drawing on experience from the collective bargaining fights of 2011, the Ohio AFL-CIO recognized the threat of ongoing and renewed attacks on working people in the single party government and immediately got to work trying to supersede the threats.
As the political picture came into view after the November elections, it became clear that there would be a highly contested race to become Ohio speaker of the House in a chamber overwhelmingly controlled by Republicans. One of the candidates, Rep. Larry Householder, who has established relationships with Ohio union leaders, indicated he would abandon the regular attacks on collective bargaining, wages and labor's core issues that were constantly introduced and pushed in prior GOP Ohio legislatures.
The race for speaker was a very close one, with the candidates effectively dividing the GOP majority into two equal parts. Any significant defection of minority Democrats to support one or the other candidate emerged as a potential deciding factor in the outcome of the most important vote of the legislature. The Ohio AFL-CIO launched a union coalition and advocated for the ousting of the current speaker to be replaced by Householder, given his commitments to stand with trade unionists and working people. The intense and intricate effort brought forth the desired result. In the end, Householder won the race for speaker with 52 votes—26 from Republicans and 26 from Democrats.
This win was multifaceted. The advocacy effort caused an open dialogue between Householder and House Democrats as they discussed offering their support. House Democrats were able to secure significant procedural and structural advancements from now-Speaker Householder that create a unique opportunity for the minority party to participate in major policy decisions. With these agreements in place, many expect the chamber to also conduct itself in a more deliberative and transparent manner than has been the case in recent years.
"The voice of working people is a powerful thing and it knows no partisan lines," Burga said. "It is great when we have members of both parties recognize that, and come together to pave a way forward," he said.
It’s day 20 of the government shutdown, and the AFL-CIO has called upon the entire labor movement to fight for our affected brothers and sisters.
Watch AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka on "Morning Joe" talking about the shutdown:
On Tuesday, the AFL-CIO asked the leadership of the general board and state federations and central labor councils to marshal our resources and use our collective power to end the shutdown.
As Trumka said, this shutdown is a direct attack on our unions. “These are the moments this federation was created for. When you mess with one of us, you have to deal with all of us: 12.5 million working people and 55 unions strong.”
Together, we’re working at every level to make our voices heard, including:
Rallying today at the AFL-CIO headquarters.
Blitzing targeted senators with calls from both members and leaders.
Bringing a delegation of workers to meet with senators to demand an end to the shutdown.
Publicly shaming a senator if they refuse to meet with workers.
Activating our network of labor liaisons and community partners like the United Way to respond to requests from impacted workers.
Our simple ask to our senators: Pass the House bills and open the government.
AFGE National President J. David Cox Sr. was interviewed on the latest edition of the “State of the Unions” podcast about the effects of the government shutdown and reminded us that “the average take home pay of our members is around $500 a week....They live paycheck to paycheck. And missing one paycheck—and particularly a paycheck that could have overtime on it—creates devastating effects.”
“We’re being held hostage for political purposes and that just needs to stop,” he declared.
Check out the full episode here.
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.
A. Philip Randolph Institute:
Want to give a big shout out to our brother E.J. Jenkins for putting events on like this in several communities over the past few years thru his outreach program. Another reason why we need to support him in with the #BlackLaborWeek2019. We all... https://t.co/PSqf2DuwT9— APRI National (DC) (@APRI_National) January 7, 2019
It's been 11 years – we are over due for a new Lab Agreement, and @BroadwayLeague needs to support paying Equity Members for their creative contributions.— Actors' Equity (@ActorsEquity) January 6, 2019
Sign your #NotALabRat commitment card online! Visit https://t.co/tYMoZ94Ns4 to add your voice. pic.twitter.com/RPaxKGpjhU
Air Line Pilots Association:
Alliance for Retired Americans:
Thanks to NYSARA Exec Director Stephen Madarasz for protesting the government #shutdown at a rally outside @RepStefanik 's Glen Falls office. It's time for federal workers to return to their jobs with the pay they deserve! #1u @AFGENational pic.twitter.com/8TJpHdeOp2— Alliance Retirees (@ActiveRetirees) January 7, 2019
American Federation of Musicians:
In 1960 when she raised her baton at the Majestic Theater to start #TheMusicMan, Liza Redfield became the first woman to conduct a Broadway orchestra. She was a #UnionMusician for over 70 yrs. Rest In Power Liza!— Amer. Fed. Musicians (@The_AFM) January 3, 2019
American Postal Workers Union:
Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance:
The Trump administration has launched its most aggressive legal attempt yet to end all immigration to the United States -- an asylum ban. Seeking asylum is a human right. #AsylumIsLegal— APALA (@APALAnational) January 2, 2019
Submit a public comment to stop this ban! https://t.co/iFqjDoR7ch pic.twitter.com/myvtopgPST
Boilermaker bonds are strong, but for a L-465 member, brotherhood proved lifesaving. Find out how an L-169 apprentice faced danger to save his #Boilermaker brother. https://t.co/YCJfgbDkPV pic.twitter.com/q3tCuIHDNe— Boilermakers Union (@boilermakernews) January 4, 2019
The House of Representatives passed reasonable, commonsense legislation to re-open & fund the government. But Mitch McConnell & #Senate GOPs refuse to bring it up for a vote. Urge your Senator to re-open the Government today: https://t.co/DEMl335nBX #StopTheShutdown pic.twitter.com/PUVvOFC0GW— Bricklayers Union (@IUBAC) January 7, 2019
Coalition of Black Trade Unionists:
So proud. So fierce. So liberating. https://t.co/UjMINvTm56— CBTU (@CBTU72) January 5, 2019
Coalition of Labor Union Women:
Communications Workers of America:
Corporate CEOs & wealthy donors have rigged our political system & working families are ready to take it back! The #ForThePeople Act makes voting easier and gets big money out of politics. CWA supports bold action to reclaim democracy for working families! https://t.co/kihlRjhcbw— CWA (@CWAUnion) January 7, 2019
Department for Professional Employees, AFL-CIO:
"We are collaborators, and we need to be acknowledged for what we’re doing. We’re putting in more skin than we once did, and after recoupment we think it’s fair that we should be able to share in the success of the show.” #1u #NotALabRat https://t.co/zkYz1FfSuJ— Department for Professional Employees (@DPEaflcio) January 7, 2019
Farm Labor Organizing Committee:
At 71, @baldemarfloc is still organizing. Here he is with the farm workers and...in front of a Confederate Flag. A sign that is not hospitable to people of color. See his comment in the picture below. As we've said, he is 71 and us younger folk struggle to keep up with him! pic.twitter.com/XydR3ZRwYT— Farm Labor Organizing Committee (@SupportFLOC) January 4, 2019
The IAFF’s position on proposed degree requirements for accredited paramedic programs is that the certification/licensure process SHOULD continue to be a viable option through which a prehospital care provider becomes credentialed. https://t.co/TRRJ6oWpRB— IAFF (@IAFFNewsDesk) January 3, 2019
Heat and Frost Insulators:
Learn more about the Insulators Union and our involvement across the country to recruit the next generation of Mechanical Insulators during the the 2018 @USDOL National Apprenticeship Week. https://t.co/z4MVMJHP5n— Insulators Union (@InsulatorsUnion) January 7, 2019
International Federation of Professional and Technical Engineers:
#Disgusting that these hard working Americans are being forced to do their job without pay! We stand with @AFGENational and all #FederalWorkers affected by the #TrumpShutdown ! https://t.co/LW64QjvKYk— IFPTE (@IFPTE) January 5, 2019
The Iron Workers with its contractor-ironworker partnership IMPACT, has been busy developing new programs for construction personnel to help them succeed. #skillsshortage #skilledlaborshortage https://t.co/w8Z5yVeOF0— Ironworkers. (@TheIronworkers) January 3, 2019
Jobs With Justice:
Well, this isn't tone deaf: while the people who clean our government buildings and service our national parks are furloughed, high ranking Trump administration officials--including Vice President Pence--nearly received a significant raise. https://t.co/C1k05WrhhO— Jobs With Justice (@jwjnational) January 7, 2019
Labor Council for Latin American Advancement:
The partial government shutdown has now entered its third week, and as it drags on thousands of working people are being denied denied a paycheck. America's working families are counting on our Congressional leaders to bring this situation to an end.— LCLAA (@LCLAA) January 7, 2019
Metal Trades Department, AFL-CIO:
A furloughed federal employee's guide to filing for unemployment during the shutdown https://t.co/0iaswWxZLm— Metal Trades Dept. (@metaltradesafl) January 6, 2019
National Air Traffic Controllers Association:
The government shutdown is directly affecting air traffic controllers. NATCA member Matt Craviotto from Wilmington, N.C. (ILM), whose home was flooded during Hurricane Florence in September, shared how the #shutdown is impacting him. https://t.co/Bzv4AfTlDS— NATCA (@NATCA) January 3, 2019
National Association of Letter Carriers:
NALCREST -- A #retirement #community for letter carriers that is union-made! The Nalcrest community is for retired letter carriers who are members dreaming to retire in a nice & sunny location. For more information & how to apply https://t.co/V98r12UfAg #postalproud #Florida pic.twitter.com/Fngi9y6AHV— Letter Carriers (@NALC_National) January 6, 2019
National Domestic Workers Alliance:
National Federation of Federal Employees-IAM:
NFFE-IAM member Erin Kidwell of NFFE Local 1968 tells how many federal employees are struggling by being furloughed during the holidays. "We do live paycheck by paycheck," said Kidwell. https://t.co/uYYvbB32tB— NFFE (@NFFE_Union) January 2, 2019
National Nurses United:
#SafeStaffing can be a life-or-death issue.— NationalNursesUnited (@NationalNurses) January 6, 2019
Studies show that #nurses from units with low staffing were twice as likely as nurses on well-staffed units to report risk factors for needle-stick injuries and near misses.
Support nurse-to-patient ratios: https://t.co/2COmQyKfDf pic.twitter.com/RMg2aKiah7
National Taxi Workers Alliance:
NYC Taxi & Limousine Commissioner Meera Joshi is stepping down. Read our statement: "The timing of commissioner Joshi's resignation is concerning because the crisis for New York City drivers is far from over and the TLC's work to fix it is just beginning." pic.twitter.com/3c54M8g3EB— NY Taxi Workers (@NYTWA) January 5, 2019
.@news_guild members are part of an organizing movement. We're ready to spread the news at our sector conference in Orlando!https://t.co/Ke8jif3vIo#TNGmeets#TNGorganizes#Right2Report#1u pic.twitter.com/4C5th91A6u— NewsGuild (@news_guild) January 3, 2019
NFL Players Association:
Will you be in town for #ATLSB53? We're partnering with orgs all over Atlanta to have a candid conversation around #mentalhealth.— NFLPA (@NFLPA) January 7, 2019
If you have questions or are interested in attending, send an 📧 to firstname.lastname@example.org. pic.twitter.com/etc9jKnvu4
North America's Building Trades Unions, AFL-CIO:
With the #116thCongress in office, Hill leadership may be ready to start the discussion on #InfrastructureInvestment.— The Building Trades (@NABTU) January 7, 2019
“We’re generally positive that those in leadership positions have a commitment to infrastructure & ensuring that something gets done”
Office and Professional Employees:
Painters and Allied Trades:
Plasterers and Cement Masons:
How does the government shutdown effect federal infrastructure projects? “If the shutdown gets resolved without too much delay, the impact will be minimal. However, the longer it drags on, states may hold back on bids because of the uncertainty." https://t.co/Lkr1dekbIu— OPCMIA International (@opcmiaintl) January 6, 2019
Printing, Publishing and Media Workers-CWA:
Professional Aviation Safety Specialists:
PASS-represented employees at the FAA are either furloughed or working without pay, not knowing when they'll receive their next paycheck. Mortgages, rents, utilities, bills, tuitions, medical expenses, food, gas all cost $$$. #WeWantToWork #EndTheShutdown https://t.co/ofmpXssnCO— PASS (@PASSNational) January 4, 2019
Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union/UFCW:
Way to step up, everyone. NY Waterway crews again demonstrate they're not just workers but part of the community. https://t.co/WCmZE6bWTV— Seafarers Union (@SeafarersUnion) January 1, 2019
Theatrical Stage Employees:
Transportation Trades Department, AFL-CIO:
"General Motors enters 2019 as the top carmaker in Mexico. The distinction comes as GM plans to shutter four U.S. manufacturing facilities this year." https://t.co/wOK1I0hJIm— UAW (@UAW) January 3, 2019
Union Label and Service Trades Department, AFL-CIO:
'I'm Pretty Much Broke Right Now': TSA Workers On Edge As Government Shutdown Grinds On https://t.co/3Hb7mVVWRg— Union Label Dept. (@ULSTD_AFLCIO) January 7, 2019
Because of #TrumpShutdown, 500 federal cafeteria workers are out on furlough. Without intervention, they won’t get backpay & could lose their healthcare. Time to #StopTheShutdown & pay workers what they deserve! https://t.co/4dIixrCRvu pic.twitter.com/aJkYlVAwO8— UNITE HERE (@unitehere) January 7, 2019
United Food and Commercial Workers:
Job well done! MT @ufcwlocal152: On Friday, 1/04, UFCW Local 152 members of CRS Facility Services at the #PhiladelphiaMillsMall in Philadelphia, PA unanimously ratified a new #union contract! Congratulations to our members and the Negotiating Committee. https://t.co/6AZuBqEeNS— UFCW (@UFCW) January 7, 2019
. @SenRodrigues @SenRichardRoss @SenatorMikeRush Thank you for fighting for our brothers & sisters @USW04 @BostonGas12003 to #EndTheLockout by @NationalGridUS @MarcyReedNG! #Solidarity pic.twitter.com/QnQ2yjqWFn— United Steelworkers (@steelworkers) January 7, 2019
Although the economy saw new peaks in 2018, not all Americans report reaping the benefits. The majority of workers say they saw no salary increases last year, according to a new survey.https://t.co/V6guB9GYyJ— Working America (@WorkingAmerica) January 2, 2019
Writers Guild of America, East:
The U.S. economy gained 312,000 jobs in December, and the unemployment rate rose to 3.9%, according to figures released this morning by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. This report shows an increase in unemployed workers and while wage gains are stronger, they are not consistent with a tight labor market. This ongoing financial and economic volatility means that the Federal Reserve needs to hold off on more rate increases.
In response to the December job numbers, AFL-CIO Chief Economist William Spriggs tweeted:
Job gains were in all broad industry groups except information. Biggest gains in education and health, leisure and hospitality, professional and business services leading in growth #JobsReport @AFLCIO pic.twitter.com/MhRDA7KKnH— William E. Spriggs (@WSpriggs) January 4, 2019
The broadest measure of labor force slack (including part-time for economic reasons and discouraged workers) was flat at 7.6%, while the narrower measure was up to 3.9% #JobsDay #JobsReport @AFLCIO pic.twitter.com/WnwK9O5MxV— William E. Spriggs (@WSpriggs) January 4, 2019
Over the year, unemployment rates fell for all education attainment groups, but was flat for college grads. But, from November to December, unemployment rates and number unemployed were up for all education groups, except college grads. #jobsday #JobsReport @AFLCIO— William E. Spriggs (@WSpriggs) January 4, 2019
Over the year, and in December, construction and mining show gains. In a trend dating back to 2010, construction is almost recovered to its record level of employment in 2007 @AFLCIO pic.twitter.com/68cUzgS4Sh— William E. Spriggs (@WSpriggs) January 4, 2019
December was a movement in the right direction for education employment with state and local government, but over the year the employment is still down--NOT GOOD for America's long term growth. @AFTunion @AFSCME @AFLCIO #JobsReport #jobsday pic.twitter.com/QsB6iBSRY7— William E. Spriggs (@WSpriggs) January 4, 2019
Many are seeing a sunny picture, but this job report shows an increase in unemployed workers (Black workers, all workers with less than college degrees, younger workers). Wage gains stronger but not consistent with a tight labor, the @federalreserve still needs to pause @AFLCIO— William E. Spriggs (@WSpriggs) January 4, 2019
Last month's biggest job gains were in health care (50,000), professional and business services (43,000), food services and drinking places (41,000), construction (38,000), manufacturing (32,000) and retail trade (24,000). Employment in other major industries—including mining, wholesale trade, transportation and warehousing, information, financial activities and government—showed little change
over the month.
Among the major worker groups, the unemployment rates rose for blacks (6.6%), adult men (3.6%) and Asians (3.3%). The jobless rate for teenagers (12.5%), Hispanics (4.4%), adult women (3.5%) and whites (3.4%) and showed little or no change in December.
The number of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27 weeks or more) declined slightly in December and accounted for 20.5% of the unemployed.
Today, we are taking a moment to reflect on a historic year for collective action by highlighting the top 10 most-read posts on the AFL-CIO blog in 2018. Throughout the year, working people across the country joined together to build a better America. These are our stories.
1. If You Live in Missouri, Vote 'No' on Proposition A: "On Aug. 7, Missouri voters will have the chance to vote against Proposition A, a divisive attack on working people funded by big corporations and their wealthy allies. The misleading measure is a direct attack on the rights of the working people of Missouri. Here are the key reasons why Proposition A is wrong for Missouri...."
2. What You Need to Know About the Vote on Missouri's Prop. A Today: "While Missourians are headed to the polls today, working people are mobilizing across the Show-Me State in a massive final push to defeat Prop. A."
3. Executive Paywatch 2018: The Gap Between CEO and Worker Compensation Continues to Grow: "CEO pay for major companies in the United States rose nearly 6% in the past year, as income inequality and the outsourcing of good-paying American jobs have increased. According to the new AFL-CIO Executive Paywatch, the average CEO of an S&P 500 Index company made $13.94 million in 2017—361 times more money than the average U.S. rank-and-file worker. The Executive Paywatch website, the most comprehensive searchable online database tracking CEO pay, showed that in 2017, the average production and nonsupervisory worker earned about $38,613 per year. When adjusted for inflation, the average wage has remained stagnant for more than 50 years."
4. Donald Trump: A Year of Making Workplaces More Dangerous: "It has been a year since Donald Trump took office. Despite promising to be a friend of workers, Trump has spent much of his first year making our workplaces less safe."
5. 7 Labor Activists You Should Know About for Asian Pacific American Heritage Month: "Each May is Asian Pacific American Heritage Month, when we celebrate the accomplishments, culture and history of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in the United States. Today, we are going to take a deeper look at members of the Asian American and Pacific Islander community who have advanced the cause of worker justice. Here are seven labor activists who you should know about for Asian Pacific American Heritage Month...."
6. The Racist Roots of Right to Work: "Proponents of "right to work" laws often use lofty language to sell their agenda, with false appeals to freedom, among other high ideals. But right to work is about freedom only in this way: It’s about taking away the freedom of working people to join together in strong unions."
7. 15 Things You Need to Know from the 2018 Death on the Job Report: "These are challenging times for working people and their unions, and the prospects for worker safety and health protections are uncertain. What is clear, however, is that the toll of workplace injury, illness and death remains too high, and too many workers remain at serious risk. There is much more work to be done. Here are 15 key things you need to know from this year’s report, which primarily covers data from 2016."
8. The Awesomeness of 'Black Panther': Union Made: "Wow, the "Black Panther" movie was awesome, wasn't it? And while we could spend hours about how great an action movie it is or how beautiful it looks or the social implications of the themes and representation of African culture, let's take a few minutes to look behind the scenes at the work it took to bring a movie like "Black Panther" to life, work done by union members."
9. 6 Activist Women You Need to Know About for Black History Month: "As we celebrate Black History Month, we thought we'd take a look back at some of the women who have made history in the realm of fighting for the rights of working people. The battles they fought at the intersection of the rights of African Americans, women and working people should have made these women household names. Women continue to be at the forefront of battles for the rights of African Americans today, building on the work of these women and many others. Here is an introduction to a group of amazing women who did some amazing things."
10. One Job Should Be Enough: "'8,300 UNITE HERE members have the courage and the power to take on the biggest hotel company in the world and are willing to fight to transform jobs they can’t survive on into careers where they can support their families with dignity,' said UNITE HERE International President D. Taylor last week as strike headquarters opened across the country."