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In this weekly series, we take a deeper look at each of the AFL-CIO's affiliates. Next up is the American Train Dispatchers Association.
Name of Union: American Train Dispatchers Association (ATDA)
Mission: To provide representation for train dispatchers and other railroad employees in contract negotiations with railroads both individually and collectively with other rail unions, discipline and grievance handling and contract enforcement, and to engage in legislative activities and regulatory processes on behalf of its craft and rail labor in general.
Current Leadership of Union: Leo McCann currently serves as president of the ATDA, a post he has held since 1999. Ed Dowell has served as secretary/treasurer since 2015. Paul E. Ayers, John Salvey, Rory Broyles and Barry Cross hold the positions of vice president. The organization also has a board of trustees with three members and a support staff of four full-time employees at its headquarters in Cleveland.
Members Work As: Train dispatchers, assistant and chief train dispatchers, power supervisors, power directors and load dispatchers, conductors and engineers, maintenance of way workers and yardmasters working for freight, passenger and commuter railroads across the country.
Industries Represented: The U.S. railroad industry.
History: While earlier efforts had been made to organize train dispatchers, the organization that would be successful, the ATDA, was founded in 1917 and its first meeting was held in Spokane, Washington. The craft union came together to organize and represent people working as train dispatchers in the nation’s railroad industry. Eventually, the organization expanded to include assistant and chief train dispatchers and power supervisors and directors who supervise and manage the power supply for electrically powered trains. In the 1990s, other crafts such as train and engine crews, maintenance of way workers and yardmasters joined the organization.
Community Efforts: In addition to representing and negotiating contracts for its members, the officers and staff of the ATDA promote legislation and regulatory improvements that benefit the safety and well-being of its members, the rail industry and every community where the railroad provides a vital service. The ATDA also serves on committees that manage and improve health care benefits and partners with organizations like Union Privilege to provide additional benefits to its members.
For Women's History Month, the AFL-CIO is spotlighting various women who were leaders and activists working at the intersection of civil and labor rights. Today's profile is Maida Springer Kemp.
Maida Springer Kemp was born in Panama, but moved to Harlem at the age of 7. Her mother, Adina Steward Carrington, listened to the messages of Marcus Garvey and passed the lessons she learned to her daughter, teaching her to be hopeful and to value education.
She joined the labor movement during the Great Depression, when she became a member of the Dressmakers' Union, Local 22 of the International Ladies' Garment Workers Union. Her interest in unions spiked after hearing a 1929 radio address by A. Philip Randolph. According to Springer Kemp biographer Yevette Richards, Randoph's speech helped her realize that there were larger forces that hindered working people.
In 1933, Local 22 launched a successful general strike of dressmakers. Afterwards, Springer Kemp quickly moved up the union's ranks. In 1938, she began serving on the executive board and in 1940, she became the chair of the local's education committee. She became known as "the pride of ILGWU" and Randolph began to mentor her and helped raise her profile by choosing her as one of the first African Americans to march in New York's grand union parade.
In 1945, Springer Kemp became the first black woman to represent U.S. labor overseas, when the AFL and CIO sent her as part of a group observing wartime conditions in Great Britain. Her time in England would be just the beginning of her international efforts to promote union organizing. She helped found the first women's labor movement in Turkey before becoming a key figure in establishing relationships between leaders in the emerging African and U.S. labor movements. She advised newly-formed unions in Kenya, Nigeria, Tanzania, Uganda, Ghana and other African nations and helped run a scholarship program for union members. She officially joined the AFL-CIO's International Affairs Department in 1959, a position which she held until 1965.
From 1970 to 1973, she served as the Midwest Director of the A. Philip Randolph Institute, where she worked on voter registration and education. She also worked for the African American Labor Center and coordinated relief programs after drought struck in Africa. She later became a consultant with the Asian American Free Labor Institute and worked as a consultant and lecturer promoting women's labor rights and unionism in Africa.
She continued to promote equality for working women and supported the labor movement long after her retirement in 1981. She died in 2005 at the age of 94, leaving behind a legacy that helped improve the lives of working people around the world.
After yet another speed-up in a workplace notorious for its lightning pace of work, workers at a Minnesota Amazon warehouse walked off the night shift for three hours.
The March 7 walkout at Amazon’s fulfillment center in Shakopee, Minnesota, was these workers’ second job action in three months.
The strikers work in the stow department, shelving items after they have been unloaded from inbound trucks and processed. Once shelved, the merchandise is then compiled into customer orders by pickers.
The latest bargaining information for the University of California, the New Jersey Executive Branch, Frontier Airlines, and NBC Universal.
Newsroom employees at the Morning Call in Allentown, Pa., voted overwhelmingly to join the NewsGuild of Greater Philadelphia.
Under the agreement, the tech giant will make sweeping changes to its paid advertising platform to prevent discrimination in employment, housing, and credit advertising.
Maximus employees also called on the company to meet with a committee of workers to discuss how improved working conditions would help achieve better outcomes for Maximus and its customers.
The Republican corporate tax cut bill contained a provision that rewards and incentivizes the offshoring of more American jobs.
CWA members made thousands of calls to their representatives in Congress, and their efforts paid off when Congress passed the For the People Act.
On the heels of Los Angeles teachers’ winning strike in January, teachers in Oakland 340 miles north joined the strike wave. Three thousand teachers, alongside parents and students, led picket lines February 21-March 1 at the city’s 86 schools.
These strikes, plus rumblings from other California teacher unions, are ramping up the pressure on school boards and legislators to invest in public schools and stop privatization statewide.
For Women's History Month, the AFL-CIO is spotlighting various women who were leaders and activists working at the intersection of civil and labor rights. Today's profile is Dolores Huerta.
Huerta was born in 1930 to Alicia and Juan Fernández in Dawson, New Mexico. Her father was a farmworker and miner who became a state legislator after her parents divorced and Huerta moved with her mother to California. There, her mother worked as a waitress and cannery worker before eventually buying a small hotel and restaurant. Huerta learned her compassion from working people and her dedication to community activism from her mother.
After graduating from the University of Pacific's Delta College, Huerta taught school. After witnessing many hungry children of farmworkers in her classes, she decided she could do more good by organizing farmworkers than she could teaching their children. In 1955, she co-founded the local chapter of the Community Service Organization. While registering Hispanic voters and fighting for economic rights for farmworkers, she also founded the Agricultural Workers Association. After meeting César Chávez, the two founded the National Farm Workers Association, the predecessor to the United Farm Workers (UFW), which formed in 1965.
With UFW, Huerta organized workers, negotiated contracts and advocated for safer work conditions for farmworkers. She was a key organizer in the 1965 Delano grape workers strike and lead negotiator for the contract that followed. She built upon that success and led the table grape boycott efforts of the late 1960s that led to a collective bargaining agreement in 1970. The 1973 boycott of grapes led to the passage of the California Agricultural Labor Relations Act of 1975.
Huerta continued to serve as vice president of UFW until 1999. In the years after the successful grape boycotts, she fought for legislation that would expand working people's voices in government and politics and focused on helping elect more Latinos and women to public office.
She was awarded the Elanor Roosevelt Human Rights Award in 1998 and the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2012. She remains active today, serving as a board member of the Feminist Majority Foundation, president of the Dolores Huerta Foundation and in an emeritus role for UFW.
At Shareholder Meeting, Call Center Workers Send Clear Message: Maximus, Respect Our Right to Organize!
Maximus workers attended the company’s annual shareholder meeting in Reston to call on Maximus to respect their right to organize free from fear, intimidation, and interference.
In the latest episode of "State of the Unions," Julie and Tim talk to the co-chairs of the House Blue Collar Caucus. Reps. Brendan Boyle (Pa.) and Marc Veasey (Texas) both come from union families and formed the caucus in the aftermath of the 2016 election to better connect with blue-collar workers. They say the path to a stronger America runs through the labor movement and any plan to rebuild our economy must include the working people who make it go.
"State of the Unions" is a tool to help us bring you the issues and stories that matter to working people. It captures the stories of workers across the country and is co-hosted by two young and diverse members of the AFL-CIO team: Mobilization Director Julie Greene and Executive Speechwriter Tim Schlittner. A new episode drops every other Wednesday featuring interesting interviews with workers and our allies across the country, as well as compelling insights from the podcast’s hosts.
Listen to our previous episodes:
- A conversation with Kim Kelly, a labor columnist for Teen Vogue.
- A special Black History Month discussion with IUPAT General President Ken Rigmaiden.
- Kooper Caraway, the 28-year old president of the Sioux Falls AFL-CIO, on how the labor movement can reach young people.
- Honoring Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s legacy with former Tallahassee, Fla., Mayor Andrew Gillum.
- Special #StopTheShutdown episode with AFGE President J. David Cox.
- A review of 2018, which was a year of collective action on the rise.
- A conversation with UNITE HERE about recent worker victories at Marriott and AFA-CWA International President Sara Nelson talks about aviation's first responders.
- Special Episode: What's Wrong with GM? with longtime UAW member Brad Markell.
- Discussing the midterms and the future of labor with AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka.
- Our midterm recap with Rep. Conor Lamb from Pennsylvania.
- Talking about union members in office with Mayor Dahlia Vertreese of Hillside, New Jersey.
- An interview with Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha, the Flint, Michigan, water crisis whistleblower.
- Inaugural episode where you can learn about hosts Julie and Tim.
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.
Obama Expanded Overtime Pay to 4 Million Workers. Now Trump Is Scaling That Back: "Richard Trumka, president of the AFL-CIO labor federation, called the new rule 'disgraceful.' '[This] is part of a growing list of policies from the Trump administration aimed at undermining the economic stability of America’s working people,' he tweeted on Friday. The public can comment on the rule proposal for 60 days before the Department of Labor sends a final version to the White House for review. If the White House approves the new rule, which is likely, it will be the Trump administration’s latest victory in its quest to undo Obama-era regulations meant to benefit workers."
Organized Labor Opposes Proposed New NAFTA Deal: "The AFL-CIO, the nation’s largest federation of labor unions, won’t support the USMCA trade agreement if an early vote is pursued, the organization announced March 14. The federation’s executive council voted to oppose the deal after a two-day meeting, saying that it lacks sufficient enforcement mechanisms that would strengthen labor conditions in Mexico. The United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement, if ratified, would replace the existing North American Free Trade Agreement."
AFL-CIO Backs Legislation That Would Power Up American Working Families: "Bill Samuel, the AFL-CIO’s Government Affairs Director, discussed some of the labor federation’s top legislative goals with People’s World as the council meeting opened here Tuesday. High on labor’s list is 'some version,' as he put it, of the Workers Freedom to Negotiate Act, a bill that has already been introduced into Congress. What the federation is aiming for is a law that will make it much easier to organize a union and bargain with employers. As it stands now, workers who try to form a union often face harassment and loss of their jobs. Current law also allows employers not just to target organizers but to drag their feet and stall in the bargaining process after the union has been established."
Steelworker Wins Election to Local Maine School Board: "United Steelworkers (USW) Local 9 member Kathy Wilder won a write-in election for school board in Maine School Administrative District (MSAD) 54 on March 4. Wilder, who works as a chemical prep operator at Sappi Fine Paper in Skowhegan, says that her priorities will be student achievement, fiscal responsibility, clear communications and social justice."
Paving the Way: 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: AFSCME: "Next up in our series taking a deeper look at each of our affiliates is AFSCME."
Our Time Is Now: Leading with Passion, Purpose and Power: "More than 300 union sisters from all sectors of organized labor gathered at the Hilton East Brunswick Hotel on March 1 for the 16th annual Women in Leadership Development (WILD) Conference. This two-day conference featured several distinguished speakers, including Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman, AFL-CIO Secretary-Treasurer Liz Shuler (IBEW) and Alice Paul Institute Executive Director Lucienne Beard."
Economy Gains 20,000 Jobs in February; Unemployment Down to 3.8%: "The U.S. economy gained 20,000 jobs in February, and the unemployment rate fell to 3.8%, according to figures released this morning by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. This is a dramatically lower level of job growth than we have seen in recent years and is good reason for the Federal Reserve's Open Market Committee to express caution in considering any interest rate hikes."
A historic civil rights settlement was announced with Facebook today encompassing sweeping changes that the tech giant will make to its paid advertising platform to prevent discrimination in employment, housing, and credit advertising.
I talk with labor activists all across the country. Plenty are inspired by strikes that happen elsewhere. But over and over I hear the same excuse for why they can’t make big demands or go on strike themselves: “It’s different here.”
How is it different? Pick your poison: It’s the South. It’s the public sector. It’s illegal. Our union leaders would never support us. Everyone is too scared. Too apathetic.
This year, the teacher union movement is supplying the best reply to “It’s different here.” Here’s what we’ve seen in 2019 so far:
The AFL-CIO is taking a deeper look at each of our affiliates in our regular weekly series. Next up is the Actors and Artistes (4As).
Name of Union: Associated Actors and Artistes of America
Current Leadership of Union: Gabrielle Carteris, who is also the president of SAG-AFTRA.
The 4As works to advance and protect the welfare of the people who work to entertain and inform others in person and through every medium of recording and transmission. There are five member unions that make up the 4As. Actors' Equity (AEA) and SAG-AFTRA are directly affiliated with the AFL-CIO. Three other unions are part of the AFL-CIO through their membership in the 4As: the Musical Artists (AGMA), the Variety Artists (AGVA) and the Italian American Actors (GIAA).
Musical Artists (AGMA)
Mission: To represent members and to guarantee that our nation's artistic institutions adhere to fair labor practices, securing both gainful employment and quality of life for our artists.
Current Leadership of Union: John Coleman serves as president. The other officers are: Gregory Stapp (first vice president), George Scott (second vice presiden), J. Austin Bitner (third vice president), Jane Shaulis (fourth vice president), Louis Perry (recording secretary) and Raymond Menard (treasurer).
Members Work As: Soloists, choral singers, actors, ballet dancers, production staff and related jobs.
Industries Represented: America's operatic, dance and choral heritage.
History: AGMA formed in 1936 as an organization of solo musical artists. In August of the next year, AGMA was granted a charter from the 4As to cover the fields of grand opera, concert and recital. AGMA pursued a campaign to organize artists throughout the country and the first collective bargaining agreement that AGMA successfully negotiated that fall was with the Southern California Symphony Association.
Variety Artists (AGVA)
Mission: To represent performing artists and stage managers for live performances in the variety field.
Current Leadership of Union: Judy Little serves as executive president. Other officers include Christopher Johnson (executive vice president) and Susanne K. Doris (executive secretary-treasurer).
Members Work As: Variety performers, including singers and dancers in touring shows and in theatrical revues, theme park performers, skaters, circus performers, comedians and stand-up comics, cabaret and club artists, lecturers, poets, monologists, spokespersons and those working at private parties and special events.
Industries Represented: Any performances in the variety area.
History: AGVA was founded in 1939.
Current Campaigns and Community Efforts: AGVA helps members obtain benefits beyond timer periods specifically related to shows and contracts. It also offers current and previous members assistance through the AGVA Sick & Relief Fund, which also regularly contributes to industry-related charities and presents shows to raise the funds available for relief. AGVA also provides members visa application assistance.
Italian American Actors (GIAA)
Mission: To preserve the history and promote awareness of Italian heritage amongst its members. GIAA is committed to helping advance, promote, foster and protect the welfare of its members, not only within its own jurisdiction, but within the jurisdiction of its sister unions.
Current Leadership of Union: Carlo Fiorletta is the president of GIAA. Other officers include: Carson Grant (first vice president), Debbie Klaar (second vice president), Mara Lesemann (secretary/treasurer), Elaine Legaro (councilor), Ron Piretti (councilor), Simcha Borenstein (alternate councilor), Dana Halsted Moss (alternate councilor) and Lauren Cozza (alternate councilor).
Members Work As: GIAA is the only ethnic acting union in the United States. It is an Italian actors union for Italian speaking performers.
Industries Represented: The arts and entertainment industries.
History: GIAA was founded in 1937.
Community Efforts: GIAA provides news and casting opportunities to its members.
This article has been updated since the original version, first published March 1.
At a sprawling locomotive manufacturing complex a mile long and a mile wide in Erie, Pennsylvania, 1,700 workers struck for nine days and fended off their new employer’s efforts to impose a raft of concessions, including two-tier wages.
Temperatures were below freezing. Strikers stood on a dozen picket lines ringing the plant, feeding wood into burn barrels and making life difficult for any non-union employees who tried to drive through the gates.
Passenger service agents have voted against ratification of the tentative contract agreement between the Communications Workers of America and Envoy Air.
This week, labor leaders from across the country descended on New Orleans to map out the path ahead for our movement. From trade and public education to equal pay and paid leave to back pay for federal contract workers and bargaining power for all, the AFL-CIO Executive Council tackled the issues that will define working people’s fight for economic justice in 2019 and beyond.
Sending waves through Washington yesterday, the Executive Council’s most notable decision was its announcement that, “if the administration insists on a premature vote on the new NAFTA in its current form, we will have no choice but to oppose it.” Here are a few highlights from the statement:
Trade policy must be judged by whether it leads to a just, inclusive and sustainable economy....By that measure, the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), which has driven the outsourcing of so many good jobs, has been a catastrophic failure.
By design, NAFTA distorted power relationships in favor of global employers over workers, weakened worker bargaining power and encouraged the de-industrialization of the U.S. economy.
After a quarter-century of this race to the bottom, workers in all three NAFTA countries find it more difficult to form unions and negotiate collective bargaining agreements.
The NAFTA renegotiation requires strong labor rights provisions and strong enforcement provisions that as of today are not yet in the agreement.
The current effort by the business community to pass the new NAFTA is premature, and if it continues, we will be forced to mobilize to defeat it, just as we mobilized to kill the Trans-Pacific Partnership.
For Women's History Month, the AFL-CIO is spotlighting various women who were leaders and activists working at the intersection of civil and labor rights. Today's profile is Frances Perkins.
Perkins was born in Boston in 1880, descendant from a long line of Maine farmers and craftsmen. At Mount Holyoke College, she studied the natural sciences and economic history and was exposed to a variety of works and lectures who exposed her to new ways of thinking about the social problems she witnessed.
After graduation, she learned more about the plight of working people when she volunteered in New York's settlement houses. She heard stories directly from workers about the dangerous conditions of factory work and the desperation of being unable to collect promised wages or secure medical care for workplace injuries. She left her teaching career, just as it was beginning, to earn a master's degree in economics and sociology.
In 1910, she became secretary of the New York Consumers' League and was part of a team that lobbied the state legislature for a bill limiting the workweek for women and children to 54 hours. On March 25, 1911, she was attending a social function near the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory when the fire began. She witnessed the entire event. She was deeply affected by it:
Up until that point she had lobbied for worker rights and on behalf of the poor, but she had been on a conventional trajectory, toward a conventional marriage, perhaps, and a life of genteel good works. After the fire, what had been a career turned into a vocation. Moral indignation set her on a different course. Her own desires and her own self became less central and the cause itself became more central to the structure of her life. The niceties of her class fell away. She became impatient with the way genteel progressives went about serving the poor. She became impatient with their prissiness, their desire to stay pure and above the fray. Perkins hardened. She threw herself into the rough and tumble of politics. She was willing to take morally hazardous action if it would prevent another catastrophe like the one that befell the women at the Triangle factory. She was willing to compromise and work with corrupt officials if it would produce results. She pinioned herself to this cause for the rest of her life.
The results were obvious.
Perkins began to focus more on practical remedies to the challenges faced by working people. She held to a strong belief that legislation was the most important avenue to "right industrial wrongs," and she simultaneously championed labor organizing and collective action. In 1918, she was invited by Gov. Al Smith to join the New York State Industrial Commission, becoming the first woman to serve. By 1926, she had become the commission's chairwoman. In 1929, Gov. Franklin Roosevelt appointed her as the industrial commissioner for the state. She led a series of progressive reforms that included expanding factory investigations, reducing the workweek for women to 48 hours and championing minimum wage and unemployment insurance laws.
In 1933, Perkins was chosen by President Roosevelt to serve as secretary of labor, making her the first woman ever appointed to a federal Cabinet position. She focused on creating a safety net to counteract the Great Depression's effects on working people. This was evident in the legislation she helped secure, including the Wagner Act (which gave workers the right to organize unions and bargain collectively), the Fair Labor Standards Act (which established the first minimum wage and created a maximum workweek) and the Social Security Act of 1935.
She also played a crucial role in the dramatic labor uprisings of the 1930s and 1940s. She consistently supported the rights of workers to organize unions of their own choosing and to pressure employers through economic action. She successfully resolved strikes with gains for workers time and time again, most notably helping end the 1934 San Francisco General Strike without violence or the use of federal troops, an option that was on the table.
In 1945, Perkins resigned from her position as labor secretary to head the U.S. delegation to the International Labor Organization conference in Paris. President Harry Truman appointed her to the Civil Service Commission, a job she held through 1953. She also returned to the classroom to teach at Cornell's School of Industrial and Labor Relations. She died in New York in 1965 at the age of 85 and was buried in her family's plot in New Castle, Maine.
Read more about Perkins.
The A-Team was a hit show among my friends when it first aired in 1983. Growing up in a union family, one episode that stood out for me was “Labor Pains,” when the A-Team helped farmworkers organize a union. I recently watched it again to see how well it presents unions and the organizing process.
The latest bargaining information for the University of California and Restaurant Opportunities Centers United.
United Steelworkers (USW) Local 9 member Kathy Wilder won a write-in election for school board in Maine School Administrative District (MSAD) 54 on March 4. Wilder, who works as a chemical prep operator at Sappi Fine Paper in Skowhegan, says that her priorities will be student achievement, fiscal responsibility, clear communications and social justice.
"Being elected to the school board is really exciting for me because I grew up in Norridgewock and attended K-12 in MSAD 54," said Wilder after finishing a night shift at the mill. "Now I have to give back to the community by working to make the future a brighter and stronger place for today’s youth."
Wilder worked with the Maine AFL-CIO in 2018 as part of our labor candidates training program to elect more union members and working class people to elected office at all levels. She previously ran for the Maine State Legislature in 2018.
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:
Strong Unions Mean Strong African-American Communities https://t.co/teHSH89X2k— APRI National (DC) (@APRI_National) March 4, 2019
San Mateo County human services workers are on strike, demanding greater recognition for the critical role they play in their community. Some 600 members of Local 829 are asking for a fair contract to address caseloads, staffing, retention and more. https://t.co/TuDkKoHQJn— AFSCME (@AFSCME) March 6, 2019
After a decade of neglect, AFT members across the country are standing up. They are taking to the streets to demand the teaching and learning conditions they and their students deserve. #FundOurFuture https://t.co/VbXBpaPHxk pic.twitter.com/a2KiuzKJQP— AFT (@AFTunion) March 7, 2019
Air Line Pilots Association:
Alliance for Retired Americans:
Lawmakers are trying to curb sepsis infections and get better care for patients with a new bill that would boost punishment for understaffed nursing homes: https://t.co/GHeHNL0KyE pic.twitter.com/EKJr4eAWhq— Alliance Retirees (@ActiveRetirees) March 7, 2019
Amalgamated Transit Union:
American Federation of Musicians:
“As Music Director and a musician of this orchestra, I am with the Musicians," said Ricardo Muti in a letter delivered to Chicago Symphony management. BRAVO! 👏👏👏👏👏https://t.co/HxF9qRfMXX via @crainschicago— Amer. Fed. Musicians (@The_AFM) March 7, 2019
American Postal Workers Union:
Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance:
"Cindy Domingo epitomizes public service with her tireless dedication and long string of accomplishments in repping communities so often left from the table.” Shout out to our APALA Seattle member for receiving the MLK Jr. Medal of Distinguished Service! https://t.co/QeOdJInkem pic.twitter.com/AR0sVqccbt— APALA (@APALAnational) March 7, 2019
Association of Flight Attendants-CWA:
Over 70 years of experience and heart in aviation, the members of the Association of Flight Attendants know the realities of the aircraft cabin better than anyone. We don't just serve drinks. We save lives. pic.twitter.com/yzqoYXUecS— AFA-CWA (@afa_cwa) March 7, 2019
Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers:
Educators, parents, students and their communities are standing up with a clear message: that we’re not going to accept underfunding and scarcity. It's time to #FundOurFuture! Share this video from @AFTunion: https://t.co/GYf20DOjvz— BCTGM International (@BCTGM) March 4, 2019
Incredible @ChadlHymas at #Boilermakers CSO Conference: "People who refuse to change the way they’ve done things in the past never solve problems. They find themselves paralyzed by their own patterns...they find themselves trapped in the patterns they’ve created for themselves." pic.twitter.com/Rrs4rxxuHD— Boilermakers Union (@boilermakernews) March 5, 2019
Making a successful transition from the #military into the civilian workforce can be difficult, but with the help from @H2Hjobfairs, you can build a lifelong career in the trowel trades. Check it out: https://t.co/fs0PPoDhe3#ApprenticeshipWorks #skilledtrades #1u #construction— Bricklayers Union (@IUBAC) March 6, 2019
California School Employees Association:
Great keynote speech by State Superintendent @TonyThurmond to a crowd of more than 1,200 @CSEA_Now members attending the 22nd Annual Paraeducator Conference in Sacramento today. “Classified employees are the backbone of our schools!”— CSEA (@CSEA_Now) March 6, 2019
Coalition of Black Trade Unionists:
Another great piece by Bill. https://t.co/rD9f8eJrg3— CBTU (@CBTU72) March 7, 2019
Coalition of Labor Union Women:
Communications Workers of America:
It's Throwback Thursday! CWA Local 7800 members & family picket outside the US West Headquarters in Seattle, on Aug. 16, 1998. Members were striking against mandatory overtime & reduction of wages & benefits. 34,000 union workers in 13 states participated. #tbt #ThursdayThoughts pic.twitter.com/Av2JveDhvu— CWA (@CWAUnion) March 7, 2019
Department for Professional Employees:
‘Times Are Changing:’ More women breaking into construction industry https://t.co/q8LgtVLTii— IBEW (@IBEW) March 4, 2019
Farm Labor Organizing Committee:
Hooray! https://t.co/jBOxJ9n7Su— Farm Labor Organizing Committee (@SupportFLOC) March 7, 2019
Heat and Frost Insulators:
Unlike typical post-high school education, a registered apprenticeship won’t leave you in debt, but rather help you build a stable, middle class life. Does this appeal to you? Learn more about joining the Insulators Union here: https://t.co/3Odj5kfMCh— Insulators Union (@InsulatorsUnion) March 7, 2019
International Federation of Professional and Technical Engineers:
International Labor Communications Association:
If March roars in like a 🦁, we’re editing the thought to say the first two months of 2019 were roaring, if partially hibernating. Let's catch up and plant the seeds for a fruitful year. https://t.co/3XUC6y6UmA— Labor Communications (@ILCAonline) March 1, 2019
Iron Workers General Organizer Vicki O'Leary addressed the North American Iron Workers/IMPACT Conference general session about how workplace harassment threatens job site safety. https://t.co/RthABSKNoX #NWIC #InterntionalWomensDay #BeThatOneGuy #ImpactOfChange— Ironworkers. (@TheIronworkers) March 7, 2019
Jobs With Justice:
This is more like it: working people > subsidies for the biggest and wealthiest companies in the world. https://t.co/5CtPm7cXf2— Jobs With Justice (@jwjnational) March 7, 2019
Labor Council for Latin American Advancement:
LCLAA is proud to have played a role in this amazing outcome aimed at protecting equal pay!https://t.co/7MEupRn1BL— LCLAA (@LCLAA) March 7, 2019
Maritime Trades Department:
UMWA’s Allen Updates Board on Pension Crisis | Maritime Trades Department, AFL-CIO https://t.co/4yozRPzRCQ— MaritimeTrades (@Maritime_Trades) February 28, 2019
Metal Trades Department:
“The AFL-CIO and our affiliates have long supported a substantial, long-term infrastructure investment plan — one that lifts up working people, grows the economy, creates ‘high... https://t.co/tLYq9iqx2R— Metal Trades Dept. (@metaltradesafl) March 7, 2019
UMWA members attend the Congressional hearing on “The Cost of Inaction: Why Congress Must Address the Multiemployer Pension Crisis.” Retirees and employers will speak about their concern that some of the nation’s largest multiemployer pension plans soon becoming insolvent. pic.twitter.com/Am1atiqdKy— United Mine Workers (@MineWorkers) March 7, 2019
Today, the American Guild of Musical Artists announced the installation of John Coleman as President of the Union, following the resignation of James Odom.— AGMA (@AGMusicalArtist) March 1, 2019
To view the press release, please visit our website - https://t.co/hAtRl61guI#SolidarityForever #UnionStrong
National Air Traffic Controllers Association:
NATCA members at Atlanta-area facilities safely handled more than 1,500 general aviation flights in the 36 hours surrounding #SuperBowl LIII. Feb. 4 was the busiest day for the Atlanta TRACON in more than a decade, handling more than 4,000 total flights. Well done! pic.twitter.com/6J8b3XR95J— NATCA (@NATCA) March 7, 2019
National Association of Letter Carriers:
Our member Chris Metropulos rescued a woman trapped on the second floor of a burning building. With help from a man, Chris locked elbows w/ the man & convinced the woman to jump to safety. Emergency responders later arrived to battle the fire & treat the woman. #Heroes #Wisconsin pic.twitter.com/V0i7OnOTh4— Letter Carriers (@NALC_National) March 7, 2019
National Day Laborer Organizing Network:
National Domestic Workers Alliance:
Mechelle Vinson filed a lawsuit against her supervisor for sexual harassment in the office and took her case all the way to the Supreme Court. In 1986, the Court ruled, for the first time, that sexual harassment is discriminatory and illegal. #WHM2019https://t.co/2XXTqoFYFJ— Domestic Workers (@domesticworkers) March 7, 2019
National Nurses United:
No one should be left to die simply because they are too poor to afford health care.— NationalNursesUnited (@NationalNurses) March 7, 2019
Take action- make sure your Congressperson is on the right side of history and supports #MedicareForAll.
Call 202-858-1717 today. #ThursdayThoughts pic.twitter.com/B3YeLoA6qK
National Taxi Workers Alliance:
Good news folks: Uber is now on the hook for unemployment insurance contributions for NY drivers! Uber withdrew its appeal of a ruling that found 3 former NYC Uber drivers and ALL SIMILARLY SITUATED drivers to be employees for the purposes of unemployment benefits!— NY Taxi Workers (@NYTWA) March 4, 2019
NFL Players Association:
ICYMI: Our president dropped some knowledge about the salary cap https://t.co/DHA5WirHDx— NFLPA (@NFLPA) March 7, 2019
North America's Building Trades Unions:
To celebrate National Women in Construction Week, we will share some of the top stories and initiatives highlighting the increased role that WOMEN play in the #BuildingTrades.— The Building Trades (@NABTU) March 4, 2019
Keep up with the thread here 👀 #WICWeek2019
Office and Professional Employees:
The apparent contempt for working people shown by this administration is appalling. First, nearly 1m federal workers are forced to go w/o pay for 35 days. Now they want to roll back OT protections for millions, again shifting wealth from the many into the hands of the few. #1u https://t.co/CQJNYaiTZ9— OPEIU (@opeiu) March 1, 2019
Plasterers and Cement Masons:
“The building trades have always maintained a healthy supply of job-ready, skilled, safe workers. ... But [we] cannot do it alone. ... [We] need continued support from the Department of Labor and the Trump administration for their apprenticeship programs.” https://t.co/iMvdGAZ0So— OPCMIA International (@opcmiaintl) February 28, 2019
Plumbers and Pipe Fitters:
Today Working Families United, the AFL-CIO, and more than 30 national unions and labor institutions sent a letter to Congress expressing their support for legislation that makes the protections for TPS holders and dreamers permanent. Find letter below. https://t.co/Lnd4chIdVt— GoIUPAT✊🏽 (@GoIUPAT) March 4, 2019
Printing, Publishing and Media Workers-CWA:
Union Printers Home Foundation Now Accepting Applications for Scholarships https://t.co/9NFp5AsjXl— CWA Printing Sector (@CWAPrintingSect) March 7, 2019
Professional Aviation Safety Specialists:
"MLB players love our caps. People who make them for us deserve fair wages" TY @whatwouldDOOdo @Nationals for supporting union members at New Era—losing jobs as work sent overseas. Unions=America=baseball PASS members at FAA get you safely to games. #1u https://t.co/1qKH5DN88B— PASS (@PASSNational) March 4, 2019
Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union:
We need mayoral control of @NYCSchools. RWDSU is proud to stand with our brother and sisters in the labor movement to call on the NYS Legislature to renew mayoral control of the NYC school system without delay. #1u pic.twitter.com/aYsV5uItLE— RWDSU (@RWDSU) March 7, 2019
Climb aboard and sign the petition to support and embrace diversity and not contribute to gender, race, ethnicity, and age stereotypes. https://t.co/rP8gXTLjX9— Seafarers Union (@SeafarersUnion) March 7, 2019
This #IWD2019 Kenya union leader Rose Omamo is championing passage of a proposed @ILO global standard that would address #genderbasedviolence at work. “Our job is to lobby, lobby, lobby and make sure we get support.” @ituc @equaltimes https://t.co/1IvYMPQGQj— Solidarity Center (@SolidarityCntr) March 7, 2019
“He kept the whole train connected in a family kind of way...It rekindled my faith in humans," said passenger Barbara May. So why does @Amtrak want to cut these jobs and service? Stop the #ColdCuts, Mr. Anderson.— Transportation Communications Union/IAM (@TCUnionHQ) March 2, 2019
CC: @AmtrakCouncil https://t.co/Y61KGnytFC
Theatrical Stage Employees:
This Women's History Month, we're highlighting the stories of IA women who came before and blazed the trail for all of us. Tell us about the groundbreaking women in your local in the replies! #WomensHistoryMonth #UnionStrong pic.twitter.com/I0QJkUou4f— IATSE (@IATSE) March 4, 2019
UnAmerican continues to undermine the safety of its fleet by penny wise, dollar foolish outsourcing. TWU Jet Mechanics uncovered dangerous conditions which included improper electrical wiring. UnAmerican Air needs to stop putting profits before people. @AmericanAir pic.twitter.com/qWUGZYcAEW— TWU (@transportworker) March 7, 2019
Transportation Trades Department:
Teachers, bus drivers, and school support workers want the best for the kids they serve. That's why they're standing united with @AFTUnion to fight for #FundOurFuture - and we're standing with them. https://t.co/XiGSWptZsQ— Transp. Trades Dept. (@TTDAFLCIO) March 7, 2019
This week, GM is idling the GM Lordstown Plant. On Friday, show your solidarity with the affected workers by wearing blue and posting your photo online with the hashtag #GMinvestinUS. pic.twitter.com/rJ6u90pQGN— UAW (@UAW) March 6, 2019
United Food and Commercial Workers:
Citing civil rights, cities are banning cashless retail: Some New Yorkers want to join cities like Philadelphia, San Francisco, and Washington in banning them, because cashless business discriminates against low-income people. https://t.co/NvU8fI4iQA @RWDSU— UFCW (@UFCW) March 7, 2019
Union Label and Service Trades Department:
"There are many team members working at Whole Foods today whose total compensation is actually less than what it was before the wage increase due to these labor reductions," says Whole Worker, a group organizing for a union at the high-end grocery chain... https://t.co/md7LE1DbJD— Union Label Dept. (@ULSTD_AFLCIO) March 6, 2019
Union Veterans Council:
"That humble piece of cardboard is a symbol of solidarity—a sign of what labor movements are made of, and a sign of the racial unity they should continue to strive for."#1u #WomensHistoryMonth https://t.co/lYyyicah58— UNITE HERE (@unitehere) March 7, 2019
United Students Against Sweatshops:
Instead of praising @nike for doing the minimum, call on them to rehire hundreds of Indonesian women organizing for higher pay and better working conditions. Sign our petition here: https://t.co/zgjMXgCjpx— USAS (@USAS) February 27, 2019
Abandoning white-working class voters to Republican racial messaging is bad politics and bad for the country. In @Newsweek's new cover story, @MattMorrison explains that politicians can address racial and economic justice at the same time https://t.co/wFXSt5CWc2 pic.twitter.com/AJzABtqQZg— Working America (@WorkingAmerica) March 7, 2019
Writers Guild of America, East:
We are thrilled to announce that the 169-member editorial staff at Gizmodo Media Group has unanimously ratified its second collective bargaining agreement with the Writers Guild of America, East! #1u https://t.co/PRHG9f2Oyo— Writers Guild of America, East (@WGAEast) March 5, 2019
The difference between a truly democratic union and one that follows a servicing model is stark when it comes to grievance handling. In a strong democratic union there may not even be many grievances; members organize to convince supervisors to stop violating the contract without having to use the formal procedure.
It’s just what you would expect from airplane engineers on strike—they reengineered the picket line burn barrel to be more efficient.
The strikers were Boeing engineers, members of the Society of Professional Engineering Employees in Aerospace (SPEEA), who walked the lines for 40 days in 2000 during a rainy Seattle winter.
The guy at the car rental counter found my T-shirt puzzling.
It was early on a Tuesday morning, and I had just flown back into L.A. Why, he wanted to know, was someone from Massachusetts wearing a shirt that said “United Teachers Los Angeles”?
I explained that I had been out the week before to support the teachers strike. I was back for a second round because this strike was important to educators across the country.
“The whole country? Why?”
Mexican maquiladora workers in 70 factories have won big wage increases and bonuses in a strike wave that began in January.
The strikes in the industrial city of Matamoros, Tamaulipas, on the border with Brownsville, Texas, have primarily hit auto parts factories, where tens of thousands of workers make goods for General Motors and other car manufacturers.
The first of the strikes began on January 12 at eight factories. Workers were demanding a 20 percent wage increase and an annual bonus of 32,000 pesos ($1,600)—a demand now popularized as “20/32.”
In the past six months, over 50 workers, students, and labor activists in China have been arrested or disappeared by the government. Their crime? Supporting workers at the Jasic welding equipment factory in their legal efforts to form a union.