Articles

solidarity

26 Jun Join together to get ahead

The Labor Wire June 26, 2018   On the eve of a likely ruling against workers in Janus v. AFSCME, leading economists continue to say unions are the best tool to raise pay and standards for working people. A recent paper by Henry Farber, Daniel Herbst, Ilyana Kuziemko and Suresh Naidu draws on a huge number of data sources and concludes that as unionization rises, inequality falls. This news comes just as a major study from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology finds that the portion of the American workforce who would vote today to join or form a union jumped by an unprecedented 50%, as more and more of us realize that standing together is the best way to get ahead. Message of the Day -- Join Together to Get Ahead --   When workers use our collective power, we can demand and win better pay and access to health care and retirement security. Over the past 40 years, as CEOs and their politicians have rigged the economy against working people and made it harder to join together in unions, our economic mobility has suffered. Workers, especially young people, have begun to realize the importance of solidarity as an answer to the economic worries that keep us up at night, things like student debt, the high cost of housing and low pay. Economists, too, are turning away from bankrupt free market fantasies and back toward ideas that work, like collective bargaining, which allow us to stand together and get a fair share of what we produce. This is good news for America’s working people, because we want new economic rules so our families and communities can thrive. Kitchen Table Economics   68%: That’s how many workers between the ages of 18 and 29 see unions favorably, according to a new study from the Pew Research Center.   Take Action   Stand together for working people’s freedom!               Source:  The Labor Wire, AFL-CIO   June 26, 2018...

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21 Jun A broken immigration system

The Labor Wire June 21, 2018  After a week of family separation, workplace raids and even more bad legislation, it is clearer than ever that we must fix our broken immigration system. “The Trump administration is using enforcement overreach to terrify immigrant workers and is directly threatening our freedom to stand together and fight in unions for fair pay and treatment,” said AFL‑CIO President Richard Trumka.   Trumka added: “Nothing embodies our broken immigration system more than the unnecessary pain and suffering of our immigrant brothers and sisters as families are torn apart at the border.” -- Message of the Day --A Broken Immigration System  America’s broken immigration system and threats of detention and deportation have been used as leverage to lower pay, worsen benefits and make workplaces less safe for decades. The brutal policy of ripping children from the arms of parents at America’s borders adds a new low to this legacy. A first priority of any nation must be to safeguard families and our most vulnerable people, especially those who come here seeking safety and refuge. Necessary, too, are good jobs and the freedom to stand together in unity to raise pay and lift up our communities. Working people want real solutions, not the two bad bills put forward by Congress, because both choke off legal immigration, expand abusive temporary work visa programs, and fail to protect families and children. The AFL‑CIO demands comprehensive immigration reform with a path to citizenship and an end to a system that hurts working people. Kitchen Table Economics  69%: That’s how many participants in the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, commonly known as DACA, got a higher-paying job because of work authorization, said a survey from the Center for American Progress. The results illustrate the way good immigration policy can raise pay.  Take Action Protect Dreamers!              Source: The Labor Wire, AFL-CIO   June 21, 2018   ...

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a-better-deal

14 Jun A better deal for workers

The Labor Wire June 14, 2018   Democrats in Congress this week introduced a key piece of legislation designed to combat growing inequality and strengthen working people’s right to fight for our economic rights. “All working people should have the freedom to join together to negotiate with their employers for better wages and working conditions,” said AFL‑CIO Government Affairs Director William Samuel in a letter urging members of Congress to support the bill. “Help us build an economy that works for all working families and not just the privileged few.” Message of the Day -- A Better Deal for Workers -- As corporations continue waging a full-blown assault on the freedoms of working people, our allies on Capitol Hill have introduced a piece of legislation that would mark an enormous step forward in the struggle for economic justice. The most recent proposal in congressional Democrats’ Better Deal agenda, the Workers’ Freedom to Negotiate Act, would enact several key provisions expanding collective bargaining rights, such as: Strengthening penalties against abusive and predatory corporations that violate workers’ rights. Combating misclassification of workers as supervisors and independent contractors. Strengthening our right to strike for the wages, benefits and working conditions that we deserve. Creating a mandatory mediation and arbitration process to ensure that corporations and newly organized unions reach a first contract. Banning state laws that undermine our freedom to join together and negotiate. Protecting the integrity and fairness of union elections from employer propaganda.   Kitchen Table Economics   1%: Wage growth for the bottom 50% of Americans between 1980 and 2014.   Take Action   Support working people’s freedom!             Source:  Labor Wire, AFL-CIO   June 14, 2018...

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ballot

12 Jun You gotta fight for your right to vote

  The Labor Wire June 12, 2018   Conservatives on the Supreme Court yesterday backed Ohio officials’ efforts to purge tens of thousands of citizens from its voter rolls, likely opening the door for other states to take similar actions. Brought by the A. Philip Randolph Institute, the suit argued that such aggressive actions amounted to unconstitutional restrictions that disproportionately target working people and communities of color. Message of the Day -- You Gotta Fight for Your Right to Vote --   Powerful right-wing interests are continuing to weaponize a fabricated epidemic of voter fraud in their assault on Americans’ voting rights. Yesterday, five justices sided with a wrong-headed law designed to deny targeted citizens’ constitutional right to vote. By inviting these deep-pocketed groups to continue their assault on voting rights, the Supreme Court has opened a floodgate of attacks on our democracy. Ohio’s voting restrictions—some of the most extreme in the country—begin the purging process if a voter misses one federal election cycle. If they miss a single mailed notice, their registration is then slated to be purged in four years. This extreme, unwarranted effort already has blocked tens of thousands of Ohioans from voting. With the court failing to protect our right to vote, it’s time for working people to double down and continue fighting for our collective voice. With right-wing forces as ambitious as ever, it has never been more important for the labor movement to mobilize and fight back. Kitchen Table Economics   144,000: Number of voters in Ohio’s three largest counties whose registration was purged before the 2016 election.   Take Action   Protect the right to vote!           Source:  Labor Wire, AFL-CIO   May 12, 2018...

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kitchen-table

31 May Jobs, jobs, jobs

The Labor Wire May 31, 2018 Washington often misses the big picture by focusing on narrow details, like the monthly jobs report due out tomorrow from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. This month’s numbers will likely continue a trend of modest job growth dating back to the administration of President Barack Obama, which pundits say is a success. Not so fast. We demand a robust program to create millions of jobs coupled with a $15 minimum wage, so regular working people can work hard to get ahead for a change. Message of the Day - Jobs, Jobs, Jobs The monthly jobs reports from the Bureau of Labor Statistics have put the unemployment rate in the 4% range for months, which might sound rosy to some people. Yet more than 1.3 million unemployed workers in America have been looking fruitlessly for work for more than six months, and 5 million workers are stuck in part-time jobs while looking for full-time work. Wages for too many of us have remained stubbornly low. America’s working people demand better. We want federal and state legislation to lift the minimum wage to $15 an hour and index it to the median wage. We want new appointments to the Federal Reserve Board of Governors to be committed to full employment, which has been a sidelined priority of the Federal Reserve for far too long, and we want full employment to be measured by the growth of real wages in line with productivity. We want budget and tax policies that prioritize full employment and good-paying jobs, including massive and sustained investments in America’s infrastructure. The AFL‑CIO is committed to building power for a new set of economic rules so working people can earn rising pay and good benefits.   Kitchen Table Economics 20%: That’s how much less millennial workers earn when compared to the wages brought home by baby boomers at the same age.   Take Action Join a union! ...

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30 May We’ll vote for you if you fight for us

IThe Labor Wire May 30, 2018 The negotiations over the North American Free Trade Agreement have continued past House Speaker Paul Ryan’s arbitrary deadline, which puts them squarely into the electoral season as we head toward the midterm elections in November. Working people won’t lift a finger for candidates who want bad trade, but we will move heaven and earth for candidates who embrace our vision and values and fight for our jobs and communities.  - Message of the Day -We’ll Vote for You if You Fight for Us It’s only 159 days until the midterm elections in November, and working people are paying attention to who’s talking about our agenda. It’s time for candidates to talk about the need for good trade deals that work for working people, not for Wall Street. The AFL‑CIO supports the premise of renegotiating the North American Free Trade Agreement, but we reject the idea that the struggle is between Mexico, the United States and Canada. The real fight is between workers and corporate interests, which is why we support ideas that will improve the lives of working people throughout North America. We want strong rules to protect the freedom of workers to form powerful and independent unions, and we want those rules to have teeth. We also want trade rules to protect democracy and the environment, and to get rid of corporate giveaways, starting with the private corporate courts (ISDS) where investors get to write their own rules. America’s working people are ready to fight for and win a new set of economic rules, so we can win good pay and benefits and so our communities can thrive.  Kitchen Table Economics  $2.25 per hour: That’s how much autoworkers earn at a plant in central Mexico, where they make $40,000 SUVs to be sold in the United States. The pay is low because of so-called “protection” contracts signed long before the plants opened, which make it harder for workers in the United States and Canada to negotiate for better pay and benefits. Take Action Join the fight for good trade!    Source:  The Labor Wire, AFL-CIO   May 30, 2018    ...

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23 May Independent political power

The Labor Wire May 23, 2018 In special elections across the country, America’s labor movement has demonstrated our unity and independence as an electoral force for a working family agenda, which is a truth every political hopeful should heed in 2018. “If you want working people to rally around you, then you sure as hell better rally around us,” said AFL‑CIO President Richard Trumka (UMWA) to Pennsylvania’s labor movement. “We don’t work for any political party. We want fair economic rules so working people can work hard and get ahead.” Message of the Day—Independent Political Power America’s working people laid out an ambitious agenda for building independent political power at the 2017 AFL‑CIO Convention in St. Louis, because it’s time for working people to write new economic rules so regular people can get ahead. Working people put that political independence to the test in local, state and federal elections across the country this year, and we proved that our passion and resources can make the difference for candidates who embrace a working family agenda. “We want more pro-labor Republicans and fewer corporate-beholden Democrats,” said AFL‑CIO President Richard Trumka to a convention of the Boilermakers (IBB) last month. The AFL‑CIO is mobilizing working people to educate and register voters, to leaflet worksites and to turn out the vote for working family candidates, so we can elect leaders who will fight against Wall Street and for working family priorities. Kitchen Table Economics 4,987 to 1: That’s the ratio of pay between former Mattel CEO Margo Georgiadis and the median worker at the company who’s not a manager. That gap is an example of why we need new economic rules. Take Action Support working people’s freedom! Labor Wire, AFL-CIO May 23, 2018...

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banner-2018

16 Apr Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive

On May 12th, marks the 26th anniversary of one of America’s great days of giving - the National Association of Letter Carriers’ Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive. Participating in this year’s Letter Carrier Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive is simple. Just leave non- perishable food donation in a bag by your mailbox on Saturday, May 12th and your letter carrier will do the rest. These donations will go directly to local food pantries to provide food to people in need. Click here to find the phone number for your local post office. 2017 Food Drive Results  ...

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