AFL-CIO Now Blog

03/19/2021 - 6:30pm
Stop AAPI Hate: In the States Roundup

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

Alabama AFL-CIO:

Alaska AFL-CIO:


03/19/2021 - 12:00pm
Service + Solidarity Spotlight: Orange County Labor Federation Flips County Supervisor Seat for Working Families Katrina Foley

Working people across the United States have stepped up to help out our friends, neighbors and communities during these trying times. In our regular Service + Solidarity Spotlight series, we’ll showcase one of these stories every day. Here’s today’s story.

The Orange County Labor Federation successfully flipped a seat on the Orange County Board of Supervisors, as former county Supervisor John Moorlach conceded the race to worker champion Costa Mesa Mayor Katrina Foley.

Anti-worker Republicans have now lost their 4-1 supermajority status on the board, and Foley’s win introduces a new era, one with a competitive 3-2 partisan dynamic. It’s the first time in decades that Democrats have two seats on the powerful board, which influences everything from homelessness to mental health services to the pandemic.

Working families fought to elect Foley by running ground campaigns and ads against Moorlach and for Foley. Financial support came from the Orange County deputy sheriffs union and from unions representing Orange County Fire Authority firefighters and hotel and restaurant workers.

Gloria Alvarado (IBT), executive director of the Orange County Labor Federation, said, “Congratulations to Supervisor-elect Katrina Foley on a resounding victory. Thank you to all our locals for your countless hours of work and support in making this victory possible. The result of this election shows the power of working families in Orange County, historically known as a conservative bastion within Southern California. We know Supervisor-elect Foley will hit the ground running, and we look forward to working with her and her team to make our county fairer for working families. Thank you to all our brothers and sisters in labor that volunteered and helped the labor federation efforts.”

Fri, 03/19/2021 - 08:32

Tags: COVID-19, Community Service


03/19/2021 - 12:00pm
Women's History Month Profiles: Jeannette Bradshaw Jeannette Bradshaw

This year, for Women's History Month, we're taking a look at a group of leaders who are currently active making women's history across the labor movement. Check back daily for a new profile and meet some of the people working to improve not only their community, but also to improve conditions for working people across the country. Today's profile is Jeannette Bradshaw.

Bradshaw is an incredible asset to the labor movement in Michigan. She serves as secretary-treasurer of the Metropolitan Detroit AFL-CIO and recording secretary/registrar of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 58. She recently drew national attention for her steady leadership of Michigan's Board of State Canvassers, chairing a lengthy meeting and bipartisan vote certifying Michigan's 2020 presidential election results.

Fri, 03/19/2021 - 09:30

Tags: Women's History Month


03/18/2021 - 11:30am
Service + Solidarity Spotlight: UWUA Contributes to Report on Post-Military Career Opportunities AFL-CIO

Working people across the United States have stepped up to help out our friends, neighbors and communities during these trying times. In our regular Service + Solidarity Spotlight series, we’ll showcase one of these stories every day. Here’s today’s story.

The American Legion unveiled a report on Monday offering recommendations to help educators, employers, veterans and service members translate skills earned in the military into post-military career opportunities. The Utility Workers (UWUA) director of veterans affairs and workforce development, Rick Passarelli, is one of the report authors. In addition to offering promising solutions for employers and educators, the report spotlights existing model programs and public-private partnerships that benefit veterans today, including the union’s Utility Workers Military Assistance Program (UMAP).

“It’s our hope this report and the partnerships we’ve forged through UMAP can clear the way for many more veterans to navigate into good, family-supporting post-military careers like those offered through the utility sector,” said UWUA President James Slevin. “This report will help to change minds about what life beyond the military can look like.”

Thu, 03/18/2021 - 08:35

Tags: COVID-19, Community Service


03/18/2021 - 11:30am
Women's History Month Profiles: Stephanie Brown Stephanie Brown

This year, for Women's History Month, we're taking a look at a group of leaders who are currently active making women's history across the labor movement. Check back daily for a new profile and meet some of the people working to improve not only their community, but also to improve conditions for working people across the country. Today's profile is Stephanie Brown.

Brown is the longest tenured employee at the Michigan AFL-CIO. She is a committed union activist and serves as steward for the staff union, OPEIU. Brown is integral to all the operations of the state labor federation. She is always quick with a kind word of encouragement or to answer any question.

Thu, 03/18/2021 - 09:30

Tags: Women's History Month


03/17/2021 - 5:00pm
Comic Book Answers: Why Do Workers Need a New ‘Bill of Rights’? Workers Bill of Rights Comic Book Cover

comic book developed by the North Carolina State AFL-CIO aims to answer the question of why we need a new “Bill of Rights” in this country to turn the tide of economic and societal forces back in favor of working people during the current pandemic and beyond.

The ‘Bill of Rights’ We Need Now More Than Ever

America’s labor movement continues to lead the response to the coronavirus pandemic and to fight for economic opportunity and social justice for all working people—including fighting for policies and principles that, had they been in place at the start of the current crisis, would have lessened the disruption to lives and livelihoods caused by COVID-19.

Back in 2017, at the national AFL-CIO convention in St. Louis, delegates passed Resolution 1: Workers’ Bill of Rights, which declares that all working people have the right to:

  • A good job with fair wages;
  • Quality health care;
  • A safe job;
  • Paid time off and flexible, predictable scheduling;
  • Freedom from discrimination;
  • To retire with dignity;
  • Education;
  • The freedom to join together; and
  • A voice in democracy.

With public approval of unions today near a 50-year high and with COVID-19 having exposed and even worsened preexisting and persistent structural racial and economic inequalities in the United States, now is the time for the labor movement to champion these essential rights and freedoms.

Introducing ‘The Workers’ Bill of Rights: A Comic Exploration’

In keeping with our commitment to promote the Workers’ Bill of Rights to a broad audience, we are thrilled to announce an exciting, new resource: The Workers’ Bill of Rights: A Comic Exploration, a comic book developed by the North Carolina State AFL-CIO.

The comic book, available in Spanish and English, both in print and online, comprises nine captivating and beautifully illustrated individual stories that explore the nine key components of the Workers’ Bill of Rights.

We must educate our members and the public on the need for a comprehensive bill of rights for all working people—Black, Brown and White; urban and rural—because we deserve better.

One job should be enough to make ends meet. Getting an education should not require mortgaging your future. No one should have to sacrifice their health or life to earn a paycheck.

Join us in this fight for better jobs and better lives for all working people!

Visit the comic book website to read The Workers’ Bill of Rights: A Comic Exploration.

Get involved by texting comic to 235246 to get your own digital copy of this publication or by emailing info@aflcionc.org to request a printed copy.

This post originally appeared at the North Carolina State AFL-CIO.

Wed, 03/17/2021 - 11:34

03/17/2021 - 5:00pm
Unacceptable: What Working People Are Doing This Week 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.

Actors' Equity:

AFGE:

AFSCME:

Alliance for Retired Americans:

Amalgamated Transit Union:

American Federation of Musicians:

American Federation of Teachers:

American Postal Workers Union:

Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance:

Association of Flight Attendants-CWA:

Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers:


03/17/2021 - 10:49am
Service + Solidarity Spotlight: Support Staff Keep Our Students Learning

Working people across the United States have stepped up to help out our friends, neighbors and communities during these trying times. In our regular Service + Solidarity Spotlight series, we’ll showcase one of these stories every day. Here’s today’s story.

Schools are communities that include students, teachers, administrators, families and, of course, support staff who keep the schools running. In a video, the California School Employees Association (CSEA) celebrates the contributions of school support professionals who have stepped up to the plate during the pandemic. “We can connect—we can connect with these families. We can hear them when they express what they’re going through, and we can reach out and help them,” said Maria Castillo, a CSEA member and health clerk at a California middle school. “I believe that we make a difference and that’s what we’re here for, to make that difference.”

Wed, 03/17/2021 - 08:27

Tags: Community Service, COVID-19


03/17/2021 - 10:49am
Women's History Month Profiles: Jacquie Sweeney

This year, for Women's History Month, we're taking a look at a group of leaders who are currently active making women's history across the labor movement. Check back daily for a new profile and meet some of the people working to improve not only their community, but also to improve conditions for working people across the country. Today's profile is Jacquie Sweeney.

Sweeney, a member of UMWA Local 717, is the embodiment of a woman taking charge in the workplace. When her employer of nine years, Remington Arms, went through bankruptcy, she rallied members of the local to come together and fight for what they deserve. For the past year and a half, Sweeney has served as recording secretary for Local 717.

Wed, 03/17/2021 - 09:30

Tags: Women's History Month


03/16/2021 - 4:30pm
Service + Solidarity Spotlight: Baltimore Teachers Union Secures 20,000 High Filtration Masks for City Schools Staff AFL-CIO

Working people across the United States have stepped up to help out our friends, neighbors and communities during these trying times. In our regular Service + Solidarity Spotlight series, we’ll showcase one of these stories every day. Here’s today’s story.

Diamonté Brown, president of the Baltimore Teachers Union (BTU), an affiliate of AFT, said that thanks to the leadership of member Laur Plawker, more than 20,000 high filtration masks will be donated to Baltimore City schools staff, as teachers and students continue to go back to teaching in person after a local mandate. When local restaurant owner Samantha Claassen heard Plawker was having anxieties over going back to school, Claassen reached out to other restaurant owners and together, with the help of local media, held an incredibly successful fundraiser on Feb. 23. Even after the fundraiser technically ended, donations continued to come in as word spread. BTU has begun distributing the masks to schools as teachers go back to school this week.

“While we were disappointed that the district rejected our proposal to supply N95 masks to staff working in person,” said Brown, “I am deeply heartened by the power of the community to step up and help keep our members safe.”

Tue, 03/16/2021 - 08:30

Tags: Community Service, COVID-19

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