It's time once again to take a look at the battles for the rights of working families in the states. Here is what the unions in the states are talking about this week. Click on any of the links to follow the state federations and labor councils on Twitter.
Each week, we take a look at the biggest friends and foes of labor. We celebrate the workers who are winning big and small battles, and we shame the companies or people who are trying to deny working people their rights.
South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley gave the Republican Party's response to Barack Obama's State of the Union Speech last night. The rebuttal is often used as a way to introduce rising stars on the political scene to a national audience, so clearly, Republican Party leaders think Haley has a bright future. The problem is that her past isn't that bright. Her record as governor of South Carolina is the wrong kind of agenda for working families. Here are three key things you should know about that that show how wrong Haley's job record is.
Unions must mobilize to defeat racism because it destroys solidarity and brutalizes union members, the demographics of working people are changing rapidly and morality demands action. But mobilizing all of labor to join the fight against racism will not be easy: Race fractures the labor movement itself. AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka said of Ferguson, Mo., “our brother killed our sister’s son,” and, in doing so, he spoke to the tragic facts and also to the internecine racial fault lines that shatter worker solidarity.
Tonight, President Barack Obama will deliver his final State of the Union address, and AFL-CIO Secretary-Treasurer Liz Shuler will be in the audience representing America's working people.
Watch the video above for her thoughts on what she hopes the president will address. What issues would you like to hear him talk about? Log in and leave your comments below.
The president will give his final State of the Union address tonight. Traditionally, this annual speech reviews the accomplishments of years past and sets out a “to-do” list for the year ahead. Although the White House has indicated that this year’s speech will be “nontraditional,” it has made clear the economy will be a major focus.
Just across the border with Texas, workers in Ciudad Juárez have been launching brave actions against global manufacturing giants to improve conditions in the low-wage maquiladora sector. Over the past six months, workers at large assembly plants owned by Commscope, Eaton, Foxconn and Lexmark, producing electronics, auto parts and printing supplies for the U.S. market, have launched a series of mobilizations to protest wages as low as $30 per week, unsafe working conditions, sexual harassment and discrimination. Juárez is a major location of such industry, accounting for well over 10% of all such exports from Mexico. In several cases, workers have attempted to form independent unions to defend their rights and have a voice at work.
Every week, we'll be bringing you a roundup of the important news and commentary about issues and events important to working families. Here's this week's Working People Weekly List.
The U.S. economy added 292,000 jobs in December and unemployment was 5%, remaining unchanged from the previous month, according to figures released this morning by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. This continues the record string of months with job growth.
The International Union of Food Workers (IUF) and the Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers (BCTGM) have affirmed their solidarity with employees of Mondelēz International, the maker of Nabisco products, around the world. The state of Illinois has given Nabisco/Mondelēz millions of dollars in public assistance and tax breaks. BCTGM represents some 4,000 Mondelēz workers. The company has asked for massive concessions from employees that BCTGM says would amount to lost wages and benefits of $22–$29 per hour, per employee, and would lead to hundreds of lost jobs. In July, the company moved hundreds of jobs from Chicago to Mexico, jobs that were mostly held by African American and Latino workers before the move. Most of them are also over the age of 40, a surprisingly disproportionate targeting of experienced and valuable employees.
Despite the departure of four of their own, Kentucky House Democrats should be able to keep the Republican "right to work" wolf away from organized labor’s door. Prevailing wage repeal, another long-cherished Republican goal, also faces an unlikely future in the South's only Democratic-majority legislative chamber.
Obama Administration’s Crackdown on Immigrants Ignores Due Process and Creates Communities Filled with Fear
AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka released the following statement in response to the Obama administration’s large-scale deportations.
How do you tell if the 12-country Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) is a good deal or a bad one?
Confused about Friedrichs? It's pretty simple. See more after the jump.
As Donald Trump maintains a high standing in Republican primary polls, AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka had to speak out about the reality TV star's negative campaign that includes racism, attacks on workers and attempts to divide Americans and treat them differently because of their religion. In Trumka's words, "We deserve better."
We're back! In our regular weekly feature, we’ll be taking a look at the winners and losers of the week in the struggle for the rights of working families. The winners will be the people or organizations that go above and beyond to expand or protect the rights of working families or working people who have fought for or won a significant victory. The losers will be whomever went above and beyond to limit or deny those rights or the working people who have lost a right or a battle for expanding or keeping their rights.
Happy New Year from America's unions.
Here's to 2016 being filled with working-people wins and a union voice on the job.
It's been a busy year here on the AFL-CIO Now blog where we try to cover the issues that are important to working people. The stories, from TPP to anti-worker rhetoric from presidential candidates and governors to the growing momentum in efforts to organize workers, raise wages and expand the collective voice of working people, that most affect working families. Here are the 10 stories that were most read by you, our readers.
America's working people in unions wish you a very merry Christmas and a happy New Year.