News

The COVID-19 pandemic isn’t just a public health crisis — it’s a labor crisis as well.

“Fund our Facilities” is a coalition of elected leaders, labor organizations, and community groups focused on securing funding for improvements to school buildings. For $170 million, environmental hazards across the School District of Philadelphia’s more than 200 buildings can be remediated to the point that every school will be safe, healthy, and clean. This dollar figure addresses the following needs:
Join Fund Our Facilities Coalition member Rep. Elizabeth Fiedler, students, parents, union leaders and members on Wednesday, December 18 at 10 a.m. for the SOS Toxic Schools Rally in Harrisburg! Whether in Philly or anywhere else in Pennsylvania, none of us should worry about getting mesothelioma or another illness because of the time we spent in a public school. The rally takes place from 10-11, followed by lobbying at the Capitol. We're calling on state lawmakers to pass our Emergency Grant Repair Program so we can get the toxins out of our schools!

Last week, the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics released its annual report on union membership, which found that the number of union members rose by 260,000 in 2017. This reflects critical organizing victories across a range of industries, which have reaped higher wages, better benefits and a more secure future for working people around the country.

Of the report, AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka said:

The Mexican government has filed legislation that would substantially weaken rights for working people. In response, the AFL-CIO filed a complaint alleging that Mexico is violating the North American Agreement on Labor Cooperation, the NAFTA labor side deal.

50 years ago this April 4th, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr was assassinated in Memphis, Tennessee. While Dr King is celebrated as a key leader of our nation’s civil rights movement and Nobel Peace Prize laureate, American union members also recognize him as a key leader of our nation’s labor movement – and, in fact, he came to Memphis in the spring of 1968 in order to organize support for municipal sanitation workers who had gone on strike for union recognition.

Journalists at the Los Angeles Times have overwhelmingly elected to form a union, a first for the 136-year-old news organization that for much of its history was known for its opposition to organized labor.

The union drive was launched publicly in October and culminated in an election earlier this month. Results, tallied Friday by the National Labor Relations Board, show workers voted 248 to 44 to be represented by the Washington, D.C.-based NewsGuild-Communications Workers of America.

The middle class has been on a steady slide for decades. Signs of this slide are all around us: anemic wage growth, historic income inequality, chronic unemployment and underemployment and, not coincidentally, the steady erosion of workers’ freedom to join unions and bargain for fair wages and benefits. At the same time, American households are facing rising costs that far outpace their stagnant wages.

To Washington, D.C. insiders, this month’s budget negotiations are just the latest partisan exercise in a series of manufactured crises that too often result in short-term solutions. But for those who live and work outside of the Beltway bubble, much more is at stake.

What happens in the coming days has the potential to fundamentally shift the balance of power in the workplace. Nothing less than the right to dream, live, work and retire in security is on the table as Congress faces key decisions and deadlines.

Imagine this: It's Sunday morning and you walk into the church you grew up attending. You have not been to service in a few years. For most of that time, you worked the night shift as an emergency-room nurse and the occasional weekends you had off were filled with sick children, aging parents and digging out from snowstorms. But you are there now. The usher asks your name and when you answer, he frowns and says "I'm so sorry, since you haven't exercised your religious freedom in the last six years, I'll have to ask you to leave."

The Trump administration announced Monday that it will terminate the provisional residency permits of about 200,000 Salvadorans who have lived in the country since at least 2001, leaving them to face deportation.