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AFL-CIO Now

Showing blog posts published on Nov 16, 2012

BCTGM President Frank Hurt: Hostess Demise a Decade in the Making

The following statement was issued by BCTGM International Union President Frank Hurt in response to the announcement by Hostess Brands that it would begin liquidation.

“Hostess’s announcement that it is liquidating the company is a deep disappointment for all of our Hostess members. While Hostess management wants to blame our members for the demise of the company, the truth is that had it not been for the valiant efforts of our members over the last eight years, including accepting significant wage and benefit concessions after the first bankruptcy, this company would have gone out of business long ago.

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Hostess' Pattern of Mismanagement and Debt Caused Its Collapse

While Hostess Brands is trying to scapegoat the workers and members of the Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers (BCTGM), the real cause of the company's collapse can be traced back to its crony capitalism and consistently poor management. 

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Working Families and Retirees Asking Congress Not to Cut Social Security, Medicare or Medicaid Benefits

In a series of video letters, working families and retirees ask members of Congress not to cut Social Security, Medicare or Medicaid benefits. Because of the fiscal obstacle course created by Congress, some in Washington, D.C., want to cut these lifelines. But there is no need to cut Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid, particularly when any cuts would directly harm working families.

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Taking the Truth About Palermo's Pizza to Costco

Photo from Tumblr

The striking Palermo’s Pizza workers’ Truth Tour hits Seattle today where Palermo's workers and their allies are marching to Costco’s corporate headquarters in nearby Issaquah to urge Costco—the largest retailer of Palermo's products—to support the workers and stop selling the pizzas. Palermo's Pizza workers, who have been on strike since June 1, are demanding safe working conditions and recognition for their union.

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Newark Teachers and N.J. Gov. Christie Agree on New Bonus System

A historic three-year deal was struck between New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and Newark teachers on Wednesday. The Newark Teachers Union is the first in the Garden State to include merit bonus pay based on classroom performance in its contract. Gov. Christie and AFT President Randi Weingarten met on MSNBC's "Morning Joe" today to talk about the bonus pay agreement. Watch the video below. 

Weingarten says:

This is a dynamic, new contract that's fair to the teachers, but most importantly, that's good for kids. That's why when people looked at this, they voted it up by more than 60%....In all this, Sandy happened and the governor did an extraordinary job in terms of all the work in New Jersey, and this is the way government should work whether it's at the collective bargaining table or whether there is a public disaster. You have lots of public employees who, every single day, are trying to make a difference in the lives of kids of the community. We worked hard at the table to come up with something that is good for Newark.

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Waiter, There’s a Germ in My Soup

Next time you’re sitting down at your favorite restaurant, you may be getting an unordered side of germs with that cheeseburger or maybe unexpected exposure to the latest flu virus with that healthy garden salad. Why? Because, as this new video from the Restaurant Opportunities Centers (ROC) United illustrates, 90% of all restaurant workers have no paid sick days.

 

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Trumka: Bain-Style Tactics by Hostess Are ‘Wrecking America’

AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka issued the following statement concerning Hostess Brands' announcement that it will liquidate its holdings and cease operations, costing 18,000 workers their jobs.

What’s happening with Hostess Brands is a microcosm of what’s wrong with America, as Bain-style Wall Street vultures make themselves rich by making America poor. Crony capitalism and consistently poor management drove Hostess into the ground, but its workers are paying the price. These workers, who consistently make great products Americans love and have offered multiple concessions, want their company to succeed. They have bravely taken a stand against the corporate race-to-the-bottom. And now they and their communities are suffering the tragedy of a needless layoff. This is wrong. It has to stop. It’s wrecking America.

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Urgent Appeal for Relief for Fire Fighters Affected by Superstorm Sandy

Photo courtesy of iFireDesign

Thousands of Fire Fighters (IAFF) who were on the front lines in the response to Superstorm Sandy lost their own homes and personal lives while working hard to save the lives and homes of others. Many of them are now struggling and need direct financial assistance immediately. Despite the help they are receiving from family, friends and their fellow IAFF members, they need more help in starting their lives over.

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Campaign for America's Future Launches 'Wage Class War' Website

Photo courtesy of Talk Radio News Service

The Campaign for America's Future (CAF) launched a new website Thursday, Wage Class War, saying that the 2012 election was, in large part, about class warfare and that the Democrats who sided with the middle class and poor were the victors.

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