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The Real ALEC Promo Video

The newest video from AFSCME takes a closer look at the latest promotional video from the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), the shadowy, extremist organization behind much of the anti-worker agenda in the states. It seems that the video left some information out, but AFSCME quickly responded and helped out by including the missing info. Check it out and learn more about ALEC on AFSCME's blog.

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It's Been 6 Years Since the Federal Minimum Wage Was Last Increased

It's Been 6 Years Since the Federal Minimum Wage Was Last Increased

The federal minimum wage has been stuck at $7.25 an hour since July 24, 2009. A worker with a full-time minimum wage job earns just $14,500 annually—a salary that would put a single parent of two children below the poverty line. It is past time to raise the minimum wage to a level that provides working people with economic stability, instead of trapping them in poverty. 

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Victory in New York! Fast-Food Workers to Get $15 Minimum Wage

Victory in New York! Fast-Food Workers to Get $15 Minimum Wage

A national movement for a higher minimum wage, increased dignity and a better quality of life looks like it's going to pay off for the New York fast-food workers who launched the whole thing. Momentum has grown in recent years for not only increasing the minimum wage, but for making the wage closer to one that workers can support their families on, and the state of New York is set to join the wave. Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) directed the state's acting commissioner of labor to appoint a panel to consider the issue, and the panel has recommended that the state raise the wage for fast-food workers to $15 per hour in chains that have more than 30 outlets. The acting commissioner still must approve the changes, but he is widely expected to do so. When he does, 70% of New Yorkers who currently work for the minimum wage will see a raise.

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Peruvian Unions File Complaint for Violation of Labor Rights in U.S.-Peru Trade Agreement

Peruvian Unions File Complaint for Violation of Labor Rights in U.S.-Peru Trade Agreement

Imagine if, for more than a dozen years, you got a piece of paper with each paycheck saying you still had a job next week and should come back to work next Monday. Now imagine your best friend at the same garment factory, after 14 years of service, getting a piece of paper that said she should not come back on Monday. Why? Because she supported the union and therefore no longer has a job. 

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Labor Offers Realistic Path Toward Meeting New Jersey’s Pension Obligation

The New Jersey State AFL-CIO and its affiliated unions have been working hard to find solutions to the state’s pension funding problem on behalf of nearly 800,000 current and retired public employees who have been contributing faithfully to their pensions and whose retirement security depends partly on earned pension income.

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Deadline for Nominations for Berger-Marks' 'Edna' and 'Kate' Awards Is This Friday

Deadline for Nominations for Berger-Marks' 'Edna' and 'Kate' Awards Is This Friday

The Berger-Marks Foundation, which helps organize women into unions, gives out the Edna Award and Kate Mullany Courageous Young Worker Award each year to recognize young women active in labor and social justice work. The deadline for nominations for this year's awards is Friday, July 24, before midnight ET. The winners will be honored at an event in Washington, D.C., on Nov. 12.

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Social Security Report Delivers Reassuring News for Working Families

AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka released the following statement in response to the release of the 2015 Old-Age, Survivors and Disability Insurance (OASDI) Trustees Report.

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Montgomery County Needs to Work to Make Taxis Wheelchair-Accessible

My name is Peter Ibik. For the past 17 years, I have driven a wheelchair-accessible taxi for Barwood in Montgomery County, Md. The taxi system isn’t working for drivers or passengers in Montgomery County, especially those requiring wheelchair-accessible transportation. We have been working on legislative reforms that are pro-passenger and pro-driver. We have gotten support from a majority of council members on reforms that are good for drivers. But these reforms have fallen short for people who need accessible taxis.

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Actor and Union Activist Theodore Bikel Dies at Age 91

Actor and Union Activist Theodore Bikel Dies at Age 91

Longtime stage, TV and movie actor, as well as former president of the Actors' Equity (AEA), Theodore Bikel passed away at age 91 on July 21, 2015. 

Aside from famous stage roles, including Captain von Trapp in the "Sound of Music," Tevye in "Fiddler on the Roof," Bikel was a tireless advocate for actors and their right to a union voice on the job. He served as president of Actors’ Equity  from 1973–1982 and was the longtime president of the Actors and Artistes (4As).

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Democrats Introduce Bill to Make #SchedulesThatWork

Last week, Democrats, led by Sens. Elizabeth Warren (Mass.), Patty Murray (Wash.) and Chris Murphy (Conn.) and Reps. Rosa DeLauro (Conn.) and Bobby Scott (Va.), introduced a bill, the Schedules That Work Act, which would push employers in fields with known scheduling abuses to create predictable and stable schedules and would protect workers who ask for schedule changes. Under the legislation, workers in fields with a record of scheduling abuses—such as food service, retail and cleaning—would get their work schedules two weeks in advance and workers would receive additional pay for being put on call without any guarantee of work, being scheduled for a split shift, if they report to work and are sent home early, or they receive schedule changes without at least 24-hour notice. Employers would be required to consider and respond to all schedule requests and grant those requests based on health, care for children or the elderly, a second job, continuing education, or job training, unless there is a legitimate business reason not to do so.

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