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Showing blog posts by Mike Hall

Mike Hall

I’m a former West Virginia newspaper reporter, staff writer for the United Mine Workers Journal and managing editor of the Seafarers Log. I came to the AFL- CIO in 1989 and have written for several federation publications, focusing on legislation and politics, especially grassroots mobilization and workplace safety. When my collar was still blue, I carried union cards from the Oil, Chemical and Atomic Workers, American Flint Glass Workers and Teamsters for jobs in a chemical plant, a mining equipment manufacturing plant and a warehouse. I’ve also worked as roadie for a small-time country-rock band, sold my blood plasma and played an occasional game of poker to help pay the rent. You may have seen me at one of several hundred Grateful Dead shows. I was the one with longhair and the tie-dye. Still have the shirts, lost the hair.

Ironworkers’ IMPACT Training Builds Green Energy Skills

Ironworkers’ IMPACT Training Builds Green Energy Skills

The Ironworkers’ training and apprenticeship programs ensure workers across the nation have the skills they need for 21st century green energy projects. The union and its labor-management component, IMPACT (the Ironworker Management Progressive Action Cooperative Trust), have developed a new program on wind turbine construction and safety that provides workers with the job skills needed for the growing wind energy industry.

Click here to read more about this state-of-the-art training in our special AFL-CIO union innovators series.   

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Wisconsin: 11 Good Reasons to Fire Scott Walker

Wisconsin: 11 Good Reasons to Fire Scott Walker


Why should Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R) lose his job in next week’s recall election against Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett? Here are 11 good reasons:

  1. Scott Walker eliminated the collective bargaining rights of 380,000 public employees.
  2. Scott Walker has led Wisconsin to last place in the nation in job creation.
  3. Scott Walker has disenfranchised tens of thousands of young voters, senior citizens and minority voters with voter suppression and voter ID laws.

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In Face of Bankruptcy, TWU Keeps American Flying

In February, AMR Corp., the parent company of American Airlines and American Eagle, announced plans to lay off 13,000 workers as part of its bankruptcy strategy. You can show your support for the American workers today by signing the “I Support American Jobs” pledge at

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Ryder Elected ILO Director-General

ILO Executive Director-Elect Guy Ryder, ITUC photo.

Guy Ryder was elected Monday as the new director-general of the International Labor Organization (ILO). He says his new post is a:

tremendous opportunity, in the middle of this global crisis, to make a difference to the lives of millions of change their lives for the better.

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New Shop Union App from UFCW

New Shop Union App from UFCW

Looking for the nearest union grocery store? There’s an app for that. The new United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) app lets U.S. and Canadian shoppers find the closet union grocery store. A great tool at home or on the road.

You also can find action updates, the latest working family news, messages from union members, photos, videos and more. It is available at the iPhone app store.

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Apply Now for National Labor College Fall Term

Alejandro Garcia, IBEW Local 357, is an NLC student and a Union Plus NLC Scholarship recipient.

Are you or is someone you know trying to complete a college degree? If so, now is the time to do something about it, and the National Labor College (NLC) can get you started toward completing your degree as soon as this fall.

NLC is the only accredited labor college dedicated to educating union members and their families. Tuition is highly discounted for union members (about $300 per credit). If you apply now, take 50 percent off the application fee—and you can start taking classes in September.

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Romney’s Education Plan Recycles Failed Ideas

Photo by Old Show Women/Flickr

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney yesterday outlined his proposals for education and, like his economic platform, Romney’s proposal centers on failed policies of the past while attacking teachers. He even says class size doesn’t matter.

While at a labor-management conference of more than 400 teachers, administrators and other educators working together on school reforms, AFT President Randi Weingarten said this about the Romney plan. 

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Amazon Latest to Join ALEC Exodus

Photo by Soozarty1/flickr

Two other big corporations—including Amazon—and several state lawmakers are the latest to sever their ties with American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), as the group’s influence and radical agenda—one that includes voter suppression, union-busting and immigrant bashing—is further exposed.

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T-Mobile’s ‘Alter Ego’—Job Killer

You may have seen T-Mobile’s “Alter Ego” ad where a stylish young women in a big city luxury high-rise trades her chic designer party dress and high-fashion footwear for motorcycle leathers and boots. T-Mobile has an alter ego, too—job killer. This parody commercial from the Communications Workers of America (CWA) spells that out.

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Simpson Launches Tirade Against California Seniors

A vicious rant against seniors by Alan Simpson, co-author of the 2010 federal commission on the deficit report that calls for raising the Social Security retirement age, should give pause to those embracing the so-called Simpson-Bowles plan—especially Democrats. It’s time for them to not only repudiate Simpson’s most recent tirade against seniors, but they should also reject his even more devastating attack on seniors—and their children and grandchildren—by pledging not to cut Social Security.

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