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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.

USW Backs Arena Football Players

The Arena Football League Players Union (AFLPU) has a new teammate--the United Steelworkers (USW), which announced Friday that it will provide key assistance to the AFLPU’s drive to negotiate a fair labor agreement with team owners.

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Sutter Nurses Vote to Join CNA/NNU for Better Patient Care

Registered nurses at Sutter Tracy Community Hospital in Northern California this week voted to join the California Nurses Association/National Nurses United (CNA/NNU). The more than 150 nurses say they faced an aggressive anti-union campaign of surveillance and harassment. But according to many nurses who voted to join CNA/NNU, those tactics backfired, underscoring the need for union representation.

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Postal Unions Fight Closures and Job Loss

Earlier this year, the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) announced it would shut more than half its mail processing plants and about 3,600 post offices, costing as many as 100,000 jobs. It also is proposing to end Saturday mail delivery. As the postal unions work to persuade Congress to act, the Postal Workers (APWU) union also is reaching out to the public to build support.

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Republicans Want to Silence Safety Whistle-Blowers

Want more proof what side most Republican lawmakers stand on when it comes to workplace safety? When it comes to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) budget, they seem to be saying that it’s more important to let employers voluntarily police themselves and enforce workplace safety standards than it is to give workers protection when they blow the whistle on unsafe practices.

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Housekeepers Reveal Hyatt's 'Dirty Laundry'

Housekeepers at Hyatt Hotels shined a spotlight on what they say are unsafe and demeaning working conditions when they held rallies outside Hyatt properties—including this "Dirty Laundry Fashion Show" in Hawaii—as part of International Women’s Day observances. The video is fun.

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AFL-CIO Council: Organizing, Bargaining Key to Reversing Inequality

Inequality in both wealth and income is greater than at any time since the early part of the last century. At the same time, says the AFL-CIO Executive Council, the best remedy to inequality and injustice—collective bargaining—is under increasing political attack in the private and public sectors. But workers across the country are fighting for their right to join a union.   

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Council Supports State DREAM Acts, Urges Congressional Action

With the federal version of the DREAM Act stalled in Congress, 13 states have adopted their own versions. But those laws have become targets of right-wing extremists connected to groups like the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC).

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Council Says 30 Years of Policies for the 1% Caused Crisis, Outlines Steps to Fix Economy

In a broad statement today at its annual winter meeting in Lake Buena Vista, Fla., on “How to Fix What Is Wrong with Our Economy,” the AFL-CIO Executive Council details the step-by-step policy decisions by business and government and the rise of corporate power over the past decades that brought the economy to its knees and outlines ways to fix the economy for the long term.

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AFL-CIO Calls for Overturning Citizens United Case

Two years ago, the U.S. Supreme Court gave business corporations and other groups the green light for unlimited independent campaign spending. That decision in the Citizens United case, says the AFL-CIO Executive Council, has “undermined democracy.”

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Council Urges Action on Deadly Silica Dust Rule, Condemns N.Y. Pension Cuts

While the Obama administration has worked closely with unions and other job safety advocates to overcome the eight years of neglect and inaction by the Bush administration on vital workplace safety issues, the AFL-CIO Executive Council says, “There still is much work to be done.” At its annual winter meeting in Lake Buena Vista, Fla., the council also condemned New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s (D) Tier-6 pension proposal.

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