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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.

Work—and Laughter—Connect Us All

Have you heard the one about the corporate CEO and the duck? Or how about the classic description of what happens when three shop stewards walk into a bar? If you’re in Portland, Ore., Sunday night, you just might hear these and more when Laughing Liberally and the Oregon AFL-CIO showcase strategies for infusing activism with comedy.

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UI Benefits Extension Doesn’t Share Sacrifice

The House (293-132) and the Senate (60-36) passed legislation today to extend federal unemployment insurance (UI) benefits and the payroll tax cut. UI benefits were set to expire Feb. 29 and the legislation that President Obama will sign extends the program for the nation’s nearly 13 million jobless workers through the end of the year.

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New Study Shows Labor-Management Partnerships Improve Patient Care

Patient care improves and costs come down as a result of labor and management partnerships, according to a new Cornell University study.

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Jazz Musicians Faced Historic Abuse

Jazz musicians have been—and continue to be—among the most abused of professional performers, writes Todd Bryant Weeks in a Black History Month feature for the latest edition of Allegro, the magazine of American Federatoin of Musicians of the United States and Canada (AFM) Local 802 in New York.

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Tentative Deal Reached on Jobless Aid/Payroll Tax Cut

While unemployment insurance (UI) is running out for nearly 13 million unemployed workers, congressional Republicans have spent their time pushing a UI  extension that included harsh and punitive requirements for jobless workers such as requiring unemployed workers to pay for re-employment services, acquire a high school degree, undergo drug testing and more. They also called for cutting 40 weeks of benefits from the unemployed.

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Watch Teach-In to Take Back American Dream

Tune in Tuesday, Feb. 21, for the televised National Teach-In to Take Back the American Dream. Broadcast on Free Speech TV at 9 p.m. EST/6 p.m. PST, the teach-in will outline the facts on who broke the economy for the 99 percent and what needs to be done to fix it.

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Corporate Takeover of Florida Prisons Denied

A scheme to privatize Florida’s prisons failed (19-21) in the state Senate yesterday after a huge public outcry led by Florida working families, community and civil rights groups. The plan was backed by extremist Gov. Rick Scott (R), private prison companies and the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), one of the key players in the drive to privatize prisons throughout the nation.

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AFL-CIO Backs Bahrain Democracy Movement

The AFL-CIO Solidarity Center sends us this report.

One year ago today, a peaceful demonstration massed in Bahrain’s capital, Manama, with tens of thousands of men, women and children joining the call for greater social justice in their country. By exercising their rights to free speech and free assembly, the brave protesters provided their government with the chance to address issues of equality and democracy.

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Cordray and Consumer Bureau Taking New Steps to Protecting Homeowners and Buyers

When the nation’s housing crisis—fueled by “unscrupulous operators looking to make fast cash”–was beginning to explode, writes Richard Cordray, newly appointed head of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), in a column on Politico:

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Join TWU’s ‘I Support American Jobs’ Campaign

Earlier this month, American Airlines announced plans to eliminate the jobs of 13,000 workers and dump pension plans for nearly 90,000 workers as part of its bankruptcy plan. Roughly 9,000 Transport Workers (TWU) members are employed at American.

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