Shortcut Navigation:

AFL-CIO Now

Showing blog posts by Kenneth Quinnell

Kenneth Quinnell

I am a long-time blogger, campaign staffer and political activist.  Before joining the AFL-CIO in 2012, I worked as labor reporter for the blog Crooks and Liars.  Previous experience includes Communications Director for the Darcy Burner for Congress Campaign and New Media Director for the Kendrick Meek for Senate Campaign, founding and serving as the primary author for the influential state blog Florida Progressive Coalition and more than 10 years as a college instructor teaching political science and American History.  My writings have also appeared on Daily Kos, Alternet, the Guardian Online, Media Matters for America, Think Progress, Campaign for America's Future and elsewhere.  I am the proud father of three future progressive activists, an accomplished rapper and karaoke enthusiast.

Follow me on Twitter

Trumka: Labor Prepared to Combat Assaults on Workers' Rights

Photo courtesy Jason Perlman on Flickr

While conservative legislators across the country are gearing up to propose extreme legislation, AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka issued a statement that working families and the labor union are prepared to fight back and make sure that harmful and unpopular policies don't pass. He said the labor federation would continue to focus on the agenda that working families want, one of raising wages and creating an economy that works for all Americans.

Read more and comment »

Hey, Walmart, Want to Fix Those Sales Problems? Why Not Invest in Workers?

Photo courtesy Sean on Flickr

An internal memo, recently leaked by a Walmart manager, urged store managers to improve lagging sales, primarily through addressing problems with understocked shelves and with keeping fresh meat, dairy and produce stocked and aging or expired items off the shelves. Such complaints are widespread at Walmart stores and are likely a significant factor in the company's sales, which have lagged for 18 months. While the memo catalogs problems the company faces, it ignores the two most obvious solutions—giving workers adequate hours and paying those workers the $15 living wage they've been calling for. 

Read more and comment »

I Am AFGE: Vets Helping Vets

This video in the AFGE's series "I Am AFGE" is very appropriate for Veterans Day. It introduces us to Christopher Lee Castle, an AFGE vice president and a veteran who took a job as a loan specialist at the Department of Veterans Affairs so he could help his fellow soldiers. This video expresses not only the true spirit of our men and women in uniform, but the true spirit of America on the day we say "thank you" for their service.

Read more and comment »

What Union Members Are Doing This Week

What Union Members Are Doing This Week

Welcome to our latest feature, a look at what the various AFL-CIO unions, state federations and other working family organizations are doing around the country and beyond. The labor movement is big and active—here's a look at the broad range of activities we're engaged in this week.

Read more and comment »

We Live To Fight Another Day: Winners and Losers of the Week

Photo courtesy Tim Pierce on Flickr

In our regular weekly feature, we take a look at the winners and losers of the week in the struggle for the rights of working families. The winners will be the persons or organizations that go above and beyond to expand or protect the rights of working families, while the losers will be whoever went above and beyond to limit or deny those rights.

Read more and comment »

Helping Women Veterans Find Sheet Metal Apprenticeships

Helping Women Veterans Find Sheet Metal Apprenticeships

After serving their country, many veterans have trouble transitioning into civilian jobs, particularly younger and female service members. The unemployment rate among all veterans ages 18–24 is 21.3% (compared to 13.1% of civilians. And while male veterans have an unemployment rate (4.2%) lower than the national rate, female veterans are much worse off with a 7.9% unemployment rate. Helmets to Hardhats, the International Training Institute and the construction trades are trying to do something about that problem.

Read more and comment »

Trumka Calls on Obama to Take Executive Action on Immigration

Photo courtesy SEIU on Flickr

Wasting no time after the midterm elections, AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka immediately stepped back into the policy arena, calling on President Barack Obama to take executive action on immigration. Executive action is particularly important now that a historically obstructionist Congress is likely to be followed by one that takes even less action on issues important to working families.

Read more and comment »

Trumka: 'Americans Are Desperate for a New Economic Life'

“The defining narrative of this election was confirmation, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that Americans are desperate for a new economic life,” said AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka on Wednesday. After a disappointing election night, Trumka held a press conference to discuss the election and release the results of a poll conducted by Hart Research Associates that looked into the story behind the headlines. He said voters made it clear they want an economy that works for everyone.

Read more and comment »

Fast Track Sneak Attack: Winners and Losers of the Week

Photo courtesy Stop Fast Track on Flickr

In our regular weekly feature, we'll be taking a look at the winners and losers of the week in the struggle for the rights of working families. The winners will be the persons or organizations that go above and beyond to expand or protect the rights of working families, while the losers will be whoever went above and beyond to limit or deny those rights.

Read more and comment »

What Working in Fast Food Could Be Like

Photo courtesy Steven Isaacson on Flickr

Imagine you have a job where you get the full 40-hour workweek you want. You have affordable health care that meets your needs. You get five weeks paid vacation, paid maternity and paternity leave, a pension and overtime pay for working after 6 p.m. or on Sunday. You get your work schedule four weeks in advance so you can plan your life. And your employer can't send you home early without pay because business is slow. You have a union that is well-organized and fights to make sure your rights are protected. After you pay your rent and bills, you can still put some money in your savings account, and you still have money left over to go out and have a nice evening. And you know that if times get tough, that savings you have been able to put away will help you through.

Read more and comment »

Online Community

Take Action

Stop Fast Track

Sign the petition and tell Congress to stop the Fast Track bill, it's undemocratic and bad for working families.

Connect With Us

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • YouTube
  • Flickr

Get Email from AFL-CIO

Are you a union member?

Facebook Favorites

Blogs

Join Us Online