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Court Orders Ballot Spot for Michigan Collective Bargaining Initiative

The Michigan Court of Appeals ruled that a proposal to preserve collective bargaining rights for Michigan workers be placed on the November ballot. The four-member Board of State Canvassers—two Republicans and two Democrats—had deadlocked on allowing the issue on the ballot. Michigan State AFL-CIO President Karla Swift says:

Corporate special interests pushed Lansing politicians to pressure the court leading up to the decision. But the court confirmed there is no legal reason to deny people the opportunity to vote on the proposal.

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Celebrate Labor Day and Save Money with Union Plus

Celebrate Labor Day and Save Money with Union Plus

Our friends at Union Plus want you to know that with Labor Day approaching, you can celebrate the benefits of your union membership with several money saving programs and, at the same time, support your union brothers and sisters who provide the services or make the goods.  

You can save money on wireless service and smartphones with AT&T, the only national unionized wireless provider. Go to UnionPlus.org/ATT and save 15 percent on select data and phone plans. In addition, when you use your Union Plus Credit Card to buy a smartphone from AT&T, you'll get a rebate up to $100.

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On Anniversary of Women's Right to Vote, What Do Romney-Ryan Offer?

On Anniversary of Women's Right to Vote, What Do Romney-Ryan Offer?

Ninety-two years ago yesterday, U.S. women won the right to vote.

The Indiana State AFL-CIO mentioned in an e-mail yesterday, Rose Schneiderman, who headed the Women’s Trade Union League, explained in 1918:

We want to tell our Senators that the working women of our State demand the vote as an economic necessity. We need it because we are workers and because the workers are the ones that have to carry civilization on their backs.

The anniversary is a good time to reflect on how women would fare under a Romney-Ryan administration.

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Find a Labor Day Celebration Near You

From San Antonio, Texas, on Thursday to New York City on Sept. 8, working families in hundreds of towns and cities will honor workers and the work they do that connects us all in Labor Day celebrations organized by local unions, central labor councils and state federations.

Here’s a look at a few events from traditional parades and picnics to political actions. Follow the links for information on each event and find a Labor Day event near you.

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Washington Electricians Team Up to Bring the Hungry More Than Food

IBEW Local 26 Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee (JATC)

cross-post from Metropolitan Washington [D.C.] Council.

Dave McCord, a 25-year member of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW), is bringing his passion for riding bicycles and changing lives together. As the director of the IBEW Local 26 Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee (JATC), McCord joined other electricians and union-organized contractors last April on a bike ride in Southern Maryland to benefit End Hunger in Calvert County.

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National Week of Action at Costco in Support of Palermo's Workers

Palermo's workers are launching a week of action at Costco locations around the U.S. Photo courtest of The Stand (www.thestand.org).

Closing in on their third month on strike, workers at Palermo's Pizza and their supporters continue to put pressure on Costco, the largest retailer of Palermo's products.

Beginning today, thousands of community activists and workers in more than 20 cities around the country will be participating in a National Week of Action at various Costco store locations. These events will inform Costco customers and employees of the worker abuses at Palermo's Pizza. 

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America the Undertaxed

In refusing to turn over more than two years of his tax returns, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney brags that he paid all his taxes but "not a penny more." Meaning no matter what he paid, he coughed up a pretty minimal amount, however you slice it. Not only can Romney get away with legally paying very little in taxes, but his low tax rate is within an already low national tax rate (click to enlarge chart).

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How One Group Is Using Pat Boone to Scare Seniors

Photo courtesy of the Alliance for Retired Americans.

Although the Affordable Care Act strengthens Medicare, groups on the right have been spreading misinformation and using scare tactics since health care reform passed to confuse seniors about how the new law affects their health care.

The 60 Plus Association has jumped right into the fray, using popular singer and actor Pat Boone as the face of false information. In Florida and Ohio, 60 Plus is running ads that claim, incorrectly, the Affordable Care Act creates a “Medicare IRS,” which will deny seniors health care benefits. In reality, the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB) is prohibited by law from cutting any Medicare benefits for seniors. 

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Taxpayers Get Bang for Their Buck with Medicare, Social Security

Taxpayers Get Bang for Their Buck with Medicare, Social Security

If Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan were really interested in maximizing taxpayer money to get the most bang for the buck, they would not push to cut Social Security and Medicare. (And, in the case of Medicare, the Romney/Ryan plan would raise health care costs for seniors on average by $11,000, with today’s 54-year old paying $59,500 in increased Medicare costs

Rather than cutting Social Security and Medicare, they should strengthen both programs.

Here’s why.

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Do I have to Sign a Waiver that I Won’t Join a Union?

Image courtesy of Working America, http://workingamerica.org/

This is a cross-post from Working America’s Dear David workplace advice column.

Question:

I just started a new job at a major national retailer as a sales associate in the housewares department. I’m grateful for the job, but during orientation, I was instructed to sign a waiver that said I wouldn’t join a union. My manager said that we don’t need unions here because the workers already have everything they need. But I happen to know that there’s a national effort to unionize my company. I don’t think they can require me to sign the release, but no one told me it was optional, and I’m worried that if I refuse to sign it, I’ll be flagged as a liability risk and possibly passed up for advancement opportunities. What do you recommend? See answer at the jump. 

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