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The War on Voting: The Southern Strategy

With the spotlight on Southern states during both of the political conventions, a look at voter suppression efforts in that region is revealing. Diversity is broadening daily in Southern states—while the Republican-led war on voting rages there, perhaps harder than in any other region.

In "Voter Suppression: the Confederacy Rises Again," blogger Ari Berman, with The Nation magazine, lays out the details.

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Jobs Crisis Spreads to Young Workers Worldwide

Young workers in the euro zone have been among the hardest hit by the global economic crisis, and now even those in regions like East Asia, where economies have remained strong through the recession, are struggling to get jobs, a new International Labor Organization (ILOreport shows (click chart to enlarge).

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Victory for Texas Nurses: More Than 1,500 RNs Win First Contracts

Photo courtesy of National Nurses United (NNU).

In a major win for nurses, patients and three Texas communities, registered nurses (RNs) in El Paso, Corpus Christi and Brownsville gave final approval to contracts yesterday in first-ever collective bargaining agreements, reports National Nurses United (NNU). 

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Education: Affordable and Accessible Only for the Privileged?

Photo of the National Labor College 2012 graduation by Page One Photography.

2007 Boston Globe report on college admissions data that has been making the rounds on Twitter lately reveals that “about 15 percent of freshmen enrolled at America's highly selective colleges are white teens who failed to meet their institutions' minimum admissions standards,” most of whom “are students who gained admission through their ties to people the institution wanted to keep happy, with alumni, donors, faculty members, administrators and politicians topping the list.”

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Labor Day Memories from the 1950s in Cleveland

For most of us who lived in the blue-collar and lower socioeconomic areas bounded by Buckeye Road, 93rd Street, Lee Road and Miles Avenue (John Adams High School district) in Cleveland, Labor Day was a major holiday—a day filled with celebrations, fireworks, parades with marching bands, veterans and labor union members wearing their union logos (e.g., Teamsters, AFL-CIO, Steelworkers). 

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Farm Workers Deliver 5,000 Letters in Kangaroo Campaign

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Farm workers and their allies delivered nearly 5,000 letters from consumers around the country to convenience chain Kangaroo Express at its headquarters in Cary, N.C., this week. The letters call on its chairman of the board, Edwin Holman, to visit the tobacco fields and see firsthand the harsh working conditions of those who toil for Reynolds American.

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RNC Speakers Really Don't Like Working People

While this week, Vice President Joe Biden and others thanked unions and working people for their contributions to the economy, we heard quite the opposite last week from Republican National Convention (RNC) speakers like New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, who took every opportunity to speak out against teachers and people who work for a living. 

Watch the AFL-CIO YouTube video highlighting some of these comments we heard from Tampa, Fla., last week. 

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Bob King, Workers Laid Off by Bain Show a Romney America

In 2008, at the height of the recession, Mitt Romney declared that government should “let Detroit go bankrupt” rather than providing federal aid to automakers. President Obama was a lot smarter than that. As a result of federal assistance, General Motors (GM) posted record profits and paid back its loans early, Chrysler paid back all its loans and hundreds of thousands of U.S. workers are on the job who otherwise would be out of work (click on chart to enlarge).

Karen Eusanio, a UAW Local 112 member and second generation auto worker, is one of those workers. Speaking last night at the Democratic National Convention, Eusanio recalled her struggle to support her children after GM laid her off, and the unpopularity of Obama’s plan to save the auto industry. Yet, President Obama didn’t think about the polls or the politics, said Eusanio.

He thought about the people. Because he put himself in our shoes, we’re back on our feet. Obama believed in us, he stood up for us.

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Richard Trumka: 'We Love Our Country....We Built It'

America needs good jobs and shared prosperity, AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka told delegates at the Democratic National Convention tonight. It’s abundantly clear the Romney-Ryan ticket is only offering prosperity for the rich and an economic nightmare for everyone else, whether it's cutting Medicare and Social Security, giving the rich more tax breaks or outsourcing America's jobs. “Prosperity requires democracy—starting with the essential right of everyone in this great country to a voice, both in the ballot box and in the workplace.” 

Prosperity requires economic security. Working Americans will stand with leaders who protect and strengthen Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid—not those who plan cuts to benefits working people have paid for, earned and are counting on. 

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What Will Excluded Workers Celebrate Next Labor Day?

This is a cross-post from The Huffington Post by Tiffany Williams, advocacy director of the Break the Chain Campaign.

While the Labor Day holiday is meant to give us time to reflect on the victories in human progress that were hard-fought by the union movement, it is also a great time to check in on the "excluded workers" movement—workers who, because of policy or practice, fall outside the traditional labor protections offered to other workers in the U.S.

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