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AFL-CIO Now

AFT's GOTV Bus Tour Hits the Sunshine State

AFT Photo

AFT’s "Your Vote–Your Right–Their Futures” bus tour is rolling through Florida this week building support and getting out the vote for President Obama and other working family candidates. AFT President Randi Weingarten, AFT Secretary-Treasurer Lorretta Johnson, along with local and state AFT officials and members, will meet with union and community election volunteers and activists for rallies, marches and neighborhood walks.

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Sensata Tells Workers End Protests or Ax Falls Sooner

Photo by Allison Pasek

The workers at Sensata Technologies, who’ve established the tent city “Bainport” across the street from the Bain Capital majority-owned plant that is shutting down and shipping the 170 U.S. jobs to China, filed unfair labor practice charges Wednesday against Sensata.

The workers charge that the company has threatened to shut down the plant before its end-of-the-year scheduled closure if the workers continue to organize to stop the outsourcing of their jobs to China.

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Working America’s Actions Part of Swing States Ground Game Series

Working America’s Actions Part of Swing States Ground Game Series

A recurring theme in the media’s horse race coverage of the presidential election is a so-called diminished enthusiasm among voters who backed President Obama in 2008 and a corresponding burst of excitement on the right for Mitt Romney.

Don’t tell that to Working America’s Peter Drummond, who along with hundreds of other Working America members in Wisconsin, is talking to working family voters every night. He tells the American Prospect:

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Nearly 70,000 Retirees Join Vice President Biden on Medicare, Social Security

Nearly 70,000 Retirees Join Vice President Biden on  Medicare, Social Security

Nearly 70,000 members of the Alliance for Retired Americans joined a call this week with Vice President Joe Biden to learn more about the Obama administration’s commitment to keeping Medicare and Social Security strong for future generations. The call was organized by the Alliance.

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Three Generations: From the Fields to Construction to UCLA

The author, Paul Garcia, at MacArthur Park in Los Angeles, California.

This is a cross-post from Massachusetts Institute of Technology's CoLab Radio blog by Paul Garcia, a recent University of California, Los Angeles, grad working with the California Construction Academy, a project of the UCLA Labor Center.

This past June, I walked across the stage in front of thousands of students and family members to receive my bachelor’s degree from UCLA. There was a sea of black robes behind and in front of me, and as I set my feet on the stage and saw the crowd, I felt a rush of excitement. With the diploma in my hand, I felt the weightlessness of unlimited opportunity. Yet I knew that I didn’t get here alone. Two generations before me struggled to give me this chance.

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Richard Trumka: JPMorgan Chase Should Be Liable for Alleged Acts of Fraud by Bear Stearns

Photo by Denny Delie

JPMorgan Chase should be liable for alleged fraud by Bear Stearns, which it now owns, AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka said in a statement released today.

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USW Warns Great Salt Lake Project Poses Environmental Dangers

A plan by the major mineral company, Great Salt Lake Minerals Corp., with ties to a Louisiana salt mine (North American Salt Co.), to expand its mineral extraction production at the Great Salt Lake, poses a threat to Utah’s Great Salt Lake ecosystem, says the United Steelworkers (USW).

North American Salt Co. also has a record of safety and health violations (enter Mine ID 1600358, to view to view violations) and unfair labor practices.  

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Food Service Workers: What Can You Get for a Dime a Day? A Lot Actually

www.bitly/DimeaDay

This a guest post from Saru Jayaraman,  director of the Food Labor Research Center at the University of California, Berkeley, and co-founder and co-director of the Restaurant Opportunities Centers United, and Joann Lo, executive director of the Food Chain Workers Alliance.

Big Food companies and their lobbying groups have lied to us many times. They convinced Congress to include tomato paste on pizzas as a vegetable. They say we need industrial, chemical-laden agriculture to feed the world (check out Anna Lappé’s new video Food MythBusters to learn that we don’t). And Big Food has also spread the mythology that if the minimum wage is raised, food will become so expensive that none of us will be able to afford to eat out—or eat at all—again.

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Does the Boss Pocket Your State Taxes?

Photo by eyewashdesign: A. Golden/Flickr

Remember the state fiscal crisis, when state treasuries were running out of money because revenues (aka taxes) were down and cuts to education, health care, public safety and roads were the flavor of the day?

One of the little known factors behind this loss of revenue to state treasuries—and this is hard to believe—is that in 19 states, with Pennsylvania on the verge of becoming number 20, corporations are pocketing workers’ state income taxes instead of sending the weekly withholding to the state where it could be used to help pay for education, health care, public safety and roads.   

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Wear Jeans? Why Made in America Matters to You

Photo by Hendrike: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Hendrike

"Wear Jeans? Why Made in America Matters to You" is a cross-post from the Youth Monument blog, by Celeste Drake, trade and globalization policy specialist at the AFL-CIO. 

“Buy American.” “Made in America.” In today’s interconnected world, those ideas might seem more like leftovers from the Cold War—not important maxims for America’s future. After all, young Americans are drinking Colombian coffee in the morning, skyping with friends in the U.K. at lunch, buying a made-in-China iPhone in the afternoon and drinking Italian wine in the evening. The idea of “Buying American,” or economic patriotism, might seem quaint, if not outright ridiculous.

Fact is, making things in America isn’t an obsolete idea. It’s how we built this country into the largest economy the world has ever seen. And it’s imperative for America’s future. 

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