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Controlling Rising Health Care Costs: Medicare Is the Solution, Not the Problem

Controlling Rising Health Care Costs: Medicare Is the Solution, Not the Problem

This is a cross-post from The Huffington Post, by Joe Baker, president of the Medicare Rights Center.

Although Election Day is behind us, Medicare remains on working people's minds. Medicare ranked third to the economy and federal deficit as an issue of extreme importance in deciding how people voted. For months now, pundits, candidates and policymakers have wrestled one another about Medicare's future. Taking place at town hall meetings and on editorial pages, these battles were mostly waged in fiscal terms. Medicare's sustainability, the fiscal slope and the cost of insuring the Baby Boomers are hot topics for debate. Attention will now turn from the candidates' promises to their actual proposals.

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The House Republican Health Care Plan—a Betrayal of Working People that Keeps Getting Worse

AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka blasted the Republican health care plan on which House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) has announced plans for the House of Representatives to vote later today, stating in a letter:

This legislation is a betrayal of working people who will pay the price for it through medical care they can no longer afford, greater financial insecurity, fewer jobs and lives that end too soon. Though it masquerades as health policy, this legislation is really a massive redistribution of wealth away from working families to give even more to the wealthy few.

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Stand with Mondelez/Nabisco Working People Whose Jobs Were Outsourced by Watching and Sharing This Video

Stand with Mondelez/Nabisco Working People Whose Jobs Were Outsourced by Watching and Sharing This Video

The consequences of corporate greed are disastrous. Just ask the 600 former Mondelēz/Nabisco working people and members of the Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers (BCTGM) union in Chicago, who were laid off one year ago today as the company shifted production to Mexico.

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Investors with $3 Trillion in Assets Call for CEO-to-Worker Pay Ratio Disclosure

Today, more than 100 institutional investors with a combined $3 trillion in assets under management sent a letter to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission in support of a CEO-to-worker pay ratio disclosure. The signatories of the investor statement on pay ratio disclosure include a variety of pension plans, asset managers, foundations, faith-based funds and state treasurers.

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Getting Kids to Be Activists Through a Graphic Novel

Getting Kids to Be Activists Through a Graphic Novel

One of the lessons of history is that it must be retaught so our children won’t repeat it. When I left Union Plus last year, I decided to enter into an “encore” career and published a graphic novel to teach kids about labor history. But most importantly, how to become an activist when you’re a teenager. That was just the beginning—AFT got involved and decided that we needed to go big on this. Through #ShareMyLesson, we wrote a lesson plan that guides kids through worker history but also gets them engaged in issues during this very important political time.

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AFL-CIO Analysis of President Donald Trump’s FY 2018 Budget

Gage Skidmore/Flickr

AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka made the following statement regarding President Donald Trump’s proposed budget:

 “Working people in states like Ohio, Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin didn’t vote for a budget that slashes workforce training and fails to invest in our nation’s infrastructure. President Trump’s proposed budget attempts to balance the budget on the backs of working families. The $54 billion cut to programs that benefit working families is dangerous and destructive. Huge cuts to the departments of Labor, Education and Transportation will make workplaces less safe, put more children at risk and make improving our failing infrastructure much more difficult. The administration can and should do better.”

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9 Ways the Republican Health Care Bill Makes Health Coverage in America Unaffordable and Out of Reach

Gage Skidmore/Flickr

The congressional Republican health plan is an attack on everyone’s health benefits. No health care coverage—workplace plans, Medicare, Medicaid or the individual insurance coverage now available as a result of the Affordable Care Act—is untouched. For more than a century, working people in their unions have fought to make health care a right for every American. The Republican plan contradicts this very idea by making care less affordable and less accessible. It’s bad for our health care, it’s bad for working families, and we fully oppose it.

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How to Find Union-Made Tires

How to Find Union-Made Tires

The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) has made it very easy to find union-made tires by requiring that each tire carry a code that shows the company and the location of the plant that manufactured the tire. DOT requires that each tire sold in the United States carry a code that looks something like this: DOT BE XX XXX XXX. The two letters or numbers that follow the DOT identify a particular factory.

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Still Getting 'It' Wrong

Still Getting 'It' Wrong

On Friday, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported the economy gained 235,000 payroll slots in February and upped its estimates for December and January by another 9,000 jobs. Over the three-month period, that means an average job growth of 209,000 jobs a month. Including the ups and downs, over the past 30 years, the U.S. economy has averaged job growth of about 126,000 jobs a month. So this current rate of growth would suggest a strong labor market. Further, workers who transitioned from being out of the labor force into active job search were 2.3 times more likely to land a job than to be stuck unemployed.and looking. And unemployed workers were 1.3 times more likely to find a job than if they were to quit and drop out of the labor force discouraged. Over the year, average wages (not adjusting for inflation) rose 2.8%.

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Protect the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has done crucial work to safeguard Americans against the deceptive and abusive practices of big banks, student loan servicers, credit card companies and predatory lenders. Tell Congress to protect this important agency.

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