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Showing blog posts tagged with Florida

To Vote or to Use the Restroom Should Not Be the Question: Winners and Losers of the Week

Hunger strikers praying for the release of their loved ones ansd to stop deportations. Photo via Twitter

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 people or organizations that go above and beyond to expand or protect the rights of working families, while the losers will be whomever or whatever went above and beyond to limit or deny those rights.

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States Move to Restrict Voting Rights Following Supreme Court Ruling

Bob McDonnell photo courtesy Gage Skidmore

Following the U.S. Supreme Court's 5-4 ruling in the Shelby County v. Holder case striking down a portion of the Voting Rights Act (VRA), several states immediately took steps to increase voter suppression efforts. The court ruled unconstitutional the formula used to determine which states and locales needed to get preclearance from the Department of Justice before making changes in voting process. In recent years, Republicans have ramped up efforts to limit the right to vote, particularly through the use of voter identification laws that require eligible voters to purchase state-issued IDs before they can cast their ballots.

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Florida Gov. Rick Scott Signs Bill Banning Local Paid Sick Leave Laws

Photo courtesy Gage Skidmore

Florida Gov. Rick Scott (R) has signed legislation that prevents local governments in the state from passing ordinances requiring businesses to provide paid sick days to their employees. The bill was supported by business interests, including the the American Legislative Exchange Council, Florida Chamber of Commerce, Walt Disney World and Darden Restaurants, which owns Olive Garden and Red Lobster.

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In the States Roundup for June 6

Rick Scott, photo courtesy Gage Skidmore

Here's a look at some of the key battles in the states over the past week.

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AFT Helps Put Books in Homes

Children who grow up in homes with books, research shows, have much higher reading scores and go farther in the education system than others. But many children can’t get books at home because their families just don’t have the money or have other problems. The AFT partners with First Book to help reduce the achievement gap between low-income and middle-class students. First Book has distributed more than 90 million new books to children across the United States, many of whom could not afford them.

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Now That the Election Is Over, the Real Battles in the States Begin

Photo of Rick Snyder courtesy Michigan Municipal League

While government in Washington, D.C., remains divided and marked by long-term gridlock, governments in the states are much less divided. Of the 50 states, 37 now feature state governments where the governor and majorities in both legislative houses are controlled by one party—24 of those are controlled by Republicans. Extreme, anti-working family Republicans have repeatedly assaulted the rights of people in recent years and, by all accounts, the trend looks to expand in 2013. Working families are mobilized and fought back in 2012 and will continue to fight in 2013.  The response to the "right to work" for less push in Michigan was so strong, that governors in Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin have since declared that they won't push for right to work in their states.

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Activist Gaby Pacheco Describes Her Struggles in TEDx Talk

Photo courtesy of blancastella

Gaby Pacheco, the leader of the DREAM youth movement from Miami and one of the co-founders of Students Working for Equal Rights, tells her story in a recent TEDx Talk. Pacheco moved to the United States from Ecuador when she was eight. She grew up a hardworking student who was elected student government president of Miami Dade Community College and the statewide community college student government organization. Along the way she faced many obstacles as an aspiring citizen, from an encounter with the Ku Klux Klan to the inability to find work because of her lack of papers verifying citizenship.

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Election Protection Alert: Voting Trouble In Pinellas County, Florida

Photo courtesy of Adonis Hunter

Hundreds, possibly thousands, of robocalls were sent out from the Pinellas County Supervisor of Elections office this morning instructing voters that they could vote tomorrow. After about 30 minutes of the calls going out, they were stopped and the elections office issued a statement saying that the calls were inaccurate.

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Broward Is Second Florida County to Address Wage Theft

Construction workers are amongst the most likely to be victims of wage theft, photo courtesy of Jaxport

This week, Broward County—one of the most populous counties in South Florida—became the second county in the state to pass a local wage theft ordinance, joining Miami-Dade County. In a 7-2 vote, the Board of County Commissioners voted to create the new law to deal with a significant and growing problem in Florida. Wage theft occurs when workers are not paid overtime, not paid at least the minimum wage, are forced to work off the clock or are not paid at all for work they have completed.

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AFL-CIO Executive Vice President Arlene Holt Baker Phone Banks in Florida

AFL-CIO Executive Vice President Arlene Holt Baker

Union members and working family activists all over the country are joining phone banks and other get-out-the-vote actions to make sure everyone gets to the polls Nov. 6. AFL-CIO Executive Vice President Arlene Holt Baker traveled this week to Florida, where she joined the Florida AFL-CIO in Miami and made calls to voters. 

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