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AFL-CIO Now

Showing blog posts published on Feb 13, 2013

Obama Calls for Minimum Wage to Be Raised

Photo courtesy of Joe Bielawa

In his State of the Union address on Tuesday, President Obama proposed raising the minimum wage to $9 per hour and indexing the wage to increases in the cost of living.

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Strike Three! New Hampshire House Calls Right to Work ‘Out!’

New Hampshire union members applaud defeat of "right to work" for less bill. Hew Hampshire AFL-CIO photo.

It was no charming third time for former New Hampshire House Speaker William O’Brien (R) as the state House of Representatives decisively defeated (212-141) a "right to work" for less bill sponsored by O’Brien who no longer holds the speaker’s post.  

New Hampshire AFL-CIO President Mark MacKenzie called today’s vote “a strong rebuttal of ex-Speaker O'Brien's attacks on the middle class.” O’Brien championed the anti-worker measure in the past two sessions only to see it die both times.

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Working Families Protest Patriot Coal's New Bonus Plan

Photo courtesy Cathy Sherwin

Patriot Coal filed a motion in the Bankruptcy Court of the Eastern District of Missouri to be allowed to pay $6 million to 120 senior executives, company managers and office personnel. The company's top six executives would receive no bonuses in the plan, but the bonuses are being condemned by working families and retirees the company is attempting to deny health care coverage.

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Join Us Feb. 14 in National Call-In Day to Stop Fiscal Showdown Déjà Vu

Join Us Feb. 14 in National Call-In Day to Stop Fiscal Showdown Déjà Vu

Do you want to protect Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid from benefit cuts? Do you want to close tax loopholes for the wealthy and corporations so they pay their fair share? Do you want to stop another Republican-manufactured fiscal crisis that would imperil the fragile economic recovery and cost as many as 1 million of America's workers their jobs?

Then join us in a National Call-In Day to Congress and tell your lawmakers:

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Trumka: White House Inaction on Silica Is Deadly for Workers

Tom Ward was 13 when his father came home from what would be his last day of work. Ward's father "barely made it through the door, fell to the floor and, between tears, said, 'I can't do it anymore.'"

This is an excerpt of "White House Inaction on Silica Is Deadly for Workers," by AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka, originally published on The Huffington Post. Read the rest

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Sen. Klobuchar Introduces Bill to Make Medicare Prescriptions More Affordable

Sen. Amy Klobuchar.

When Medicare Part D was introduced in 2003, the goal was to provide seniors with cheaper prescription drugs, writes Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) in an Op-Ed for the Duluth News Tribune. But, with the Part D "donut hole" and the clause that prohibits Medicare from negotiating drug prices, the burden of prescription drug costs has been a hardship for many of America's seniors over the past decade. 

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3 Reasons Even Right-Wing Republicans Should Like Unions

Photo courtesy of National Nurses United (NNU).

Want a reason to support unions? A union may help keep you alive.

Your chances of surviving a hospital stay after a myocardial infarction—also known as a heart attack—are higher if your nurses are in a union than if they’re not.

That’s the conclusion of a study by academics at the University of Massachusetts and the University of California. It’s also part of a much larger picture that the media ignore, that might give even right-wing Republicans a reason to support unions, and that makes the latest U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics evidence of a dwindling union presence bad news for all of us.

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Working Families Rally to Oppose Cuts to Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid

Photo by Kenneth Quinnell.

More than 1,500 people rallied Tuesday on Capitol Hill in support of working families and to tell Congress not to make any benefit cuts to Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid. They also told Congress to close tax loopholes for big corporations and the wealthiest 2% and to prevent the sequester from going into effect and harming the country. Throughout the rally, working families spoke with a unified voice calling for "jobs, not cuts."

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