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AFL-CIO Now

Showing blog posts published on Mar 8, 2013

Working Families Rally in Chicago for Immigration Reform

AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka speaks at immigration rally.

Hundreds of activists representing working families rallied in Chicago on Thursday in support of commonsense immigration reform with a path to citizenship. The event was held by the Chicago Federation of Labor, Instituto del Progreso Latino and the AFL-CIO.

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100 Days to Fix What Wall St. Broke: Don’t Evict Retirees Earl and Anne Favre

100 Days to Fix What Wall St. Broke: Don’t Evict Retirees Earl and Anne Favre

Earl and Anne Favre are working with Occupy Chattanooga to save their home from Freddie Mac, a corporation sponsored by you and me. You can support them by signing on to their petition here.

This concerns the end of my life as I know it. I was happy and fairly financially secure. Then Katrina happened on Aug. 29, 2005. I lost everything except the clothes on my back, the sandals on my feet and my three dogs, with whom I spent six hours on a roof waiting to be rescued.

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Immigration Reform Advocates Urge Action on Public Services in Commonsense Reform Package

Photo courtesy of NILC

A coalition of immigrant rights activists, including the National Immigration Law Center (NILC), the AFL-CIO and AFSCME, submitted a letter to Congress and President Obama asking that lifelines and public services that meet basic human needs be included in commonsense immigration reform.

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Apparel Brands Urge Labor Reform in Peru

Lima, Peru. Photo courtesy of the Maquila Solidarity Network

Six global apparel brands took the unusual and welcome step this week of publicly calling on a government to improve its labor laws.  

In their March 4 letter to Peruvian President Ollanta Humala Tasso, New Balance, Nike, PVH Corp. and three other brands said that current labor law that allows maquilas (apparel and other exporters) to use short-term contracts undermines worker rights and the ability of these companies to ensure compliance with their codes of conduct.

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International Women's Day: Coalition of Immokalee Workers March 200 Miles for Rights, Respect and Fair Food

The Coalition of Immokalee Workers (CIW) embarked on a 200-mile march from Fort Myers, Fla., to Lakeland to raise awareness about the Fair Food movement that has encouraged growers and big tomato buyers (Subway, McDonald’s, Burger King and companies that provide food for dining halls, etc.) to agree to higher wages and other worker protections. The march, which goes from March 3-17, will end at Publix headquarters to put the pressure on supermarket industry leaders who continue to refuse these protections. 

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AFT President Randi Weingarten Arrested at School Closure Protest

Photo courtesy Ra Hurd

Randi Weingarten, president of AFT, was arrested Thursday for blocking access to a school closure hearing in Philadelphia. AFT spokesman Marcus Mrowka told The Huffington Post that Weingarten was arrested with 18 other community activists for blocking the entrance to the meeting. Weingarten said afterward she knew her actions would lead to arrest, but it was a last-resort attempt to stop the Philadelphia School Reform Commission from closing some of the city's public schools, which she argues would detrimentally affect students, particularly African American and Latino students.

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Economy Adds 236,000 Jobs but Recovery Is Still too Slow

Economy Adds 236,000 Jobs but Recovery Is Still too Slow

The nation’s economy added 236,000 new jobs in February and the jobless rate was 7.7% from January's 7.9%, according to figures released this morning by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). The 236,000 jobs created reflect 35 straight months of positive job growth. But the number of long-term unemployed (those who are jobless for 27 weeks or more) was unchanged at 4.8 million. These people account for 40.2% of the unemployed.

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International Women's Day: ITUC Calls to End Violence Against Women

Photo courtesy of the ITUC

Ending violence against women is something everyone can agree on and shouldn't be controversial. Astonishingly, some Republicans in Congress held up the re-authorization of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) for more than a year because it has protections for Native Americans, lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people and immigrant women without documents. President Obama just signed VAWA into law yesterday. This Senate-version of the bill was voted down by 138 Republicans in the House. Today, unions across the world are celebrating International Women's Day and raising awareness about violence against women and girls. 

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