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AFL-CIO Now

Showing blog posts by Jackie Tortora

Jackie Tortora

I'm the blog editor and social media manager at the AFL-CIO. Interviewing union musicians was my introduction to the labor movement. My first job after graduating college was in Syracuse, New York, where I wrote and edited the International Musician, the monthly magazine for the American Federation of Musicians (AFM). Protecting Social Security and Medicare from benefit cuts brought me to Washington, D.C., where I spent two years as a new media coordinator at the National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare. I came to the AFL-CIO in the summer of 2012, just in time to re-elect President Barack Obama. When I'm not tweeting about America's unions, it's likely I'm watching Syracuse basketball and football. 

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Dream It Now: Keep Families Together

More than 200,000 families have been separated by deportation since July 2010. In case you missed it, last week The Dream is Now released a new music video highlighting the importance of keeping families together and supporting a common sense road map to citizenship for aspiring Americans. 

Check out the video and call your representative to support immigration reform at 1-888-787-9658.

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Working America's Dear David: Train in Vain?

Working America's Dear David: Train in Vain?

Train in Vain is a cross-post from Working America’s Dear David workplace advice column

Question:

At the company I work for, employees are expected to attend training, usually four hours per day, Monday to Friday, for 30 days (without pay). Once training is completed, they may or may not get a chance to work, because the company has brought on so many people that most of the time only 10 percent can be on the schedule at one time. There are over 3,000 of us with the same job title working for this company all over the country. So many people are getting taken advantage of every day by this company. I know at least 90 percent of us feel the same way. A lawsuit has already been started, but I feel we need to organize and create a union to stop the abuses and manipulation of this company in its tracks. Where do I go from here?

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BART Strike Ends for Now, ATU Continues Contract Negotiations

BART workers and members of the Amalgamated Transit Union (ATU) Local 1555 ended their strike today as negotiations continue over a new contract. Their current contract will expire August 4. 

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Happy 4th of July

Photo by Bayasaa, Flickr.

We at the AFL-CIO would like to wish you a happy, healthy and safe 4th of July. 

In case you missed it, here's our July 4th shopping list (if you're running out to the store at the last minute) and some grill and fire safety tips brought to you by the Fire Fighters (IAFF). 

If you plan on shooting off your own fireworks, here's a great Facebook graphic from IAFF on fireworks safety.

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Trumka Statement on Delayed Employer Responsibility Assessments in the Affordable Care Act

AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka released the following statement on the announcement the administration is delaying employer responsibility assessments in the Affordable Care Act until 2015: (see statement after the jump). 

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IBEW Members Did Something Pretty Cool for a Woman Who Couldn't Afford Her Utility Bill

When an elderly woman on a fixed income couldn't afford an astronomical utility bill that was caused by leaks, local Electrical Workers (IBEW) members stepped in. 

Check out this story on the AFL-CIO's @ Work site in the community section and watch the video in the post. 

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Made in America Week: Beer

Photo by Labor 411

This week, leading up to July 4th, we're highlighting American products and services. What are your favorite Made in America products? 

Beer is as American as apple pie and baseball, and fortunately, there is a wide selection of American, union-made beers to choose from.

For a lengthy list of union-made beers, visit the Union Plus website or Labor 411's Ultimate Union Beer List.

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Made in America: What's Your Favorite?

Made in America: What's Your Favorite?

Back by popular demand, this week we're asking you what your favorite Made in America products are and posting lists every day to help you find items that really say "proud to be U.S.A." Maybe it's the classic Oreo cookies, the Louisville Slugger, Red Wing Shoes or a hotel in your favorite vacation spot staffed by UNITE HERE members. 

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AFT Teacher Chris Hall Makes a Difference

Chris Hall, a teacher at a school in Dorchester, Mass., and a member of the Boston Teachers Union/AFT Local 66, is making art with students with autism—and his students are making impressive strides, thanks to his unique teaching gifts.

“Chris brought something out of my child and out of our kids at the Lee School. He made the impossible possible,” said Liz Gomes. Her son, nine-year-old Mason, is one of Hall’s students. Non-verbal until the age of five, Mason deals with autism and ADHD.

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Workonomics: The Most Important Upworthy Series You're Probably Not Reading Yet (But You Should)

Workonomics: The Most Important Upworthy Series You're Probably Not Reading Yet (But You Should)

Did you know 75% of minimum wage earners are adults? That there's a website that will literally help you fix your job? On some farms in New York, 15 to 16 workers are forced to live together in tiny trailers? On average taxpayers subsidize Walmart $6,000 per employee because of poverty wages?

These stories appear in the Upworthy series, Workonomics, brought to you by the AFL-CIO. The series is designed to lift up shareable content about labor unions, America's middle class and the need for collective action to make real change around wages, paid sick days, economic inequality and workers' rights. 

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