AFSCME Legislative Update

Legislative Update: February 27, 2015 New Mental Health Institutes Bill Filed A new by State Senator Rich Taylor, Senate File 308, has been filed. The bill is identical to Senate File 140 but does not include an appropriation in the … Continue reading

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Iowa, union go to binding arbitration

IMG_3024DES MOINES — Negotiators for Iowa and its largest public employees union Thursday asked an independent arbitrator to resolve an impasse over wages and health benefits that prevented the two sides from reaching a voluntary settlement on a new two-year collective bargaining agreement.

Danny Homan, president of American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Council 61, said talks broke off with the two sides close to agreement on a wage provision that would boost pay for 18,000 AFSCME members by about 6 percent over the two-year agreement that would begin July 1 and run through June 30, 2017. For the first time, he said, his union agreed to pay a share of their health insurance premiums but could not accept significant concessions sought by state negotiators that would have saved $48 million for the state but would have clawed back 4 percent of the wage gains from his members in the process.

AFSCME began negotiations in November seeking a 2 percent wage increase at six-month intervals over the life of the contract and wanted status quo on health benefits. The state opened talks offering a 1 percent across-the board wage boost each of the two fiscal years. Current 4 percent “step” increases for eligible employees would carry over to the new contract.

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Walker in Dubuque March 7 – Let’s give him a good union welcome

walker isisWisconsin Governor Walker will be in Dubuque, Iowa March 7.

There are plans being made to give him a good Union Welcome. Details coming soon!

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AFL-CIO Responds to Department of Labor’s Report on Labor Rights Violations in Honduras

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U.S. Government responds to CAFTA-DR complaint Honduran & American workers issued three years ago (Washington, D.C., Friday, February 27, 2014) – Today, the AFL-CIO welcomed the U.S. Department of Labor’s report confirming widespread, major violations of labor rights in Honduras. … Continue reading

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Statement by AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka on Gov. Scott Walker Comments Comparing Workers to Terrorists

Statement by AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka on
Gov. Scott Walker Comments Comparing Workers to Terrorists
February 27, 2015

 

Governor Walker’s statement comparing workers and terrorists is revolting.  It is clear that Governor Walker’s judgment is impaired, and that he is not qualified for the Presidency.

 

I call on Governor Walker to personally and immediately retract his statement, and apologize sincerely to the millions of workers in Wisconsin and throughout America he has so appallingly insulted.

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What’s happening on the Hill

CONSERVATIVE AGENDA: House Speaker Kraig Paulsen, R-Hiawatha, said the chamber next week will introduce legislation regarding school choice, Second Amendment rights, abortion and collective bargaining for public employees. Next week is the first key deadline for some legislation to be … Continue reading

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Statement by AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka on Republicans Playing Politics with National Security

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February 27, 2015 Shamefully, Republicans have chosen an agenda built on demonizing aspiring citizens over our national security needs. They have ignored multiple opportunities to bring a clean homeland security funding bill to the floor for a vote. And now … Continue reading

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Labor History

February 28 U.S. Supreme Court finds that a Utah state law limiting mine and smelter workers to an 8-hour workday is constitutional – 1898 (Actually Leap Year Feb. 29) The minimum age allowed by law for workers in mills, factories, … Continue reading

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Phone Banking for Wisconsin Unions

By Tracy Leone, Iowa Federation of Labor On Tuesday and Wednesday, February 24-25th, AFLCIO members in Iowa and across the country phone banked to Wisconsin to encourage voters to contact their state senators and ask them to oppose the just-introduced … Continue reading

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Privatize East Moline Garbage Collection

On Monday March 2nd at 6:30pm, the City of East Moline will be voting on whether or not to privatize Garbage Collection Services. We need as many union members and community allies in attendance as possible. The Council voted to … Continue reading

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Midwest UPS workers strike new deal

Teamsters members who work for UPS in Illinois, Iowa and Indiana approved by a 4 to 1 a five-year contract — retroactive to 2013 — that increases wages annually, ups healthcare benefits and vacation pay and limits the carriers’ use of subcontracting, the union says.

The deal was reached in December, and voting was conducted in recent weeks via mail-in ballots.teamsters logo

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Corporate influence borders on fascism

overturnThe “Citizens United” ruling and the more recent McCutcheon ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court gives wealthy individuals such as the Koch brothers and large corporations the power to buy elections and to own politicians. Many of these rich individuals and corporations also control and fund think tanks and foundations and many of these foundations have banded together and formed an entity known as the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC). ALEC’s purpose is to formulate a right-wing legislative agenda that is designed to benefit the rich oligarchs. These ALEC sponsored laws include voter suppression laws and privatization schemes.

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Learn more about Trans-Pacific Partnership

signalsIf you would like to do a favor for yourself your family and your community, please find out the truth about the Trans-Pacific-Partnership (TPP). It is a huge trade agreement that will be up for a vote in Congress very soon.

This nicely-named agreement with its components of deregulating Wall Street, investor state dispute settlements, loss of environmental protections and untested foods from far off lands should be enough to cause you to want to take a good look at this agreement.

Possibly within the next three weeks, Congress will vote to grant President Barack Obama, Rep. John Boehner and Sen. Mitch McConnell total control of what it looks like. Of course, CitiCorp, Mobil-Exon, BP and others with their 600 corporate lobbyists, will be looking out for the U.S. consumer, worker, family farmer and tax payers as they help write it.

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A Better Measure of Efforts to Reduce Childhood Poverty in Iowa

February 26, 2015 – John Michaelson, Public News Service (IA) Play Audio in Browser Window PHOTO: A new report calls for a stronger focus on a new ways to measure poverty and evaluate the programs aimed at helping families in … Continue reading

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RENEWED ASSAULT ON WORKER AND PUBLIC PROTECTIONS

The 114th Congress has been in session only a few weeks, but already the Republican majorities in the House and Senate have launched a renewed assault on worker and public protections. At the urging of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce … Continue reading

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Labor History

February 27 Legendary labor leader and socialist presidential candidate Eugene V. Debs becomes charter member and secretary of the Vigo Lodge, Brotherhood of Locomotive Firemen. Five years later he is leading the national union and in 1893 helps found the … Continue reading

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Statement by AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka on Introduction of Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) Legislation

stop fast track tpp

February 25, 2015

 

“The Trade Adjustment Assistance program has a history of success helping U.S. workers get back on their feet when their jobs are offshored. Working people are proud to have leaders like Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH) and Congressman Adam Smith (D-WA), who champion this critical retraining assistance and safety net. When workers lose their jobs through no fault of their own, they need the support of this program. And we owe it to them to prevent TAA from being linked to the undemocratic Fast Track process, which paves the way for fewer jobs and lower wages.”

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There has been much confusion concerning the United Steelworkers (USW) negotiations with the refinery industry regarding the scope of our members’ work.

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Joint Statement from Leo W. Gerard, International President, United Steelworkers (USW) and Sean McGarvey, President, North America’s Building Trades Unions (NABTU) ATLANTA, GA — There has been much confusion concerning the United Steelworkers (USW) negotiations with the refinery industry regarding … Continue reading

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1965: THIS YEAR IN IOWA’S AFRICAN AMERICAN HISTORY

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by Jacqueline Thompson  February 25, 2015 Visit Our Website to Comment on this Blog and View Previous Blog entries. 1965:  THIS YEAR IN IOWA’S AFRICAN AMERICAN HISTORY In January 1965, WILLIE STEVENSON GLANTON of Polk County AND JAMES H. JACKSON of … Continue reading

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AFL-CIO Executive Council Creates New Labor Commission on Racial and Economic Justice

(Atlanta, GA – Feb. 25, 2015) – The AFL-CIO Executive Council unanimously created a new Labor Commission on Racial and Economic Justice today to explore racial issues within the labor movement. The Council recognizes that employers, politicians and the 1% … Continue reading

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