DACA Empowers Thousands of Hardworking Aspiring Citizens

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Statement by AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka on Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals executive order’s fifth anniversary: Five years ago, the Obama administration created the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, offering a measure of increased security and stability to hundreds … Continue reading

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Labor History

 

June 14
Unions legalized in Canada – 1872

The first commercial computer, UNIVAC I, is installed at the U.S. Census Bureau – 1951

June 15
The Metal Trades Department of what is now the AFL-CIO is founded – 1908

The Congress of Industrial Organizations expels the Fur and Leather Workers union and the American Communications Association for what it describes as communist activities – 1947

Battle of Century City, as police in Los Angeles attack some 500 janitors and their supporters during a peaceful Service Employees Int’l Union demonstration against cleaning contractor ISS. The event generated public outrage that resulted in recognition of the workers’ union and spurred the creation of an annual June 15 Justice for Janitors Day – 1990

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Working Families Summit Panel

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Merkley, Buttigieg To Speak At Progress Iowa Corn Feed

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Oregon Senator and South Bend Mayor to join Congressman Dave Loebsack, leaders from across Iowa at 3rd annual Progress Iowa Corn Feed on Sept. 10 Des Moines, Iowa – Progress Iowa announced today that Senator Jeff Merkley (D-Oregon), Mayor Pete … Continue reading

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AARP Expands Age Tax Ads Targeting 11 Senators

AARP Expands Age Tax Ads Targeting 11 Senators in Alaska, Arizona, Colorado, Iowa, Ohio, Nevada, Tennessee, West Virginia Steps Up Opposition to Harmful Health Bill with Visits to Capitol Hill, Phone Calls, Social Media Washington, DC — AARP today announced … Continue reading

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10th ANNUAL ALLIANCE FOR RETIRED AMERICANS CONVENTION!

We are getting really excited for our

10th ANNUAL ALLIANCE FOR RETIRED AMERICANS CONVENTION!

Wednesday, June 21 from 11 am – 5:30 pm
at the

FFA Enrichment Center, DMACC Ankeny Campus
1055 SW Prairie Trail Parkway, Ankeny, Iowa 50023

Registration will open at 10:00 am
Cost is: $15 for Members and $25 for Non-Members (this includes the $10 membership fee)

Lunch is included!

We’ll have sessions and speakers on a variety of topics, including:
Aging in Iowa; Safety Tips for our homes, computers, from scams, from abuse and more!

We know that: Elections Matter… Issues Matter… and Retirees Matter!

RESERVE YOUR SPOT!
You can contact us at: iowa.alliance@gmail.com or by phone at 515-480-3240

You can register on-line at: Click HERE to register!
Or you can print and send in the Registration Form below:

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Michael P. Libbie Insight Advertising, Marketing & Communications at the Working Families Summit

So Much To Do! Yesterday I spend several hours at the Iowa Working Families Summit which was held in Ames. The number of people, surprisingly, was down. I write “surprisingly” without the knowledge that there were no fewer than two … Continue reading

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Working Families Summit focuses on organizing, advocacy

Hundreds of Iowans gathered for the third Iowa Working Families Summit — the second in Ames — Saturday to bring Iowan’s together under the theme, “Standing Together, Fighting Back,” to learn about policy and advocacy.

Saturday’s keynote speaker at the event held at the Schemen Building on the Iowa State University campus was Larry Cohen, former president of the Communications Workers of America Union. Cohen was a senior advisor on the Bernie Sanders presidential campaign, and now leads the group Our Revolution, a group fighting to advance Sander’s progressive agenda after the campaign ended. His keynote address theme was “Seizing the Moment.”

When asked why he attends events such as the summit, and why it is important they continue to happen, Cohen said, “We need everyone to work together, we need a majority strategy.”

There were more than 30 sponsors of the summit, all with tables set up to share information about their goals and purposes with the other groups and with the public in attendance.

The main sponsor of the group was the Iowa Federation of Labor.

“Labor is inherently linked to all these groups and that is key,” Cohen said.

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Labor History

Today’s Labor Quote: Tom Seaver The legendary Mets pitcher, who said during the 1981 strike that “The owners are taking a very destructive position; it’s very disturbing. If they are trying to alienate the players, they are doing a good job.” June … Continue reading

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SATURDAY: Iowans to Gather for Working Families Summit

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Larry Cohen of Our Revolution to keynote second Iowa Working Families Summit  AMES, IOWA — Larry Cohen, former President of the Communication Workers of America and Labor Chair of Our Revolution will keynote the second Iowa Working Families Summit this … Continue reading

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IOWA LGBTQ MEDIA GUIDE RELEASED IN RECOGNITION OF PRIDE MONTH

IOWA LGBTQ MEDIA GUIDE RELEASED IN RECOGNITION OF PRIDE MONTH  DES MOINES — Local and national organizations released the Iowa LGBTQ Media Guide today, to provide accurate information and encourage appropriate representation of the LGBTQ community in the media. One … Continue reading

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Labor History

June 09 Helen Marot is born in Philadelphia to a wealthy family.  She went on to organize the Bookkeepers, Stenographers and Accountants Union in New York, and to organize and lead the city’s 1909-1910 Shirtwaist Strike.  In 1912, she was … Continue reading

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Report Shows Rural Iowa Kids Depend on Medicaid

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June 8, 2017 – Mary Kuhlman, Public News Service (IA)

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The number of children on Medicaid living in rural communities in Iowa increased by six percentage points since 2009.(Pixabay)
The number of children on Medicaid living in rural communities in Iowa increased by six percentage points since 2009.(Pixabay)

DES MOINES, Iowa – The importance of Medicaid in small towns and rural parts of Iowa cannot be overstated, according to a new report from the Georgetown University Center for Children and Families.

The research found that across the nation, a larger percentage of children in rural areas count on Medicaid compared with urban areas.

Anne Discher, interim executive director of the Child and Family Policy Center, says in Iowa it is 36 percent compared with 32 percent.

“The findings of this report really talk about what an important lifeline Medicaid is for children and families in our small towns and rural communities,” she states. “Forty percent of Iowans live in those communities and it just really shows how important Medicaid is for these communities.”

The report says the data underscores the importance of preserving funding for Medicaid and related services as Congress debates the American Health Care Act.

Joan Alker, executive director of the Georgetown University Center for Children and Families, calls Medicaid a crucial support for children, families, seniors and people with disabilities.

“Our nation’s leaders face a really important decision on whether or not to cut Medicaid and turn their backs on the progress we’ve made in helping children and families,” she states. “That’s so important for folks to understand that the Medicaid program is really the backbone of health insurance in these rural areas and small towns.”

Discher says in some cases, Medicaid is the only health insurance option in small towns and rural areas that have not recovered from the recession.

“It’s largely a function of economic opportunity and wages,” she stresses. “The incomes tend to be lower in rural areas and so Medicaid becomes a particularly important source of health insurance.”

According to the report, the number of children on Medicaid living in rural communities in Iowa increased by six percentage points since 2009.

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Working Families Summit – Iowa

Insight on Business the News Hour with Michael Libbie is a production of our advertising agency, Insight Advertising, Marketing & Communications and is the only daily, hour-long business broadcast in the region. The News Hour is made possible through the sponsorship of: The Greater Des Moines Partnership, Shaul & Desmond … Continue reading

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Labor History

 

June 05
Thirty-five members of the Teamsters, concerned about the infiltration of organized crime in the union and other issues, meet in Cleveland to form Teamsters for a Democratic Union – 1976
(Auditing Local Union Financial Records: Financial misdeeds can be avoided when proper procedures are in place. This easy-to-understand little book is a must-have for every local union trustee and auditor. In the author’s words, it will “provide local union trustees and auditors with the know-how and confidence they need to spot problems so they can be promptly reported and corrected.”)

A strike begins at a General Motors Corp. parts factory in Flint, Mich., that spreads and ultimately forces the closure of GM plants across the country for seven weeks.  The Flint workers were protesting the removal of key dies from their plant and feared their jobs would be lost. The company ended the dispute by assuring the plant would remain open until at least the year 2000 – 1998

June 06
The U.S. Employment Service was created – 1933

A general strike by some 12,000 autoworkers and others in Lansing, Mich., shuts down the city for a month in what was to become known as the city’s “Labor Holiday.” The strike was precipitated by the arrest of nine workers, including the wife of the auto workers local union president: The arrest left three children in the couple’s home unattended – 1937

U.S. President Harry S. Truman and American Federation of Musicians President James Petrillo perform a piano duet at the union’s convention in Asbury Park, N.J. – 1948

Labor Party founding convention opens in Cleveland, Ohio – 1996

June 07
Militia sent to Cripple Creek, Colo., to suppress Western Federation of Miners strike – 1904

Sole performance of Pageant of the Paterson (N.J.) Strike, created and performed by 1,000 mill workers from the silk industry strike, New York City – 1913

Striking textile workers battle police in Gastonia, N.C.  Police Chief O.F. Aderholt is accidentally killed by one of his own officers. Six strike leaders are convicted of “conspiracy to murder” and are sentenced to jail for from five to 20 years – 1929

Founding convention of the United Food and Commercial Workers. The merger brought together the Retail Clerks Int’l Union and the Amalgamated Meatcutters and Butcher Workmen of North America – 1979
(Parliamentary Procedure and Effective Union Meetings: You couldn’t have an effective convention if no one knew how to conduct a meeting. This is a very helpful guide for how to run or participate in a union meeting—not just the formal procedures, but the realities, like how to set an agenda, how to deal with people who just love to hear themselves speak and how to boost attendance, for example.)

The United Steelworkers and the Sierra Club announce the formation of a strategic alliance to pursue a joint public policy agenda under the banner of Good Jobs, A Clean Environment, and A Safer World – 2006

June 08
The earliest recorded strike by Chinese immigrants to the U.S. occurred when stonemasons, who were brought to San Francisco to build the three-story Parrott granite building—made from Chinese prefabricated blocks—struck for higher pay – 1852

A battle between the Militia and striking miners at Dunnville, Colo., ended with six union members dead and 15 taken prisoner.  Seventy-nine of the strikers were deported to Kansas two days later – 1904

Spectator mine disaster kills 168, Butte, Mont. – 1917

Some 35,000 members of the Machinists union begin what is to become a 43-day strike—the largest in airline history—against five carriers. The mechanics and other ground service workers wanted to share in the airlines’ substantial profits – 1966

New York City drawbridge tenders, in a dispute with the state over pension issues, leave a dozen bridges open, snarling traffic in what the Daily News described as “the biggest traffic snafu in the city’s history” – 1971

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Cutting Medicaid Expansion: Huge Cost Shift to Iowa, Other States

                IOWA CITY, Iowa (June 6, 2017) — A new report shows Iowa would have to spend almost three times what it does now to cover low-income adults who would lose health coverage … Continue reading

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Iowa City Federation of Labor Endorses Passage of Bond Referendum

 

June 2, 2017 (Iowa City, Iowa) – The Iowa City Federation of Labor, AFLCIO, voted at its Regular Delegates Meeting in May to endorse the General Obligation Bond which will be on the ballot for the September 12, 2017, School Board Election.

Republicans in the Legislature have reneged on their commitment to education. Their failure to value education means our local community must act if we want to continue to provide quality education for Iowa City Community School District families.

We have an obligation to support passage of this bond and to demand oversight on its implementation. This includes reconsidering the capability of current administration to be transparent and democratic in its decision making, and if not, to be bold enough to replace the current administration.

Upon passage of the bond, Labor will work with our community allies to ask that:

  • Industrial Arts Programs be part of any ongoing discussion of the Facilities Master Plan
  • Contractors hire local labor, and if they are found to have significant OSHA violations, not to be considered a responsible bidder
  • There be an equitable balance between updating outdated schools and building new schools in growing areas

The ICCSD also needs to report on its ability to properly fund operational expenses as the school district expands. No one wants to have larger class sizes because the district cannot afford to hire teachers to staff additional classrooms. Neither do we want the custodial and administrative staff to be overworked or underpaid as the district budgets to provide service for a growing school district.

Iowa City Community School District students are depending on our investment to quality, accessible, public education. We were leaders in the state when it came to raising wages for Iowa’s poorest workers, and now it’s time for us to be leaders in the state in a commitment to funding education.

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Sales-tax break didn’t add jobs

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Whatever can be said about the expensive new sales-tax break for business, creating jobs in manufacturing is not one of them.

Pushes for lower taxes on business routinely come with promises for more jobs. On that score, the more-costly-than-expected manufacturing sales-tax break has not produced for Iowans.

Since the start of the current fiscal year, when the new law took effect, Iowa manufacturing jobs are even lower than where they started. Clearly the new break did not cause the drop — a decline in manufacturing jobs started over two years ago after some recovery from the 2007-09 Great Recession. Iowa lost more than 30,000 manufacturing jobs from the peak in those years and never fully recovered. Manufacturing jobs dipped below 211,000 in April for the third time in six months, to nearly their lowest level in five years.

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Rosy forecasts bring thorny budgets

A memo from the Legislative Services Agency (LSA) indicates a higher-than-anticipated cost of a special-interest sales-tax break primarily for manufacturers.

We could not afford it when Governor Terry Branstad attempted to implement it by rule in 2015, or when a scaled-back version passed in 2016, and we cannot afford it now.

But it appears likely that the new break is at least part of the reason sales-and-use taxes are flattening out, putting fresh pressure on the budget even after FY2017 cuts and continued reliance of state policy makers to push tax breaks that divert millions from critical services such as education.

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Standing Together, Fighting Back: Iowans to Gather for Working Families Summit

Larry Cohen of Our Revolution to keynote second Iowa Working Families Summit AMES, IOWA — Larry Cohen, former President of the Communication Workers of America and Labor Chair of Our Revolution will keynote the second Iowa Working Families Summit, which … Continue reading

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