ENews: May 9, 2019

AFL-CIO Northeast Council District Meeting

NEARI responds to GOP ethics complaint

For immediate release

May 6, 2019

RIGOP celebrates teacher appreciation week by…attacking teachers

Cranston, R.I. – Today, the RI GOP, apparently prompted by Providence Journal reporter Katherine Gregg, filed an ethics complaint against full-time East Providence classroom teacher, part-time state senator, and National Education Association Rhode Island (NEARI) Vice President Valarie Lawson for supporting and voting for continuing contract legislation currently before the RI General Assembly.

NEARI Executive Director Robert A. Walsh Jr., asked to comment due to Lawson’s union position, stated the following:

“It is sad that the beleaguered RI GOP would use the occasion of Teacher Appreciation Week to attack a hardworking classroom teacher. Like many Rhode Islanders, Val Lawson is active in her profession, her community, her union, and, in her case, she also serves as a newly-elected state senator.

“Val Lawson is a stickler for the rules. She attended the briefing for state senators conducted by the RI Ethics Commission and followed up with their executive director, Jason Gramitt, with questions on this topic. In fact, this matter was so clear-cut that neither the Ethics Commission staff nor Senate legal staff felt that she needed an opinion in writing.


Checkmate Consulting Group:

National Education Association RI (NEARI) is kicking off Teacher Appreciation Week with a 60 second ad we recently produced that captures NEARI’s commitment – inside and outside of the classroom – to providing a high quality education for every student from every zip code. The star of the ad, 8 year old Avery Morris, is a one-of-a-kind personality and we were thrilled to give her her first acting role. Now get her another coffee milk, please! -Learn More


Thread Reader: @Richard Trumka

Gallup recently put the popularity of unions at 62 percent—a 15-year high.

The @WSJ reported that 2018 was the biggest year for collective action in three decades. Teachers from West Virginia to Arizona. Google employees. Workers in every sector and every region are embracing the transformational power that comes from joining together in common cause.
@MIT mentions found that half of non-union workers would vote to join a union today if given the chance. That’s more than 60 million Americans. The stated purpose of the National Labor Relations Act is to encourage collective bargaining. Yet in the more than 80 years since its passage, every amendment to the law has made it harder for workers to form unions. Today, union-busting consultants are paid tens of millions of dollars to deny workers a voice on the job. And once a union election is won, these same bad actors do everything in their power to undermine the collective bargaining process. -READ MORE

IBEW Media Center: Stay Safe with National Fall Prevention Safety Stand-Down Week

Every year, hundreds of construction workers are killed on the job and more than a third die from falls, the number one cause of accidental deaths in the industry. The tragic loss of our brothers and sisters is made all the more bitter because every death or injury from a fall is preventable with proper training and the use of appropriate fall protection.

From May 6-10, the IBEW is joining with the Occupational Safety and Hazard Administration, the North American Building Trades and the Center for Construction Research and Training for the 6th annual National Fall Prevention Safety Stand-Down.

“This is great opportunity for our signatory contractors to take time for safety demonstrations, training in fall prevention and a review of site safety rules,” said Safety Department Director Dave Mullen.

OSHA spokespeople said they expect thousands of work sites and millions of workers to observe the stand down worldwide in 2019.


AFL-CIO: Union Made in America Mother’s Day

You have no excuse for waiting until the last minute to find a nice gift for Mother’s Day that also carries the union label. Our friends at Labor 411, the union business directory from the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor, can help you out.

If you want to go the traditional route with some top-of-the-line chocolates, take a look at these from the Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers (BCTGM) and the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW).

**Don’t forget to purchase your gifts and flowers at Stop & Shop, Shaws and Eastside Marketplace where our union brothers and sisters work.



“In unity is strength.” —Aesop

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The 2019 George “Bing” Fogarty Memorial Classic Golf Tournament

The George “Bing” Fogarty Foundation was established by the family and friends of Bing to carry on his legacy of charitable works and helping others. Bing lived his life in service of others and quietly helped thousands of people in multitude of ways. This foundation will attempt to carry on those good works by making a difference in the lives of those less fortunate and in need of a shoulder to lean on.

When: Friday, June 7 Where: Exeter Country Club, 320 Ten Rod Road (Route 102), Exeter, RI Time: Registration 7:30 – 8:30 a.m. Shotgun Format: Scramble Cost: $150 to play golf with steak fry; $125 Tee Sign; $250 Corporate/Union Sponsor

For more information: E-Mail BingFogartyMemorial@gmail.com or call (401) 932-3642



Nationwide railway strike begins at Pullman, Ill. Nearly 260,000 railroad workers ultimately joined the strike to protest wage cuts by the Pullman Palace Car Co. – 1894

Longshoremen’s strike to gain control of hiring leads to general work stoppage, San Francisco Bay area – 1934

Some 12,000 Steelworker-represented workers at Goodyear Tire & Rubber win an 18-day strike for improved wages and job security – 1997

The constitution of the Brotherhood of the Footboard was ratified by engineers in Detroit, Mich. Later became the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers – 1863



Dr. Okurowski returns again this week in the first half of the program to talk with Erica Hammond about the importance of AEDs (Automatic External Defibrillators) in the workplace, and how having them nearby during a cardiac event can significantly increase a patient’s chance of survival.

And in the second part of the show, a celebration from the State House of the one-year anniversary of the ability of worker-owned cooperatives to do business as a legal entity; brought to us by the members of Fuerza Laboral and their tireless leaders, Heiny Maldonado and Raul Figeuroa. Highlighted are workers from Healthy Planet Cleaning Co-op and several other co-ops from around the state.