E-News: October 3, 2019

Rhode Island AFL-CIO Union Directory

An updated Union Directory listing union goods and services in R.I. can be found on our website at www.RhodeIslandAFLCIO.org under the “Resources” tab.

Here is the direct link—-> Union Directory

Please use this directory to find where you can buy union and use services in Rhode Island.

It is with a very heavy heart that we inform you of the passing of Marcia B. Reback. Marcia’s distinguished labor career spanned decades while serving as President of the Providence Teachers Union, Local 958, President of the Rhode Island Federation of Teachers and Health Professionals, AFT, Rhode Island AFL-CIO Executive Board, and the Rhode Island AFL-CIO Executive Committee.

Providence Journal: Marcia Reback, retired R.I. teachers union president, dies at 74

“It’s a loss to the whole labor movement,” said George Nee, president of the Rhode Island AFL-CIO. “She had a fierce loyalty to her members but she was also a champion for public education because she understood its importance to democracy.”

PROVIDENCE — Marcia B. Reback, a tough negotiator and former president of the Rhode Island Federation of Teachers and Health Professionals, died of cancer early Thursday. She was 74.

Reback, who lived on Providence’s East Side, was a fearless champion of labor at a time when very few women led state unions.

“She truly was a trailblazer,” said Colleen Callahan, director of professional issues at the Rhode Island Federation of Teachers. “She was a very strong woman, and a brilliant woman.”

The Providence Journal once called her one of labor’s bulldogs, but labor leaders said she was so much more than that. At a time when teacher unions were focused mostly on working conditions, Reback recognized that supporting teacher skills was equally as important.

She is credited with fighting for early-childhood education, helping draft the first charter-school law and working to establish a state funding formula for schools.

Reback took a big risk when she endorsed the state’s $75-million Race to the Top application and urged her locals to follow suit — support that was key to Rhode Island’s winning the federal grant.


Labor support for Orlando Correa – Ward 10 Providence

With less than two weeks left to go we need your help to get Orlando Correa elected to Providence City Council. There is much at stake in this special election.

A host of economic development issues that matter to union members in Providence and across the state will be in front of the City Council in the near future. The future of our schools, community, and unions depend on having a strong voice for working families at the city hall. There is no other candidate that will support union members and Ward 10 like Orlando Correa. Please donate and volunteer! DONATE HERE, or contribute via check made out to ” Friends of Orlando A. Correa ” please mail to:149 Burnside St Providence RI, 02905

We need volunteers!

Labor to Labor Canvass Schedule:

  • Saturday October 5th 10:30 am meet at 149 Burnside St Providence
  • Help needed next week for GOTV and Election day October 10th
  • We will be either making calls or walking every day from Saturday October 5th to Election day Thursday October 10th
  • We need about 20 volunteers for election day as well, Morning till polls close!

If you want to door knock or make calls any time please sign-up on this WEBSITE, or contact Anthony Cherry at: 413-446-1739.

Greg Mancini Twitter:

Richard Trumka Twitter:


AFL-CIO: Get to Know AFL-CIO’s Affiliates: Painters and Allied Trades

Next up in our series that takes a deeper look at each of our affiliates is the Painters and Allied Trades.

Name of Union: International Union of Painters and Allied Trades (IUPAT)

Mission: To shape members’ communities through an abiding commitment to service, by fighting passionately for workers’ rights that benefit all working families and through effective and aggressive political mobilization.

Current Leadership of Union: Kenneth E. Rigmaiden serves as general president. Rigmaiden graduated from California State University in San Jose in 1977 and immediately enrolled in the floor covering apprenticeship training program of IUPAT Local 1288. He completed the training and fulfilled the state of California’s apprenticeship standards in 1980.

He quickly became involved in the local and, over the next six years, served as an executive board member, trustee, vice president and then president of the union. He also taught floor covering installation to apprentices.


Robert Reich Twitter:

New York Times: The Evolution of the Hard Hat

The hard hat was designed 100 years ago as protective gear for miners and other laborers, but it has grown to become a symbol of status and masculinity.

In 1919, when Edward W. Bullard had just returned to the United States after serving in the cavalry in France, he saw skyscrapers going up all across the country, and dams and bridges were growing ever larger.

These projects brought new life to cities after World War I, but they also presented new dangers for the construction workers who placed girders, poured concrete and pounded nails.

Mr. Bullard, whose father had a business making carbide lamps and other supplies for miners, had an idea: What if the company built a helmet for miners and other laborers, modeled on the metal helmet he and the other soldiers known as doughboys had worn overseas?

The Bullards cobbled one together, and that was the birth of the hard hat, which celebrates its 100th anniversary this year.


Labor 411: Make it a Union Oktoberfest!

Oktoberfest is here, starting Saturday and continuing through Oct. 6. With two weeks of celebration, it wouldn’t be the “wurst” idea in the world to stock up on supplies for the next couple of weeks. Between salty snacks, brats and biers, your ‘fest will become a veritable feast, particularly if you use the products below which are made by ethical companies that treat their workers with respect. A toast to Oktoberfest! Let’s all drink our way to a stronger America.


Quote of the Week

“Our resounding override—along with progress on a $15 minimum wage, paid family leave and the Fund Our Future-led effort to increase investment in education—reminds us that the best way to win pro-worker laws is by electing more of our own.” —AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka (UMWA), addressing the Massachusetts AFL-CIO Convention this morning

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UPCOMING EVENTS:                                                        

Please join us for the UFCW, Local 328 “Members Helping Members Toy & Food Drive” 5k Walk-a-Thon on Sunday, October 6, 2019 at 10AM (Registration at 9AM), Slater Memorial Park, (Rt 1A) Newport Avenue, Pawtucket, RI. Call (401) 861-0300 for more information.


CLUW (Coalition of Labor Union Women) RI Chapter meeting

When: Monday, October 7: Refreshments will be served at 4 p.m. and meeting starts at 4:30
Where: Rhode Island AFL-CIO, 194 Smith St. Providence, RI
Details: Get involved. New members welcomed. Contact Maureen Martin at Maureen@riaflcio.com or visit FaceBook for more information.



Recognition Event & Dinner for Chas Walker

When: Friday, October 18 @ 6 p.m. – Late
Where: 1199 Union Hall (319 Broadway, Providence, RI)
Details: Chas played a key role in building 1199 SEIU in RI over the last decade in a half. Chas helped shape the direction and strategy of the union as an elected organizer. He was instrumental in making the Rhode Island chapter of family child care providers the strongest child care bargaining unit in the country. Chas improved the lives of thousands of workers through his organizing talent. He will be missed by 1199, as he continues to fight for working people in his future endeavors.

Tickets may be purchased for $25 per person by credit/debit card at this link.  You may also mail a check to the 1199 Rhode Island office at 319 Broadway, Providence RI 02909.

Please RSVP and purchase tickets by Friday, October 11.


Voices of Labor:

The Lawrence, Massachusetts “Bread and Roses” textile strike was in full swing. On this date, 12,000 textile workers walked out of mills to protest the arrests of two leaders of the strike. Police clubbed strikers and arrested some, while the bosses fired 1,500. Industrial Workers of the World (IWW) co-founder Big Bill Haywood threatened another general strike to get the workers reinstated. Strike leaders Arturo Giovannitti and Joe Ettor were eventually acquitted 58 days later. – 1912

The National Farm Workers Association (predecessor to the United Farm Workers) was created during a convention called by Cesar Chavez and Delores Huerta in Fresno, California. – 1962

President Franklin D. Roosevelt addressed a crowd in right wing San Diego, asserting the right of all workers to join unions. “It is now beyond partisan controversy that it is a fundamental individual right of a worker to associate himself with other workers and to bargain collectively with his employer.” – 1935



In the first half of the show, Erica Hammond sits down with Desiree Leclair, the RI Director of the SEIU 1199NE Training and Upgrading Fund and Dulari Tahbildar, the Director of the SEIU 1199NE Childcare Training Fund to discuss the complexities of collectively bargained Training Funds and the benefits they bring to the individuals who access them.

And in the second half of the show, since summer is now officially over and most of us are now confined to our offices, we’re bringing back Dr. Okurowski from the OEHCRI to give us a refresher course on proper ergonomics to help us avoid common workplace injuries.