E-News: October 31, 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.



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Read Article from Boston 25 News Here.



Providence Journal: New memorial pays tribute to 97 R.I. firefighters lost in line of duty

EXETER — A memorial to the 97 Rhode Island firefighters who have died in the line of duty since record keeping began in the 1800s will be dedicated Saturday at the state Fire Training Academy.

Firefighters raised more than $300,000 and construction has taken about year, said North Kingstown Fire Chief Scott Kettelle, who is chairman of the building committee.

Firefighters, their families and friends; and family members of firefighters who gave their lives are invited to the ceremony, which will start at 1 and end at 3. Members of the general public are also invited.

“This is monumental,” Kettelle said. “It’s an actual memorial park, like the Station memorial.” He was referring to the Station Fire Memorial Park in West Warwick. That park is on the site of the nightclub that burned Feb. 20, 2003, when pyrotechnics ignited sound insulation, killing 100 people and injuring 230.

The firefighter memorial names 97 firefighters who have died in the line of duty, “starting in the 1800s,” Kettelle said, “as far back as we can get records.”-READ MORE


WPRI 12: Rhode Island Fire Memorial dedicated to the state’s fallen firefighters

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Providence Business News: Union gets toehold in R.I.’s marijuana industry

THE NASCENT CANNABIS INDUSTRY in Rhode Island is expanding quickly and attracting the attention of a national union best known for organizing supermarket workers.

The United Food and Commercial Workers International Union has signed a labor peace agreement with the owner of Ocean State Cultivation Center in Warwick. The agreement is seen as opening a door to unionization of the local industry.

Labor officials say what is now a medical-marijuana market in Rhode Island, and which could be opened to recreational marijuana, has a growing workforce in need of union protections.

The labor peace agreement is essentially a pledge by a company owner not to interfere in unionization efforts. In exchange, workers generally agree to not disrupt production, such as through a strike. The agreements are common on large construction projects.

This is the first one inked with the cannabis industry in Rhode Island, according to Timothy Melia, president of the UFCW Local 328, which represents about 10,000 food industry workers in Rhode Island and southeastern Massachusetts.

“Usually most employers don’t agree to labor peace agreements,” Melia said. “Most of them are going to fight you tooth and nail every step of the way. This employer is saying, ‘I have no problem with the union coming in. That’s a decision that’s left up to the employees.’ ”

-READ MORE


Yahoo Finance: States With the Strongest Unions – 2019 Edition

Unions can be effective tools for collective bargaining. They represent workers in negotiations with management to uphold workers’ rights, including fair wages. According to a 2018 report on full-time workers from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), nonunion workers earned just 82% of the median weekly amount that union member workers earned. Being able to make a fair wage is necessary in order to budget properly and build up your savings account. But the power of unions in the U.S. varies significantly across different locations. Some states are union hotbeds, where organized labor is a major player is business and politics. In other states, unions don’t hold as much sway. SmartAsset decided to see where unions are the strongest.

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To find the states with the strongest unions, we analyzed data across the following eight metrics: number of union members, the percentage of workers who are union members, five-year change in union membership, average annual wage for all occupations, average annual wage for middle school teachers, the salary ratio of teachers to all occupations, the average wage for firefighters and the salary ratio of firefighters to all occupations.

-READ MORE


AFL-CIO: Get to Know AFL-CIO’s Affiliates: National Air Traffic Controllers Association

Next up in our series that takes a deeper look at each of our affiliates is the National Air Traffic Controllers Association.

Name of Union:National Air Traffic Controllers Association (NATCA).

Mission:To advance the status, professionalism and working conditions of all air traffic controllers and other aviation safety-related employees through collective bargaining, political action and other lawful concerted activity.

Current Leadership of Union:Paul Rinaldi has served as president of NATCA since 2009. He is the sixth person to hold that position. In July 2018, Rinaldi won re-election to serve an unprecedented fourth three-year term. Prior to being elected president, Rinaldi served as executive vice president for three years. He previously served as an air traffic controller at the Dulles International Airport control tower for 16 years. Working with Rinaldi, Trish Gilbert serves as executive vice president. She also has been in that position since 2009 and is serving an unprecedented fourth term. Prior to her election, Gilbert worked for 21 years as an air traffic controller at Houston Air Route Traffic Control Center. Rinaldi, Gilbert and 10 regional vice presidents make up NATCA’s National Executive Board.

Number of Members:15,878.

Members Work As:Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) air traffic controllers, traffic management coordinators and specialists, flight service station air traffic controllers in Alaska, staff support specialists, engineers and architects and other aviation safety professionals, as well as Department of Defense and private sector Federal Contract Tower air traffic controllers.

Industries Represented:All aspects of aviation safety in the United States.

-READ MORE


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UPCOMING EVENTS:                                                        



THIS WEEK IN LABOR HISTORY

Voices in Labor:

The Gateway Arch, a 630 ft high parabola of stainless steel marking the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial on the waterfront of St. Louis, Missouri was completed after two and a half years. Although it was predicted 13 lives would be lost in construction, not a single Ironworker died. – 1965

The New York City subway opened on this date in 1904. The first rapid-transit system in America ran its first route from City Hall to Grand Central Station, then west to Times Square and north to 145th Street. More than 100 workers died during the construction of the first 13 miles of tunnels and track. – 1904

President Truman raised the federal minimum wage from 40 cents to 75 cents. – 1949

-LEARN MORE



NEXT WEEK ON LABOR VISION:

At the recently held R.I. AFL-CIO convention, Jennifer Wood, Executive Director of the Center for Justice outlined her organization’s mission to provide legal services for those most in need, workers facing misclassification and wage theft; and especially immigrants with little legal recourse and precarious reporting situation.

And in the second half of the show, highlights from the annual Big Brother/Big Sister Halloween Hike in Roger Williams Park this year brought to us by the R.I. Building Trades Council; this year honoring the women of the building trades. It was a great day for a hike, and honorary chair Mike Montecalvo from WPRI helped with the costume contest and got the hike off to its start.