E-NEWS: APRIL 14, 2022

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.



State of Rhode Island: Attorney General Neronha and state labor leaders seek to strengthen penalties for wage theft and worker misclassification

Testimony in support of wage theft and worker misclassification legislation before the Rhode Island House Committee on Judiciary scheduled for Wednesday at the rise of the House

PROVIDENCE, RI –Attorney General Peter F. Neronha will testify in support of legislation currently before the General Assembly that will increase penalties for wage theft and misclassification, joining state labor leaders in a push to protect Rhode Island workers, taxpayers, and business owners.

“Employers who fail to pay workers their hard-earned wages or misclassify them as independent contractors not only cheat their workers, but also cheat Rhode Island taxpayers,” said Attorney General Neronha. “Currently, our state does not treat this type of criminal conduct as seriously as it should. A person can steal a television worth over $1,500 and it’s a felony, but if a person steals a worker’s wages in any amount, it’s a misdemeanor. That is why this bill is important – the punishment should fit the crime and ultimately deter this conduct.”

The bill, H 7677, introduced by Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, Robert E. Craven, Sr. (D-Dist. 32, North Kingstown) at the request of the Attorney General, proposes to reclassify knowing or willful instances of wage theft over $1,500 from a misdemeanor to a felony. The bill also proposes to reclassify knowing or willful instances of worker misclassification from a misdemeanor to a felony. The Senate companion bill is S 2775, sponsored by Senate Majority Leader Michael J. McCaffrey (D-Dist. 29, Warwick).

“Misclassifying workers as independent contractors harms workers, taxpayers, and businesses,” said Michael F. Sabitoni, President of the Rhode Island Building and Construction Trades Council. “Unscrupulous employers engage in this practice to avoid paying benefits, overtime, taxes, Social Security, Medicare, and workers’ compensation insurance. When this happens, employees are shortchanged, the State is deprived of tax revenue, and the employer gains an unfair advantage over competing businesses that follow the law.”

Read more here.


Excited for the $220M development of the iconic Superman Building in #Providence under a PLA creating 1500 local union construction jobs!

Thank you @GovDanMcKee @RISpeaker @SenatorRuggerio @LGSabinaMatos @CommerceRI

@RIFoundation @Jorge_Elorza @ri_trades @build_ri


Laborers Local 271 Twitter:

Proud to partner and support exciting $220M development of the iconic “Superman Building” in #Providence under a PLA creating 1500 local union construction jobs @GovDanMcKee @RISpeaker @SenatorRuggerio @LGSabinaMatos @CommerceRI@RIFoundation @Jorge_Elorza @ri_trades @build_ri


The Patch: Providence and City Workers Union Agree To New Contract

PROVIDENCE, RI — Providence city officials and the union representing city employees in several departments agreed to a new three-year contract, officials said.

The contract between The City of Providence and Laborers’ Local 1033 begins July 1. It covers public employees at City Hall, the Department of Public Works, the Parks Department and more.

“I thank the leaders of Laborers’ Local 1033 for their commitment and partnership throughout this process,” Mayor Jorge Elorza said in a statement. “By working together, we found important ways to better reflect our values and serve our city workforce while identifying savings and efficiencies that taxpayers deserve. I thank our negotiation teams for their hard work in coming to this agreement.”

City officials said the agreement provides over $2 million dollars in savings in healthcare costs, expanding the city’s workplace wellness program and maintaining provisions from the city’s previous contract with the union to reduce the cost of new employees.  Read more here.


Laborers Local 271 Twitter:

Productive week in DC, meeting with our elected officials to discuss construction jobs and the great work happening in #RhodeIsland Thank you @SenWhitehouse @SenJackReed @davidcicilline @JimLangevin for meeting with the @ri_trades and @build_ri


Matt Taibi for Eastern Region VP Facebook:

New Eastern Region International Vice President Matt Taibi is at work to help lead a new member-led union with the energy of new organizing and member-led contract campaigns.

Watch video here


Coventry Firefighters, Local 3372 Facebook:

Crews will be training over the next few weeks in a house made available to us. Here is a video of what firefighters see when searching a room.

Watch video here.


GoLocalProv: RI Political Diary: Magaziner Stands With Starbucks Union Effort

Magaziner’s Starbucks Union Solidarity

Rhode Island General Treasurer Seth Magaziner – running in the Democratic primary in the second Congressional district for the seat being vacated by Rep. Jim Langevin – turned up to show his union support.

Last week, the first Starbucks in Rhode Island joined the “Starbucks Workers United” unionization effort at the Warwick location on Pace Boulevard.

On Tuesday, Magaziner Tweeted his appearance at the location — and his solidarity.

“Proud to stand with the Starbucks workers preparing to form a union at the Pace Blvd location in Warwick,” he Tweeted.

“Unions build the American middle class, and the right to organize must be protected,” he added.


RICOSH Advisory:

COVID Chronicles: CONTINUE COVID Vigilance

We have been humbled by this virus before and no one can predict confidently what will happen in the future.’ Nick Loman Professor of Microbial Genomics, Birmingham University (UK)

Nationwide, COVID-19 hospitalization, and fatalities have decreased. But as the more contagious omicron subvariant BA.2 continues its spread; cases are ticking upward in nine states as of March 24. The latest variant proportion estimates from the CDC show the omicron subvariant BA.2 accounts for more than one-third of COVID-19 cases nationwide and more than half of cases in the Northeast. Rhode Island had the highest proportion of BA.2 cases of all states, according to the NYTimes.Researchers have detected a rise in viral particles recovered from nearly 150 wastewater-surveillance sites. And we are still traveling internationally from places where the BA.2 infection rates are very high.

If cases rise again, as many experts expect, we must prepare to lower the chance that we will pass the virus to someone, and their family, for whom the consequence can be catastrophic. COVID has killed one out of every 75 older Americans; residences of long-tern care facilities make up only 3 % of the population but account for 1 in 5 COVID deaths.

According to Dr Michael Fine, former director of RI Department of Health, ‘In Rhode Island, at least 2300 are walking around with Covid-19 according to colleagues who are good at these numbers. But I think that’s an underestimate, and the real number is closer to 5000.’

Read more here.


Job Opening:

Administrative Secretary/Administrative Office Staff Supervisor

40 hours/week – Salary Range: $52,487 – $58,713

For more information on job description and benefits, click here.

RI Council 94 is a Labor Union representing approximately 7,200 state, municipal and private employees.


United Way of RI Celebrating Health Event

More information.



AFL-CIO:



UPCOMING EVENTS:

R.I. Labor History Society: 2022 Spring Speaker Series

Lessons on African American Labor History

Dates:

Monday, April 18, 2022

Monday, June 6, 2022

Speakers:

Keith Stokes, Director of Business and Development for the City of Providence

Patrick Crowley, Organizer and Government Affairs Specialist with the NEARI and Secretary-Treasurer of RI AFL-CIOFor more information and topics see here.

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Calling All Union Members! Don’t miss your chance to enter the “Future is Union: Climate Urgency through the Eyes of Workers” photo contest! Submit a photo that shows what climate work means to you and win up to $500!

The contest is open to any union member who sees their work as a “climate job” – whether you’re driving or fixing electric buses, working on wind turbines, teaching students about the climate crisis, cleaning up after climate-related disasters, working on green buildings, installing solar, operating water systems, or anything that relates to climate change.

Learn more and submit your photos before April 22 here: https://www.climatejobsphotocontest.org/

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Rhode lsland P.O.W.E.R. Network

Request the pleasure of your company ,as we commemorate the
Fourth Anniversary of the State Day of the Cooperative in Rhode Island

RI State House, 2nd floor

On Tuesday, May 3rd, 2022
3:00p.m. – 5:00p.m.
Press Conference: 3:00 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Resolution at the Senate: 4 p.m. – 4:30 p.m

Cooperative Fair: 3 p.m. – 5 p.m. Hall, 2nd Floor

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TEAMSTERS, Local 251

SOLIDARITY WITH JOHNSON BROTHERS WORKERS

Please visit the picket line and show Johnson Brothers that workers stick together and will not be treated like second-class citizens.

Picket lines are at:

Johnson Brothers of Rhode Island

120 Moscrip Ave

North Kingstown RI 02852

Key times are 7:30-8:30 a.m.

Let Johnson Brothers know about your concerns at:

651-649-5800 (Corporate) or 401-583-0050 (Rhode Island)

Donations can be made to: Teamsters Local 251 Strike Fund, 121 Brightridge Ave. East Providence RI 02914

More information here.



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LABOR VISION

Coming up on Labor Vision

Show host Autumn Guillotte sits down with Majority Whip Katherine Kazarian, House sponsor of the Let RI Vote Act and Marcela Betancur, Director of the Latino Policy Institute and spokesperson for the Let RI Vote Campaign.

Continuing with the conversation on this year’s legislative priorities for working people, we discuss the Let RI Vote Act and how  improving voter access helps working people.

Voting rights and unions put power behind our voices!

You can learn more about everything discussed here at https://letrivote.org/

And, click here to send a message to key House and Senate leaders, asking them to support the bill!  

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