Category Archives: Press

e-news: May 28, 2020

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.



CORONAVIRUS COVID-19 RESOURCES

You can find some helpful resources on our website.
Share this link: https://rhodeislandaflcio.org/coronavirus-covid-19

Contact information from RI AFL-CIO Conference Call on 4/7/2020

https://centerforjustice.org/ 491-1101

https://www.uwri.org/ 2-1-1 or 444-0600

https://capitalgoodfund.org/ 866-584-3651



An excellent opinion piece in today’s ProJo by Michael F. Sabitoni, president of the Rhode Island Building & Construction Trades Council.

Providence Journal: My turn: Michael F. Sabitoni: In times of crisis, R.I. can count on union workers

A number of professions have been recognized for heroic calls to action during this pandemic, all of them well-deserving. One group that is rarely mentioned is the 10,000 skilled craftsmen and women of the Rhode Island Building and Construction Trades Council.

A number of professions have been recognized for heroic calls to action during this pandemic, all of them well-deserving. One group that is rarely mentioned is the 10,000 skilled craftsmen and women of the Rhode Island Building and Construction Trades Council.

For a number of years, I have been honored and privileged to serve as their president; but today, I am more proud than ever, because our members are answering the call of duty, courageously “lacing them up” every day during these most difficult times.

A most poignant example is the urgently needed field hospital recently constructed with extraordinary speed and skill for an anticipated rise in COVID-19 cases. Within a record two weeks, our union workforce turned a 365,000-square-foot space at the Rhode Island Convention Center into a total functioning hospital to treat Rhode Islanders infected with the coronavirus.

-READ MORE


RICOSH Webinar Event Today

Reopening the economy from a workers’ perspective”

Date: Today, May 28th @ 4:30 PM

Join from a PC, Mac, iPad, iPhone or Android device: Please click the link to join the webinar with streaming audio: https://aflcio.zoom.us/s/94468951126?pwd=Vjh4b2tPU3hsQ2FsQjFjWVpEZ2ZMdz09

Password: 639110


Rhode Island AFL-CIO // Workers First Caravan

Wednesday, June 3 @ 3 p.m.

Contact: Secretary-Treasurer Patrick Crowley @ PCrowley@NEARI.org

Details: Join the Rhode Island Labor Movement in a rolling caravan to call attention to the importance of the US Postal Service and America’s 5 Economic Essentials.

The caravan will start at the West River Street/Corliss Street intersection and proceed around the postal center, with stops at the Providence Teacher Union Hall and the Stop & Shop on West River Street.

Sign-up to attend this event: https://actionnetwork.org/events/ri-afl-cio-caravan/


Providence Journal: Omni hotel workers to lose subsidized health care

PROVIDENCE — On June 1, the Omni Providence Hotel will stop subsidizing health-insurance benefits for its employees in a move that union representatives say will leave many workers without affordable coverage in the middle of a public-health crisis.

“I don’t know what to do right now,” said Helena Dahn, a 35-year-old housekeeper who has been with Omni Providence since 2007. “They’re putting our lives in danger.”

The hotel temporarily laid off most of its employees when it closed in March due to the coronavirus pandemic, and while it has continued to subsidize health insurance for its workers for two months, the expiration date on the benefit is fast approaching and the pandemic is far from over.

Dahn, whose health plan covers herself and her four children, said she appreciated having insurance when she and her whole family came down with COVID-19, the respiratory illness caused by the coronavirus, in April. No one had to go to the hospital, she said, and while they are improving, some of her family members are still experiencing “off-and-on” symptoms.

READ MORE


Providence Journal: East Greenwich firefighter tests positive for COVID-19; eight firefighters quarantined

EAST GREENWICH — A firefighter has tested positive for COVID-19, and eight firefighters are quarantined in total, the town manager and the union representing firefighters in town said.

A member of the town’s IT department is also quarantined because of contact with the firefighter, town manager Andrew Nota said.

With three vacancies in the department — which includes one resignation last week — there are 33 active firefighters in the town, so the eight members who are quarantined represent 24% of the department, Nota said.

“Most if not all” of those who are quarantined will be cleared to work in seven to nine days, Nota said. He said he and the fire chief are working on filling the three vacant positions.

“In the interim, the department is staffing its needs per the existing contract requirement in meeting the minimum manning standards,” Nota said in an email. “The shifts thus far have been voluntarily filled.”

The union representing firefighters in East Greenwich said in a social media post that the “remaining limited staff will remain on duty 24/7” to fill in for the quarantined firefighters and the three positions that haven’t been filled.

READ MORE


Providence Journal: Our Turn: Sen. William J. Conley Jr. and Rep. Karen Alzate: Sharing the burden of rebuilding our economy

The COVID-19 pandemic has created havoc in the lives of our families and friends and set in motion an economic maelstrom devastating every economic sector of Rhode Island. Working families, large and small businesses, public services from our state and municipalities and our collective sense of community are all struggling to cope with its destructive and existential consequences. This is a historically teachable moment that requires us to remain steadfast to the values of the social contract that have made our republic the greatest experience in governing in the history of civilization. It is time to discard divisive rhetoric and respond to the inspiring voices that are telling us we are all in this together.

The General Assembly is confronted with extraordinarily difficult decisions as it reconvenes. Among the many challenges is a revenue shortfall of over $800 million in our state budget. While significantly more state and municipal aid must be the foundation of Congress’s next relief package, Rhode Island must be nimble and innovative in creating its own revenue solutions so we do not retreat from investing in our future.

The task of rebuilding our economy will be an incremental process that will require constant review of reliable data, information and results. Strategic cuts in expenditures will be necessary, but we cannot simply take a machete to the budget and inflict further harm by reducing economic activity. We must pursue policies that support small businesses, generate consumer spending and stabilize an affordable, accessible public health-care system.

-READ MORE


An excellent article written by Steven A. Tolman , President of the Massachusetts AFL-CIO and Steve Striffler, Director of the UMass-Boston Labor Resource Center

Telegram.com: As I See It: Deepen the rights of all workers to unionize

COVID-19 has upended our world while exposing the inequalities that characterize Massachusetts and the United States. Many working people are in the uncomfortable position of needing a job to survive and being terrified of work itself. Millions of people are jobless with little safety net while millions more are being forced to work in unsafe conditions.

This crisis has not only led to a massive increase in unemployment, but has also generated strikes, sickouts, and other forms of protest from workers in grocery stores, hospitals, factories, and every sector. Nor is this about to change. Many cannot work remotely. Three-quarters of people with a high school degree or less remain in workplaces outside the home. They are doing the millions of jobs that keep society running. They are vulnerable, and they are angry at employers and government for not moving quickly enough to protect them.

This combination of massive job losses and unsafe working conditions has brought two things into sharp relief. First, most people are exposed to a range of health issues, while also economically exposed. They hold jobs that provide few protections and can be fired at will. The crisis has revealed how so many of us are vulnerable to sudden financial and health-related stress.

-READ MORE


AFL-CIO: FaceBook Town Hall

Join AFL-CIO Constituency Groups A. Philip Randolph Institute,
Pride at Work, Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance (APALA), Labor Council for Latin American Advancement (LCLAA), Coalition of Labor Union Women, and CBTU for a town hall discussion about workers on the front lines.


Remember to purchase your food where your union brothers and sisters work: Stop & Shop, Shaws and Eastside Marketplace.

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For more information visit Website.


Are you following Rhode Island AFL-CIO on Social Media? Click on the links below.

FaceBook: @riaflcio

Twitter: @riaflcio

Visit our website RhodeIslandAFLCIO.org for more information, news and events.



THIS WEEK IN LABOR HISTORY

Voices in Labor:

After 14 years of construction and the deaths of 27 workers, the Brooklyn Bridge over New York’s East River opened. Newspapers call it “the eighth wonder of the world”. – 1883

Men and women weavers in Pawtucket, Rhode Island staged the nation’s first “co-ed” strike. – 1824

The AFL-CIO began what was to become an unsuccessful campaign for a 35-hour workweek, with the goal of reducing unemployment. Earlier tries by organized labor for 32- or 35-hour weeks also failed. – 1962

The notorious 11-month Remington Rand strike began. The strike spawned the “Mohawk Valley (NY) formula,” described by investigators as a corporate plan to discredit union leaders, frighten the public with the threat of violence, employ thugs to beat up strikers, and other tactics. The National Labor Relations Board termed the formula “a battle plan for industrial war.” – 1936

-LEARN MORE


This week onLabor Vision

The Labor Vision at Home Edition continues. Check out the latest episodes on our website: www.LaborVisionRI.org.

Never miss a segment. Like us on Facebook (@LaborVisionRI), follow us on Instagram and Twitter, and subscribe to our YouTube page (LaborVisionTV1).


Cox Channel 14 & FIOS Channel 33
Tuesday @ 7pm
Thursday @ 8pm
Saturday @ 5pm
                               
More Info on Labor Vision:
Website: http://www.LaborVisionRI.org
FaceBook: @LaborVisionRI
Twitter: @LaborVisionRI
Instagram: LaborVisionRI
YouTube: LaborVisionTV1

e-news: May 21, 2020

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.



CORONAVIRUS COVID-19 RESOURCES

You can find some helpful resources on our website.
Share this link: https://rhodeislandaflcio.org/coronavirus-covid-19

Contact information from RI AFL-CIO Conference Call on 4/7/2020

https://centerforjustice.org/ 491-1101

https://www.uwri.org/ 2-1-1 or 444-0600

https://capitalgoodfund.org/ 866-584-3651



NewportRI.com: Terminated Tiverton teacher Amy Mullen showered with support

“It shows you what the labor movement can do when there’s a cause we believe in. When we’re not allowed to have our voice, we do something about it,” Mullen said.

PORTSMOUTH — Amy Mullen is a 25-year special education teacher in the Tiverton school district and 20-year union head who was terminated from her job after she said she tried to be a voice for her membership during a meeting about distance learning from which she was barred.

On Thursday afternoon, Mullen was given a morale boost by fellow educators, who drove by her home with signs of encouragement and beeping horns in what was called a “Rolling Rally to Support Amy Mullen.”

Wearing a face mask, dressed mostly in purple and joined by her family, Mullen stood outside her house holding a big “Thank You” sign and waved to her colleagues and supporters in the cars and trucks that passed her, their horns blaring.

“I am so overwhelmed,” she said. “It shows you what the labor movement can do when there’s a cause we believe in. When we’re not allowed to have our voice, we do something about it,” Mullen said.

-READ MORE


NEARI FaceBook: Video of the Bring Back Amy Caravan Rally

WATCH VIDEO


UFCW: Today @UFCW is calling on top grocery CEOs to immediately extend emergency pay for grocery workers on frontlines of #coronavirus outbreak. America’s grocery workers put their lives at risk to keep our families fed. They must come before corporate profits.

-READ MORE


Teamsters: Teamster Contract Overwhelmingly Ratified at STA/Ocean State Transit

(EAST PROVIDENCE; BARRINGTON, R.I.) – Approximately 215 school bus drivers, monitors and aides voted overwhelmingly over the weekend to ratify their first contract with STA/Ocean State Transit and become members of Teamsters Local 251.

The five-year deal calls for significant increases in pay, new dental and vision benefits, a retirement plan with company contributions, multiple bonuses, just-cause job protections, seniority rights and a grievance and arbitration procedure.

“None of the wages, benefits or working conditions were guaranteed or consistent with area standards in Rhode Island before the workers organized with the Teamsters,” said Nick Williams, Local 251 Business Agent. “In fact, we were able to regain benefits for paid days off which had been previously taken away by the employer.”

“We believe this new contract recognizes the commitment these workers have for safely transporting our children every day,” said Matt Taibi, Secretary-Treasurer of Local 251. “These dedicated school bus workers sought Teamster representation eighteen months ago and saw it through to a Teamster contract. In these challenging times being a Teamster has more value than ever. We appreciate the community support. We would like to thank them as well as the Teamsters’ Passenger Transportation Division and Strategic Research and Campaigns Departments for their assistance in reaching this successful conclusion for our new members.”

READ MORE


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AFL-CIO: AFL-CIO Sues OSHA for Emergency Temporary Standard to Protect Workers

This morning, the AFL-CIO filed a petition for a writ of mandamus in the U.S. Court of Appeals to compel the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to issue an emergency temporary standard (ETS) protecting U.S. workers against the coronavirus.

The petition demonstrates that thousands of workers have been infected on the job through exposure to infected patients, co-workers and unscreened members of the public. As the economy reopens and people return to work, person-to-person contact will increase and health experts predict the already shocking number of infections and deaths among workers will rise.

“It’s truly a sad day in America when working people must sue the organization tasked with protecting our health and safety,” said AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka. “But we’ve been left no choice. Millions are infected and nearly 90,000 have died, so it’s beyond urgent that action is taken to protect workers who risk our lives daily to respond to this public health emergency. If the Trump administration refuses to act, we must compel them to.”

-READ MORE


AFL-CIO: Labor Radio–Podcast Weekly: Fire Fighters and COVID-19, the Longest Wildcat Strike and More

The latest episode of the Labor Radio-Podcast Weekly features firefighters during COVID-19, the country’s longest wildcat strike, a new show and more. This week’s highlights include:

IAFF Podcast: Hosts Mark Treglio and Doug Stern talk with members of the Fire Fighters health and safety division about how their members are dealing with the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic: “Our firefighters and paramedics are used to risking their lives and safety every day when they go to work, but the sheer scope of the virus, combined with the lack of PPE in some communities, creates a very anxiety-provoking situation.”

LISTEN TO PODCAST




For more information visit Website.


Are you following Rhode Island AFL-CIO on Social Media? Click on the links below.

FaceBook: @riaflcio

Twitter: @riaflcio

Visit our website RhodeIslandAFLCIO.org for more information, news and events.


UPCOMING EVENTS:

ILSR Basic/Advanced Steward Training Virtual Workshop via ZOOM

The Institute is offering a Basic/Advanced Steward Training Virtual Workshop via ZOOM consisting of 2 sessions to be held on Monday, June 15th 5:00-7:30PM and Monday, June 22nd 5:00-7:30PM.

Seating is limited and on a first come first serve basis. If you are interested in attending the Steward Training Workshop, please reply by Monday, May 25, 2020 directly to Denise Cesino at 401-463-9900 or dcesino@riilsr.org



THIS WEEK IN LABOR HISTORY

Voices in Labor:

An Oklahoma jury found for the estate of atomic worker Karen Silkwood and ordered Kerr-McGee Nuclear Company to pay $505,000 in actual damages and $10 million in punitive damages for negligence leading to Silkwood’s plutonium contamination. – 1979

In what may have been baseball’s first labor strike, the Detroit Tigers refuse to play after team leader Ty Cobb was suspended after he went into the stands and beat a fan who had been heckling him. Cobb was reinstated and the Tigers went back to work after the team manager’s failed attempt to replace the players with a local college team whose pitcher gave up 24 runs. – 1912

Twelve Starbucks baristas in a midtown Manhattan store signed cards demanding representation by the Industrial Workers of the World, or Wobblies, declaring they couldn’t live on $7.75 an hour. – 2004

Fast food workers took to the streets of Milwaukee in a one-day work stoppage to demand a $15.00 an hour wage. – 2013

-LEARN MORE


This week onLabor Vision

The Labor Vision at Home Edition continues. Check out the latest episodes on our website: www.LaborVisionRI.org.

Upcoming Segment:

  ▪ Erica Hammond sits down with Emmanuel Falck of SEIU 1199NE to discuss the many challenges their member’s are facing while working on the front line of the COVID-19 pandemic. Falck highlights the unwavering strength shown by members and the great show of solidarity by allies and community members in their fight for hazard pay, personal protective equipment (PPE), safe staffing, and over all quality care conditions in their workplace. The two discuss a few of the victories members fought for as well as a new tool SEIU 1199NE has created to help community members get involved in their ongoing fight for safer conditions for both workers and the individuals they care for.

Never miss a segment. Like us on Facebook (@LaborVisionRI), follow us on Instagram and Twitter, and subscribe to our YouTube page (LaborVisionTV1).


Cox Channel 14 & FIOS Channel 33
Tuesday @ 7pm
Thursday @ 8pm
Saturday @ 5pm
                               
More Info on Labor Vision:
Website: http://www.LaborVisionRI.org
FaceBook: @LaborVisionRI
Twitter: @LaborVisionRI
Instagram: LaborVisionRI
YouTube: LaborVisionTV1

E-news: may 14, 2020

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.



CORONAVIRUS COVID-19 RESOURCES

You can find some helpful resources on our website.
Share this link: https://rhodeislandaflcio.org/coronavirus-covid-19

Contact information from RI AFL-CIO Conference Call on 4/7/2020

https://centerforjustice.org/ 491-1101

https://www.uwri.org/ 2-1-1 or 444-0600

https://capitalgoodfund.org/ 866-584-3651



UFCW Local 328: UFCW Local 328 Rallies to Raise Awareness for Worker Safety at Taylor Farms

On Friday, May 8th, UFCW Local 328, joined by community and labor allies, rallied outside of Taylor Farms, a food manufacturer located in North Kingstown, Rhode Island. Taylor Farms produces fresh-cut fruits and vegetables, including to-go meals. This location has been one of the state’s hotspots for coronavirus cases. As of April 22nd, there had been approximately 100 cases documented of the virus and more cases since. In April, an employee at the location sent photos to ABC 6 News, alerting the media that workers were not being provided personal protective equipment and there were not adequate social distancing measures in place.

We have spoken to workers at this facility who have expressed fear of going into work each day and frustration that the company waited so long to implement necessary safeguards. Many of these workers have not only been infected themselves but have in turn infected members of their own families as well, which has resulted in hospitalizations. In addition to the coronavirus concern, in early April, over 600 workers were evacuated at the plant due to an ammonia leak which resulted in 13 hospitalizations.

READ MORE


Providence Journal: Groden Center workers protest for hazard pay

PROVIDENCE — The struggle of some workers who care for young people with autism, in congregate settings where exposure to the coronavirus is a risk, drew attention late Thursday afternoon on Mount Hope Avenue.

A caravan of protesters, employing their vehicles to keep social distance, paraded around the block in a public appeal to win hazard pay for the men and women who work at the Groden Center.

A train of vehicles, estimated at 40, passed by the Groden Center. Flags fluttered and horns honked.

About 45 caregivers, who are represented by Council 1199, are trying to secure hazard pay from Groden.

Under normal conditions, young people with autism attend two school facilities operated by Groden.

Some of the students live at home with their families, others live in group homes.

During the coronavirus pandemic, the two Groden schools have closed. Personnel have been sent to three group homes where they are trying to provide programming to students in the homes while carrying out distance-learning to students at home with their families.

READ MORE


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AFL-CIO: AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka Addresses America’s Unemployment Crisis.

WATCH VIDEO


CNBC: Plans to reopen US economy must ‘talk about worker safety,’ says AFL-CIO president

AFL-CIO president Richard Trumka on Friday warned that workers will be at risk of getting sick with the coronavirus if restrictions on businesses are lifted without robust safety protocols in place.

“Don’t talk about tough restrictions and guidelines. Talk about worker safety,” Trumka said on CNBC’s “Closing Bell.” “We want them to open up, but we want them to open up consistent with the health and safety of those workers.”

The failure to prioritize worker safety while restarting the economy will only multiply the threat of additional Covid-19 outbreaks, Trumka argued. “All that we will do is open up and then immediately in a month or so have to close back down because workers got infected,” he said.

Trumka said the U.S. needs to continue expanding its testing capacity and the availability of personal protective equipment to adequately protect workers. “There are shortages of both now,” he said, which he argued will only be compounded when the millions of out-of-work Americans try to return to the job. Increasing the supply of both, he said, is critical in preventing “a second epidemic, or a second surge” of Covid-19 cases.

-READ MORE


Bloomberg Law: Nonprofit Workers Turn to Unions During Pandemic Uncertainty

Uncertainty fueled by the coronavirus pandemic has sped up a growing number of nonprofit workers joining unions.

From environmental justice organizations to political advocacy groups, nonprofit employees are turning to organized labor to achieve a greater say in how their organizations are run. And unions in turn are capitalizing on the newfound interest to shore up low levels of unionization in the nonprofit industry and provide a boost to their membership.

“We know our organization already has high standards and a commitment to things like gender equity, professional development—but we still want that seat at the table, not only for workers’ benefits but also in terms of the direction of the organization,” said Rikki Baker Keusch, an employee at the nonprofit organization J Street where a union campaign was announced last month. “And also, because of the Covid-19 pandemic, the urgency has really spurred us on.”

In a 16-day span last month, seven workplaces announced organizing campaigns with the Nonprofit Professional Employees Union, a local of the International Federation of Professional and Technical Engineers. The local’s number of bargaining units grew 35% in less than a month.

-READ MORE




For more information visit Website.


Are you following Rhode Island AFL-CIO on Social Media? Click on the links below.

FaceBook: @riaflcio

Twitter: @riaflcio

Visit our website RhodeIslandAFLCIO.org for more information, news and events.


UPCOMING EVENTS:

Bring Back Amy Rolling Rally: Caravan to Support Amy Mullen

When: Thursday, May 14 at 4 p.m.

Amy Mullen is fighting back against a bully superintendent and the Tiverton School Committee that does his bidding.Let’s show her we are in this fight with her and tell Superintendent Sanchioni to #bringbackAmy.  

4:00 Meet at Portsmouth Middle School, 125 Jepson Ln, Portsmouth, RI 02871

4:15 Pick up “Bring Back Amy” yard sign

4:30 Larry Purtill leads off rally

4:45 Rally rolls out to drive by Mullen residence on Harbor View Rd.

We will do the loop of Amy’s neighborhood a few times and then return to Portsmouth Middle School for final remarks  

Wear your purple and decorate your car! Let’s show Amy we stand with her! #bringbackAmy

*No need to leave your car, but be prepared to adhere to social distancing/facemask guidance



THIS WEEK IN LABOR HISTORY

Voices in Labor:

The Pullman Railroad Strike began in Chicago, Illinois. This was the largest industrial strike to date in the United States. Eugene Debs rose to prominence as a labor leader during this strike, which was eventually broken by federal troops. The strike and boycott crippled railway traffic nationwide and at its peak involved 250,000+ workers in 27 states. At least 24 strikers were killed. – 1894

The Laundry and Dry Cleaning International Union was granted a charter by the AFL-CIO. – 1958

The International Organization of Masters, Mates & Pilots merged with the Longshoremen’s’ Association. – 1971

200 labor leaders were arrested in Chicago for complicity in the murder of two policemen and the bombing of factories – 1922

UMW struck at selected U.S. mines. – 1993

-LEARN MORE


This week onLabor Vision

The Labor Vision at Home Edition continues. Check out the latest episodes on our website: www.LaborVisionRI.org.

Upcoming Segment:

  ▪ Erica Hammond sits down with Justin Kelley, Business Representative of the International Union of Painters and Allied Trades, Local 195 of District Council 11. The pair discuss how the COVID-19 crisis has impacted IUPAT members as well as the many safety concerns Kelley has for unrepresented workers on non-union worksites as the economy begins to reopen. Kelley also highlights the importance of strong social partnerships on a local level and how organizations and businesses can be doing their part to not support the underground economy and combat the further exploitation of workers.

Never miss a segment. Like us on Facebook (@LaborVisionRI), follow us on Instagram and Twitter, and subscribe to our YouTube page (LaborVisionTV1).


Cox Channel 14 & FIOS Channel 33
Tuesday @ 7pm
Thursday @ 8pm
Saturday @ 5pm
                               
More Info on Labor Vision:
Website: http://www.LaborVisionRI.org
FaceBook: @LaborVisionRI
Twitter: @LaborVisionRI
Instagram: LaborVisionRI
YouTube: LaborVisionTV1

e-news: may 7, 2020

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.



CORONAVIRUS COVID-19 RESOURCES

You can find some helpful resources on our website.
Share this link: https://rhodeislandaflcio.org/coronavirus-covid-19

Contact information from RI AFL-CIO Conference Call on 4/7/2020

https://centerforjustice.org/ 491-1101

https://www.uwri.org/ 2-1-1 or 444-0600

https://capitalgoodfund.org/ 866-584-3651



NEARI: An Open Letter to the Tiverton School Community

(April 30, 2020)

Dear NEA Tiverton Union Members and other Concerned Citizens in the Tiverton School Community,

As you are most likely aware, 25-year special education Tiverton teacher Amy Mullen was recently fired from her job at the recommendation of Superintendent Peter Sanchioni.

A few days ago, Superintendent Sanchioni pushed a skewed narrative in an email to teachers, staff, and parents that we felt needed a response. After politely thanking everyone for patience “during these trying times,” he launched into his real purpose in writing: to vilify Amy Mullen and to commence her public flogging. Sanchioni offered no supporting details or relevant context for his decision to fire Mullen, who also serves as Tiverton teacher union president.

She was, said Sanchioni, uncooperative, unprofessional, and persistently “divisive and obstructive.”  

Was she a poor teacher? No. Uncooperative when counseled about deficiencies? No. Unprofessional in her preparations for class? No.

No. In none of his correspondence does Sanchioni allege Amy was not a good teacher.  In fact, she is regarded as a great teacher.  

In what way, then, was she uncooperative or unprofessional or divisive and obstructive? What exactly did Amy Mullen do that was so wrong? What was her crime?

It was this: Amy Mullen spoke out. Unequivocally and unapologetically. In short, Amy Mullen did what Union leaders do.READ MORE


UNAP @WeAreUNAP Twitter:@KentHospital Robert Haffey made a callous and irresponsible decision to replace seven dedicated dialysis nurses with an out-of-state, for-profit company that’s been accused of scheming lower-income patients. Here’s our complete statement:

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Congratulations are in order for DLT Director Scott Jensen and the outstanding members of SEIU, Local 401 under the tremendous leadership of Charles “Chuck” Matley.

Providence Journal: R.I. a standout in processing unemployment claims

Rhode Island was hit faster and harder by coronavirus-related unemployment claims than any other state, but a report says that could be a sign of success in the state’s unemployment insurance system.

Although the state Department of Labor and Training acknowledges it has been swamped by the unprecedented surge in claims, it has accepted, processed and paid claims faster than other states, according to a report from Kevin Rinz, a labor economist in the Census Bureau’s Center for Economic Studies.

“Only Rhode Island stands out as having both [received] a large number of claims relative to its labor force and [issued] a large number of first payments relative to its volume of claims,” Rinz wrote.

In the week ending March 21, Rhode Island had more jobless claims as a share of its employment base than any other state, the report said.

As in other states that saw heavy early claims, the surge in Rhode Island was probably not a result of particular characteristics of the state’s economy, Rinz wrote, but because the state’s unemployment insurance system was accepting claims that other states weren’t.

READ MORE


Providence Journal: Celebrating nurses: ‘This is what I was meant to do’

Jamie Leco has been a nurse at Kent Hospital for 15 years. Before she started, she wasn’t really sure what she wanted to do. Then a friend started talking about going into nursing.

“When she said it,” Leco said, “it just clicked. I just can’t imagine doing anything else. This is what I was meant to do.”

Leco now works as a registered nurse in the critical care step-down area of Kent Hospital, caring for patients who are too sick for the general medical floors but not sick enough for intensive care. She lives in North Attleboro with her daughters, 8 and 10.

Leco spoke to The Journal by telephone on Wednesday. It was the start of Nurse Appreciation Week, and another day of a relative plateau of coronavirus patients in Rhode Island. The interview has been edited for length and clarity.

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RICOSH: Spring Newsletter

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Construction Drive: The new normal: 8 ways the coronavirus crisis is changing construction

In the span of two months, the coronavirus crisis has demanded sweeping changes from the U.S. construction industry, and experts say many of them will remain in place even after the outbreak recedes.

As contractors prepare to return to work on sites that have been shut down by shelter-in-place initiatives, they will face an industry that has been drastically changed by the both public health and economic effects of the pandemic.

“There are new factors coming into play now that you or I never thought about,” said Joe Natarelli, leader of Marcum LLP’s national Construction Industry Group. “And people need to plan now to be prepared for the long term.”

From a renewed emphasis on jobsite safety to longer project delivery times and the increased influence of organized labor, the virus has upended many facets of the industry. Companies that try to return to a business-as-usual mentality will face a harsh new reality, Natarelli said.

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Union Plus: Union-Made Mother’s Day
Mother’s Day is coming! Make sure you show mom how much you appreciate her. Shower her with love (and these union-made gifts) this year!

SEE LIST
Remember to purchase your flowers at Stop & Shop, Shaws and Eastside Marketplace where our Union Members work.



For more information visit Website.


Are you following Rhode Island AFL-CIO on Social Media? Click on the links below.

FaceBook: @riaflcio

Twitter: @riaflcio

Visit our website RhodeIslandAFLCIO.org for more information, news and events.


UPCOMING EVENTS:

CARAVAN FOR Caregiver Heroes: TODAY – Thursday, May 7th @ 4 p.m., 86 Mt. Hope Ave, Providence

Caregivers at the Groden Center are working hard every day to educate and care for students with autism. They’re working with less support than normal, in cramped congregate settings. The students they care for are more stressed leading to a much tougher work environment.

It’s a tough job under normal circumstances, but even harder when you’re putting yourself and your families at risk of COVID-19 exposure. After several staff tested positive, it took management days to notify staff they could have been exposed and two weeks to deep clean the group homes. Groden management has given a small amount of hazard time to some employees but not union members. Groden continues to refuse to negotiate hazard pay with many dedicated caregivers. RSVP on Facebook Here or RI@SEIU1199NE.org


_____________________________________________

Taylor Farms Action

UFCW Local 328 will be assembling at Taylor Farms from 11 – 3:30 pm, this Friday, May 8

Taylor Farms Address and potential spot for parking: 320 Commerce Park Rd., North Kingstown, RI 02852

(The company is located on the corner of Commerce Park Rd and Ocean State Drive)

Parking spots for the Staff: On Commerce Park Rd or on Smith Street

Parking spot for the Truck with the Billboard: On Ocean State Drive:  

Because the main door entrance to the parking lot of the company is on Ocean State Drive

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Friday @ Noon – 1 p.m. on FaceBook

Join us every Friday to meet the leaders who provide essential services for Rhode Islanders every day. You’ll hear stories of hope, thoughts on recovery, and aspirations for a more equitable future.

Host: Cortney Nicolato, President and CEO, United Way RI

Limited seating. Sign-up HERE



THIS WEEK IN LABOR HISTORY

Voices in Labor:

Though Martin Luther King, Jr. had recently been assassinated, his Poor People’s March on Washington, D.C. proceeded as planned, led by his successor Ralph Abernathy. 3,000 people erected Resurrection City on the Mall until the 17th of May. – 1968

This day marked the birth of Richard Trevellick, a ship carpenter, founder of the American National Labor Union and later head of the National Labor Congress, America’s first national labor organization. – 1830

John J. Sweeney, president of the Service Employees International Union from 1980 to 1995, then president of the AFL-CIO from 1995 to 2009, was born in The Bronx, New York. – 1934

-LEARN MORE


This week onLabor Vision

The Labor Vision at Home Edition continues. Check out the latest episodes on our website: www.LaborVisionRI.org.

Upcoming Segments will include the following guests:

  ▪ Ayana Melvin of United Way of RI, Hillary Salmons of the Providence After School Alliance, and student/program participant Sophia Chan.

  ▪ Colleen Callahan of RIFTHP.

  ▪ Roshni Darnal of United Way of RI, Linda Katz of the Economic Progress Institute, Kannyka Pouk of the Center for Southeast Asians, and Allori Fernandes of the Federal Hill House.

Never miss a segment. Like us on Facebook (@LaborVisionRI), follow us on Instagram and Twitter, and subscribe to our YouTube page (LaborVisionTV1).


Cox Channel 14 & FIOS Channel 33
Tuesday @ 7pm
Thursday @ 8pm
Saturday @ 5pm
                               
More Info on Labor Vision:
Website: http://www.LaborVisionRI.org
FaceBook: @LaborVisionRI
Twitter: @LaborVisionRI
Instagram: LaborVisionRI
YouTube: LaborVisionTV1

E-NEWS: April 30, 2020

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.



CORONAVIRUS COVID-19 RESOURCES

You can find some helpful resources on our website.
Share this link: https://rhodeislandaflcio.org/coronavirus-covid-19

Contact information from RI AFL-CIO Conference Call on 4/7/2020

https://centerforjustice.org/ 491-1101

https://www.uwri.org/ 2-1-1 or 444-0600

https://capitalgoodfund.org/ 866-584-3651



VIEW LARGER


An excellent Q&A between R.I. AFL-CIO Secretary-Treasurer Patrick Crowley and Eric Loomis.

Lawyers, Guns and Money: Organized Labor and COVID-19: A Conversation

This post is a conversation between myself and Patrick Crowley, Secretary-Treasurer of the Rhode Island AFL-CIO and staffer for the National Education Association-Rhode Island, about organized labor and the response to COVID-19.

EL: The first bailout provided at least some workers with $1200 per person. But that’s far less than is needed for people to survive when they are not working. What does organized labor think the next bailout should entail?

PC: You’re right, but that’s not all it did. On the positive side, and one I wish got more attention, are provisions protecting collective bargaining and actually encourage union organizing. Section 4003 of the CARES Act says that for loans to mid sized companies from the Fed, that is between 500 and 10,000 workers, “The borrower will not abrogate existing collective bargaining agreements for the loan duration and for two years after completing loan repayment, and will remain neutral in any union organizing effort for the loan duration.” I’m not claiming that this provision is a 21st Century Section 7A of the National Industrial Recovery Act, but it is something, and the next package should have more like it. -READ MORE


An excellent Opinion piece in the Boston Globe by Chas Walker, former SEIU, District 1199 organizer.

Boston Globe: Poverty wages in nursing homes have accelerated the coronavirus outbreak

Before the current crisis, nursing home work was already harried and backbreaking.

Each passing day brings news of another outbreak of COVID-19 at a nursing home or assisted living facility in Massachusetts. On April 4, The Boston Globe reported that state health officials had found outbreaks in at least 94 senior facilities; by April 20 there were 214 such facilities with multiple cases of infection. As of this writing, 1,059 residents of long-term care facilities in Massachusetts have died from the virus, a shocking 54 percent of the 1,961 total deaths statewide.

These figures will continue to rise, because although the virus can affect anyone, the residents of long-term care facilities are particularly susceptible to COVID-19, given dynamics such as age, underlying illnesses, and their proximity to one another (including shared rooms and bathrooms) and to their caregivers. But these commonly accepted factors are not the only reason COVID-19 is proliferating in our nursing homes: The poverty wages paid to caregivers and the understaffing of our long-term care facilities are also to blame.

-READ MORE


RICOSH Prepared a Factsheet on Respirators.

Here is the link—->https://tinyurl.com/ya8xvy47


GoFundMe Page


Providence Journal: Warwick to lay off as many as 50 city workers

WARWICK — Mayor Joseph J. Solomon announced Wednesday that the city will lay off up to 50 workers to make up for a budget shortfall caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

He said in a statement that the layoffs were necessary after the union that represents municipal workers refused a request to forego a scheduled pay raise.

“During this unprecedented time of economic instability, when most municipalities are facing drastic losses in revenue, I believed it was a fair and equitable request to ask our Union to forego a 2.75% raise in exchange for job security and continued healthcare for themselves and their families so that we could keep our budget balanced while saving our taxpayers from additional hardship,” Solomon said.

“However, the Union rejected our proposal: when presented with the options on the table, the Union opted as a body to choose raises for some and pink slips for others,” the mayor continued. “That is within the Union’s purview to choose. It is not a decision I would have made, as I do not want to add any of our employees to Rhode Island’s already skyrocketing unemployment list. However, I conveyed the available options to the Union and told them I would abide by their decision.”READ MORE


UFCW: Stop & Shop and UFCW issue Joint Statement Calling for Grocery Workers To Be Classified As First Responders

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Stop & Shop and the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union (UFCW) issued a joint statement calling on federal and state governments to designate associates at grocery stores as “extended first responders” or “emergency personnel.”

Stop & Shop and UFCW additionally announced that a 10 percent increase in pay for union hourly store associates would be extended through May 30. Stop & Shop and UFCW first announced the pay increase on March 22, along with flexible hours for associates and up to two weeks of additional paid sick leave for associates required to quarantine by government authorities or by the company.

Stop & Shop President Gordon Reid and UFCW International President Marc Perrone released the following statement:

“Stop & Shop workers, who are also UFCW members, across Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New Jersey, and New York have worked to make sure that families have the food and groceries they need during these difficult times. Make no mistake, Stop & Shop associates are essential workers and they deserve essential protections.

“Stop & Shop and UFCW have worked together to provide these workers with benefits and protections during this health crisis, including emergency pay raises, additional paid sick leave, and access to KN95 masks and face shields, but even more can be done for these workers.

“We are urgently requesting our nation’s state and federal leaders temporarily designate these workers as first responders or emergency personnel. This critical status would help ensure our state’s essential grocery workers have priority access to testing, emergency childcare, and other protections to keep themselves and their families safe and healthy.

“For the sake of workers, their families, and our nation’s food supply, this action will provide grocery workers with the vital protections they deserve.”



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For more information visit Website.


Are you following Rhode Island AFL-CIO on Social Media? Click on the links below.

FaceBook: @riaflcio

Twitter: @riaflcio

Visit our website RhodeIslandAFLCIO.org for more information, news and events.


UPCOMING EVENTS:

Limited seating. Sign-up HERE



THIS WEEK IN LABOR HISTORY

Voices in Labor:

The first strike for the 10 hour day occurred on this date by Boston carpenters. – 1825

The final strike of the education strike wave of 2018 happened in Colorado. Lasting until May 12th, this strike was not as successful as the previous three, ending with an agreement for a 2% pay raise. Just before the strike, Republican State Senator Bob Gardner introduced a bill that would terminate, fine, and even send to jail, any teacher going on strike. The bill was quickly struck down. – 2018

Congress approved the creation of OSHA, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (only to watch idly as it was gutted by Reagan, and again by his successors). The AFL-CIO declared April 28 “Workers Memorial Day” to honor the hundreds of thousands of working people killed and injured on the job every year. – 1970.

-LEARN MORE


This week onLabor Vision

The Labor Vision at Home Edition continues. Check out the latest episodes on our website: www.LaborVisionRI.org.

Never miss a segment. Like us on Facebook (@LaborVisionRI), follow us on Instagram and Twitter, and subscribe to our YouTube page (LaborVisionTV1).


Cox Channel 14 & FIOS Channel 33
Tuesday @ 7pm
Thursday @ 8pm
Saturday @ 5pm
                               
More Info on Labor Vision:
Website: http://www.LaborVisionRI.org
FaceBook: @LaborVisionRI
Twitter: @LaborVisionRI
Instagram: LaborVisionRI
YouTube: LaborVisionTV1

e-news: April 16, 2020

The United Steelworkers and the Paper, Allied-Industrial, Chemical and Energy Workers unions merged to form the largest industrial union in North America. – 2005Rhode 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.



CORONAVIRUS COVID-19 RESOURCES

You can find some helpful resources on our website.
Share this link: https://rhodeislandaflcio.org/coronavirus-covid-19

Contact information from RI AFL-CIO Conference Call on 4/7/2020

https://centerforjustice.org/ 491-1101

https://www.uwri.org/ 2-1-1 or 444-0600

https://capitalgoodfund.org/ 866-584-3651



AFL-CIO: Rhode Island AFL-CIO Helps Coordinate Distance Learning

With American students learning from home, teachers, school staffers and their unions are stepping up in a variety of ways to create innovative solutions to meet the educational needs of young people during the coronavirus pandemic.

In Rhode Island, the AFT and the National Education Association (NEA) are working closely with Gov. Gina Raimondo, and the Rhode Island AFL-CIO is helping coordinate their efforts.

After Raimondo decided to close all of Rhode Island’s schools on March 23, one of the first things she did was reach out to the leaders of AFT and NEA to ask for their help with developing distance learning programs so students would continue to receive a quality education. The unions together represent about 12,000 teachers and school support staff across Rhode Island.

“We knew it wasn’t going to be perfect, but it’s been phenomenal so far,” said Pat Crowley (NEA), the newly elected secretary-treasurer of the Rhode Island AFL-CIO. “Teachers are going above and beyond the call of duty, improvising as they go along and getting lesson plans ready for this new world.”  ~READ MORE


UFCW Local 328: First Unionized Cannabis Workers in Rhode Island Win Bonus Pay Program

Perfect Union, one of the nation’s premier cannabis dispensary operations and the parent company of Ocean State Cultivation Center, a facility located in Warwick, Rhode Island, announced the extension of their retail-industry leading coronavirus bonus pay program for employees. The company, which operates vertically integrated dispensaries in California, New Mexico and Rhode Island began paying all employees an additional $2.50/hour on March 16th .

The bonus pay extends to over 200 dedicated Perfect Union employees, including those working in cultivation, distribution, manufacturing and retail. Most of the employees are members of our United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) Union. The UFCW has been a big advocate of creating a meaningful bonus pay structure for their members who are working during these challenging times to provide essential services to others. In September 2019, the employees at Ocean State Cultivation Center became the first cannabis workers in Rhode Island to unionize when they joined UFCW Local 328. During this crisis, they are working hard to cultivate safe and reliable medicine for patients across the state of Rhode Island.

-READ MORE


VIEW PHOTOS


WPRI Channel 12: ‘We don’t feel valued’: Staff at Pawtucket group home demand hazard pay, safer staffing

PAWTUCKET, R.I. (WPRI) ─ Staff at The Arc of Blackstone Valley group home in Pawtucket are fed up with management, telling Eyewitness News that their dedication to their residents throughout the pandemic has been severely undervalued.

In what appears to be part of the “new normal,” employees of the facility participated in a caravan protest Wednesday afternoon, driving back and forth while honking their horns and holding up signs in front of the building.

Monica Scott, a direct support staff worker at the group home, said she hopes the caravan will convince management to provide its employees with hazard pay. She believes it’s the least they can do since their employees are putting their lives on the line every time they clock in.

“We don’t feel valued,” Scott said. “We could be at home collecting and getting $600 a week – which we don’t even make $600 a week here working without making overtime.”

-READ MORE


A letter of some good deeds happening in RI sent to R.I. Council 94 AFSCME
President J. Michael Downey

President Downey, I am writing to inform you of Local 528 members efforts to provide masks to our co-workers and other frontline workers. Several efforts are underway.
First Jessica Pena a 17hr housekeeper working in FS has helped to create a group of people in South County. They are using fabric/ elastic to create fabric masks and distributing them to frontline workers including members of Local 528. More info on Jessica’s group can be found on Face book South County Masketeers. They have produced a large number of masks for local grocery workers, pharmacy workers, and other frontline workers.
Deb Prior Housekeeper in FS is also sewing masks for our members. She has done this on her own initiative and to date has helped to provide several dozen mask to Local 528 members at URI.
In Dining Services a small group of members including but not limited to Diana Bebeault, Debbie Castrovillari, Carl hull among others. These ladies are also sewing masks and providing to our members.
President Dooley’s wife Lynn also has made some masks for our members.
Good example of something positive taking place.
In Solidarity, —
Mike McDonald President Local 528 Rhode Island Council 94 AFSCME, AFL- CIO Roosevelt Hall University of Rhode Island Kingston, RI 02881 (401) 874-2100/ (401) 742-5817 mmcdonalduri@gmail.com


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Providence Journal: She’s on the front lines of the coronavirus battle, cleaning the ER

Alice Morais awoke at 5:45 a.m. to get ready for duty at the state’s biggest emergency department.

She was about to battle coronavirus, though in a role often overlooked.

Alice, 54, has been on Rhode Island Hospital’s housekeeping staff for 18 years.

Her job is to clean and disinfect the ER, including rooms with COVID-19 patients.

These past weeks, while many have sheltered, she has found herself on the front lines.

As she came downstairs in her East Providence home, dressed in her standard blue uniform, she paused to take a knee and send an extra prayer:

“Thank you, God, for this new day, and please keep people safe from this virus.”

Her husband, Eduardo, now retired from his job as a fiberglass man at TPI boat builders, was in the kitchen making her coffee.

For energy, he stirred in three spoonfuls of brown flour, a touch from her native Cape Verde.

It’s where Alice grew up, daughter of a fisherman who brought the family to Rhode Island for a better life in 1985.  -READ MORE


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Time: The Country Won’t Work Without Them. 12 Stories of People Putting Their Lives on the Line to Help Others During Coronavirus

The term “frontline workers” often conjures images of doctors in Hazmat suits and soldiers in uniform. But during the coronavirus outbreak, workers across a vast array of industries have found themselves essential parts of the machine that keeps the world in motion, required to do their jobs despite great risk—whether hog farm employees or bus drivers, mental health counselors or police officers. Here, as part of TIME’s new issue, frontline workers of all types share their triumphs and fears in their own voices.READ THEIR STORIES



For more information visit Website.


Are you following Rhode Island AFL-CIO on Social Media? Click on the links below.

FaceBook: @riaflcio

Twitter: @riaflcio

Visit our website RhodeIslandAFLCIO.org for more information, news and events.


UPCOMING EVENTS:

Nursing Home Heroes Carvan 2 (Greenville)

Nursing home workers and direct support professionals caring for adults with developmental disabilities are front line heroes of the Covid-19 crisis. These front line caregivers are underpaid, under-equipped, and understaffed. Join our automobile caravans to help them demand hazard pay, #PPE, and safe staffing. The owners of these facilities have refused to increase workers’ pay despite an increase in federal and state dollars to better compensate caregivers.

Thursday, April 16 at 2:45 pm

Meetup: 870 Westminster St. Providence

RSVP on Facebook or RI@seiu1199ne

——————————————

Treasurer Magaziner is Hosting a Virtual Town Hall for Members of Rhode Island’s Retirement System

Members of the retirement system are invited to join R.I. Treasurer Seth Magaziner for a virtual town hall meeting on Tuesday, April 21 at 5 p.m.

During the one-hour meeting, Treasurer Magaziner will discuss the State’s response to COVID-19 pandemic, the pension system, and steps the system is taking to improve member service.

The Treasurer will be joined by Frank Karpinski, Director of Employees’ Retirement System of Rhode Island (ENSRI) for a Q&A session.

Here is the Link: https://register.gotowebinar.com/register/9187798843914578189



THIS WEEK IN LABOR HISTORY

Voices in Labor:

Seventeen were arrested on felony riot charges after police tear-gassed striking Hormel meatpacking workers in Austin, Minnesota. The following day, 6,000 people demonstrated against Hormel and the police (nearly one-third of the city’s entire population). The strike was eventually suppressed by Hormel, with the collaboration of the state, and the workers’ own union. – 1986

31,000 Stop & Shop workers in New England struck for 11 days costing the company up to $110 million in profits. Workers went back to work after ratifying a contract that preserved their health and pension benefits and raised employee pay. – 2019

The Union Label and Service Trades Department was founded by the American Federation of Labor. Its mission was to promote the products and services of union members. – 1909

-LEARN MORE


This week on Labor Vision

•Newly-elected Coalition of Labor Union Women – RI chapter President, Desiree Leclair, sits down with Erica Hammond to talk about the changes being made to the “Help A Sister Out, Period!” campaign, in lieu of the COVID-19 Crisis.

• Jay Walsh, Executive Director of the URI/AAUP, joins Erica Hammond on Labor Vision’s At Home Edition to discuss the ways in which members and the University as a whole have addressed the COVID-19 Crisis. Jay also highlights some of the ways URI faculty are actively working to combat the crisis using the resources they have at the university.

• Erica Hammond sits down with Larry Purtill, President of NEARI to discuss the recent shift to distance learning made by educators across the state. Larry outlines the special circumstances and how students and teachers are adapting to these changes in education due to the COVID-19 crisis.

• What’s Up at the Institute – COVID-19 updates with co-hosts Robert Delaney and Erica Hammond with guests Fatima Martin and Sabine Adrian.


Cox Channel 14 & FIOS Channel 33
Tuesday @ 7pm
Thursday @ 8pm
Saturday @ 5pm
                               
More Info on Labor Vision:
Website: http://www.LaborVisionRI.org
FaceBook: @LaborVisionRI
Twitter: @LaborVisionRI
Instagram: LaborVisionRI
YouTube: LaborVisionTV1

e-news: April 9, 2020

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.



CORONAVIRUS COVID-19 RESOURCES

You can find some helpful resources on our website.
Share this link: https://rhodeislandaflcio.org/coronavirus-covid-19

Contact information from RI AFL-CIO Conference Call on 4/7/2020

https://centerforjustice.org/ 491-1101

https://www.uwri.org/ 2-1-1 or 444-0600

https://capitalgoodfund.org/ 866-584-3651



VIEW LARGER



-LEARN MORE


Union Plus: Free Webinar on 4/15: Managing Your Money During the Coronavirus Pandemic

Union Plus and Money Management International are pleased to present, “Managing Your Money During the Coronavirus Pandemic,” a free webinar to offer financial strategies for navigating the Coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis.

During the “Managing Your Money During the Coronavirus Pandemic” webinar, you will be offered practical tips and action plans for managing financial pressure and dealing with creditors during this challenging time.
Sign-up here


Watch Video


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Rhode Island Monthly: COVID Chronicles: Firefighter Scott RobinsonFirefighter, EMT-C, union head, behavioral health guru: Scott Robinson does it all. (In case you missed it: Robinson’s work on mental health in the fire service was featured in our February 2020 story, “The Things They Carry.”) Now, he’s on the frontlines of the coronavirus epidemic in Cranston, a hotspot for positive cases. We caught up with Robinson to see how his work has changed since the start of the outbreak.

Rhode Island Monthly: First off, how have you been doing?
Scott Robinson: I’m doing well. I think our training as first responders — operating in “go mode” and being able to adapt to ever changing environments — has definitely helped me and my brothers and sisters continue to work and be focused on the present situation and not get caught up in “what if” scenarios.

RIM: How have things been at the firehouse? I heard some folks had to quarantine.
SR: We have two firefighters quarantined out of an abundance of caution because they responded for a person injured after a fall who tested positive for COVID. They are doing great and should return this week. And we had two firefighters who were traveling home from outside the country when this all broke so they self-quarantined. They are both back to work. The firehouse is the firehouse. But there definitely is an air of uncertainty and worry from the firefighters. There is an underlying worry with all of us that we will unwittingly carry the virus home to our families. -READ MORE


The Providence Journal: What does virtual learning look like for a special education teacher?

PROVIDENCE — Stephanie Zonfrillo’s physical classroom is closed, but she brings Room 304 to her students in all of its noisy, colorful detail every morning.

Zonfrillo, accompanied by her two daughters, is teaching from her basement in Warwick. Her seven students, most of whom have significant developmental disabilities, connect via zoom from their kitchens or living rooms in Providence.

Welcome to the new era of distance learning, something unimaginable to most teachers in Rhode Island three weeks ago, something that has become the new normal, thanks to a pandemic that doesn’t respect classroom walls.

When state education Commissioner Angélica Infante-Green announced that schools had to submit plans for on-line learning last month, there was a lot of hand-wringing.

We don’t have enough laptops. Poor families will be left behind. Teachers lack the training to pull this off. Students will spend their days on TikTok. -READ MORE


AFL-CIO: In Memoriam: Union Members Lost in COVID-19 Pandemic

As the COVID-19 pandemic spreads across the United States, our sisters, brothers and friends in the labor movement are among the first casualties. It is important for us to work together during this crisis to prevent further deaths. It is important to thank those who are doing the work to keep us safe and fed. It is important to remember those who we lost because of the coronavirus.

This list includes those deaths we have currently learned of. If you aware of additional union members we should include on this list, please send details to kquinnell@aflcio.org and we will add them to the list.

-SEE LIST


New York Times: We are the First Responders

In their own words, workers across the country who have no choice but to confront the pandemic describe life in a changed world.

As states and cities across the country have closed schools, businesses and public spaces and as governors have ordered residents to stay home as much as possible, millions of Americans have continued to show up for work. Some can’t work from home but can’t risk losing their jobs and income. Some hold jobs that are critical to the functioning of our society. For many, both things are true. Day by day, they confront the stark new realities of life in a pandemic and adapt as best they can. These are their stories.When Fasika Getahun, 48, finishes her shift as a custodian at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle each day, she goes home exhausted but excited to see her seven kids. She’s a single mom who immigrated from East Africa, and it’s gratifying to come home to see them healthy and happy.

READ THEIR STORIES


The Nation: ‘We Will Not Sit Back and Let Transit Workers Be Treated Like Cannon Fodder’

Transit workers across the United States and Canada paused at 7:10 pm ET on Friday, March 27, for a moment of silence to honor the memory of Scott Ryan, a bus driver in Snohomish County, Washington, who was the first member of the Amalgamated Transit Union (ATU) to die of Covid-19.

Ryan, a 41-year-old father of three, was a shop steward with ATU Local 1576 in the Everett, Washington, region—an area north of Seattle that is near one of the initial hot spots for the spread of the coronavirus. Local papers reported that he was one of 10 workers in his Community Transit workplace that had tested positive or presumptive positive for the coronavirus.

Ryan’s death was not the only one last week. Members of Transport Workers Union of America (TWU) Local 100 in New York City mourned the deaths of conductor Peter Patrassi and bus operator Oliver Cyrus, the first of their union brothers and sisters to succumb to Covid-19.

-READ MORE


The Hill: Grocery unions protect workers and save lives

Researchers have long known that unionized workplaces – whether in mining, construction, manufacturing or warehouses – are significantly safer for employees than non-union workplaces. Now we are learning in real time that the same is true for grocery workers, who have been unexpectedly thrust onto the front lines of the fight against COVID-19. Previously treated as “unskilled” and “disposable,” grocery workers are now recognized as essential personnel who are helping to keep millions of Americans alive.

From coast to coast, United Food and Commercial Workers union (UFCW) locals are pushing grocery corporations to adopt measures that will help protect both workers and shoppers. They are also lobbying state and local governments to enact critical worker safety policies, such as reclassifying grocery clerks as essential personnel, providing access to personal protective equipment (PPE) and imposing limits on the number of people admitted to stores at any one time.

-READ MORE


Labor 411: Become an Ethical Chairman of the Board (game)

We get it. It’s no fun to be stuck indoors. You can call us old-fashioned, but Labor 411 suggests that one way to help to pass the time is to ditch the screens, silence the cells, warm up those dice rolling hands and make it a family game night. The games on the list below are enduring classics, the kind of entertainment that entertained your parents (and possibly even your grandparents) for days and nights on end. They also come with the added bonus of being manufactured by ethical companies that treat their workers fairly and give them a voice on the job. A special shout out to the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union (RWDSU) and United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) whose members make these classics.

By buying union, you are supporting good jobs and helping to strengthen the middle class. Stay safe at home and let’s all play our way to a stronger America. -SEE LIST



For more information visit Website.


Are you following Rhode Island AFL-CIO on Social Media? Click on the links below.

FaceBook: @riaflcio

Twitter: @riaflcio

Visit our website RhodeIslandAFLCIO.org for more information, news and events.


UPCOMING EVENTS:

No events at this time.



THIS WEEK IN LABOR HISTORY

Voices in Labor:

The National Federation of Telephone Workers (NFTW) launched the first nationwide strike against AT&T and Bell. As many as 300,000 telephone workers walked off the job. By mid-May, 37 of the 39 member unions had won new contracts with raises. NFTW became the Communications Workers of America later that year. – 1947

15,000 SEIU Local 1877 union janitors went on strike in Los Angeles, California. – 2000

National Labor Relations Board attorney Melton Boyd told ILWU members to “lie down like good dogs” in  Juneau, Alaska. – 1947

What was to become a two-month strike by minor league umpires began, largely over money: $5,500 to $15,000 for a season running 142 games. The strike ended with a slight improvement in pay. – 2006

-LEARN MORE


This week on Labor Vision

• Desiree Leclair, newly-elected President of CLUW RI talks about “Help A Sister Out, Period!” and other group initiatives.

• From the California Newsreel documentary, “At the River I Stand,” about Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s trip to Memphis to march with sanitation workers looking to organize with AFSCME.


Cox Channel 14 & FIOS Channel 33
Tuesday @ 7pm
Thursday @ 8pm
Saturday @ 5pm
                               
More Info on Labor Vision:
Website: http://www.LaborVisionRI.org
FaceBook: @LaborVisionRI
Twitter: @LaborVisionRI
Instagram: LaborVisionRI
YouTube: LaborVisionTV1