Category Archives: Solidarity

e-news: july 29, 2021

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.


Providence Journal: Providence Teachers Union to vote on contract Friday

PROVIDENCE — The Providence Teachers Union will vote on a new contract on Friday.

Voting, which is not open to the public, is set to begin at 5 p.m. at Rhodes on the Pawtuxet in Cranston.

McKee announced last Tuesday that the state had reached a tentative agreement with the union.

Both sides said no details of the contract would be released until teachers vote to ratify it.

It has been almost two years since the previous contract expired.


UFCW, Local 328: UFCW Local 328 Joins Locals 1445, 1459, 371, 919 and 791 in Calling for Hazard Pay for Frontline Essential Workers

We join our brothers and sisters at UFCW Local 1445, UFCW Local 1459, UFCW Local 371, UFCW Local 919 and UFCW Local 791 in calling for hazard pay for frontline essential workers.

The $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan Act (ARP) signed into law in March includes $350 billion to state and local governments. With Massachusetts set to receive $5.3 billion in aid, Rhode Island set to receive $1.6 billion and Connecticut to receive $6 billion, lawmakers are presented with the opportunity to offer a portion of these funds as long overdue hazard pay for essential workers.

The pandemic has continued to exert both a mental and physical toll on frontline workers. While crowd gatherings were prohibited elsewhere and millions of workers transitioned to work remotely, essential workers continued to show up each day, increasing the likelihood of contracting the virus and spreading it to a loved one. Essential workers found it nearly impossible to remain socially distanced from customers and other workers as well. Additionally, frontline essential workers have suffered from greater levels of anxiety and depression due to stresses of contracting COVID-19. Read more here.


Secretary Gina Raimondo Twitter:

When I was Gov, if I worked on an issue where I had the Chamber of Commerce & the local AFL-CIO saying they supported it & get it done, I knew it had to happen because it was the right thing to do.

That’s what we have here with the Infrastructure Plan.

Watch Video.


TODAY!!!

Come join the Fatima Nurses on the Picket line!

200 High Service Ave, North Providence Look for the Picket line

Thursday, July 29 from 11:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m.

Failing Fatima Hospital is at it again this time they are jeopardizing patient care by refusing to agree to safe staffing levels

After over three months of bargaining, Fatima still refuses to provide safe patient care, affordable healthcare benefits, competitive wages, and safe working conditions for future pandemics.

Fatima Hospital is failing its patients, workers, and community.


SEIU, Local 580: Calling On Governor To Support DHS Workers

Frontline workers at the Department of Human Services deserve to be listened to and be treated with dignity and respect. Please help call on Governor McKee to support his DHS frontline workers. Click here to help.


WJAR Channel 10 News: Volunteer firefighters honored for heroic efforts during March fire

SOUTH KINGSTOWN, R.I. (WJAR) — Six volunteer firefighters in South Kingstown were honored Monday for their work saving a man and his dog from a building fire.

The Union Fire District firefighters responded to the fire on Curtis Corner Road March 20 shortly after midnight.

Chief Steven Pinch awarded Capt. Tyler Parks and Lt. Eric Holmander with Heroic Action Medals, the highest honor anyone has received within the department.

Pinch described the moments the two men ran into the building after learning a person was trapped inside.

“I want everyone to know at this point, it was an extremely dangerous environment, visibility was near zero, conditions were at a point where a victim would not survive much longer,” explained Pinch.

A humble Parks told NBC 10 News he remembered the call well. What started as a routine call, became increasingly important when he learned of the person inside. Read more here.


Smithfield Firefighters Local 2050 Facebook:These videos are from our live burn training in June 2021. A farm house was donated to The Smithfield Fire Dept for training purposes. We were able to use this house for live burn training, practicing stretching lines, coordinating objectives on the fire ground, communication & much more. This video was made for training purposes so that we can review our operations in order to be as prepared as possible for when we are needed. We want to release a few of our videos so that the citizens of our town are able to gain some knowledge not only as to what we do, but why we are doing it. In these videos you will see members working under circumstances as close to real life as possible. We hope to instill confidence in our residents that when or if they are in need of our services, they will know that we are fully prepared to help. Thank you to those that have continually supported The Smithfield Fire Department as well as Local 2050. Video & editing credit to: @fngr8photos on Instagram

Watch Video here.


Portsmouth Firefighters Facebook:

Portsmouth Firefighters trained this morning before the heat and humidity set in. D Group rotated between 2 training stations. The first working on pulling and advancing a charged hoseline down a flight of stairs. The second working on multiple techniques utilizing webbing to move a victim. When not responding to calls, training like this is a daily event for your Portsmouth Firefighters and members of surrounding departments.

View pictures here.


Teamsters Joint Council 10 Facebook: Drive at Local 251
Local 251 officers and agents were joined by representatives of the International DRIVE department at UPS Warwick on Wednesday. The team educated and encouraged members to contribute to DRIVE ( Democrat, Republican, Independent Voter Education), the Teamsters political action committee. We have to do everything we can to continue to fight for our rights as workers, both in the workplace.
“There is a war on workers raging and management wields a lot of power in the halls of Congress,” said Matt Taibi, Local 251 Principal Officer. “DRIVE is the way to put them in check and make sure that working people are heard by our politicians.”

View pictures here.


ILSR Leadership for a Future

!!! ATTENTION !!!

Leadership for a Future Alumni

It is with great pleasure that I share ILSR will be hosting a Leadership for a Future Alumni Series in September and October of 2021 (Save the Date to follow). In an effort to contact as many alumni as possible I am asking all alumni to email me, Erica Hammond (ehammond@riilsr.org). Please include your Name, Email, Phone Number, Class Year, and any additional contact information to ensure you do not miss out on this opportunity.

I do not want any alumni to miss out on these conversations. Please email me regardless of how long it’s been since you graduated from this program. I can’t wait to hear from all of you!

Contact Info: Erica Hammond (Labor Liaison, ILSR) ehammond@riilsr.org or call 401-490-1599.

In Solidarity,

Erica Hammond


Labor 411: Camp It Up This Summer With Ethical Outdoor Supplies

Ah, the lure of the great outdoors! Got your tent? Insect repellant? Sleeping bag? How about all those other supplies you’ll need to tame the wilderness (and perhaps your stomach)? If you’re heading for the wild be sure to stock up on all of the camping essentials made by companies who treat their workers well and give them a voice on the job. Those s’mores will be even “s’more” tasty to you since you’ll know you are supporting good jobs and a stronger economy. Happy camping, stay safe and let’s all work to build a stronger America. See list here.




UPCOMING EVENTS:

TODAY!

RICOSH Zoom Webinar: Controlling the Hazards of Heat

There were 194 fatalities the recent heat wave in the Pacific Northwest. Climate change results in more frequent days of extreme heat and record-breaking summers become the norm; 37% of heat related deaths from 1991 to 2018 are attributed to climate change. (Nature Climate Change)

Workers are at risk because their livelihoods often depend on their exposure to hot weather and hot environs. In addition to outdoor occupations, such as farm, utility, landscaping, delivery, and construction, others who work in hot indoor environments include kitchens, laundries, warehouses are at risk.  According to US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) 2,830 workers suffered from heat-related illness and 37 died from heat stroke and related causes in 2015.

Date: TODAY     Time: 3 – 4:30 p.m.

Join online here.Password: 929419

Or Telephone: (888) 844-9904 – Conference code: 688346


20th Annual London/Riley Memorial Golf Tournament

Date: Monday, August 2, 2021 Where: Cranston Country Club

More information: LondonRiley.org


ILSR 26th Annual Edward J. McElroy Golf Tournament

Date: Tuesday, August 17, 2021  Where: Valley Country Club

More information:Call ILSR at 401-463-9900


Teamsters, Local 251
SOLIDARITY WITH JOHNSON BROTHERS WORKERSPlease visit the picket line and show Johnson Brothers that workers stick together and will not be treated like second-class citizens. Picket lines are up 24 hours a day at: Johnson Brothers of RI 120 Moscrip Ave North Kingstown RI 02852 Key times are 7:30-9 am and 4-6 pm.

More information here.



Are you following us on Social Media? Click on the links below.

FaceBook

Twitter

Instagram

Visit our website for more information, news and events.



If you want a voice on the job or to build a better workplace, click the here to start organizing and taking action.


Coming up on Labor Vision

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

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

More Info on Labor Vision:
Website: http://www.LaborVisionRI.org
FaceBook: @LaborVisionRI
Twitter: @LaborVisionRI
Instagram: LaborVisionRI
YouTube: LaborVisionTV1

e-news: july 22, 2021

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.


AFSCME: AFSCME Rhode Island fights privatization of services to the elderly and disabled

After a prolonged budget battle with Rhode Island state leaders, AFSCME members were able to protect key community services for the state’s elderly, disabled and vulnerable people against attempts to privatize and reduce them.

Such fights – and victories – are nothing new for AFSCME Rhode Island Council 94 members, who have been fighting attempts to close several of Rhode Island’s state-run facilities that serve vulnerable residents.

Shoestring budgets that fail to invest in critical services and instead pad the pockets of private companies have only made matters worse for workers and the people they serve in these facilities.

“The real thanks go to the workers who, during the pandemic, kept going to work while management spent millions on private vendors,” said J. Michael Downey, president of Council 94. “This outsourcing trend is troubling: hiring outside vendors to do the work our members – some who have been with these facilities for years and built relationships there – were hired to do. Thankfully, the governor has put the brakes on all of that.” Read more here.


Providence Journal: Governor McKee announces agreement in Providence teachers’ contract

PROVIDENCE — Ten weeks after Gov. Dan McKee intervened in the acrimonious Providence teacher negotiations, he announced Tuesday that the state has reached a tentative agreement with the Providence Teachers Union.

At his afternoon news conference, the governor opened by saying, “I am glad to say we reached an agreement last night.”

No details will be released until teachers vote on ratifying the contract. It has been almost two years since the previous contract expired.

McKee said he looks forward to working with teachers, parents and students to “move Providence to that spot where it becomes the school of choice for the families that live in Providence.” Read more here.


General Teamsters, Local 251 Facebook:

Valets, shuttle drivers eager to get back to work at Twin River Casino. “Nearly 40 valets and shuttle drivers who worked at Twin River Casino in Lincoln are still hoping to be recalled to their positions after they were laid off in September 2020. But so far, they say they haven’t been given an exact date when they can expect to return. The Teamsters contract with Twin River calls for members who were laid off to be recalled if their jobs return within 24 months, according to Thomas Salvatore, Business Agent for Local 251.” Read more here.


Message from Providence Federation of Musicians

The Providence Federation of Musicians and the American Federation of Musicians would like to ask all union members and their friends and families to boycott the Kingston Chamber Music Festival, which is being held on the campus of the University of Rhode Island from July 24 through August 1.

The Festival management has refused to bargain or negotiate with the Providence Local, and has engaged in deceptive and misleading discussions with both the Philadelphia Local and the AFM.

In this year’s event, they have replaced all the union musicians with non-union players.

We are not in any way looking to disrupt the Festival, but we would appreciate it if our brothers and sisters in the labor movement would not patronize this festival, in view of the management’s bad faith attitudes.

Thank you,

Ed Plunkett, President


A great big thank you to Senator Reed and Senator Whitehouse for their ongoing commitment to not only Rhode Island working families but working families throughout the nation by co-sponsoring the PRO Act.

Senator Jack Reed Twitter:
Labor Unions helped to create and sustain the middle-class & working people deserve a voice, fair wages, and benefits – pass it on. I support the #PROAct along with @RIAFLCIO and all those who are #UnionStrong.

Senator Sheldon Whitehouse Twitter: For decades, billionaires have been getting richer and richer at the expense of the middle class. I stand with @RIAFLCIO in support of the #PROAct because expanding workers’ rights to unionize is a sure way to create good, family-supporting jobs.


RIFTHP Twitter: Working together to celebrate Summer and Literacy!@AFTunion @rifthp @beaup3 @AFTEVPDeJesus @rweingarten @RIFTFrankFlynn @PSD_Sup @DonGrebien @GovDanMcKee @Riftcol @StephanieLy1

View Pictures here.


Local 37 Ironworkers Facebook:

Local 37 sponsored Alexander in a wish come true! Alex is very happy with his wish! Dreams do come true!!

View pictures here.


Labor Law Lite: A Great Week For The NLRB

It’s been a good eight days or so for those who wish to see the National Labor Relations Board enforce federal labor law as written:

  • On July 12, the House appropriations committee reported a budget bill that contained a proposed $317 million in funding for the Labor Board in FY22. That is $15 million more than the Biden administration requested for the agency and would represent a $43 million increase from its current budget, allowing the Board to potentially hire even more help than the 136 new full-time employees it projected using the administration’s number. The Senate may whittle down that number, but the added boost from the House’s efforts almost certainly improved upon whatever the final figure would have been.
  • On July 14, key Senate Democrats announced that they were including the Protecting the Right to Organize Act in the FY22 budget bill. Later developments made clear that Democrats would only include portions of the PRO Act that would likely pass the budgetary reconciliation process, namely the monetary fines for employer unfair labor practices, but this was arguably the most important part of the bill in terms of strengthening the NLRB from an agency that begs for voluntary compliance into one that can credibly demand observance of the National Labor Relations Act. Read more here.


UPCOMING EVENTS:

RICOSH Zoom Webinar: Controlling the Hazards of Heat

There were 194 fatalities the recent heat wave in the Pacific Northwest. Climate change results in more frequent days of extreme heat and record-breaking summers become the norm; 37% of heat related deaths from 1991 to 2018 are attributed to climate change. (Nature Climate Change)

Workers are at risk because their livelihoods often depend on their exposure to hot weather and hot environs. In addition to outdoor occupations, such as farm, utility, landscaping, delivery, and construction, others who work in hot indoor environments include kitchens, laundries, warehouses are at risk.  According to US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) 2,830 workers suffered from heat-related illness and 37 died from heat stroke and related causes in 2015.

Date: Thursday, July 29th      Time: 3 – 4:30 p.m.

Join online here.Password: 929419

Or Telephone: (888) 844-9904 – Conference code: 688346


20th Annual London/Riley Memorial Golf Tournament

Date: Monday, August 2, 2021 Where: Cranston Country Club

More information: LondonRiley.org


ILSR 26th Annual Edward J. McElroy Golf Tournament

Date: Tuesday, August 17, 2021  Where: Valley Country Club

More information:Call ILSR at 401-463-9900


Teamsters, Local 251
SOLIDARITY WITH JOHNSON BROTHERS WORKERSPlease visit the picket line and show Johnson Brothers that workers stick together and will not be treated like second-class citizens. Picket lines are up 24 hours a day at: Johnson Brothers of RI 120 Moscrip Ave North Kingstown RI 02852 Key times are 7:30-9 am and 4-6 pm.

More information here.



Are you following us on Social Media? Click on the links below.

FaceBook

Twitter

Instagram

Visit our website for more information, news and events.



If you want a voice on the job or to build a better workplace, click the here to start organizing and taking action.


Now Playing On LaborVision

Teamsters, Local 251 sit down with LaborVision to discuss their on ongoing strike at Johnson Brothers of RI. Through their discussion we learn about the company’s mistreatment of employees and it’s zero intention of bargaining in good faith. Johnson Brothers employees are being paid wages significantly lower than the industry average while being forced to pay outrageous out of pocket heath care costs. The company offers no retirement or 401k benefits and has cut back on truck staffing while truck loads and deliveries have increased.

Johnson Brothers employees have been on strike for over two months and the company continues to ignore their requests and concerns. There are several liquor stores still accepting Scab truck deliveries. Tune into this segment to learn how you can support these drivers. Find out which liquor stores near you are accepting scab deliveries and make sure you are shopping at the stores who are supporting these workers and REFUSING SCAB DELIVERIES. Check out the LaborVision social media pages to learn about which products you should be boycotted. Join your brothers and sisters on the picket lines and tune in to this segment to learn more about how you can support them.

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

More Info on Labor Vision:
Website: http://www.LaborVisionRI.org
FaceBook: @LaborVisionRI
Twitter: @LaborVisionRI
Instagram: LaborVisionRI
YouTube: LaborVisionTV1

e-news: july 15, 2021

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.


International Brotherhood of Teamsters: Teamsters Local 251 Hails Major Legislative Win for Rhode Island Bus Workers

Legislation Improves Environmental and Labor Protections for Industry

(PROVIDENCE, R.I.) – Legislation protecting workers in the school bus industry pushed by Teamsters Local 251 and other unions (H6118A and S635A), passed the Rhode Island General Assembly overwhelmingly and was signed into law last Friday. Local 251 Secretary-Treasurer Matt Taibi, who has been at the forefront of crafting legislation to improve workers’ lives in Rhode Island, was among the first to testify at a Senate hearing on S635A.

“We are proud to have played a role in getting this bill passed into law,” said Taibi. “We are thankful for State Representative Gregg Amore and State Senator Val Lawson being the prime sponsors of this legislation, for the State House and State Senate leadership supporting this legislation, for the Governor signing the bill and for the hard work of Teamsters Legislative Director Paul MacDonald moving workers’ issues through the legislative process.”

The pro-worker and pro-environmental provisions of the law will be considered model language for workers in the school bus industry across the country. The bill became law upon Governor McKee’s signature later this month. Read more here.


UFCW Local 328: UFCW Local 328 Applauds the Passage of H6118/S635 – A Legislative Victory for Rhode Island School Bus Workers

(PROVIDENCE, R.I.) – The United Food and Commercial Workers Local 328 applauds the approval of H6118/S635 by the General Assembly and its passage into law with the signature of Governor Dan McKee. Thanks to the leadership of Rep. Gregg Amore and Senator Valerie Lawson, Rhode Island bus drivers will enjoy some of the strongest labor protections, serving as a model for the rest of the country.

H6118/S635 guarantees that agreements between school districts and transportation providers guarantee fair standards for workers, including a mandatory minimum of 180 paid days, as is the case with teachers and many other dedicated school employees. The COVID-19 pandemic has demonstrated the need to level the playing field for these workers, as decisions to move to remote schooling often happen with less than 24 hours’ notice, leaving workers with unpredictable hours and reduced pay.

Timothy Melia, President of UFCW Local 328, applauded the passage of H6118/S635 by stating, ”This legislation will improve the quality and retention of drivers throughout the state of Rhode Island who transport our children on a daily bases. With the mandatory 180 days of pay and the prevailing wage provision, these are no longer just transient temporary jobs, but rather, permanent well-paying jobs. This is not only good for the students and the school districts that they transport for, but good for our community as a whole.” Read more here.


Providence Business News: Hospitality’s headache: How to attract, keep workers

Erin Umbdenstock spent her four-month stint of unemployment trying to keep busy.

She cooked and cleaned her Coventry apartment and took up several new hobbies. But she did not look for a new job, because she was holding out to return to work at the Providence Marriott Downtown.

So when her boss, hotel general manager Farouk Rajab, offered her a chance to come back, she didn’t hesitate. She worked the front desk, she did laundry, whatever was needed. Her part-time hours were just enough to take her off unemployment benefits but was still a pay cut and a demotion from her former role as a sales coordinator.

“It’s not what I pictured myself doing,” the 27-year-old Johnson & Wales University graduate said. “But I never thought it was below me or a waste of my time or that I was not using my degree.”

And it paid off. In February, Umbdenstock was promoted to rooms manager, an opportunity she credited in part to the topsy-turvy world created by COVID-19.

But many other hospitality workers have not stuck with the local industry through the pandemic and it’s taking an economic toll, though the shrinking workforce actually predates the virus’s emergence last year. And there’s little agreement, it seems, on the way forward beyond getting through the summer. Read more here.


RI Painters Union Twitter:


@GoIUPAT members of DC 11 , LU 195 met to discuss upcoming contract negotiations with the Providence Housing Authority. Skilled professional craftspeople, united in common cause for good wages & working conditions.


Woonsocket Firefighters Facebook:

Below are pictures of recent bailout training. Each member of WFD is issued a bailout device, stored and ready for use in their turnout gear. This potential life saving tool allows the member to lower themselves from a window, if their means of egress becomes impassable during a fire.


AFL-CIO: Executive Paywatch

In 2020, CEOs of S&P 500 companies received, on average, $15.5 million in total compensation.

The average S&P 500 company CEO-to-worker pay ratio was 299-to-1.

Passage of the Protecting the Right to Organize (PRO) Act to give workers freedom to organize a union will help restore balance between the pay of CEOs and working people.

CEO Pay Matters

The ratio of CEO-to-worker pay is important. A higher pay ratio could be a sign that companies suffer from a winner-take-all philosophy where executives reap the lion’s share of compensation. A lower pay ratio could indicate the companies that are dedicated to creating high-wage jobs and investing in their employees for the company’s long-term health.

View CEO Pay Data.

View Company Pay Ratios.


Reuters: Retail workers in unions reap higher wages even as U.S. organizers suffer setbacks

CHICAGO, July 9 (Reuters) – Wally Waugh, 57, a front-end manager at a Stop & Shop supermarket in Oyster Bay, New York, makes over $1,150 a week. He is a union member.

Adam Ryan, 33, a sales clerk at a Christiansburg, Virginia, Target, makes $380 to $460 a week. He is not.

While the gap in how much they earn arises in part from the very different regions where both live and work, it is also in line with a Reuters analysis of U.S. retail wages, whose findings are previously unreported. After reviewing two decades of retail wages, Reuters found that union workers get paid more on average – and that the gap is widening.

Reuters examined a three-year rolling average of data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and found that the weekly pay differential between union and nonunion workers in the U.S. retail sector widened significantly between 2013 and 2019 – from nearly $20 to more than $50. Read more here.



AFL-CIO:



UPCOMING EVENTS:

20th Annual London/Riley Memorial Golf Tournament

Date: Monday, August 2, 2021 Where: Cranston Country Club

More information: LondonRiley.org


ILSR 26th Annual Edward J. McElroy Golf Tournament

Date: Tuesday, August 17, 2021  Where: Valley Country Club

More information:Call ILSR at 401-463-9900


Teamsters, Local 251
SOLIDARITY WITH JOHNSON BROTHERS WORKERSPlease visit the picket line and show Johnson Brothers that workers stick together and will not be treated like second-class citizens. Picket lines are up 24 hours a day at: Johnson Brothers of RI 120 Moscrip Ave North Kingstown RI 02852 Key times are 7:30-9 am and 4-6 pm.

More information here.



Are you following us on Social Media? Click on the links below.

FaceBook

Twitter

Instagram

Visit our website for more information, news and events.



If you want a voice on the job or to build a better workplace, click the here to start organizing and taking action.


Now Playing On LaborVision

Co-hosts Erica Hammond and Autumn Guillotte sit down with Teamsters Local 251 to discuss their ongoing strike with Johnson Brothers of RI. The group highlights the company’s mistreatment of employees and how it’s shown zero intention of bargaining in good faith. Some of the major issues effecting workers include, significantly low wages, racial disparities among salaries, outrageous out of pocket heath care costs, lack of retirement/401k benefits, and cut backs on truck staffing while truck loads and deliveries increase.  

Johnson Brothers employees have been on the picket lines for weeks demanding Black Lives Matter, higher wages, reasonable health coverage, and more. Now they are asking for the help of their brothers and sisters throughout the labor movement. There are a number of liquor stores still accepting Scab truck deliveries and it’s unacceptable. Find out which liquor stores near you are supporting these workers and refusing to accept scab deliveries. Join your brothers and sisters on the picket lines and tune in to this segment to learn more about how you can support them.

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

More Info on Labor Vision:
Website: http://www.LaborVisionRI.org
FaceBook: @LaborVisionRI
Twitter: @LaborVisionRI
Instagram: LaborVisionRI
YouTube: LaborVisionTV1

e-news: july 8, 2021

1199 SEIU Rhode Island Facebook:

BREAKING VICTORY: The Rhode Island General Assembly passed a new state budget that gives Direct Support Professionals a $2.53 raise! These hardworking professionals deliver care and services to almost 4,000 adults with developmental disabilities and for too long, poverty wages have dragged down care by creating a revolving door of caregivers. By standing together and demanding better, we were able to provide these dedicated caregivers with a pathway out of poverty!


Raise the Bar Residence Care Facebook:

BREAKING: The Rhode Island General Assembly passed a new state budget that includes $600,000 to support enhanced training for frontline caregivers to improve the quality of care for residents with changing healthcare needs and acuity. We have been fighting for greater training opportunities for caregivers for well over two years and this is a victory we can all be proud of!


Filter: Massachusetts Cannabis Workers Unionize, Part of a National Movement

Cannabis cultivation workers at Cresco Labs in Massachusetts have successfully negotiated their first union contract. The agreement is the latest in a series of organizing actions by cannabis workers across the country, including recently secured workplace contracts in Illinois, Pennsylvania and California.

“We’re seeing a big momentum in cannabis workers locally and across the country,” Sam Marvin, organizing director at United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) Local 328, which helped Cresco Labs workers organize, told Filter. “Workers across the industry are coming together and securing an equitable future in a growing industry.”

Among the Cresco Labs union’s newly won protections are scheduling policies, employee discounts and a $1.50 hourly pay increase, with annual raises over the three-year contract.Read more here.


General Teamsters Local 251 Facebook:

JOHNSON BROTHERS OF RI WORKERS PROTEST AT SUMMER HOME OF THEIR BOSS While most Americans were enjoying cookouts, fireworks, and other festivities during the long weekend to commemorate America’s Independence Day, striking workers from Johnson Brothers of Rhode Island were entering their sixth week on strike and protesting at the waterfront summer home of their boss and fighting for their very lives today. The group of 12 long term, full time workers who were being paid as little as $15 hour and health insurance premiums and deductibles that could cost them up to $20,000 per year for a family plan.
“Nobody begrudges the boss having a $775,000 home in Mendon, MA and a $700,000 waterfront summer home in Mashpee, MA unless it comes at the expense of the workers,” said Matt Taibi, Teamsters Local 251 Secretary-Treasurer. “Before the strike even began one of these workers was homeless and another was fending off evictions with multiple loans,” said Teamsters Local 251 Business Agent Matt Maini. “With this type of greed going on in Corporate America I’m sure this isn’t the country the signers of the Declaration of Independence imagined we would be,” he said. Please ask Rhode Island liquor stores, restaurants and bars to refuse delivery of Johnson Brothers products. Visit the picket line and show Johnson Brothers that workers stick together and will not be treated like second-class citizens. Picket lines are up 24 hours a day at: Johnson Brothers of Rhode Island 120 Moscrip Ave North Kingstown RI 02852 Key times are 7-9 a.m. and 4-6 p.m. Let Johnson Brothers know about your concerns at: 651-649-5800 (Corporate) or 401-583-0050 (Rhode Island)


Market Watch: Where’s housekeeping? Hotels cutting back on daily cleaning after pandemic

Some workers not called back full-time as hotels skip daily cleaning of rooms — ‘It’s a double whammy’ for the ‘exact same communities that have been hurt and most affected by the pandemic,’ union official says

With most coronavirus pandemic regulations lifted in the U.S. and hotels seeing a resurgence of visitors, many hotel employees have returned to work. But not all.

Hotels have cut back on daily room cleanings, which means many housekeepers remain on call. Because of this, a union that represents hotel service workers is sounding an alarm and saying that nearly 40% of hotel-housekeeping jobs — more than 180,000 — are in danger of being permanently eliminated.

“Every time there’s a crisis, companies try to use it to hurt workers,” Unite Here International President D. Taylor told MarketWatch.

Executives of some of the nation’s biggest hotel chains, including Hilton HLT, -2.24%, Marriott MAR, -1.46% and Hyatt H, -2.21%, have signaled that pandemic-induced changes may become the norm. Some of those changes could result in fewer hotel employees and diminished offerings for hotel customers, including room cleaning, room service, complimentary breakfasts and other food service. Read more here.


Center for American Progress: The Clean Economy Revolution Will Be Unionized

The United States faces enormous opportunity to launch a clean energy-driven economic recovery that supports millions of well-paying union jobs, confronts environmental injustice, and prevents the worst impacts of climate change. On March 31, President Joe Biden released the American Jobs Plan calling for major job-creating public investments in clean energy industries, clean infrastructure, and innovation. And to ensure that these federal investments support high-quality, family-wage jobs and build worker power, the president has called for including high-road labor standards and expanding the right to unionize.

All levels of government are working to ensure that these jobs are well-paying union jobs. States have already taken steps to prepare the workforce for the transition into a cleaner future while empowering workers and partnering with unions to improve labor standards. From tax incentives to apprenticeship programs to investing in green schools, state and local officials, environmental leaders, and industry have created a road map for much-needed federal action.

Join CAP founder John Podesta for a conversation with AFL-CIO Secretary-Treasurer Liz Shuler on what it takes to ensure that clean jobs are good jobs. Read more here.


UAW International Union Facebook:

If there’s a benefit or protection in the workplace, you have a union to thank for it





UPCOMING EVENTS:
20th Annual London/Riley Memorial Golf Tournament

Date: Monday, August 2, 2021

Where: Cranston Country Club, Cranston, RI

More information: LondonRiley.org


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 up 24 hours a day at: Johnson Brothers of RI 120 Moscrip Ave North Kingstown RI 02852 Key times are 7:30-9 am and 4-6 pm.

More information here.



Are you following us on Social Media? Click on the links below.

FaceBook

Twitter

Instagram

Visit our website for more information, news and events.



If you want a voice on the job or to build a better workplace, click the here to start organizing and taking action.


Now Playing On LaborVision

Erica Hammond and Autumn Guillotte sit down with Matthew Gunnip and Barry Noel of SEIU Local 580 to discuss many changes on the horizon at the RI Department of Children, Youth, and Families (DCYF). The group talks about the October 2020 report that uncovered the vast understaffing issue and high case loads throughout the Department. This year legislators and the Governor have added significant funds to their budget in order to increasing staffing and calling for a top down review within DCYF. Check out this segment to learn what these funds and review will mean for DCYF employees and why these changes come at such a critical time for the children and families they serve.

Next Week On LaborVision

LaborVision sits down with the Teamsters Local 251 to discuss their ongoing strike with Johnson Brothers of RI. The group highlights the company’s mistreatment of employees and how it’s shown zero intention correcting this. Some of these major issues include, significantly low wages, racial disparities among salaries, outrageous out of pocket heath care costs, lack of retirement/401k benefits, and cut backs on truck staffing while truck loads and deliveries increase.  

Johnson Brothers employees have been on the picket lines for weeks demanding Black Lives Matter, higher wages, reasonable health coverage, and more. Now they are asking for the help of their brothers and sisters throughout the labor movement. There are a number of liquor stores still accepting Scab truck deliveries and it’s unacceptable. Find out which liquor stores near you are supporting these workers and refusing to accept scab deliveries. Join your brothers and sisters on the picket lines and tune in to this segment to learn more about how you can support them.

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

More Info on Labor Vision:
Website: http://www.LaborVisionRI.org
FaceBook: @LaborVisionRI
Twitter: @LaborVisionRI
Instagram: LaborVisionRI
YouTube: LaborVisionTV1

e-news: july 1, 2021

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.


RI Building & Construction Trades Council Twitter:

Pres. Sabitoni: The Apprenticeship FORWARD project creates much needed diversity and equity within the registered apprenticeship and pre-apprenticeship programs. Thank you Building Futures RI @goapprenticeRI @SenJackReed @RI_DLT
Vast career opportunities for ALL RI residents


RI Painters Union Twitter:


@GoIUPAT Assistant to the General President, & @ri_trades Sec/ Treasurer Scott Duhamel is joined by management at Building Futures @goapprenticeRI pre apprenticeship graduation. #1u#Solidarity#Apprenticeship#Training


UA Local 51 Facebook:

Thank you Senator Jack Reed for your continued support in Rhode Island’s job force and the future of apprenticeships in RI.


Int’l Brotherhood of Teamsters: First Student Teamsters Ratify National Master Agreement

Contract is Best Yet at the Company

Press Contact: Galen Munroe Phone: (202) 439-7427 Email: gmunroe@teamster.org

(WASHINGTON, DC) – In results released today, First Student Teamsters have overwhelmingly voted in favor of ratifying the latest National Master Agreement with the company, which will be in effect through March 2026. Members voted between June 7-28 and the contract was ratified by 93 percent.

“Congratulations to all of the members who participated in this ratification,” said Rick Middleton, IBT Passenger Transportation Division Director. “We have made working at First Student a better job with each successive National Master Agreement, and this latest contract is our best yet. In spite of the havoc wrought by the coronavirus, we adapted quickly and reached an agreement that improves our members’ working conditions. This agreement reflects the value and service of First Student Teamsters.”

Initial negotiations with the company were disrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic resulting in a one-year agreement which ran from 2020-2021. The parties returned to the bargaining table in late 2020 to negotiate the agreement ratified today. The 2020-2021 contract included improvements such as protections for our members’ jobs from outsourcing to ride-share companies, protections against reduced wages in the event that a driver is re-assigned to a job with a lower rate of pay and improved transfer rights if a member relocates to another yard.
Read more here.


AFT Connecticut Twitter:

Today #AFTCT VP @JB5591 & @rifthp prez @RIFTFrankFlynn joined @AFTMass prez @beth_kontos to picket in #solidarity w/ @MassNurses RNs on #strike at @tenethealth‘s @SaintVincentMA. #PatientsBeforeProfits @AFTUnion @AFTHealthcare @AFLCIO @ConnAFLCIO @massaflcio @riaflcio


Newport Daily News: Greenleaf Compassion Center union worker says his wrongful termination was retaliatory

PORTSMOUTH — On Saturday, unionized retail workers at Greenleaf Compassion Center, a medical cannabis facility on West Main Road, held a brief strike in support of one of their co-workers, who they say was wrongfully terminated earlier in the week.

The termination came after the employee said he became heavily involved with the workers’ union organization, and his firing was a retaliation tactic. The workers decided to organize after an alleged history of retaliation, wage capping, wage theft and profiteering.

When reached for comment on this matter, Greenleaf Compassion Center CEO Seth Bock said the allegations against his company are false and he couldn’t comment further on a human resources issue. Read more here.


The General Election for the Pawtucket Ward 5 Special Election is Tuesday, July 6th and there are rumors that the opponent who lost the primary, Ana Soares – a Charter school supporter – may be trying to do a secret write-in campaign.

With the super low turnout in the primary (just 374 people!) and we can anticipate a lower in the general. We don’t want to take anything for granted!

WE NEED YOU TO VOLUNTEER.

We are looking for help with phone banking, knocking on doors and doing lit drops. Please call SEUI 580 President Matt Gunnip at 401-486-7719 to volunteer.

Here is more information on the election:

SPECIAL ELECTION COUNCIL DISTRICT #5 on Tuesday, JULY 6, 2021

WOODLAWN COMMUNITY CENTER, 210 WEST AVENUE, Pawtucket

NOTE: This will be THE ONLY POLLING LOCATION FOR THIS ELECTION.

POLLS OPEN 7:00 A.M. TO 8:00 P.M.

EARLY IN-PERSON VOTING – PAWTUCKET CITY HALL, Monday – Friday (8:30 am to 4:30 pm) Please Note: City Hall will be closed on Monday, July 5th. and Early In-person voting will be in effect until 4pm on Tuesday, July 6th.


AFL-CIO: Trumka: ‘It’s Time to Build’

June 29, 2021

Statement from AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka on the ongoing infrastructure talks:

For too long, lip service has been paid to infrastructure without making the investments we need. It’s time to build. The bipartisan infrastructure framework secured by President Biden would be the single greatest infrastructure investment in history and has the potential to create good union jobs and middle-class opportunity. Investing in roads, bridges, transit, rail, climate change mitigation, electric vehicles, clean drinking water, high-speed internet, resilient transmission lines and more would make America a stronger, more competitive nation. The final legislation must ensure infrastructure jobs have full labor protections and nothing in the bill can be used as a backdoor to privatization. We urge Congress and the administration to continue working together to achieve a long-overdue infrastructure breakthrough. And that must be followed quickly by the rest of the multitrillion-dollar Build Back Better Agenda, including the American Families Plan and the PRO Act.
Contact: Carolyn Bobb (202) 637-5018


AFL-CIO:

View image larger.


Boston Globe: Study finds residential construction projects riddled with under-the-table payments, poor treatment of workers

The majority of builders in non-union residential construction in Massachusetts avoid treating their workers as regular employees, relying on “labor brokers” to provide a steady stream of often undocumented workers who are frequently paid in cash and have little recourse if they are injured on the job, according to a new report from the University of Massachusetts Amherst Labor Center.

The system enables wage theft and the exploitation of vulnerable workers, while costing the state millions in unpaid payroll taxes and putting legitimate contractors at a disadvantage, the report says.

Practices such as the illegal misclassification of workers as independent contractors, wage theft, tax fraud, and paying workers in cash, which were once at the fringes of the construction industry, are now at the center of medium and large residential construction statewide, according to the study. Read more here.


Bloomberg Law: OSHA Virus Rule Intended to Cover All Workers, Draft Shows

OSHA’s emergency standard protecting health-care workers from Covid-19 that was issued June 10 after months of anticipation originally was intended to protect all workers, a draft version of the rule obtained by Bloomberg Law showed.

The 780-page draft standard and justification formally submitted to the White House on April 26 made it clear Occupational Safety and Health Administration staff had concluded a “grave danger” threatened the health of all U.S. workers, not just workers in health care who had been deemed essential during the darkest days of the pandemic.

“OSHA has determined that employee exposure to this new hazard, SARS-CoV-2 (the virus that causes COVID-19) presents a grave danger in every shared workplace in the United States,” the draft said. “This finding of grave danger is based on the science of how the virus spreads as well as the adverse health effects suffered by those diagnosed with COVID-19.”

Yet, the final version of the emergency temporary standard that took effect June 21 and has a July 6 compliance deadline for employers limited the standard to only health-care employees, prompting at least two lawsuits by unions seeking a broader regulation. Read more here.



***Remember to purchase your food and supplies at Stop & Shop, Shaws and Eastside Marketplace to support where our union brothers and sisters work.



UPCOMING EVENTS:
20th Annual London/Riley Memorial Golf Tournament

Date: Monday, August 2, 2021

Where: Cranston Country Club, Cranston, RI

More information: LondonRiley.org


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 up 24 hours a day at: Johnson Brothers of RI 120 Moscrip Ave North Kingstown RI 02852 Key times are 7:30-9 am and 4-6 pm.

More information here.



Are you following us on Social Media? Click on the links below.

FaceBook

Twitter

Instagram

Visit our website for more information, news and events.



If you want a voice on the job or to build a better workplace, click the here to start organizing and taking action.


Now playing on Labor Vision

Co-hosts Erica Hammond and Autumn Guillotte, sit down with SEIU Local 580’s President and Vice President, Matthew Gunnip and Barry Noel. In this segment the group discusses the reform taking place at DCYF including, what an October 2020 report uncovered in the department, how legislators are working to address it, and what this means for DCYF employees and the children and families they service.

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

More Info on Labor Vision:
Website: http://www.LaborVisionRI.org
FaceBook: @LaborVisionRI
Twitter: @LaborVisionRI
Instagram: LaborVisionRI
YouTube: LaborVisionTV1

E-news: june 24, 2021

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.


SEIU, Local 580 Press Conference:

SEIU calls for full review of practices at the Department of Children, Youth, and Families that has endangered our most vulnerable children.

Watch Video

The Providence Journal: Lawmakers and social workers are calling for an audit of DCYF performance. What to know:

PROVIDENCE — A bipartisan group of lawmakers and state social workers on Tuesday called for a complete performance review of the state’s child welfare agency to once and for all root out what they said has been decades of mismanagement, nepotism, political patronage and child-protection failures.

The timing of the announcement was curious, as other calls for evaluations of the state Department of Children, Youth and Families – and there have been many over the years – have usually come after tragedies involving deaths of children in state care.

In this case the call for the audit comes after House Speaker K. Joseph Shekarchi and the House Finance Committee agreed to spend more on DCYF in next year’s budget – earmarked mostly for additional front-line workers – than Gov. Dan McKee requested. Read more here.


General Teamsters Local 251 Facebook: Teamsters Local 251 Members at Praxair Unanimously Ratify New Contract

On Sunday June 13, Teamster members at Praxair unanimously voted to ratify a new 3 year deal. Members maintained their strong Teamster pension and Teamster healthcare. With the merger of Praxair and Linde, and expanded operations by the company in the region, members were unsure of how negotiations would go. They stood united and ratified another strong contract.
Strong job protections were maintained, with gains made in vacation bidding, solid wage increases and a reduced new hire progression.


Teamsters Local 251 Observes Juneteenth by Protesting at Home of Boss

Workers at Johnson Brothers of RI Demand a Fair Contract

(Mendon, MA) – Workers who have been on strike against Johnson Brothers of Rhode Island since May 26th marked the new federal holiday, Juneteenth by protesting at the home of their boss today. Johnson Brothers of RI is the exclusive distributor of Gallo Wine products in the Ocean State. Teamsters Local 251 has been negotiating a first contract with the company since November 2020.

The workers gathered at Johnson Brothers of Rhode Island President Keith Miranda’s home early this morning. They wore their strike signs, carried Black Lives Matter signs, chanted and gave flyers out describing their struggle in the exclusive Mendon, MA neighborhood.

“This small group of 12 workers is comprised predominantly of people of color. As we celebrate the emancipation of Black Americans on Juneteenth for the first time as a federal holiday, the truth of the matter is we still have corporate enslavement in America,” said Teamsters Local 251 Business Agent, Matt Maini.

“Some of these workers make as little as $15 per hour. How does Johnson Brothers expect them to pay up to $20,000 per year in premiums and out of pocket expenses for a family medical plan, put food on the table, keep a roof over their head and save for retirement with wages like that?” asked Matt Taibi, Teamsters Local 251 Secretary-Treasurer. “Before the strike even began one of the workers was already homeless. Another was living in an apartment with minimal furniture, very little food in the refrigerator, had to take out loans to stave off evictions, and took buses to get to work,” he said. Read more here.


Smithfield Firefighters IAFF Local 2050 Facebook:

E2 & R2 visited Generations Adult Day Health Center earlier this week while they participated in field day. We had several visitors come visit our trucks learning about what we carry on our trucks. Thank you Generations Adult Day Health Center for allowing us to take part in field day!


AFL-CIO: AFL-CIO Commends Biden Administration on Making Juneteenth a Federal Holiday

Statement from AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka and AFL-CIO Civil, Human and Women’s Rights Director Clayola Brown on Juneteenth, the holiday commemorating the official freeing of the last enslaved Black people in the United States:

Today’s historic signing by President Biden making Juneteenth a federal holiday is a recognition of Black power and a reflection of America’s ongoing journey to tell our nation’s story. As we honor the sacred Juneteenth holiday that celebrates Black resilience and joy, America’s labor movement will continue to use our voice to lift up and learn from the Black experience. We must be a voice for all who live and work in the United States and to say out loud the names of those who were taken from us by racist violence.

Though explicit slavery has been abolished for more than 150 years, the exploitation of Black labor continues to this day through a systemically racist economy designed to promote wage disparity in the workplace and the chronic unemployment, underemployment and economic exploitation of Black people. America’s labor movement must remain at the tip of the spear to uproot systemic racism in all forms if we seek to fully uphold our nation’s promise of dignity for Black people.

Contact: Carolyn Bobb (202) 637-5018


AFL-CIO: Memorandum from President Richard Trumka

This past year, the need for food relief was greater than ever—and so was our determination to help. Throughout this pandemic, we have stepped up to help union members and struggling families keep food on their tables. We’re doing what the labor movement does best: joining together in solidarity, lifting each other up and serving our communities.

The AFL-CIO is proud to partner again with the National Association of Letter Carriers (NALC) for the Stamp Out Hunger food drive campaign. Because of continued safety concerns, this year’s food drive was unable to happen as it usually does in May.

NALC is asking members of the community to participate by donating food directly to food banks in their area. Simply go to www.nalc.org/community-service/ food-drive/2021-donor-drive, select your state and find the food banks in your area.

I urge all of you to help promote the Stamp Out Hunger campaign among your union members and affiliates. Should you have any questions, please contact Kristie Small at ksmall@aflcio.org.

I recognize and thank each of you for your incredible efforts to support our members and your communities this past year. Your determination and courage is inspiring.

***Local Food Bank: Rhode Island Community Food Bank, 200 Niantic Avenue, Providence, RI 02907


Economic Policy Institute: Employer misclassification of workers as independent contractors deprives millions of their rights

Misclassification, the ABC test, and employee statusThe California experience and its relevance to current policy debates

Introduction

The determination of whether an individual performing services is treated as an employee or an independent contractor carries significant consequences for workers, businesses, and governments. In the United States, workers who are classified as independent contractors:

  • are not covered by worker protection laws such as wage and hour laws, anti-discrimination laws, and laws providing collective bargaining rights
  • do not receive unemployment benefits when temporarily jobless
  • do not receive workers’ compensation when injured on the job
  • are responsible for paying the full payroll tax contribution to federal Social Security and Medicare programs

This publication was created in collaboration with the Friedrich-Ebert Foundation. In contrast, employers are responsible for covering payroll tax and social insurance costs, and providing these worker protections, for workers classified as employees. Thus, classifying workers as independent contractors both deprives these workers of workplace protections and imposes significant costs, resulting in considerable cost savings for employers, as they are able to shift these costs onto workers and avoid making payments to government tax and social insurance programs. Read more here.




UPCOMING EVENTS:

RICOSH COVID Chronicles: Role of Ventilation and Filtration in Controlling COVID-19

Time: Friday, June 25, 2021 @ 2:00 PM via Zoom

Join from PC, Mac, Linux, iOS or Android: https://aflcio.zoom.us/j/86462261420?pwd=NjdyTFo4NHNkZ1NHVEx1aHJxTHIrUT09

Meeting ID: 864 6226 1420, Password: 997593

Or Telephone: 888-844-9904, Conference code: 688346


20th Annual London/Riley Memorial Golf Tournament

Date: Monday, August 2, 2021

Where: Cranston Country Club, Cranston, RI

More information: LondonRiley.org


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 up 24 hours a day at: Johnson Brothers of RI 120 Moscrip Ave North Kingstown RI 02852 Key times are 7:30-9 am and 4-6 pm.

More information here.



Are you following us on Social Media? Click on the links below.

FaceBook

Twitter

Instagram

Visit our website for more information, news and events.



If you want a voice on the job or to build a better workplace, click the here to start organizing and taking action.


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

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

More Info on Labor Vision:
Website: http://www.LaborVisionRI.org
FaceBook: @LaborVisionRI
Twitter: @LaborVisionRI
Instagram: LaborVisionRI
YouTube: LaborVisionTV1

e-news: june 17, 2021

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.


WPRI Channel 12: McKee signs 20-year gambling contract with IGT, Bally’s

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — Gov. Dan McKee signed a bill Friday that gives gaming technology company IGT and Twin River owner Bally’s Corp. control of most of Rhode Island’s gambling operations for the next 20 years.

In exchange for the no-bid contract, both companies have committed to creating more jobs in the state.

“This legislation represents $250 million in economic development that includes securing 1,100 well-paying jobs right here in the state of Rhode Island,” McKee said.

Both House Speaker Joe Shekarchi and Senate President Dominick Ruggerio backed the deal once amendments were made last month, saying it’s critical to protecting local jobs and preserving one of the state’s largest revenue streams. Read more here.


Teamsters: New England Waste Workers Unite to Win Strong Contract at Veolia Water

Waste workers for Veolia Water in Fall River, Mass., have voted overwhelmingly to ratify an excellent three-year agreement after a hard-fought campaign to win respect at the bargaining table. The new contract raises wages, secures health and welfare, provides a retention bonus and other improvements for the members of Local 251 in East Providence, R.I.

“We’ve always been willing to bargain and work with the company on certain aspects of the contract, but this time it was different, and we were united to win a fair contract,” said Howard Paine, an 11-year maintenance worker at Veolia Water and steward for Local 251. “When they realized we were serious about striking, the company began to take us seriously. I am grateful to the guys for their solidarity. We all stuck together and it’s the best contract we’ve ever had.”

Paine noted that he and his co-workers refused to accept Veolia Water’s concessions, which included switching from the Teamsters Health and Welfare plan to the company’s inferior health care plan. Read more here.

General Teamsters Local 251 Facebook:

Members in Fall River, Massachusetts voted overwhelmingly to ratify a strong 3-year agreement after a hard-fought campaign to win respect at the bargaining table!

The new contract raises wages, secures Teamster health and welfare, provides a retention bonus and other improvements for the members.


Providence Journal: Opinion/Clausius-Parks and Katz: It’s time to raise the RI Works benefit amount

Paige Clausius-Parks is a senior policy analyst at Rhode Island KIDS COUNT. Linda Katz is the policy director at the Economic Progress Institute.

While many of us may feel relieved with increasing numbers of vaccinations in RI and the gradual return to our previous lives, many low-income Rhode Islanders continue to face deep economic hardship. This is especially true for Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC), children in low-income communities, and families headed by women. Historical policies rooted in racism — policies that have barred and continue to limit access to wealth-producing opportunities — have left these communities disproportionately exposed and vulnerable to the COVID-19 pandemic and to the subsequent economic downturn.

Rhode Island Works, our state’s version of the federal Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program, is designed to help very low-income families meet their basic needs by providing cash assistance and work supports, including employment services, SNAP benefits, health insurance, subsidized childcare, and a small annual clothing allowance for children. The maximum monthly benefit for a family of three is $554 per month. This benefit amount provides $6 per person per day and has not been increased in 30 years. Read more here.


SEIU, Local 580: Time is Now

Take 60 seconds to sign up to send a pre-filled  email (option to edit) that will seamlessly send automated email to your state senator and state representative.  

DCYF is understaffed and underfunded putting the lives of DCYF children at risk. Support DCYF to get accredited.

In 2010, legislation was passed  “to provide the resources for the department of children, youth, and families to meet, achieve and sustain accreditation by the Council on Accreditation” and “the general assembly shall appropriate sufficient funds for expenses associated with achieving initial COA accreditation and subsequent re-accreditation with said funds being placed in a restricted receipt account to be used solely for this purpose.”

In 2010, this law was voted for by every legislator and the Governor. However, the law was not implemented.

Since this time there have been child fatalities and a Children’s Rights class action lawsuit that exposed our broken child welfare system that highlighted children falling through the cracks to due excessive caseloads, being understaffed, amongst other systemic failures. A lawsuit settlement agreement mandated by a federal consent decree to overhaul the DCYF system. At this time 9 out of 12 benchmarks of the consent decree have still not been met despite years gone by. Read more here.


UA Local 51Facebook:
Local 51 is proud to introduce the graduated classes of 2020 & 2021! Congratulations to all the Apprentices who finished their schooling! Thank you to the family and friends who joined us for a fun filled evening at Kempenaar’s Clambake Club! We would also like to thank the JATC committee for their continued dedication to our Training program.

View Pictures


Cranston Firefighters Twitter: Cranston firefighters getting ready for the Gaspee Day Parade @GaspeeDay.


North Kingstown Firefighters Facebook:

View Pictures

On Saturday members on North Kingstown Fire Department Marine 5 along with Newport RI Fire Department Newport Firefighters IAFF Local 1080 and Portsmouth Fire Dept Portsmouth Rhode Island Firefighters gathered under the Newport Bridge to conduct a water cannon salute to the U.S. Coast Guard Northeast U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Sycamore U.S. Coast Guard Station Castle Hill U.S. Coast Guard Air Station Cape Cod as they escorted one of their own for a burial at sea. It was an honor and a privilege to be part of this event, fair winds and following seas Chief Petty Officer Marquard, Rest In Peace.



Vox: Poll: A majority of voters support the PRO Act

The Protecting the Right to Organize (PRO) Act seems unlikely to succeed in the Senate due to a lack of Republican support — but it has the support of the majority of likely voters, according to a new poll from Vox and Data for Progress.

The act, a sweeping labor rights bill, would strengthen unions through overriding Republican-led “right to work” state laws, which impede unions’ abilities by allowing workers to join without paying dues. It would also penalize companies that restrict union activity, and would bestow independent contractors — such as drivers for Uber and Lyft — with the right to organize and collectively bargain.

The bill passed the House in March, with the support of just five Republicans and all but one Democrat. It has the support of President Joe Biden, and is part of his American Jobs Plan. Now, the bill faces long odds in the Senate, where all 50 Democrats and 10 Republicans, absent filibuster reform, would need to approve of the legislation for it to pass.

Read more here.



UPCOMING EVENTS:
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 up 24 hours a day at: Johnson Brothers of RI 120 Moscrip Ave North Kingstown RI 02852 Key times are 7:30-9 am and 4-6 pm.

More information here.



Are you following us on Social Media? Click on the links below.

FaceBook

Twitter

Instagram

Visit our website for more information, news and events.



If you want a voice on the job or to build a better workplace, click the here to start organizing and taking action.


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

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

More Info on Labor Vision:
Website: http://www.LaborVisionRI.org
FaceBook: @LaborVisionRI
Twitter: @LaborVisionRI
Instagram: LaborVisionRI
YouTube: LaborVisionTV1

e-news: june 10, 2021

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.


Providence Business News: CRMC approves South Fork Wind Farm with fewer turbines and $5.2M payout

SOUTH KINGSTOWN – State coastal regulators have signed off on the South Fork Wind Farm project, providing the number of turbines is reduced and a compensation fund for local fishermen is set up.

The R.I. Coastal Resources Management Council’s 5-2 vote on Wednesday night ends a monthslong series of failed negotiations between the developer and fishing industry representatives, whose dispute centered on details of how the industry should be compensated for losses. Even on Wednesday, the latest CRMC staff recommendation attempting to strike a compromise between the two sides appeared to drive them further apart.

South Fork is being jointly developed by Danish company Orsted A/S and Boston-based Eversource Energy. Once completed, it will supply electricity to Long Island, N.Y.

The 132-megawatt wind farm slated for federal waters off the coast of Block Island still requires final approval from the U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management. While the process for leasing and reviewing major offshore wind turbines largely rests at the federal level, the CRMC through its Ocean Special Area Management Plan gets a say for wind farm projects within a certain distance of the state coastline. Compensation is intended to offset losses to the fishing industry from the construction and operation of the projects. Read more.



RICOSH Worksite Solutions:

Beat the Heat: Elements of a Heat-Healthy Program

NWS Northeast Region issues heat advisories when the heat index is forecast to reach 95 degrees for any amount of time on two or more consecutive days or 100 degrees for any amount of time on a single day. Exposure to heat combined with physical activity and other factors in the environment can increase the body’s temperature and cause heat stress. The body responds to heat stress by trying to stabilize body temperature, a process which can lead to heat strain and more significant impacts like heat exhaustion and heat stroke which can be fatal. Unrelieved heat strain increases the risk for heat-related illness. Heat stress and heat strain can also increase risk of injuries from dizziness or falls.

Many factors impact heat stress and heat strain, including air temperature, humidity, exposure to radiant sources and equipment, clothing, physical exertion, and hydration. This is a simple checklist to plan ahead but for more detail and more specific guidance consult the CDC website {www.cdc.gov.} and the OSHA website (www.OSHA.gov.)

  Elements of Heat-Healthy Program for Workers:

·       Download OSHA-NIOSH APP Heat Safety Tool. [Real-time heat index and hourly forecasts, specific to your location, with safety recommendations from OSHA/NIOSH.]

·       Regular hydration (fluid intake) is vital. But water and sports drink intake alone will not prevent heat illnesses. It is also important to adjust the work environment and regimen.

·       Take frequent rest breaks. If you work outdoors try to take these breaks inside or in a cool shaded area. The hotter it gets, take more and longer breaks.

·       Schedule heavy work at cooler times.

Read more.


Teamsters Local 251 Driving School Facebook:

View Pictures This may be one of our biggest Facebook posts in regards to the amount of pictures we are sharing. We are very excited and proud of every single one of our recent graduates and they all have two things in common; 1. They were trained by some of the industry’s best and most qualified trainers; the Teamsters! 2. They are all Real Jobs/Back to Work RI participants that are all back on their feet after a long and stressful year during the pandemic. As you scroll through the photos we would have been remiss if we didn’t recognize every one of them individually.


The Kent County Daily Times: Town recognizes USPS employee for response to medical emergency

WEST WARWICK — Juana Palacios was making her rounds one afternoon earlier this year, distributing mail on Alden Drive in West Warwick, when she noticed a resident in need of emergency medical attention.

If not for her quick response, the situation may have ended in tragedy.

A letter carrier with the United States Postal Service, Palacios had been making her deliveries on March 3 when she happened across a man laying in his lawn, semi-conscious and foaming at the mouth, according to the local postmaster.

“[She] showed up to a resident’s house to find the customer unconscious on the front lawn in just a T-shirt. It was about 35 degrees that day,” Todd Rekrut, postmaster for the Town of West Warwick, said Thursday. “That person was in some serious distress.”

After getting no verbal response from the resident, Palacios immediately called 911 and then waited until the West Warwick Fire Department arrived to transport him to the hospital, where he later recovered.Read more.


Narragansett Fire Department Facebook:

WATCH VIDEO

Today the Narragansett Fire Dept. officially welcomed a new firetruck to its fleet by performing a traditional wet down and push-in ceremony. This tradition dates back to the early days of horse drawn equipment when the firefighters upon returning from an alarm pushed back the pumper into the fire house bay.

The new Engine-1 is a 2021 Ferrara Igniter pumper. Engine-2 a 2005 Ferrara will be placed in reserve while former reserve Engine-4 a 1997 E-One pumper will be decommissioned and retired – it has served us well for many years and provided one final wet down of the new pumper followed by a blessing from our Fire Chaplain Fr. Marcel Taillon.

Every detail of this new custom built Rescue Pumper was carefully planned to meet the ever expanding needs of our community and the services our firefighters provide.

Thank you to all those NFD members who had a hand in the planning of this truck; special thanks to the residence and citizens of this community who support such projects and continually recognize the great work that the men and women of this department perform day in and day out.

May this fire truck provide the best and safest possible service for our firefighters and the citizens we protect.- Chief Partington


Ironworkers, Local 37 Facebook:

2021 Martin T. Byrne Scholarship Fund Golf Tournament

View pictures here.


AFL-CIO: Trumka: Expansion of TSA Collective Bargaining Rights Is a Critical Victory
June 3, 2021

Statement from AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka on the expansion of union rights for Transportation Security Administration (TSA) employees:

In the nearly two decades since the 9/11 attacks, the working people of the TSA have been tasked with keeping our skies safe. For more than a year, these front-line workers have carried out that duty in the midst of unprecedented threats to their health and safety. Yet time and again, they have been denied their most fundamental rights on the job. Today’s announcement is a critical victory for tens of thousands of hardworking union members and will finally allow TSA workers to bargain for their future like other federal workers. We urge TSA’s leadership to immediately come to the table to reach a fair contract, and we call on Congress to finally codify these workers’ bargaining rights into law by passing the Rights for the TSA Workforce Act.
Contact: Carolyn Bobb (202) 637-5018


AFL-CIO Facebook:

AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka joined Bloomberg TV to discuss the latest jobs report and the keys to building back a stronger economy the right way.

Watch video.


Labor 411: How Sweet it is! Union Goodies for National Candy Month

June happens to be National Candy Month and if you’re thinking, ‘Who needs a specially designated month to enjoy the sweet stuff’ you’re not alone. But we don’t make these holidays. We just make sure that people observe them as ethically as possible. You have choices when you peruse the candy aisle and the goodies listed below are made by companies who treat their workers fairly and give them a voice on the job. So eat sweets, buy union, and let’s all work together to build a stronger America. See list.



UPCOMING EVENTS:
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 up 24 hours a day at: Johnson Brothers of RI 120 Moscrip Ave North Kingstown RI 02852 Key times are 7:30-9 am and 4-6 pm.

More information here.



Are you following us on Social Media? Click on the links below.

FaceBook

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Instagram

Visit our website for more information, news and events.



If you want a voice on the job or to build a better workplace, click the here to start organizing and taking action.


Coming up on Labor Vision

Erica Hammond sits down with Kristina Contreras-Fox (RI Coalition to End Homelessness), Alex West (SouthCoast Fair Housing), and Autumn Guillotte (RI AFL-CIO) in our first segment addressing the housing crisis in Rhode Island. RI experienced a major win last month, during Fair Housing month, when legislation addressing housing discrimination based on source of income was signed into law. The group discusses the protection this law will give to Rhode Islanders seeking housing who use a voucher or another valid source of income other than employment income to pay their rent.

The group highlights additional anti-discrimination protections that are already federal or state law in RI that many individuals are unaware of. They will also address two important pieces of legislation that have been introduced in RI this session regarding immigration status, and sexual orientation and gender identity or expression.

In this segment the group also discusses the major lack of housing affecting Rhode Islanders across the state and the impact this has on homelessness, unemployment, job security, and wages. Kristina Contreras-Fox explains exactly how RI can join its neighboring states in establishing a permeant funding stream for affordable housing throughout the state. Don’t miss this segment to learn more about the impact the housing crisis has on all Rhode Islanders.

The Labor Vision at Home Edition continues. Check out the latest episodes on our website: http://www.LaborVisionRI.org. Never miss a segment. Like us on Facebook, follow us on Instagram and Twitter (@LaborVisionRI), and subscribe to our YouTube channel (LaborVisionTV1).

More Info on Labor Vision:
Website: http://www.LaborVisionRI.org
FaceBook: @LaborVisionRI
Twitter: @LaborVisionRI
Instagram: LaborVisionRI
YouTube: LaborVisionTV1

e-news: June 3, 2021

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.


Providence Journal: McKee signs bill setting highest staff-to-patient mandate in nation for RI nursing homes

PROVIDENCE — Gov. Dan McKee on Thursday signed into law a nursing-home staffing mandate that loomed large over the 2020 elections amid an aggressive drive by the Services Employees International Union to oust any state lawmaker unwilling to commit.

While the nursing-home industry warned legislators the mandate would result in closures, advocates of the legislation said it would prevent residents from having to endure long waits for care and boost the wages of currently overstretched staff.

“Today we take a step forward for staff, residents and their families,” McKee said during the signing ceremony outside the State House. “Stronger staffing standards and [more] funding for direct care staff will help raise the bar on resident care in our state.”

“I am so excited to see this day finally come,” said Adelina Ramos, a certified nursing assistant at the Genesis Healthcare nursing home in Greenville.

“More staff will be such a relief in our bodies, minds and spirits,” she said. “It will allow us to focus on better care … and by raising wages we will be able to attract more care-givers to the field who will know their work is valued and fairly compensated.” Read more here.


Watch the signing of the Nursing Home Staffing and Quality Care Act at the State House on May 27th.

Watch video here.


SEIU Local 1199 Facebook:

Last week, the Nursing Home Staffing and Quality Care Act became the law. This was the culmination of years of work by 1199 members, nursing home caregivers, family members, residents and community allies. We still have work to do to continue improving our nursing homes and winning the wages and benefits nursing home workers deserve but this is a MAJOR VICTORY in raising the bar for resident care.


United Way of RI: Reaching a Livable Wage, a Community First Conversation

Watch last week’s Community First Conversation about getting to a livable wage in Rhode Island. Leaders of our state’s labor, housing, and finance communities shared what they’re doing to increase income for Rhode Island workers and how you can advocate for a livable wage for Rhode Islanders. Host:
– Kyle Bennett | Director, Policy and Equity, United Way of Rhode Island Guests:
– George Nee | President, Rhode Island AFL-CIO
– Melina Lodge | Executive Director, Housing Network of Rhode Island
– Representative from Bank of America


Green Energy Consumers Alliance

Spring Meeting breakout 2021! Join Kai Salem of Green Energy Consumers Alliance and Patrick Crowley of the Rhode Island AFL-CIO for a 30 minute discussion of how labor & climate groups are working together in RI. After a short presentation, an excellent discussion highlights how we can ensure a just transition to a low-carbon future. Watch video here.


Providence Journal: RI Senate passes IGT contract deal; bill heads to McKee’s desk

The long gambling-business relationship between International Game Technology, the company formerly known as Twin River and Rhode Island is on the verge of getting 20 years longer.

The state Senate on Tuesday gave final General Assembly approval to legislation extending IGT’s role as lottery technology provider and giving Bally’s, formerly Twin River, a share of the slot machine market.

The final vote was 28 to 7. Four Democrats joined three Republicans in voting against the bill.

The bill now goes to Gov. Dan McKee, who has said he supports it.

In exchange for exclusive control of lottery technology through 2043, the legislation requires the IGT-led partnership to employ at least 1,100 people in Rhode Island and make a $27-million upfront payment to the state. Read more here.


Clovis Gregor is the RI AFL-CIO’s endorsed candidate for Pawtucket City Council, Ward 5. Clovis is also endorsed by the Democratic Ward 5 City Committee and supported by State Representatives Barros and Tobon and Senator Kallman who represent the district. By working as a team and having influence with current elected officials, Clovis will be an effective leader for the district. Clovis Gregor will be a hands-on City Councilman. He will lead the beginning of his term by fighting to expedite renovations at Baldwin School, Re-open the West Ave. Fire Station and increase safety in our neighborhoods. Clovis is running to serve the working families of Pawtucket. Election Day (June 8th) is only a week away! For the past month, Clovis and his team of volunteers have been knocking on doors and calling Pawtucket voters every day, getting the word out about the election. Now we need to make sure that Clovis’s supporters show up to cast their ballots. We need you to sign up to canvass or phone bank! We’ll be knocking doors and making calls every day until Election Day. If you have even just a spare two hours to volunteer this week, please contact Matt Gunnip (President, SEIU Local 580) at 401-486-7719.


Smithfield Firefighters IAFF Local 2050 Facebook:

Members of L2050 spent a couple hours today participating in the “Murph” with @ironcladfitnesscenter . This workout is in memory of Lt. Michael Murphy who was KIA during Operation Red Wing. The workout is consists of a 1 mile run, 100 pull ups, 200 push ups, 300 squats and another 1 mile run to cap it off. Thank you to all the service men and women that have served as well as made the sacrifice for our freedoms. Great work by everyone that participated today.


Local 37 Ironworkers Facebook:

RI Welding at JP Morgan Bank Providence, RI

View pictures here.


National Education Association: We Need to Fix School Buildings Now, Educators Tell Congress

Throughout the pandemic, more Americans have become aware that our school infrastructure is decaying, and that failing HVAC systems, leaky facilities that breed mold, and hazardous old building materials disproportionately harm students of color, students with disabilities, and students in rural counties.

Every student and educator deserves a safe learning and work environment, and educators around the country are speaking out about the conditions they face and how it affects their students.Read more here.



UPCOMING EVENTS:

Today!

Register here.


Green Energy and Consumers Alliance:

A conversation on transportation & equity in RI via Zoom on June 8th at 6:30 p.m.


By addressing the historical harm caused by the transportation system to communities of color, Tribal communities and lower income communities, the Transportation and Climate Initiative Program has the potential to create a new system that is not just healthier and more resilient, but also more equitable.

But this can only happen if the voices of the people disproportionately impacted by the transportation system are heard in developing and implementing the program. Join our panel-led conversation to learn more about the TCI program and to explore how Rhode Island can center equity within its decision-making processes.

The conversation will be led by Vernice Miller-Travis of the Metropolitan Group. Panelists include: Marcela Betancur, Latino Policy Institute; Camilo Viveiros, George Wiley Center; Enrique Sanchez, Olneyville Neighborhood Association; Rochelle Lee, Kennedy Plaza Resilience Coalition; and Pat Crowley, RI AFL-CIO.

Register here.

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 up 24 hours a day at: Johnson Brothers of RI 120 Moscrip Ave North Kingstown RI 02852 Key times are 7:30-9 am and 4-6 pm.

More information here.



Are you following us on Social Media? Click on the links below.

FaceBook

Twitter
Instagram

Visit our website for more information, news and events.



If you want a voice on the job or to build a better workplace, click the here to start organizing and taking action.


Now playing on Labor Vision

The Labor Vision at Home Edition continues. Check out the latest episodes on our website: http://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                                                    
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e-news: May 27, 2021

Press Conference: May 24, 2021

President Nee & Secretary-Treasurer Crowley joined APWU – The American Postal Workers Union local 387 President Jay Marrero and US Senator Jack Reed today to discuss elements of a plan to help strengthen transparency and accountability for Postal Service performance, keep the Postal Service operating in communities nationwide, and ensure it can better serve the American people. The bill will include technology upgrades allowing the Postal Service to develop a public online mail delivery performance dashboard so customers can view on-time delivery metrics by zip code each week.

U.S. Senator Jack Reed Website: Sen. Reed Helps Deliver New Bipartisan Reform Plan to Save the Post Office

Sen. Reed says a bipartisan group of Senate Democrats and Republicans has agreed on a plan to rescue the U.S. Postal Service, put it on path to financial sustainability, and ensure reliable mail service for RI

PROVIDENCE, RI – Rhode Island citizens and businesses rely on the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) to deliver for them. But after the Trump Administration made operational changes to slow the mail, blocked needed funding for the USPS, and hobbled their finances, the Postal Service — which employs roughly 637,000 people, and which Americans count on for their prescriptions, paychecks, utility bills, and letters from loved ones — struggled to do its job.

Today, U.S. Senator Jack Reed joined with local mail carriers outside the Providence Post Office on Corliss Street to demand action to save the USPS.

Senator Reed is backing a new, bipartisan postal reform agreement that will help save the Postal Service and put it on a stronger and more sustainable financial path. Read more here.


Press Release

For Immediate Release: May 21, 2021

The Rhode Island Building & Construction Trades Council Statement on the Providence City Council passing TSA Reform

The Rhode Island Building and Construction Trades Council (RIBCTC) thanks the members of the Providence City Council for their leadership and courage in passing long overdue tax stabilization agreement (TSA) reform. This ordinance, which had lengthy public review, is a victory for the hard-working, skilled men and women who build Providence every day and provides opportunities for minority and women-owned contractors, stronger apprenticeship standards, and a floor for family-supporting wages and benefits.

          Michael F. Sabitoni, RIBCTC President states, “It is finally time for the City of Providence to stand up for working men and women. TSAs can be a useful tool to fuel economic development, but over the years on many occasions they unfortunately have exploited low-wage labor, while boosting project profit. Many TSA-assisted projects are rampant with safety and wage violations, posing a threat to taxpayers and ruining their intended use, to spur economic growth for the entire City. Tax breaks and incentives for development should not come at the expense of hard-working tradespeople building those projects. We thank the City Council for standing strong with working families and we urge Mayor Elorza to sign this ordinance and support the working families of the city of Providence.”

          *The RIB&CTC is a federation of sixteen local trade unions with approximately 10-thousand union craftsmen and craftswomen in the construction industry. The members of the council, all of whom live in and around the Rhode Island area, have been involved in every major construction initiative-private or public-undertaken in and around the State of Rhode Island for nearly a century.

*For more information contact Michael F. Sabitoni at 401.331.9682 or msabitoni@local271.org        


Providence Journal: RI governor signs bill increasing minimum wage over the next 4 years

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — Gov. Dan McKee signed legislation on Thursday that will increase Rhode Island’s minimum wage to $15 over a four-year period.

“It’s just common sense, right? Especially as we’re dealing with coming out of the COVID-19, and knowing how important the people who are working in our small businesses are to our small businesses,” McKee remarked Thursday morning.

“If there was ever a time that we know that that’s true, it’s true,” he added

The state’s minimum wage has been $11.50 since last October when former Gov. Gina Raimondo signed a bill that raised wages by $1.

“Raising the minimum wage will benefit thousands of workers, and we need this progress now more than ever,” McKee said.

According to McKee, the R.I. Department of Labor and Training estimates the new law will raise wages for approximately 70,000 workers by 2022, and approximately 140,000 workers by 2025.

“The boost in wages will go back into our local community, supporting small businesses in all of the 39 cities and towns that we call home,” McKee added. Read more here.


SEIU 1199 Facebook:

BREAKING: The Rhode Island Senate just voted to pass The Nursing Home Staffing and Quality Care Act. This legislation, which has now passed the General Assembly, raises the bar on nursing home care and will improve the lives of thousands of seniors and people with disabilities while providing a pathway out of poverty for dedicated frontline caregivers who are disproportionately women of color. It would not have happened without the hard work and dedication of countless individuals over the years demanding that safe staffing become a reality. Now we need Governor McKee to sign this bill into LAW.


A well thought out Op-Ed in this week’s Projo pertaining to Tax Stabilization Agreements (TSAs).

Providence Journal Op-Ed: City must level tax breaks for developers

Vennicia Kingston and Jose Marcano Guest columnists Recently, state leaders named racism as a public health threat, and even closer to home, the City of Providence released a comprehensive report on systemic racism in our city. It’s encouraging that leaders are looking for ways to tackle historical inequities baked into our policies and underwritten by our tax dollars. One clear next step for Providence city councilors to take: ensure a more equitable Providence by reforming how the city approves tax breaks for developers.

The Providence Tax Stabilization Investment ordinance would standardize the processes for future tax incentives for developers. Along the way, the reform would simplify an often convoluted, opaque process and add needed transparency by clearly defining the requirements that all developers must follow to get a tax break from the people of Providence. The proposed legislation’s appeal is that it not only protects the city’s financial interests, but also encourages new development by creating a system that’s more predictable, measurable, and accountable. Read more here.


Tweets of the Week:


General Teamsters, Local 251 Facebook:

Picket lines are up 24 hours a day at: Johnson Brothers of RI, 120 Moscrip Ave., North Kingstown RI 02852 A year ago, they were heroes. They deserve better treatment!

Let Johnson Brothers know about your concerns: 651-649-5800 Corporate l 401-583-0050 Rhode Island.

View list of Gallo wines here.



Labor 411:

On Memorial Day, we remember the brave servicemen and women who made the ultimate sacrifice in service of our great nation. The holiday and the accompanying weekend is an opportunity for friends and family to prepare for summer. Although the calendar says it may officially still be spring, once Memorial Day weekend arrives, vacations and summertime fun are just around the corner. That means barbecues, picnics, sunshine and lots of outdoor activities, following all of the appropriate health guidelines, of course. To get the party started, we have listed some of our favorite food and accessories. Even better, the items below are all made by ethical companies who treat their workers with respect and give them a voice on the job.

Happy Memorial Day and let’s all work together to build a stronger America.

View list here.

***Remember to purchase your food and beverages from Stop & Shop, Shaws and Eastside Marketplace where our union members work.



UPCOMING EVENTS:

TODAY @ 2 p.m.

United Way of Rhode Island

Getting to a Livable Wage in Rhode Island, A Community First Conversation Join us for a Community First Conversation about getting to a livable wage in Rhode Island. Leaders of our state’s labor, housing, and finance communities will share what they’re doing to increase income for Rhode Island workers and how you can advocate for a livable wage for Rhode Islanders. Host:
Kyle Bennett | Director, Policy and Equity, United Way of Rhode Island Guests:
George Nee | President, Rhode Island AFL-CIO
Melina Lodge | Executive Director, Housing Network of Rhode Island
– Representative from Bank of America

Register here.



Are you following us on Social Media? Click on the links below.

FaceBook

Twitter

Instagram

Visit our website for more information, news and events.



If you want a voice on the job or to build a better workplace, click the here to start organizing and taking action.


Now playing on Labor Vision

The Labor Vision at Home Edition continues. Check out the latest episodes on our website: http://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