Category Archives: Uncategorized

E-News: April 21, 2022

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

Here is the direct link—-> Union Directory

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



Attorney General Peter F. Neronha: East Providence contractor charged with stealing over $93,000 in employee wages stemming from school construction work

PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Attorney General Peter F. Neronha announced that the owner of a Rhode Island-based construction company was arraigned in Providence Superior Court on felony and misdemeanor charges following an investigation by the Office of the Attorney General and the Department of Labor and Training into allegations that he stole over $93,000 in wages from workers during the construction and renovation of RISE Prep Mayoral Academy in Woonsocket in 2018 and 2019.

Marcos Mutz (age 48), the owner of the now defunct M. Mutz Construction, is charged with one count of obtaining money under false pretenses over $1,500, one count of unlawful appropriation over $1,000, one count of providing false certified payroll documents, and 12 misdemeanor counts of wage theft.

Under Rhode Island law, wage theft violations, unlike all other theft crimes, are misdemeanor crimes regardless of the amount in wages implicated. Attorney General Neronha has repeatedly introduced legislation to make such crimes a felony in Rhode Island, as they are in other states.

As alleged in court filings, the defendant is accused of failing to pay approximately $93,643 in wages to 12 former workers for work they performed during the construction and renovation of RISE Prep Mayoral Academy in Woonsocket between September 2018 and October 2019. During that time, M. Mutz Construction performed work as a subcontractor under Case Construction Company, the construction manager of the project. Read more here.


Wage theft affects workers in all industries and making it a felony is pro-worker, pro-business, and pro-taxpayer.

Watch video here.


The Brown Daily Herald: GLO files unfair labor practice charges over funding cuts

The Graduate Labor Organization filed three unfair labor practice charges against the University with the National Labor Relations Board in response to its cuts to top-up funds — payments to graduate student workers above their base stipends to ensure competitive compensation — in the Department of Earth, Environmental and Planetary Sciences and the Department of Computer Science. GLO alleges the cuts represent bad-faith bargaining, retaliation against protected practices and direct dealing with employees on the part of the University, GLO Communications Coordinator Kate Clark GS said.
In its protests earlier this month, GLO alleged that the University forced the cutting of top-up funds by reducing budget allocations, The Herald previously reported.

Bad-faith bargaining

GLO’s first new charge with the NLRB alleges that the University engaged in bad-faith bargaining in its negotiations with the union. Bad-faith bargaining can encompass a number of violations, ranging from failing to negotiate with the union before making workplace changes to obstructing the bargaining process, according to the NLRB website.

In this case, GLO representatives claimed that the University unfairly bypassed the union in cutting top-up payments without discussion during bargaining. Read more here.


RI Building & Construction Trades Council Twitter:

President Sabitoni & RIBCTC with AFL-CIO President Liz Shuler @OurMovementOurMoment


UFCW 328 Twitter:

What better way to celebrate 4/20 than by showing support for Greenleaf workers in Portsmouth, RI! Visit https://linktr.ee/respect4greenleafworkers to see the ways you can tell company owner Seth Bock to stop the retaliation and to bargain in good faith #420day #cannabisworkersrising


Join us in support of SEIU, 1199 Healthcare for an informational picket at Blackstone Valley Community Health Center, 1000 Broad Street, Central Falls, RI on Monday, April 25, 2022 from 4 – 6PM (Speaking program at 5PM).

View flyer larger here.


SEIU 580: DHS Crisis: Backlogs Due To Unfilled (Already Funded) Frontline Worker Vacancies

Take less than 60 seconds to send, with two clicks, a pre-filled (option to edit) email, that will go directly to your state senator, state representative requesting legislative oversight hearings and the Governor’s office urging to fill all DHS frontline vacancies!

Let’s show our DHS members solidarity, by taking just 60 seconds to get DHS frontline worker vacancies filled!

The time is now to act!

The legislature is critically close to making final budget decisions and wrapping up the legislative session. Crushing caseloads due to unnecessary vacancies are impacting RI’s most vulnerable populations. Unless quickly, the legislature provides pressure through oversight hearings and we provide direct pressure to the Governor, lives will be further devastated and the system will be decimated.

Click here.


AFL-CIO: TAKE ACTION: Building a Better America

The Building a Better America plan puts working families first by solving problems we face every day:

  • Investing in clean energy and manufacturing jobs, right here in the United States.
  • Accessing better health care and lower prescription drug costs.
  • Lifting up our future generations with affordable, quality child care and investments in education.
  • Supporting the right to organize, providing real penalties on companies that violate the rights of working people organizing together.

While the Senate played political games, working people struggled for years. It’s time for your senators to do their jobs and help America’s working people.

Sign petition here.


WBUR: AFL-CIO, president Liz Shuler on the future of America’s labor movement

Liz Shuler is the first woman ever elected president of the AFL-CIO.

She took over a time when the world of work has been turned upside down.

Union organizing is happening in some unexpected places, and sometimes in ways that disrupt the traditional union playbook.

“If you have established unions, it’s great to have their support,” Brett Daniels, an Amazon union organizer, said. “But if they’re not the ones that are actually on the inside, maybe workers can’t relate to that as much, because who knows the warehouse conditions better than Amazon workers themselves?”

Today, On Point: A conversation with AFL-CIO president Liz Shuler.

Guest

Liz Shuler, AFL-CIO president. (@lizshuler)

Full Show Transcript

MEGHNA CHAKRABARTI: This is On Point, I’m Meghna Chakrabarti. In 1955, the American Federation of Labor and the Congress of Industrial Organizations merged to form the AFL-CIO, the largest federation of unions in America. Separately, the two labor organizations date back further to the 19th century. From 1955 to 2005, AFL-CIO member unions represented nearly all organized workers in the United States.

Union membership peaked in 1979, when the AFL-CIO counted nearly 20 million members. Women have consistently played a critical role in the labor movement. Their influence grew as their presence in the labor market grew, as union member Wanda Garrett describes in the 1981 documentary A Time of Challenge. Read more here.




IUPAT:



UPCOMING EVENTS:

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


The contest is open to any union member who sees their work as a “climate job” – whether you’re driving or fixing electric buses, working on wind turbines, teaching students about the climate crisis, cleaning up after climate-related disasters, working on green buildings, installing solar, operating water systems, or anything that relates to climate change.Learn more and submit your photos before April 22 here: https://www.climatejobsphotocontest.org/

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RICOSH:

Workers’ Memorial observances will begin on April 23rd and continue through May 1. Across the country and around the globe, we’ll see vigils and events to honor workers who have been killed, injured, and suffered occupational illness.

RICOSH is coordinating with the New England Roundtable event on Wednesday, April 27th @ 9.

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United Way of RI Celebrating Health Event

More information.

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

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

RI State House, 2nd floor

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

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

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

Fighting for freedom at home and abroad: The story of Boilermakers Local 308 and the
end of Jim Crow unions

Date:

Monday, June 6, 2022

Speaker:

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

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TEAMSTERS, Local 251

SOLIDARITY WITH JOHNSON BROTHERS WORKERS

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

Picket lines are at:

Johnson Brothers of Rhode Island

120 Moscrip Ave

North Kingstown RI 02852

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

Let Johnson Brothers know about your concerns at:

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

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

More information here.



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.


LABOR VISION

Coming up on Labor Vision

Show host Autumn Guillotte sits down with the RI Building & Construction Trades Women’s Council to talk about their work to create a community for women on the jobs. Board members Vennicia Kingston, Darche Hood, and Devyn Maher talk about the experience of women in the trades, leadership, diversity, and the changing culture in a male dominated industry.

You can reach out to the women’s council at riwomencaucus@gmail.com

Read more here:

– Building Futures – https://www.bfri.org/women-in-the-trades/

– Tradeswomen are organizing together in the Women’s Council – https://www.bfri.org/ritradeswomencouncil/

~~~~~

Never miss a segment!

Like us on Facebook, follow us on Instagram and Twitter (@LaborVisionRI), and subscribe to our YouTube channel (LaborVisionTV1). https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ozCVw and you can always find us on our website at https://laborvisionri.org/

E-NEWS: APRIL 7, 2022

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

Here is the direct link—-> Union Directory

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


Providence Journal: Rattled by RIPTA breach that affected 22,000, lawmakers propose policy changes

Lawmakers say that last year’s breach of Rhode Island Public Transit Authority computer systems highlighted glaring problems with the way the state responds to the theft of people’s personal data.

About 22,000 former and current state employees were affected by the breach, which occurred when hackers got hold of unsecured files containing years’ worth of health insurance billing data.The incident sparked widespread frustration, and Sen. Louis DiPalma, D-Middletown, and others hope that the result will be concrete policy changes.

“Let’s seize this opportunity,” DiPalma said.

DiPalma’s bill, S 2664, is designed to expand the protections and reporting requirements outlined in the Identity Theft Protection Act of 2015. A companion bill, H 7884, was introduced in the House by Rep. Terri Cortvriend, D-Middletown.

Everything that’s in the bill is a result of the oversight hearing we had,” DiPalma told The Providence Journal, referring to a Senate Oversight Committee hearing that he chaired in February, in which RIPTA officials and the state’s Department of Information Technology were grilled about what had gone wrong. Read more here.


The Boston Globe: Starbucks workers trying to form union in Rhode Island

Workers at the coffee chain’s location on Pace Boulevard in Warwick on Wednesday announced their intention to unionize. It’s the first store in Rhode Island to petition for unionization.

PROVIDENCE – The Starbucks unionization drive has reached Rhode Island.

Workers at the coffee chain’s location on Pace Boulevard in Warwick on Wednesday announced their intention to unionize. It’s the first store in Rhode Island to petition for unionization.

“A democratic workplace is right for everyone,” Cassie Burke, a barista at the Warwick location who was involved in the organization effort, said in an interview. “It’s something everyone should have and feel they have the right to fight for.”

Burke said the local organizers needed 30 percent of workers there to sign cards expressing support for a union, but were able to quickly get more than half of the workers to do so. Now, Starbucks could choose to voluntarily recognize the union, although that almost certainly won’t happen. If Starbucks doesn’t voluntarily recognize the union, a vote among workers governed by the National Labor Relations Board would take place. If a majority of workers who vote say yes, the NLRB will certify the union. If they vote no, the union won’t be formed.

Read more here.


It’s time to pass the Let RI Vote bills!

Improving voter access helps working people. The RI AFL-CIO has joined the Let RI Vote coalition. You can show your support too by sending this letter in support of voting rights directly to key House and Senate leaders today!

Click here and send your message of support to these key House and Senate leaders:

Senate President Dominick Ruggerio, Senate Majority Leader Michael McCaffrey, Senate Judiciary Committee Chair Cynthia Coyne, House Speaker Joe Shekarchi, House Majority Leader Chris Blazejewski, House State Government and Elections Chair Evan Shanley

The Bills

S2007/H7100 — The ‘Let RI Vote Act’

Will improve access and opportunity to vote in Rhode Island by:

·         Removing the requirement for an excuse to vote by mail or early in-person

·         Removing the requirement for two witnesses or a notary to vote a mail ballot

·         Providing an online application to request a mail ballot

·         Providing secure drop-boxes to return mail ballots up to the close of polls on Election Day

·         Creating an official multilingual voter information hotline

·         Improving voter list maintenance to ensure records are accurate & up to date

·         Reducing lead-time to request a Braille ballot from 45 days to 21 days

·         Permitting long-term nursing home residents to join the permanent ballot application list

S2216/H7225 — The Same-Day Registration Resolution

Will put a question on the ballot asking Rhode Island voters to amend the state constitution, allowing the General Assembly to change the voter registration deadline up to the day of an election.


Laborers Local 271 Twitter:

@ri_trades and @LIUNALocal271 with @SecRaimondo at #NABTU202.



Fuerza Laboral / Power of Workers Facebook:

Mujeres se reúnen para hablar de sus experiencias empresariales en “Pawtucket Promotes: Women in Business Forum” Somos imparables!

Women gathered today to talk about their experiences in the “Pawtucket Promotes: Women in Business Forum” We are Unstoppable!

View pictures here.


National Postal Mail Handlers Union Local 301 Facebook:

Shop Steward Training, FMLA/OWCP

Branch 18, Providence RI


The White House: FACT SHEET: The Biden-⁠Harris Action Plan for Building Better School Infrastructure

Vice President Harris to Outline Actions for Bolstering Clean School Infrastructure and Transportation to Support Student Learning and Health

Administration Launches $500 million Grant Program from Bipartisan Infrastructure Law Program to Save Schools Money with Energy Upgrades Today, Vice President Kamala Harris is announcing the Biden-Harris Action Plan for Building Better School Infrastructure to upgrade our public schools with modern, clean, energy efficient facilities and transportation—delivering health and learning benefits to children and school communities, saving school districts money, and creating good union jobs. The action plan activates the entire federal government in leveraging investments from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and American Rescue Plan to advance solutions including energy efficiency retrofits, electric school buses, and resilient design.

The science of learning and development

has shown that students need school environments filled with safety, belonging, and health to learn and thrive. Yet many schools rely on outdated heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems that make classrooms less comfortable and may pose health risks to students and teachers exposed to contaminants or particles in the air that can trigger allergies or asthma attacks and potentially spread infectious diseases – including COVID-19. Dirty diesel buses pose additional health risks for students on board and the neighborhoods they travel through — and exhaust from idling buses can pollute the air around schools. Read more here.


AFL-CIO:

Here is a list of union-made in America treats to fill an Easter basket and your holiday dinner table brought to you by the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor’s resource site, Labor 411.

See list here.

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



AFL-CIO:



UPCOMING EVENTS:

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

Lessons on African American Labor History

Dates:

Monday, April 18, 2022

Monday, June 6, 2022

Speakers:

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

RI State House, 2nd floor

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

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

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TEAMSTERS, Local 251

SOLIDARITY WITH JOHNSON BROTHERS WORKERS

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

Picket lines are at:

Johnson Brothers of Rhode Island

120 Moscrip Ave

North Kingstown RI 02852

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

Let Johnson Brothers know about your concerns at:

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

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

More information here.

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United Way of RI:

For more information, visit website 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.


LABOR VISION

Coming up on Labor Vision

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

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

Voting rights and unions put power behind our voices!

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

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

~~~~~

Never miss a segment!

Like us on Facebook, follow us on Instagram and Twitter (@LaborVisionRI), and subscribe to our YouTube channel (LaborVisionTV1). https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ozCVw and you can always find us on our website at https://laborvisionri.org/

E-NEWS: MARCH 31, 2022

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

Here is the direct link—-> Union Directory

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



Rhode Island Senate Leadership PAC:

What Makes Smart Climate Policy — RI Climate Jobs Roundtable.

Priscilla De La Cruz, President of the Environment Council of Rhode Island and Patrick Crowley, Secretary-Treasurer of Rhode Island AFL-CIO on What Makes Smart Climate Policy — RI Climate Jobs Roundtable.

Watch video here.


PRESS RELEASE

For Immediate Release: March 28, 2022  

Contact: Jim Cenerini (401) 724-5900 ext. 22 – work / (401) 378-8491 – cell    

RI Council 94, AFSCME President, Officers & Executive Board Elected  

North Providence – Today, Rhode Island Council 94, American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees, AFL-CIO announced that J. Michael Downey was re-elected President at the thirty-ninth annual convention. The convention was held virtually via Zoom on March 26, 2022.  

President Downey stated, “It’s a privilege and an honor to be re-elected to my fifth term as President of Rhode Island Council 94, AFSCME, AFL-CIO. Our members have continued providing critical services during the Covid-19 pandemic.   Council 94’s fight for dignity and economic justice for all public and private sector employees will not waver. Working with the elected officers and executive board, Council 94 will use future challenges as opportunities to build a bigger, bolder union.”

Additional officers elected include: Mary Townsend, Executive Vice President; Claire Newell, Treasurer; David Hoffman, Recording Secretary; Michael McDonald, State Vice President; and Walter Hartley, Municipal Vice-President.  

Executive Board members include: Kevin Allard, Michaela Bolano, Barry Brothers, Fred Cavallaro, Lynn Clark, Jason Kane, Kwame Larbi, J. Rafael Martinez, Renee Massie, Tracy McDermott, John Monse, Anthony Peters, Cristobal Rodriguez, and Romeo Turgeon.

Trustees include: Sherry DiBiase, Gina Friedman, John Rose, and Erin Shannon.

Sergeant-at-Arms: Mark Brayall    

Council 94 represents over 4,000 state employees, 4,000 municipal employees and 350 private sector employees.


Providence Business News: NEA R.I. names Barden new executive director

CRANSTON – The National Education Association Rhode Island did not have to look too far to find a new executive director.

The labor union that represents teachers and other education employees announced March 25, and confirmed Monday to Providence Business News, that Mary K. Barden has been selected as NEARI’s new executive director. Barden, who will start her new role Aug. 1, will succeed Robert A. Walsh. Walsh is retiring as NEARI’s director this summer after being with the labor union for close to three decades.

NEARI spokesperson Stephanie Mandeville told PBN Monday that the labor union’s executive committee voted March 21 to name Barden the next executive director. Barden was chosen based on the recommendation from the interview committee that was put together to review candidates for the position.

Barden, Mandeville said, has been the assistant executive director/UniServ at NEARI since 2013. Prior to that, Barden rose through union ranks with NEA North Kingstown, Mandeville said, serving as a building rep, middle level advocate, grievance chair and president of the local union. In North Kingstown, Barden was a social studies teacher with Davisville Middle School.

Read more here.


Press Conference: SEIU 580 & AFSCME 2882

March 30, 2022

Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 580 and American Federation of State, County & Municipal Employees (AFSCME) Local 2882 Calls on State Officials at the Department of Human Services (DHS) and the Department of Administration (DOA) to Immediately Fill All DHS Frontline Worker Vacancies to End Delays to Critical Services for Rhode Island’s Most Vulnerable Populations.

Watch video here.


ABC 6 News: ‘Be fair to those who care’: Medical professionals hold picket outside Landmark Medical Center

WOONSOCKET, R.I. (WLNE) — Dozens of healthcare workers chanted “Be fair to those who care” while taking part of a informational picket outside Landmark Medical Center Thursday night.

The picket was held by United Nurses and Allied Professionals Local 5067, the union that represents health care workers employed at Landmark Medical Center, who has been negotiating a new contract.

The original contract ended in December, but an extension moved the expiration date to March 31.

UNAP said that Prime Healthcare, owners of Landmark, refuse to negotiate a contract with protections for patients and staff.

“Put simply, Landmark management, led by the out of state Prime Healthcare, has forgotten about the nurses and healthcare professionals who led Landmark Medical Center through the worst of the pandemic,” stated President Brenda Schobel.

“We are still in the throes of the pandemic, and they’ve already forgotten the sacrifices we made for the hospital and our patients, instead offering us a contract that increases our health insurance costs and pays us far below fair market rates. This contract proposal is a slap in the face to us and the work we do, and it will create an unsafe environment for patients in the hospital.” Schobel continued. “While top executives rake in big money and Prime takes in massive management fees, they’re simultaneously refusing to provide a competitive wage and benefit package, which will result in a shortage of caregivers, creating dangerous conditions, and putting Landmark patients at risk. They’re more interested in lining their own pockets than ensuring the long-term stability of this community hospital that Woonsocket and other Blackstone Valley residents depend on.” Read more here.


In solidarity with the @WeAreUNAP medical workers at Landmark Medical Center, picketing for a fair contract.

View pictures here.


General Teamsters Local 251 Facebook:

Stericycle & Shred-It Workers Ratify First Contracts, Join Teamsters Local 251

Workers at the Woonsocket RI Stericycle and Pawtucket RI Shred-It locations overwhelmingly ratified their respective first contracts. Woonsocket drivers had organized in October of 2020, and Pawtucket drivers and helpers had organized in February of 2021. After many months of negotiations, practice picketing, strike authorization votes and support from the community, workers ratified strong first contracts. Strong wage increases, ratification bonuses, frozen employee healthcare costs, and strong job protections were notable highlights. We welcome 60 new Teamsters to our Local!

View pictures here.


Graduate Labor Organization Twitter:

Today GLO members voted 98% YES to ratify our raise! All grad workers at

@BrownUniversity will make over $42k in FY23, an effective raise of 12.9%! This historic raise would not have been possible without our members! @riaflcio @AFTacademics @AFTunion

@rifthp


Local 37 Ironworkers Facebook:

First few days of erection at Amazon in Johnston.

View pictures here.


IUPAT Twitter:

This video of our bridge painters working on the Brooklyn Bridge in the mid 1900s shows just how dangerous it was to work in our skilled trades before our union won safety measures on our jobsites. Countless thousands of lives have been saved as we’ve made our industry safer.

View video here.



UPCOMING EVENTS:

Click here for more information and tickets.

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

Lessons on African American Labor History

Dates:

Monday, April 18, 2022

Monday, June 6, 2022

Speakers:

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

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

————————————

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

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

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

————————————

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

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

RI State House, 2nd floor

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

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

————————————

TEAMSTERS, Local 251

SOLIDARITY WITH JOHNSON BROTHERS WORKERS

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

Picket lines are at:

Johnson Brothers of Rhode Island

120 Moscrip Ave

North Kingstown RI 02852

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

Let Johnson Brothers know about your concerns at:

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

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

More information here.

————————————

United Way of RI:

For more information, visit website 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.


LABOR VISION

Coming up on Labor Vision

🎴 NEW @LaborVisionRI EPISODE! 🎴

Show host Autumn Guillotte sits down with Majority Whip Katherine Kazerian, House sponsor of the Let RI Vote Act and Marcela Betancur, Director of the Latino Policy Institute & spokesperson for the @letrivote Campaign. Continuing with the conversation on this year’s legislative priorities for working people, we discuss the Let RI Vote Act and how improving voter access helps working people. Voting rights and unions put power behind our voices! You can learn more about everything discussed here at https://buff.ly/3FIxICc and send a message to your State Rep & Senator asking them to support the bill!

Watch here: https://youtu.be/yvST1_lA0gs

Like us on Facebook, follow us on Instagram and Twitter (@LaborVisionRI), and subscribe to our YouTube channel (LaborVisionTV1). https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TYjDqDCHe_I&t=205s

E-NEWS: JANUARY 20, 2022

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

Here is the direct link—-> Union Directory

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


AFL-CIO Daily Brief: Union Members Working at USPS Ready to Deliver Millions of COVID-19 Test Kits

The Biden administration has announced a program to mail up to 500 million at-home COVID-19 test kits to every household that requests them. These kits could be mailed to as many as 160 million addresses. Union members who work for the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) will be critical to the success of the program. You can order free COVID-19 test kits through COVIDTests.gov.

“The APWU is excited and fully supports this plan,” said American Postal Workers Union (APWU) President Mark Dimondstein. “It is in the interests of the health and wellbeing of the general population as this dangerous pandemic continues. It underscores the invaluable role of the public Postal Service in the lives of the people. It shines a light on the importance of maintaining universal service to every address and person.”

“The ongoing pandemic has proven beyond a shadow of doubt the critical importance of the services we provide six and seven days a week to keep people connected and essentials moving,” National Association of Letter Carriers (NALC) President Fredric Rolando said. “This partnership is the perfect example in action. Letter carriers are proud to be the face of this important initiative as we continue serving all communities equitably.”

The National Postal Mail Handlers Union-LIUNA (NPMHU-LIUNA) stated: “This pilot provides Mail Handlers with the opportunity to perform an essential Public Health Service to the American Public in our battle against the coronavirus pandemic. Mail Handlers are proud to be a part of these critical efforts.”


AFL-CIO President Liz Shuler Twitter:
Have you ordered your COVID-19 tests through @USPS yet? Each household can order 4 free home rapid tests. The fulfillment, packaging, & shipment of these tests wouldn’t be possible without our postal workers, who are critical to the success of the program! https://go.aflcio.org/covidtests


RICOSH Brief: OSHA & COVID-19: Where Are We At?

The Supreme Court has effectively blocked OSHA’s COVID {Vaccination}ETS: Designed to Increase Vaccination Rates

OSHA’s promulgation of a Emergency Temporary Standard this past November {2021} designed to increase vaccination rates, period (Vaccination) ETS covers all firms (with 100 or more employees) under OSHA’s jurisdiction; that is most of the private sector from construction to transportation to retail, more than 84 million workers This OSHA (Vaccination) ETS directed employers to have a policy that will A] Determine the vaccine status of all employees; B} Requires employees to be vaccinated or if unvaccinated to submit to weekly COVID testing also wear a mask in congregate work setting. [Without requiring employers to pay for testing, nor face coverings].C} Require employees to report to the employer if they test positive for COVID-19 or receive a COVID-19 diagnosis. Employers must then remove the employee from the workplace, regardless of vaccination status.

·   At the same time the court did rule that the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid services could mandate vaccinations in any hospitals and long-term care facilities that receive Medicare or Medicaid funds. That’s about 17 million workers at approximately 76,000 health care facilities.

Read more here.


AFT: What it takes to be back in school—and stay back

Small things sometimes have an outsized impact. That has struck me as I’ve visited with students and staff in public schools in recent weeks, particularly since the surge of the omicron variant. Ordinary activities—pre-K children playing side by side, students working on a group project, a teacher guiding students through a lesson on conflict resolution, and kids doubling over with laughter—left me with profound gratitude that they were doing these things together, in school. Two years into the pandemic, these small signs of a return to normalcy don’t feel so little anymore.

Throughout the pandemic, teachers and school support staff have been working with parents to meet kids’ needs and build trust. Through this collaboration, along with resources for academic recovery and safety protocols, schools were able to reopen last fall. Even with new cases of COVID-19 averaging more than 700,000 per day for the first time, 98 percent of public schools in the United States were open for in-person teaching and learning last week.

Read more here.


Economic Policy Institute: Minimum Wage Tracker

The federal minimum wage has not been raised since 2009. In the absence of action at the national level, many states and localities have raised their own minimum wages. Explore the map to see how these rapidly changing laws differ across the country, and read EPI’s recent research explaining the benefits of raising the minimum wage and eliminating the subminimum wage for tipped workers. Values as of January 1, 2022.

More info here.





UPCOMING EVENTS:TEAMSTERS, Local 251SOLIDARITY 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 at:
Johnson Brothers of Rhode Island 120 Moscrip Ave North Kingstown RI 02852 Key times are 7:30-8:30 a.m. Let Johnson Brothers know about your concerns at: 651-649-5800 (Corporate) or 401-583-0050 (Rhode Island) Donations can be made to: Teamsters Local 251 Strike Fund, 121 Brightridge Ave. East Providence RI 02914

More information here.



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


LABOR VISION

Coming up on Labor Vision

Labor’s Recommendations for RI’s ARPA Funding – Support Innovation in Rhode Island Public Education

Show host Autumn Guillotte sits down with Jim Parisi and Frank Flynn, of the RI AFT to discuss Labor’s Recommendations for RI’s ARPA Funding and how it can be used to support innovation in Rhode Island’s public education.

The American Rescue Plan Act (or “ARPA”) was signed into law on March 11, 2021 by President Biden. This Act is a way for the Federal Government to aid State and Municipal governments coping with the fall-out from the COVID-19 pandemic. Rhode Island’s share of these dollars includes $1.13 billion for state fiscal relief, $540 million for local fiscal relief, and $415 million for relief for k-12 schools.

On August 4, 2021, the Rhode Island AFL-CIO convened a gathering of labor leaders from across the state to discuss how the State could best deploy these funds to help working class Rhode Islanders. The full list of 26 Recommendations can be accessed here: https://bit.ly/ARPARecs.

Never miss a segment. Like us on Facebook, follow us on Instagram and Twitter (@LaborVisionRI), and subscribe to our YouTube channel (LaborVisionTV1). https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ozCVwEfHII8

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

E-NEWS: DECEMBER 16, 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.


The Boston Globe: Unions, climate groups call for ‘decarbonizing’ R.I. public school buildings

Climate Jobs Rhode Island calls for using federal funds and placing a school bond referendum on the ballot in 2022

PROVIDENCE — A coalition of labor unions and environmental groups is calling for Rhode Island to tap federal and state funds to “decarbonize” public school buildings by shifting them from fossil fuels to renewable energy sources.

The Climate Jobs Rhode Island coalition is urging Governor Daniel J. McKee and General Assembly leaders to back a 2022 school bond referendum and to use some of the $1.1 billion in American Rescue Plan Act money to help school districts who already have projects underway.

The coalition said the “Green and Healthy Schools” initiative would help Rhode Island meet the targets established in the newly enacted Act on Climate, which requires Rhode Island to cut greenhouse gas emissions to 45 percent below 1990 levels by 2030 and to achieve “net zero” emissions by 2050. Decarbonizing every public school in the state would eliminate 105,913 metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent emissions, the group said.

“Crumbling schools powered on fossil fuels are bad for kids, teachers, support staff, school lunch employees, and our planet,” Rhode Island AFL-CIO President George Nee said. “It’s time to rebuild our schools for the future — with solar panels, energy efficiency retrofits, and climate-safe school buildings. And let’s do it with the strongest labor and equity standards in the country.” Read more here.


Secretary Jennifer Granholm Facebook:
Rhode Island is at the forefront of offshore wind! Thanks to @GovDanMcKee’s leadership, Rhode Island will house the first regional offshore wind manufacturing facility of its kind—increasing job growth, speeding up supply chains, & opening the U.S. for business on offshore wind.

Watch video with Secretary Granholm and labor leaders here.


General Teamsters Local 251 Facebook: RI School Bus Workers Need ARPA Funding To Support Essential Services

View pictures here.
School bus drivers, monitors and aides from Smithfield, Pawtucket, Scituate and Portsmouth represented by Teamsters Local 251 are sending a loud and clear message to First Student and Durham School Services, “We give our best to the students we transport and deserve fair wages, benefits and working conditions!” Workers at all the bus yards have all authorized a strike and begun “practice picketing.” The Smithfield Durham bus yard was the latest to make their message public and received great support from the community when they picketed last week between the morning and afternoon runs. Durham school services workers, members of UFCW Local 328, in Cumberland RI expressed their solidarity. After a nearly two year long battle, these workers achieved a first contract. General Teamsters Local 251 worked hard with the General Assembly and the Governor’s office to pass legislation that will bring these workers better wages and benefits, but the law won’t fully take effect until 2024. Currently these workers are still dealing with the consequences of COVID, whether from work schedule instabilities or concerns over the latest variant making its way onto their buses. In the meantime, the State and municipalities have the ability to allocate some of the $1.1 billion in broad stimulus funding already received from the federal American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) as a stopgap until the new law is fully implemented. A strike is always a last resort but as each day passes without agreements, it gets closer and closer to that point.


NEA Rhode Island Twitter:
Our deep appreciation to the @RISenate, @hannagallo27, @SenatorMillerRI

Nancy Miller, and Senate staff for hosting the annual Gingerbread Express lunch and bringing holiday joy to public school students in need through the NEARI Children’s Fund. Happy Holidays!

View pictures here.


RI Council 94 Facebook: DCYF Pajama Drive RI Council 94 would like to recognize the very gracious work in the DCYF Pajama Drive by President Mario DiDino of Local 2876, his wife, and various members. Together, they were able to raise almost 4,000 pairs of pajamas to help those in DCYF Care.
Please see the below message from President DiDino: I want to take this opportunity to personally thank everyone for their tremendous support with our 1st Annual DCYF Pajama Drive. Thank you for sharing information about this pajama drive and helping to collect these essential items. Your generous donations helped us to gather nearly 4,000 pairs of new pajamas for children and youth of all ages. These pajamas will go directly to children who come into DCYF care. Cozy pajamas are something we can provide to make them feel more comfortable. Thank you for your heart-felt support for our children in care. I appreciate your kindness and wish all of you the happiest of holiday seasons! Mario DiDino President, Local 2876


AFL-CIO: Message from Liz Shuler

  • The tornadoes that ripped through several states on Friday have left a trail of devastation and heartbreak. Our thoughts are with the dozens of families who lost loved ones—including the many workers at a candle factory and an Amazon warehouse who were killed.
  • From the rubble of this disaster, union members will do what we always do: Roll up our sleeves and get to work building stronger communities. Union members know the power of the bond we share is there to rely on in the difficult days ahead.
  • With each ensuing extreme weather event, we are reminded that the climate crisis is not just a future problem. It’s happening right now. The labor movement will continue to center those impacted by climate change in our work toward a clean energy future built by good-paying union jobs.


Bloomberg: Starbucks Workers Push to Unionize in Boston Area After New York Win

Starbucks Corp. employees are petitioning to unionize two Massachusetts coffee shops, just days after a landmark New York vote created the sole labor foothold among the chain’s thousands of corporate-run U.S. stores.

In filings with the National Labor Relations Board on Monday, workers at locations in Boston and nearby Brookline requested votes on joining Workers United, an affiliate of the Service Employees International Union. The same union last week prevailed in initial vote-counting at one of three stores in the Buffalo region where it had petitioned in August for elections. The group fell short at a second, while the third result hinges on the outcome of voter-eligibility disputes. Workers United has also filed for votes at three other New York sites and one in Arizona.

The filings in Massachusetts underscore how quickly change may be coming for Starbucks, which has long resisted organizing efforts. Pro-union employees in Buffalo say they’ve heard from a slew of supportive coworkers around the country. The union’s staying power will depend in large part on its ability to actually secure a collective bargaining agreement with Starbucks, which is no easy task. While federal law requires that a company negotiate “in good faith” once a union is certified to have won an election, it doesn’t force it to make major concessions.Read more here.





UPCOMING EVENTS:TEAMSTERS, Local 251SOLIDARITY 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 Rhode Island
120 Moscrip Ave.
North Kingstown RI 02852
Key times are 6:30-8:30 a.m. and 4-6 p.m.
Customer banners are typically on Wednesdays from 4-6pm. Contact us to participate.
Johnson Brothers of RI Donations can be made to: Teamsters Local 251 Strike Fund, 121 Brightridge Ave. East Providence RI 02914

More information here.



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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

New show host Autumn Guillotte sits down with  Paul Valletta, of the Rhode Island State Association Of Fire Fighters to discuss Labor’s Recommendations for RI’s ARPA Funding and how it can be used to protect our first responders.

The American Rescue Plan Act (or “ARPA”) was signed into law on March 11, 2021 by President Biden. This Act is a way for the Federal Government to aid State and Municipal governments coping with the fall-out from the COVID-19 pandemic. Rhode Island’s share of these dollars includes $1.13 billion for state fiscal relief, $540 million for local fiscal relief, and $415 million for relief for k-12 schools.

On August 4, 2021, the Rhode Island AFL-CIO convened a gathering of labor leaders from across the state to discuss how the State could best deploy these funds to help working class Rhode Islanders. The full list of 26 Recommendations can be accessed here: https://bit.ly/ARPARecs.

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

WATCH HERE: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ozCVwEfHII8

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

e-news: august 26, 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.



AFL-CIO: Shuler Elected AFL-CIO President

Redmond Tapped as Secretary-Treasurer, Forming Historic Leadership Team

The AFL-CIO Executive Council today elected Liz Shuler, a visionary leader and longtime trade unionist, to serve as president of the federation of 56 unions and 12.5 million members. Shuler is the first woman to hold the office in the history of the labor federation. The Executive Council also elected United Steelworkers (USW) International Vice President Fred Redmond to succeed Shuler as secretary-treasurer, the first African American to hold the number two office. Tefere Gebre will continue as executive vice president, rounding out the most diverse team of officers ever to lead the AFL-CIO.

The election of Shuler and Redmond comes after the unexpected and untimely passing of Richard Trumka, who served as AFL-CIO president from 2009 until his death on Aug. 5, capping a more than 50-year career of dedication to America’s unions and working people.

“I am humbled, honored and ready to guide this federation forward,” Shuler said after her election. “I believe in my bones the labor movement is the single greatest organized force for progress. This is a moment for us to lead societal transformations—to leverage our power to bring women and people of color from the margins to the center—at work, in our unions and in our economy, and to be the center of gravity for incubating new ideas that will unleash unprecedented union growth.” Read more here.


Laborers Local 271: Media Advisory


Providence Journal: Opinion/Quinn and Blais: We all need a say in RI’s proposed hospital merger

Patrick J. Quinn is executive vice president of SEIU 1199 New England. Anna Blais is a registered nurse at Women and Infants Hospital.

For months, the proposed merger between Care New England and Lifespan has dominated headlines and raised important questions about our future health-care system. We have a rare opportunity to fundamentally improve care and services for thousands of Rhode Islanders but it is critical that patients, employees and community members have a say. At SEIU 1199NE, we are a union of over 5,000 nurses and other health-care professionals who provide care at Women and Infants and Butler hospitals, the VNA of Care New England, and other health-care facilities across the state. We are fierce advocates for our patients and while others stayed home during COVID-19, we showed up everyday to care for patients at the beginning and end of their lives, and every moment in between. Read more here.


Providence Teachers Union Twitter:
Prepping to give away 10,000 books to our amazing preK-12 students! Food, fun, vaccine clinic, DJ at Young Woods and Kizarian!!! @PTU958 ready to get #BacktoSchool2021

Watch video here.


Colleen Callahan Twitter:
Great turnout for @PTU958 Back to School Celebration, 10,000 books, food and fun! @AFTunion @AFTEVPDeJesus @RIFTFrankFlynn @Renny920 @JeremySencer @rifthp @FirstBook @OHAGANA @StephanieLy1


Providence Journal: Providence teachers do a meet-and-greet with parents to welcome students back this fall

PROVIDENCE — Eight teachers, including the union president, fanned out to knock on doors on the streets near Young Woods Elementary School Tuesday, part of an effort to win the hearts and minds of the families they serve.  

With all of the uncertainties surrounding in-person classes, combined with this spring’s public sniping over a protracted teachers’ contract, the Providence Teachers Union decided it was time to rebuild relationships with families.

Teachers also canvassed families in the neighborhoods around Kizirian Elementary School.

“We want to let parents know that we have their backs,” said PTU President Maribeth Calabro. “We want to tell them that schools are following the CDC and state Department of Health guidelines, that they should feel comfortable returning to school.”  Read more here.


International Brotherhood of Teamsters: Teamsters Local 251 Strike at Johnson Brothers Marches On

Workers at Johnson Brothers of RI Demand a Fair Contract

(NORTH KINGSTOWN, R.I.)—Dozens of Teamsters from all over New England showed up early Tuesday morning to stand in solidarity with their seven striking brothers at Johnson Brothers of RI, the state’s exclusive distributor of Gallo Wine products. Afterwards, they made their way to Haxton’s Tollgate Liquors in Warwick where they spent several hours hand-billing customers, holding banners and cheering each time the Teamster tractor trailer sounded its air horn as it drove by.

“It’s been 83 days since the strike began over unfair labor practices committed by the company along with unresolved wage, benefit and working condition issues,” said Teamsters Local 251 Secretary-Treasurer Matt Taibi. “This small group of drivers has stood up to Goliath and continues to stand strong to show the company they will not end their strike until they get a fair first contract.” Read more here.


RICOSH: Disaster Preparedness and Worker Safety

When you look at disaster preparedness from a worker health and safety standpoint you see three distinct strata or levels of agencies and workers involved. Primary emergency responders and response agencies would be called in to deal directly with the event (fire and EMS, health and public safety and related responders from state agencies (DEM, Health). And they would be at highest risk. Thus, their training and protective control methods should be the most extensive.

Another level that has received a lot of attention refers to disaster preparedness on the part of the general community as a whole. This directs attention to how a variety of institutions (business schools, universities etc.) while not directly called upon to respond might be impacted by an event. These need a preparedness plan and some training (and in certain cases provision for employee protection) but their levels of risk are limited. Thus their plans usually would instruct staff and employees (clients, students, resident) about what to do—and what not to do, i.e. with staying out of the situation. The key issues here would be evacuation and sheltering in place and communications. Read more here.






UPCOMING EVENTS:

Labor Day Screening of Slatersville

SLATERSVILLE: America’s First Mill Village, directed by Christian de Rezendes, will be screened at the Museum on September 3 and September 4, 2021at 1:30 pm. Slatersville will premiere on Rhode Island PBS in the fall of 2022. While the MoWC has hosted previous screenings virtually, this in-person event will combine two previously screened pieces, leading up to a newly edited piece. The stories are titled “The Wedding Present with 27 Rooms,” “Uncle Johnny”, and “Anything but Brotherly.” Admission is free. Reservations are encouraged. RSVP at mowc@rihs.org. Seating is limited to 45.

Museum of Work & Culture’s Labor Day Celebration is sponsored by the Rhode Island Labor History Society. More information here.


Climate Job Summit

On September 21, hear from union leaders in the climate jobs movement about how we can create millions of union climate jobs and build a renewable, worker-centered economy at the scale that science demands.

Register for the Climate Jobs Summit on September 21, 2021 here: https://climatejobs.ilr.cornell.edu/


United Way of Rhode Island’s 95th Annual Celebration

When: Tuesday, October 26, 2021 | 5:30 – 7:00 p.m.
Where: Fete Music Hall | 103 Dike Street, Providence, RI

Please join us on October 26 for our 95th annual celebration. Together, we will celebrate Rhode Island United and honor our extraordinary community volunteers.

HONORING
Community United Award |Homes RI
Dante Mollo Labor United Award | George Nee, president of AFL-CIO Rhode Island
John H. Chaffee Live United Award | Linda Katz, co-founder of Economic Progress Institute
Partners United Award | Starkweather and Shepley Insurance Brokerage

Register here.


TEAMSTERS, Local 251SOLIDARITY 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: 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
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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.



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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).

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Website: http://www.LaborVisionRI.org
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Twitter: @LaborVisionRI
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YouTube: LaborVisionTV1

e-news: March 25, 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.


Build RI:

Reform Providence’s Tax Stabilization Act to guarantee fair wages and a local and diverse workforce – during and beyond construction

If our city is giving out tax breaks, working families deserve an opportunity, too.
Providence can adopt a groundbreaking ordinance that requires employers who receive city tax benefits to institute diverse hiring practices and to pay good wages during and after construction.

With strong support from construction workers, service workers, community groups, and several members of the Providence City Council, this much-needed Tax Stabilization Act needs your voice to ensure its passage.

More information here.


Providence Journal: Split on party lines, RI House passes Act on Climate

PROVIDENCE — Landmark legislation aimed at forming the foundation for Rhode Island to confront climate change is one step closer to Gov. Dan McKee’s desk after the House voted its approval Tuesday night.

Hailed by Democrats but assailed by Republicans, Act on Climate would make reductions in planet-warming greenhouse gas emissions mandatory in the state and hold government legally accountable for meeting a net-zero goal in 2050 as well as interim targets along the way.

The bill, which brings Rhode Island in line with Massachusetts, New York and other states that have enforceable climate goals, is seen by environmental groups as the key to tamping down the use of fossil fuels and accelerating the transition to renewable energy.

After four hours of debate, it won passage in the House by a 53-to-22 vote. The House and Senate will reconcile differences between the bills and, assuming no major conflicts arise, then send the bill to Gov. Dan McKee to be signed into law. Read more here.


Press Release: R.I. Building & Construction Trades Council

View press release larger here.


Fuerza Laboral Facebook:

HPCC with opportunities for collaboration, everyone wins!! Healthy Planet Cleaning Cooperative’s recent collaboration with the City of Central Falls food is a powerful example of how the whole community benefits when cities partner with worker-owned cooperatives. Fuerza Laboral’s network of co-ops has a social justice mission in addition to centering the values of human rights, worker autonomy, and dignity, and thus seek opportunities for collaboration over competition. Central Falls, a city of 1.5 square miles and over 20,000 residents, also has a high ratio of locally-owned businesses, especially food establishments. During the pandemic, many of these food establishments struggled to stay afloat. Dining space is necessarily very small in such a small, densely-packed City.
Meanwhile, Healthy Planet Cleaning Cooperative (HPCC) thrived during the pandemic, as reliable cleaning services were in greater need to disinfect commercial spaces. But members of HPCC were concerned with the dire situation of many of the immigrant-owned food establishments in our neighborhood. HPCC and Fuerza Laboral are members of the City of Central Falls’ Buy Local Campaign, an initiative that seeks to promote local shopping to keep our neighborhoods money within our neighborhood. Our participation in this campaign is a natural fit with the idea of co-ops ensuring that the money made by workers’ labor stays with the workers, instead of going up a long chain of management that doesn’t invest in the local community. Read more.


Pawtucket Firefighters Facebook:

Paying it forward…Pawtucket Firefighters union Local 1261 donated 10 bikes & helmets today to the Pawtucket Boys n Girls club.


CNN Business: Here’s why 2021 could be a big year for labor unions

Rarely has the chasm between rank-and-file-workers and the extremely wealthy been this wide. While millions of people have lost jobs, gone hungry and struggled to pay for their basic needs, billionaires’ wealth soared to new heights in 2020.

And although the pandemic made things worse, America’s wealth gap has largely been expanding since the 1980s.

Among the many contributing factors: Far fewer jobholders have a seat at the table in negotiating with upper management than they did decades earlier. In 2020, union membership hit a new modern low.

“There is a direct correlation that when union membership is down, economic inequality is up,” said Kent Wong, executive director of the UCLA Labor Center, a department that studies labor and economic issues.

In cities across the US, and between the walls of some of the world’s largest enterprises, there is a swelling of union organizing activity that has been propelled by the pandemic and the recession.

Frontline workers — nurses, teachers, meatpackers, grocery-store clerks, delivery drivers and produce workers — protested for workplace protections and paid sick leave. In Big Tech, where multibillion-dollar companies have benefited from stay-at-home mandates, trailblazing unionization efforts are accelerating at Amazon and Google. Read more.



UPCOMING EVENTS:

Register here.




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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
                               
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E-News: January 14, 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


Greater Providence Chamber of Commerce YouTube:

Chamber President Laurie White spoke with Michael F. Sabitoni, President of the Rhode Island Building & Construction Trades Council and Business Manager for the Laborers’ Union Local 271.

Watch Video


Valley Breeze: Lawmakers happy with St. Joseph pension settlement

Senate President Dominick Ruggerio and House Speaker-elect Joseph Shekarchi were among the state leaders expressing hope and saying they were satisfied with a $30 million-plus settlement announced Monday between members of the failed St. Joseph pension plan and several of the defendants they sued for its mismanagement.

“In the end, we want to see the hardworking health care employees of the St. Joseph’s system get the security and funds they deserve for their retirement. We are hopeful that this settlement and any future settlements with remaining defendants will restore as much as possible to the members. One thing the pandemic has made clear is just how dedicated health care workers are and how critical they are to our community. Obviously, their hard-earned retirement assets should be protected, and we are glad to see progress toward addressing the grave injustice that was done to them in this situation,” said Ruggerio, of District 4, North Providence and Providence. Read more here.


RI Committee Occupational Safety & Health: A Year-end Summary of RICOSH Activities for 2020

• With the onslaught of the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic RICOSH has been an active part of Protecting Workers Alliance an international network of occupational clinicians, academics, unionists and other health professionals to understand and explore the many facets of the pandemic, from modes of transmission to methods of control, to vaccines and surveillance and tracing. RICOSH has joined on the RIDOH COVID Providers advisory weekly (and now biweekly) briefings. At the request of Senator Sheldon Whitehouse’s’ staff we drafted a policy memo on Rebuilding a Robust Pandemic Planning and Response System. In the early stages of the pandemic we proposed to the RI healthcare community and the Governor and RIDOH to prepare for a possible surge that might well overwhelm our health care infrastructure by converting Pawtucket’s vacant Memorial facility to serve as a dedicated COVID isolation facility.

• Meanwhile RICOSH has continued working with a National Heat Protection Campaign a coalition of unions and occupational health professionals and advocates to address occupational heat stress issues especially as one key impact of our changing climate will be more frequent days of extreme heat. Read more here.


AFL-CIO: Trumka Unveils Workers First Agenda for 2021: Reiterates Call for Trump Removal

January 12, 2021
President Trumka’s full remarks.

Today, AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka introduced the Workers First Agenda to fight back against COVID-19 and build an economy that puts more power and prosperity into the hands of working people. He also discussed the role the labor movement has in preserving democracy after last week’s riot incited by President Trump.

Key Excerpts:

“At the center of this agenda is the PRO Act—Protecting the Right to Organize. This worker empowerment legislation would allow millions to freely and fairly form a union. So we can raise wages and expand health care. So we can make workplaces safer and retirement more secure. So we can expand opportunities for women, immigrants, people of color and the LGBTQ community. The PRO Act is more than labor law reform legislation. It’s an economic stimulus bill. It’s a civil rights package.”

“That is why workers’ safety is another priority of our agenda. We will never get this pandemic under control if we cannot protect working people. That starts with emergency COVID-19 OSHA and MSHA standards so we can protect workers from this virus.”

Read more here.


AFL-CIO: AFL-CIO Launches Technology Institute

January 11, 2021

Amanda Ballantyne Named Inaugural Director

Today, the AFL-CIO launched its Technology Institute, which will leverage the power of technology and innovation for the labor movement. Leading this cutting-edge initiative is Institute Director Amanda Ballantyne, who brings diverse experience in labor and economic justice work. As executive director of the Main Street Alliance, she grew a groundbreaking project into a powerful, national organization. Under Ballantyne’s leadership, the organization developed campaign strategies to engage small business owners in winning a variety of progressive reforms, including job-quality policies like earned sick time, minimum wage and family leave.

The pace of current technological breakthrough is happening so fast, it has no historical precedent. Experts call this the Fourth Industrial Revolution. Technology, like automation and artificial intelligence, is changing life and work, and how people connect and communicate. And the COVID-19 pandemic is only accelerating the digital transformation. Read more here.


AFSCME: Health experts reassure union members that COVID vaccines are safe, effective

The nation’s four largest public sector unions, AFSCME, SEIU, AFT and NEA, sponsored a virtual town hall with leading scientific experts, academics and government officials to explain the safety, efficacy and equitable distribution of the COVID-19 vaccines.

A big goal of Tuesday night’s town hall was to reassure union members that the vaccines are safe and effective and that they shouldn’t hesitate to get vaccinated when it’s their turn.

More than 8 million members of the four unions have been on the front lines of the pandemic, serving their communities, caring for the sick and the elderly, and keeping our cities, towns and schools functioning. Many of them will be among the first to receive the vaccines.

The experts’ responses offered a window into not only how the vaccines were developed safely, but how experts prioritized vaccine distribution equitably, across diverse communities.

The town hall was moderated by Dr. David Michaels of the George Washington University School of Public Health, who served in the Obama administration and is a member of the Biden-Harris COVID advisory board. Read more here.


Bread and Roses 1912-2012 Facebook:

Effective January 1, 1912, a Massachusetts law reduced the maximum workweek for women and children from 56 to 54 hours. When paid on January 11, Polish and Lithuanian women weavers at the Everett Cotton Mills realized their wages had been reduced by approximately 32 cents. Stopping their looms, they left the mill shouting, “Short pay, short pay!” On January 12, thousands more workers join the strike. The Lawrence Eagle-Tribune reported on a strike meeting held on Friday, January 11: “Voting unanimously to walk out if their pay for 54 hours is less than that received for 56 hours, several hundred Italians, Poles, and Lithuanians, who are employed in the local mills, met last evening at Ford’s Hall. A majority of those who attended the meeting will receive their pay today. A mass meeting will be held Saturday afternoon at 2 o’clock in the City Hall at which speakers in English, Italian, Polish, and French will be present.”

As the strike entered its first full week mill owners expected things to return to normal on Monday, January 15; instead, lines hardened. More militia companies arrived to patrol the streets, as shown above. Strike leaders issued a call for others in the city to join them: “To all Workers of Lawrence, as long as the fight was confined to the mills of Lawrence and appeared not to extend any further we deemed it unnecessary to appeal to other classes of workers; but now that the combination of capitalists have shown the unity of all our adversaries, we call on you as brothers and sisters to join hands with us in this great movement. Our cause is just.”


UPCOMING EVENTS:

United Way of RI: Annual Celebration, 2021

Phil Fogarty of Utility Workers, Local 310 will receive the Dante Mollo Labor Award at the Annual Celebration, 2021

Join United Way of Rhode Island for our 94th Annual Celebration on Thursday, January 14, 2021 via Zoom.

During this inspiring evening, we’ll kick-off United Way’s new 5-year strategic plan: LIVE UNITED 2025. We will also celebrate our community partners and recognize local leaders who strive to make Rhode Island a better place.

Save the date:

When: TODAY
Time: 5:30 – 6:30 p.m.
Cost: Free
Where: Zoom | Meeting details will be included in your confirmation email.Sign-up here.


Raise the Bar on Resident Care Event

Rally for Nursing Home JusticeDate: Thursday, January 21 at 3:30 p.m.
Location: Veterans Memorial Auditorium 1 Avenue of the Arts, Providence

More info here.


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 3-segment series addressing the RI Opioid Crisis is now playing on our website: www.laborvision.org

In the first segment (Part I), Erica Hammond sits down with RI Building and Construction Trades Council President, Michael Sabitoni who outlines the industry impact this crisis has had. Nationally, construction workers account for 20-25% of overdose fatalities and in RI, 1 in 5 individuals who have died of an overdose worked in the construction industry. Over the past few years, the RI Building and Construction Trades Council, along with several partners, such as, Building Futures RI, the Associated General Contractors of America RI Chapter, and RI Dept. of Labor and Training have been working to address this issue and educate leaders and workers on ways to combat it. In this episode, Hammond and Sabitoni discuss some of the reasons this issue has affected construction workers at an alarming rate compared to other industries as well as what’s being done to address it. Sabitoni also highlights many of the peer support programs and resources available for individuals struggling with addiction.

During the second segment (Part II), Hammond is joined by Jill Traecy, a Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker & Health Initiatives Manager at Building Futures, to discuss a new training she’s been working on with partners mentioned above. The RI Opioid Crisis: Our Response Our Recovery training is to be offered in all trade union halls as well as on as many construction/job sites in the state as possible. In this segment Traecy outlines each of the training’s core components, additional resources, as well as how to schedule a training.

In the last segment (Part III), Hammond sits down with Tim Potter, a Certified Peer Recovery Specialist, along with Jill Traecy to discuss the benefits and the significant importance of peer support programs along the path of recovery. The group talks about many of the resources offered to individuals who are struggling with addition and/or on the path to recovery.

Additional resources:

https://www.bhlink.org/

Check out these segments and all future segments on our website: www.laborvisionri.org


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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