Tag Archives: News

E-NEWS: OCTOBER 27, 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

This mailer was sent to every union household in Cranston, we won’t forget former mayor

@AllanFungRI’s empty promises.

View image larger.

The Providence Journal: Labor Secretary Walsh stumps for Magaziner

In a homestretch effort to rally votes for State Treasurer Seth Magaziner, who is wrestling Republican Allan Fung in a scrappy match for Rhode Island’s 2nd Congressional District seat, U.S. Secretary of Labor Marty Walsh appeared in Providence on Saturday.

Speaking near the Roger Williams Park carousel, Walsh warned that there is ‘a lot at stake in November’ and ‘a lot at stake for the future of our country.’

Walsh’s message was light on Magaziner and heavy on President Joe Biden, touting the administration’s agenda and its accomplishments despite the president receiving a lackluster approval rating that mirrors that of his predecessor.

Walsh reflected on the administration’s work on the American Rescue Plan Act and the Creating Helpful Incentives to Produce Semiconductors and Science Act — known as the CHIPS Act — a move to invigorate American semiconductor manufacturing and reduce reliance on China.

The secretary also focused, unsurprisingly, on labor, surrounded by union members, including Michael Sabitoni, the powerful head of the Rhode Island Building & Construction Trades Council.

Walsh recalled growing up in Dorchester with an Irish father who was a union member, and participating in kitchen table discussions on work.

‘Everything that I have in my life, all the different positions I’ve had … has come out of the labor movement,’ Walsh said. ‘It’s been about the labor movement. It’s about what the Democratic Party stands for.’ Read more here.



  • McKee/Magaziner Phone Bank & Canvass, Painters Hall, 269 Macklin Street, Cranston 430pm-630pm

Saturday, October 29th

  • Providence: Saturday Labor Walk – Español, SEIU 1199, 319 Broadway, Providence, 10am
  • Cranston: Magaziner/McKee Canvass, Painters Hall, 269 Macklin Street, Cranston, 9:00am
  • Westerly: Victoria Gu/Magaziner Canvass, Craig Field Recreation Complex, Mountain Ave, Westerly, 12:30pm

Tuesday, November 1st

  • Magaziner Phone Bank, Painters Hall, 269 Macklin Street, Cranston 430pm-630pm

Wednesday, November 2nd

  • Providence: Wednesday Labor Walk, 300 W Exchange St, Providence, 🎂 Birthday Cake Served at 3pm, Walk at 4pm

Thursday, November 3rd

  • McKee/Magaziner Phone Bank & Canvass, Painters Hall, 269 Macklin Street, Cranston 430pm-630pm

Saturday, November 5th

***Please contact Autumn Guillotte, Organizer for Rhode Island AFL-CIO with any questions at (401) 316-1359 or E-Mail Autumn@riaflcio.com.

The Providence Journal: Bus drivers authorize strike in Lincoln, West Warwick and statewide yard in Cranston if demands aren’t meant. Here’s why

PROVIDENCE — First Student bus drivers at three bus yards said they plan to strike Nov. 2 unless management gives them a raise and a guarantee of 30 hours a week.

During a news conference Tuesday at the Service Employees International Union, New England, Local 1199 Executive Vice President Jesse Martin said more than 275 drivers and monitors authorized a strike vote last week. The employees work in the Lincoln, West Warwick and Cranston bus yards.  

How many students would be affected by a bus driver strike?

If a strike goes forward, hundreds of students would be affected because the drivers in Local 1199 provide transportation to students with special needs who are bused all over the state.

hose drivers also haul students to a number of private schools. The Journal could not obtain a list of the schools that would be affected.  

Why are the First Student bus drivers planning to strike?

Martin said drivers are not making enough money to support their families, adding that they make an average of $450 a week. He did not disclose how much more money they are seeking.

“First Student is a global company making billions of dollars in profit a year,” Martin said. “We need to make sure our employees are respected and treated with dignity.” Read more here.

1199 SEIU Rhode Island Facebook:

BREAKING: 275 1199NE bus drivers, monitors and aides who work for First Student, a multi-billion dollar company, will begin an open-ended strike starting November 2. Since June, 1199 workers from the Lincoln, West Warwick and Cranston bus yards have been trying to reach a fair settlement but First Student has refused to provide fair hours to end poverty wages. “We do not take the decision to go on strike lightly, but our children deserve consistent schedules and the best possible experience getting to and from school and as First Student has a responsibility to make that a reality,” said Lorene Hamel, a First Student school bus driver in Lincoln. Stay tuned for more details.

View pictures here.

General Teamsters Local 251 Facebook:


The Teamsters Local 251 Contract Action Team (CAT) at UPS met to put together contract proposals gathered from members. The CAT was elected by the UPS membership and had distributed and collected proposal forms to members ahead of this meeting. Local Business Agents Matt Maini and Tom Salvatore will take the L251 proposals to the New England committee. The CAT will work to unite and mobilize the membership throughout the contract negotiations and contract campaign.

View pictures here.

Local 37 Ironworkers Facebook:

A few of our members training to put another skill in their repertoire.

(Pictures from Cash Pina Facebook)

View pictures here.

RICOSH ADVISORY: Healthy Indoor Air: essential to manage COVID-19 this fall and winter.

On October 11th  Dr Ashish  JA the White House Covid coordinator  hosted a White House Summit on Improving Indoor Air Quality bringing together public health and ventilation experts, private sector and education leaders, and other stakeholders to highlight the benefits of improved indoor air quality in mitigating the spread of COVID-19,  In addition to new, updated COVID-19 vaccines and lifesaving treatments, improving indoor air quality within buildings is an essential part of the Biden Administration’s plan to manageCOVID-19 this fall and winter.

Earlier this year, the Administration launched the Clean Air in Buildings Challenge with recommendations building owners and operations can follow to improve indoor air quality.  {WhiteHouse.Gov/CleanIndoorAir}

Some common Ways to Increase Ventilation and Filteration

·         Increase outside air (OA) into the system as much as possible (most systems supply from 10-20% currently]this increases the effective dilution ventilation.

·         One way to measure ventilation is to figure out how often the air in a space is completely replaced. This is called Air Changes per Hour (ACH). In a 30-foot by 30-foot room that has 25 people in it, if the air is replaced at least every 10 minutes, there is an ACH of 6, There is not a standard for ACH, but a higher ACH lowers the risk of disease spreading through the air. We recommend a qualified HVAC technician or industrial hygienist be consulted throughout the whole process. Aim for at least 6 Air Changes per Hour [ACH ]in occupied spaces- more if possible. Read more here.

Machinists Union Facebook:

Did you know that we’re the largest union at NASA – National Aeronautics and Space Administration?

Our members build and launch the rockets and space shuttles that explore the universe. We even make spacesuits!

IAM Headquarters


Saturday Labor Walks

When: Every Saturday, 9am – 12pm

Where: Locations vary, please check here for events and sign up

Join us to canvass for endorsed democratic candidates Seth Magaziner and Governor Dan McKee! This is a tight election year and the most valuable thing you have to give to get our candidates elected is your time!

Call/ email RI AFL-CIO Organizer, Autumn Guillotte with any questions: 401-316-1359 // autumn@riaflcio.com


United Way of Rhode Island: Indigenous Peoples Equity Challenge

November is Native American Heritage Month, and United Way of Rhode Island is excited to be partnering with the Tomaquag Museum to launch an Indigenous Peoples Equity Challenge.

The free, five-day challenge will kick off on Nov. 14, but you can sign up anytime and take it at your own pace. After registering, you’ll receive a series of five emails with resources, reflection questions, or actions you can take to help create a more equitable Rhode Island.

Register here

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




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 …

This special segment of Labor Vision covers the 2022 Rhode Island Institute For Labor Studies and Research 40th Annual Awards Evening featuring Marty Walsh, U.S. Secretary of Labor, introduced by Armand Sabitoni, LIUNA. Future segments will feature student guest speakers and prestigious Eagle Award recipients.

For more photos from the evening: https://www.riilsr.org/annual-award-dinner

Find our latest episodes on our website: www.LaborVisionRI.org

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

Labor Day Events 2017

Labor Day is devoted to no man, living or dead, to no sect, race or nation.

Samuel Gompers

As we celebrate and relax with our family and friends this Labor Day, please take a few minutes to reflect and remember the struggles working people have endured to achieve gains in the workplace and society we enjoy today.

Read about the Saylesville Strike at the Rhode Island Labor History Society http://rilaborhistory.org/The_Great_Textile_Strike_1934.html


Labor Day Events

Rhode Island Labor History Society Remembrance of the Saylesville Massacre
When: Labor Day September 4th @ 10am
Where: Moshassuck Cemetery- 978 Lonsdale Ave, Central Falls
Details: The Rhode Island Labor History Society remembers the 1934 Textile Strike, when thousands of factory workers across the country went on strike to protest poor conditions and labor practices. In Central Falls, a major textile producer at the time, demonstrators were met with police and military. Four Rhode Island workers lost their lives- Charles Gorcynski, William Blackwood, Jude Courtemanche, and Leo Rouette. This year’s speech is being given by Marti Rosenberg Health Care Advocate Labor Day Memorial Speech: “Reflecting on the Past – Organizing for the Future”


Labor Day Anti-Racist March and Rally
When: Labor Day September 4th @ 12:30pm
Where: Burnside Park Providence
Details: In light of recent events in Charlottesville, Boston, and throughout the country, local Rhode Island labor unions, political organizations, and citizens will be joining together this Labor Day for an anti-racist march and rally in Providence. In addition to highlighting the role of the labor movement in developing a freer and more equitable society, this event will focus specifically on the important role that organized labor, workers, and concerned citizens have to play in the ongoing struggle against racism in our society.

9 Things You Need to Know About the Role of Unions in 2017

Union Advantage

via AFL-CIO Now Blog

A new report from the Economic Policy Institute takes a deep look at the role and importance of unions as the key avenue for working people to come together and negotiate for an expansion of their rights and freedoms. Here are nine things you need to know about the state of the labor movement in 2017.

Continue reading 9 Things You Need to Know About the Role of Unions in 2017


Bill preserves benefits and protections mandated by the Affordable Care Act

Providence, RI— On Monday, June 19th, the Executive Board of the Rhode Island AFL-CIO unanimously voted to support passage of “The Health Insurance Market Stability and Consumer Protection Act.”
Sponsored by Senator Josh Miller (S831 SubA) and Representative Brian Patrick Kennedy (H6156) the bill, ensures that Rhode Islanders are covered and protected at the state level if any changes are made to the Affordable Care Act at the federal level.
Key provisions of the ACA that the bill would maintain in state law include:
  • No pre-existing condition exclusions
  • Allow dependents up to age 26 to remain on their parents plan
  • Preserves coverage for preventative services with no cost sharing
  • Prohibition on annual limits/ lifetime dollar caps on coverage for essential benefits
Congressional Republican health care plans, including the House-passed American Health Care Act (AHCA), would repeal taxes on the wealthy, including the Net Investment Income Tax (NIIT)—a tax on combined capital gain, dividend, and interest income applicable to individuals making more than $200,000 or couples filing jointly making more than $250,000 in adjusted gross income.
 This tax cut is paid for by eliminating health insurance coverage for millions low- and middle-income Americans. According to a new report from the Center for American Progress, an estimated 51,500 Rhode Islanders would lose health insurance coverage, in order to give 920 of the wealthiest Rhode Island families a more than $42,000 tax break.



The Governor’s proposal to make college more affordable and accessible is a priority for Rhode Island’s working families

PROVIDENCE, RI The Rhode Island AFL-CIO enthusiastically supports the Rhode Island Promise proposal introduced by Governor Gina Raimondo. The proposal, which provides every Rhode Island student with an opportunity to attend two years of public college tuition-free, will provide working families with much-needed relief and will ensure that Rhode Islanders are prepared to compete for both the jobs of the present and the future.

Rhode Island AFL-CIO President George Nee released the following statement endorsing the Rhode Island Promise proposal:

The Rhode Island Promise scholarship proposal is a priority for working families because it will make Rhode Island workers more competitive. The jobs being created today require more education and training than a high school degree. The labor movement from its beginning has supported free public education for young people in the elementary and secondary schools. Due to the changing nature of employment in our economy, the time has come to extend this concept to our students engaged in post- secondary education. The Governor’s proposal builds on the success of the rest of her jobs agenda, which includes Real Jobs RI, expanded apprenticeship programs and support for career and technical education. The Rhode Island AFL-CIO and working families across Rhode Island strongly support the Rhode Island Promise scholarship proposal and respectfully requests on the General Assembly to pass it.”


New Report Ranks Rhode Island First in Nation for Worker Safety and Health

Providence, RI- In 2015, 150 workers died from preventable work-related injuries and illnesses every day in the United States, on average, according to a report released by the AFL-CIO. Nearly 5,000 workers died due to workplace injuries, and another 50,000-60,000 died from occupational diseases. The number of immigrant workers killed on the job reached a nearly 10-year high.

With 1.2 workplace fatalities per 100,000 workers in 2015, Rhode Island was ranked the safest state for worker safety and health according to Death on the Job: The Toll of Neglect released this week. The national average was 3.4 workplace fatalities per 100,000 workers.

Even with the top ranking, there is room for improvement to protect Rhode Island’s workforce. Rhode Island had 6 workplace fatalities in 2015. With only seven Occupational Safety and Health Administration inspectors for over 36,000 establishments in Rhode Island, it would take 124 years to inspect each Rhode Island workplace once.

“Each and every worker deserves a safe and healthy workplace where they can earn a fair wage and go home safely to their families at the end of the day,” said Rhode Island AFL-CIO President George Nee. “One death on the job is one too many. These are more than numbers; they are our brothers and sisters, and a reminder of the need to continue our fight for every worker to be safe on the job every day.”

“Corporate negligence and weak safety laws have resulted in tragedy for an astonishing and unacceptable number of working families,” added AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka. “Instead of working for stronger protections, too many Republican politicians in Washington, including the Trump administration, are trying to roll back commonsense regulations that enable workers to return home safely to their families.”

The report, titled Death on the Job: The Toll of Neglect, marks the 26th year the AFL-CIO has reported on the state of safety and health protections for workers in the United States. The report shows the highest workplace fatality rates are in North Dakota, Wyoming, Montana, Mississippi, Arkansas, Louisiana, Kentucky, Oklahoma, Nebraska and West Virginia. The lowest state fatality rates were reported for Rhode Island, Delaware, Massachusetts, Washington, and California.

According to the report, Latino workers have an 18% higher fatality rate than the national average. Deaths among Latino workers increased to 903, compared with 804 in 2014. Overall, 943 immigrant workers were killed on the job in 2015—the highest number since 2007.

The report also finds that construction, transportation and agriculture remain among the most dangerous sectors. 937 construction workers were killed in 2015—the highest in any sector. Older workers also are at high risk, with those 65 or older 2.5 times more likely to die on the job. Workplace violence continues to be a growing problem for workers, resulting in 703 deaths.

Read the full report here–  https://aflcio.org/reports/death-job-toll-neglect-2017

Over 1,000 Union Members Support Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Ocean State at Providence Bruins Union Night


L-R  Michael F. Sabitoni,  Pres., RI Building & Construction Trades Council; Taylor Millspaugh, BBBSOS Development & Communications Coordinator; Scott Duhamel, Secretary-Treasurer, RI Building & Construction Trades Council; Big Brothers and Big Sisters with their ‘Littles’

More than a thousand proud union members and their families from the Rhode Island Building & Construction Trades Council (RIB&CTC) cheered on the Providence Bruins Sunday while supporting the Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Ocean State (BBBSOS) at the same time!  It was all part of the 7th Annual Rhode Island Building Trades Hockey Night at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center in Providence.  Two dollars from every ticket purchased was donated to the BBBSOS.  During a special, first period presentation, RIBCTC President Michael F. Sabitoni and Secretary-Treasurer Scott Duhamel presented a check in the amount of $2,412 to BBBSOS Representatives. Families received free P-Bruins hats and enjoyed great lower level seats.  Not only was it an exciting time for Building Trade families, but also Little Brothers and Little Sisters who were able to spend a great night out with their adult mentors.

“We are grateful for the generous support from the Rhode Island Building and Construction Trades Council and the Rhode Island AFL-CIO,” stated BBBSOS Executive Director Katje Afonseca.  “This amazing partnership has allowed us to pair disadvantaged children in with a caring, adult mentor who can serve as a strong, adult role model throughout their young lives.”

The Building Trades sold more than 1,200 tickets to the April 9th game. The annual P-Bruins Hockey event is only one of many fundraisers the RIB&CTC has helped organize for nearly a decade, raising tens of thousands of dollars for Big Brothers Big Sisters.

“I am always very humbled and proud to see so many of our dedicated union craftsmen and women come out to support this vital organization,” expressed Mr. Sabitoni.  “We know the importance of giving back to the communities where we work and raise our families.  Collectively and individually we have the wonderful opportunity to make a significant impact on the lives of children who are in need of a Big Brother or Big Sister.”

Free Tax Prep from the United Way VITA Program

Build a better future—you’ve earned it!
Free income tax filing services for families or individuals earning less than $55,000. All volunteer preparers certified by the IRS. E-filing for fast returns! Get your Earned Income Tax Credit and Child Tax Credit (EITC). You may qualify for an EITC credit up to $6,269.

Visit any Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) site for service.
For information about site locations and times, please dial 2-1-1.


• Social Security Card(s) for self, spouse and
all dependents
• Picture ID for self and spouse (if applicable)
• All 2016 W-2, 1099 and 1095-A forms
• Copy of 2015 Federal Tax Return if you have it
• Child & Dependent Care Expense – Tax Identification Number (SSN, EIN) of the care provider
• For direct deposit… bring a check or a savings account number with routing number


Single, head of household:
• $14,880 – no qualifying children
• $39,296 – one qualifying child
• $44,648 – two qualifying children
• $47,955 – three or more qualifying children
Married, filing jointly:
• $20,430 – no qualifying children
• $44,846 – one qualifying child
• $50,198 – two qualifying children
• $53,505 – three or more qualifying children

VITA Fact Sheet


Joint Statement by Rhode Island AFL-CIO President George Nee and Secretary-Treasurer Maureen Martin on President Donald Trump’s Immigration Ban

President Donald Trump’s executive order banning immigrants and refugees is an affront to the values we hold dear and true as Americans. All people should be outraged at Trump’s actions, but we as Rhode Islanders should be especially offended. Rhode Island was founded by Roger Williams on principles of religious freedom and welcoming with open arms all oppressed people no matter their background.

The Rhode Island AFL-CIO leadership calls on President Trump to immediately rescind his executive order. One of the abiding ideals of the labor movement has been, and always will be, an injury to one is an injury to all- Donald Trump’s executive order is a grievous injury to the millions of immigrants and refugees who, over generations, have come to America seeking a better life and in turn have made America great. The Rhode Island labor movement stands in solidarity with all who oppose Trump’s executive order.

That Trump’s order was signed on Holocaust Remembrance Day should be a stark and sobering reminder of past eras when immigrants and refugees were banned from America based on their religious views. May we never forget the words of German Protestant minister, and leader of the church’s opposition to the Nazis, Martin Niemöller:

First they came for the communists, and I did not speak out –

because I was not a communist;

Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out –

because I was not a trade unionist;

Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out –

because I was not a Jew;

Then they came for me –

and there was no one left to speak out for me.

Rhode Island CLUW Participates in Providence Women’s March

Providence, RI- On Saturday, January 21st dozens of members and supporters of the Rhode Island Coalition of Labor Union Women (CLUW) gathered at the Rhode Island AFL-CIO Headquarters  before marching to the Rhode Island State House to join in with the Rhode Island Women’s March.

The Rhode Island Women’s March was organized to coincide with the Women’s March on Washington and was one of hundreds of sister marches across the world. Nearly 5 million people participated in marches, over 7,000 in Providence alone.

The Women’s March was part of a worldwide protest in support of women’s rights and other causes including immigration reform, health care reform, protection of the natural environment, LGBTQ rights, racial justice, freedom of religion, and workers’ rights. The rallies were aimed at Donald Trump, the recently inaugurated President of the United States, and especially at his statements and positions some regarded as anti-women or in other ways reprehensible. It is the largest one-day protest in U.S. history.