|Florida AFL-CIO Zone 1|
On 7/18/2009, workers and retirees from Central Florida held an informational drive outside of the Bank of America in Crystal River, FL.
Writing Across Borders
After her husband was murdered while working as a journalist in the Philippines, Marivir Montebon arrived in the United States seeking political asylum with the hope of finding a better, safer life for herself, and for her daughter who arrived two years later.
“I always thought of a green card as a second birth certificate—a second life,” Montebon says.
When she presents at the Writing Across Borders Conference in New York on June 1, Montebon will join other women and people of color on a panel to tell their stories about escaping abuse, oppression and the legacy of slavery. See more.
Leading up to the AFL-CIO convention in September 2013, the AFL-CIO is hosting a crucial conversation about the future of working people and of unions—in union halls and online at www.aflcio2013.org.
Rana Plaza, the Bangladesh factory that collapsed three weeks ago, killed more than 1,100 workers, many of them young women. This tragedy adds to the more than 1500 Bangladeshi workers killed in preventable fires and building collapses since 2005. Documents found at the factory show that the workers produced for big names in global retail revealing the link between poor workers in Bangladesh and major retail brands.Obviously, the government must improve local laws and their enforcement to stop these tragedies, but brands must also take responsibility for their supply chains. They must be held accountable to the tragedy that happened in their supply chain. Read more >>>
Marcus Hedger will have to wait even longer to get his job back if Senate Republicans continue to block President Obama’s bipartisan nominees to serve on the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). Call your senators toll free at 1-888-264-6154 and tell them to confirm the board nominations now. Hedger was illegally fired in 2010 from his pressman’s job at an Illinois printing company for his union activities on behalf of his fellow union members in the Graphic Communications Conference of the Teamsters. Last September, the full NLRB—two Democrats and one Republican, at the time—ruled he should get his job back with back pay. Read more >>>
Most voters agree that big corporations and the wealthy should start paying their fair share in taxes. But, of course, big corporations and the wealthy don’t want to do that. They want to pay less, and they are used to getting their way. So what do you do? Some people in Washington think the answer is a “grand bargain.” In a “grand bargain,” Republicans agree to stop protecting millionaires from having to pay a single penny more in taxes. In return, Democrats agree to cut Social Security, Medicaid and Medicare benefits. Read more >>>
Q&A with Saru Jayaraman
The partition that separates diners from the inner workings of the restaurant industry toppled for Saru Jayaraman shortly after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. Fekkak Mamdouh, one of the headwaiters of the restaurant housed on the top floor of the World Trade Center, approached Jayaraman seven months after the attacks. His former boss deemed him and his former crew “not experienced enough” to work in his new Times Square restaurant. Jayaraman, a 27-year-old organizer of immigrant women, took up the case to advocate for the displaced workers, organized protests and won—most of the workers were awarded the good jobs their former boss promised.
Jayaraman and Mamdouh formed Restaurant Opportunities Centers (ROC) United in April 2002 and were flooded with stories of workplace atrocities in New York City and, eventually, across the country. We spoke with Jayaraman earlier this month about her new book on the ills of the restaurant industry, Behind the Kitchen Door.
For Lapronda Eason and the other building service workers at the Smithsonian Museum of American History, the link to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.--who died in Memphis in 1968 advocating for the rights of city sanitation workers to form a union--is as real as the job they do every day.
Read more >>>
The time for immigration reform is now, says AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka. This will be a focus for labor in 2013 as the country needs to create a common-sense immigration process with a road map to citizenship. Read more >>>
On 7/30/2009, citizens from Gainesville, FL, attended a Healthcare Reform Townhall focused on the public option. Workers from the North Florida Central Labor Council, as well as members of the Alachua County Democratic Executive Committee, asked a panel of experts questions. And, heard personal stories from from survivors of our current Healthcare system. Together, Organizing for America and the North Florida Central Labor Council presented their respective must haves from Congress.
On July 28th, 2009, workers throughout the United States called their Congressional delegates to ensure Labor's three must haves with Healthcare are heard. From Jacksonville to Pensacola, workers in North Florida joined the mobilization efforts and took an active role by participating through their Central Labor Councils and Local Unions.
On 7/27/2009, workers and the community joined together to hear stories about Healthcare, and to support the President's Healthcare plan. Senator Tony Hill spoke while Representative Gibson moderated the discussion. Organizing for America Deputy Field Director Chris Turner introduced guests and speakers.
On 7/17/2009, workers from the Big Bend Labor Chapter in Tallahassee, FL, demonstrated outside of Tallahassee Community College in support of the Employee Free Choice Act and Healthcare Reform.
On 6/19 and 6/20, the North Central Florida Central Labor Council held two events, in Gainesville and Ocala respectively. With over 600 flyers passed out, and 102.2°F heat, workers and their families informed the public about the importance of the Employee Free Choice Act, while displaying their distrust for the financial giant Bank of America. After it became public in January that the corporate giant was helping fund a multi-million dollar disinformation campaign against the Employee Free Choice Act, workers in Florida have been protesting the bank that took taxpayer monies in the form of bailouts, then turned around and used taxpayer monies to attack legislation that will turn around America's middle class.
On 6/11/2009, Workers in Panama City, FL, combined their efforts for an information drive regarding the Employee Free Choice Act and Health Care Reform. Tom Owens, from AFGE (shown in picture) helped explain to the general public why working families need an economy that works for everyone.
On June 2nd, 2009, President Fred Croon and Zone Coordinator Aaron Wazlavek submitted a proposal regarding the Employee Free Choice Act to the Bay County Democratic Executive Committee for adoption.
On May 17th, 2009, over 200 people from working families mobilized in Jacksonville, FL to show solidarity in standing against the Council for a Union free work Environment (CUE Inc.).
On May 16th, 2009, local labor leaders had an opportunity to meet with US Senator Bill Nelson in Jacksonville, FL
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