Jobless in Wonderland

Finding a job is hard enough for the many millions of unemployed American workers. But, believe it or not, the fact that they are jobless keeps many employers from hiring them. That's right, being jobless keeps many workers from being hired for many of the jobs that are available.

It's crazy, sure. But once they're unemployed, many workers are destined to remain unemployed. Many employers are saying, in effect, that workers who are laid off by other employers, or who can't get other employers to hire them, must automatically be considered bad workers who they don't want to hire either.

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California Has One Option Left to Stop The Bleeding

by Rick Jacobs, Joshua Pechthalt & Anthony Thigpenn

When we think of California, we imagine the state that allowed the three of us to be who we are, a state that gave us the California Dream. For years now, that dream has been quickly slipping away and now it's in danger of being lost forever.

California is not in crisis; crises are sudden and acute. California is in a chronic, grinding decline and it's providing a window into America's tomorrow.  Here we have the richest and poorest, the most diverse population, high technology centers which lead the globe. And yet, here with 38 million people – 20% of the United States – we cannot find a path to leave the bounty that invigorated us for the next generation.

The answer will not come from Sacramento, just as on the national level it cannot come from Washington. It needs to come from all of us. It's simple: government has a central role in providing the basics of civilization, and that costs money.

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AFL-CIO’s Housing Investment Trust Honors Union Construction Workers at Potrero Launch Project in San Francisco

The AFL-CIO Housing Investment Trust (HIT), in cooperation with the San Francisco Building and Construction Trades Council (BCTC) and Nibbi Brothers General Contractor, hosted a special lunch for union workers at the Potrero Launch Apartments construction site in the city’s Central Waterfront area.  The union-built residential development will offer 196 rental units, create more than 460 union jobs during the construction period, and provide affordable housing, child care, and commercial development for the community.

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YouthBuild’s Newest Graduating Class of Students Builds an Education, While Developing Practical Career Skills

YouthBuild, a national work-study program formed by the San Diego Labor Council in partnership with the San Diego Building Trades Council, hosted a graduation ceremony for its newest class of graduates on Friday, November 18.

Eleven students from San Diego County received high school diplomas and two students earned their General Equivalency Diploma (GED) in front on family members, friends, program instructors, and local elected officials.

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The Occupy Movement’s Next Move: Retaking the Offensive in the Battle of the Story

For the Occupy movement, as in battlefield of the narrative, whose story is being told, whose perspective is the dominant frame, who are perceived to be the heroes and villains, the criminals and victims, is crucial.

Remember when the stock market crashed in late 2008, how it was talked about around the office printer, in newspapers and on talk shows? Remember when Lehman Brothers, Goldman Sachs and Bernie Madoff were household names spoken with disdain? When there were outraged cries for justice, televised Congressional hearings, and calls for accountability and restitution?

The mainstream media, spurred on by its journalistic tendencies, actually covered the real story of what happened—for a while. Then the right-wing spin machine fought back.

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Labor Law for the 1%

Starting in early 2011, the GOP has launched an all-out attack on the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) the likes of which has not been seen in six decades. In the latest development, Hill Republicans are promoting a bill — the ludicrously misnamed Workforce Democracy and Fairness Act (WDFA) —  the culmination of several months of sustained GOP attacks on the NLRB.

Since June, Republican proposals have included the following: slashing the agency’s funding, preventing new appointments when it is reduced to two members (out of five) at the end of the year, subpoenaing all documents related to the controversial Boeing complaint and interviewing career NLRB employees about the case, undoing a NLRB decision allowing “micro bargaining units” and another on voluntary recognition agreements between employers and unions, diminishing its already weak remedial powers to combat illegal relocations and outsourcing, reversing a new rule on notice posting to inform employees of their workplace rights, blocking a proposed new rule to streamline the current antiquated union certification process — Republicans believe in streamlining the voting period for presidential elections but not for union elections — and, most boldly, abolishing the agency and dividing its powers between the Labor and Justice Departments.

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Why California State University Faculty Will Strike on November 17

Today, November 17th, the faculty of this great university system will take the historic step of striking on two campuses—Cal State East Bay and Dominguez Hills.

Faculty and staff have been more than patient we have watched this administration focus obsessively on the wellbeing of Presidents and top managers and pay millions to consultants who duplicate the work of existing departments.

We have waited for years for this Chancellor and this Board to prioritize the people of California and the people out on the campuses—the students, staff and faculty —who built this system.

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From L.A. to Ohio

It was quite an experience to be in Ohio to help defeat Issue 2/ SB5 and restore collective bargaining for 360,000 Ohio public employees. We were 90 union volunteers from Los Angeles who went to Columbus. We took vacations days and personal days. For the most part, we didn’t know each other, but we got to know each other really well over the course of four days going house to house.

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AT&T, T-Mobile USA Merger Means Jobs

Californians are impatient with the state of the economy – and afraid that the future may not bring better circumstances.

During the worst economic downturn in a generation, it's our job to make sure no opportunity to create new jobs and protect existing jobs is left on the table.

The much-discussed merger between AT&T and T-Mobile USA is an opportunity to create real jobs that are necessary for injecting life back into our economy. It will also give tens of thousands of T-Mobile workers the option for union representation at AT&T, the only major wireless company that gives employees the freedom to join unions. In fact, the pending merger represents the best opportunity we have seen in recent memory to organize in the growing technology sector.

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