Green Bay Labor Council

 

Fifty-five years ago, in a speech to the convention of the Illinois AFL-CIO, the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. laid out with characteristic moral clarity the essential role of unions in American life. “The labor movement,” he explained, “was the principal force that transformed misery and despair into hope and progress … [When] the wave of union organization crested over the nation, it carried to secure shores not only itself but the whole society. Civilization began to grow in the economic life of man, and a decent life with a sense of security and dignity became a reality rather than a distant dream.”

This Labor Day, America’s working families are facing unprecedented challenges.

Take Action

A complete and accurate count in the 2020 census is vital to working families in every corner of our country but the enumeration period ends soon and there are still communities with low response rates.

The HEROES Act has been sitting on Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s desk for months, but now he wants to ram through a Supreme Court nomination. Tell your senators we need COVID-19 relief, not a Supreme Court power grab.

Recent News

AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka issued a strong warning to Donald Trump Friday that the nation’s workers are ready to stop any attempt by the administration to trash the U.S. constitution.

He was reacting to announcements by Trump that he considers the mail-in voting process unacceptable and that he will not commit to a peaceful transfer of power should he lose the election. Trump has said, essentially, that only an election he wins would be one he would recognize.

Members of the United Steelworkers (USW) at a steel factory in Columbus, Ohio, had hope when the Trump administration promised to protect their jobs. Fred Silvia, president of USW Local 9309, said: “Initially, we felt the tariffs were going to help us. Unfortunately, there was still steel coming in from overseas and our business just started dropping off.” Production at the steel factory where USW members worked was indefinitely halted in June. “The tariffs were a short-term fix to a long-term problem that we still currently have today.

Given the multiple crises facing American this year, 2020 has felt like “an absolute gut punch.” But organized labor was meant for difficult times like these, and by joining together with each other to weather these crises and tackle the problems that caused them, we will win.

This election year, America faces interlocking crises—a global health crisis, economic collapse, and systemic racism. Even as we live in fear of disease and economic ruin, we have had to watch the on-camera murders of unarmed Black people by officers who have sworn to protect and serve us. So many of us have stood outside nursing homes and hospitals as our loved ones died inside, alone. In response, we are struggling with despair and asking, Dare we hope for profound change in our public life?