55th Oregon AFL-CIO Convention
The 55th Biennial Convention of the Oregon AFL-CIO adjourned Sunday in Bend following two days of inspiring speeches and recommitment to the fight for economic and social justice. The theme of the convention was ‘resist today, build for tomorrow’ which encapsulates the Oregon AFL-CIO’s mission to defend all working people, to fight for an economy where everyone can prosper, and to prepare for attacks on the freedom to stand together in union.
Oregon AFL-CIO delegates voted unanimously to endorse Governor Kate Brown’s reelection campaign on Saturday.
“Governor Brown has stood by our side,” said Oregon AFL-CIO President Tom Chamberlain. “She has shown time and time again that she is a leader who will do everything she can to make Oregon a state where working people prosper. In the 2017 Oregon Legislature she worked hard to ensure transportation funding passed, signed the Rural Oregon Worker Protection Act (Senate Bill 1040) into law, and has continuously advocated for working people. That’s why we endorsed her today, and that’s why we will work hard to help reelect her next year.”
The Oregon AFL-CIO also honored three Oregon legislators who have shown outstanding advocacy for working people: Representative Dan Rayfield (House District 16) was named 2017 Legislator of the Year for his efforts in helping pass the Rural Oregon Worker Protection Act in 2017 as well as for his work in extending unemployment insurance for locked-out steelworkers; State Senator Arnie Roblan (Senate District 5) was named 2017 Union Defender for his exemplary support of multiple pieces of legislation to protect and expand collective bargaining rights for working people; and State Senator James Manning (Senate District 7) was named 2017 Rookie of the Year for being a strong voice for workers in the Senate Democratic Caucus and because his lived experience is reflected by his advocacy for working peoples’ values in the legislature.
Convention delegates heard speeches from national and local labor and community leaders and elected officials. The nearly 300 union delegates also voted on resolutions which will guide the Oregon AFL-CIO’s mission for the next two years. The resolutions reflect the convention theme as well, and empower the Oregon AFL-CIO to engage on issues including gender justice, healthcare, immigrant rights, American manufacturing and more. Delegates held a rally on Saturday to condemn President Trump’s revocation of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program and to stand against the type of hatred which was on display last month in Charlottesville.
Stand with Lane County Employees
Lane County workers, AFSCME Local 2831, need your help! After nine months of negotiations, they are still without a contract. Join members of the community and workers from Lane County on Monday, September 18 at noon at the Wayne Morse Free Speech Plaza in Eugene to support Local 2831 in their fight for a fair contract!
Stop Rigging the Rules
When we talk about the rules of our economy being rigged against us, we are often talking about corporate-funded politicians pushing for big tax breaks for big corporations and the wealthy. These tax breaks do not “trickle down” to the rest of us, contrary to what you may hear from Wall Street.
The Trump administration and leaders in Congress want to give hugely expensive tax breaks to millionaires and big corporations that ship jobs overseas. And they want to pay for those tax cuts by cutting Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, public education and other vital services working people depend on.
The AFL-CIO is teaming up with allies all over the country for a call-in day to urge our elected leaders to reject any budget package that makes drastic cuts that hurt working people to pay for wasteful tax giveaways for the rich and corporations.
Budget proposals from the Trump administration and leaders in Congress include up to $5 trillion in tax breaks that mainly benefit millionaires and corporations. They even include new tax breaks for global corporations to send jobs overseas, which would lower our wages and cost us jobs here in America.
At the same time, they include more than $4 trillion in cuts to Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, education and other vital services that help working people get by and get ahead.
Working people should not be stuck with the bill for massive tax giveaways to people who don’t need them. It’s up to working people to come together once again to demand that Congress focus on good jobs and good wages, not on cutting the services we depend on and giving global corporations more incentives to send jobs offshore.
Support for Unions on the Rise
A poll released on Labor Day shows a strong support for unions nationwide, the highest in a decade. The Gallup Poll found 61% of adults in the U.S. approve of labor unions — the highest percentage since 2003, when approval was at 65%. Click here to learn more.