AFL-CIO Executive Committee Issues Calls for Social and Economic Justice, to Save Detroit and for Support for the Large Retailer Accountability Act

This July, the AFL-CIO Executive Committee convened to chart the course for the AFL-CIO in the year ahead and beyond in the realms of politics, social justice and workers’ rights. IUPAT General President Ken Rigmaiden and fellow members of the committee, made up of leaders of some of the AFL-CIO’s largest affiliate unions, issued the following proposals with the goal to build a better America for us all.


A Call for Social and Economic Justice for Communities of Color:

The labor movement gains its strength from our common belief that all people have intrinsic value and deserve dignity as their birthright, and that people of every race, religion, color and sexual orientation deserve access to the “American Dream.” 

This dream of equality, fairness, and opportunity — the dream of raising a family, of having a home, and making a decent living doing work that makes you proud — is the beacon that attracts aspiring citizens from around the world.

 Read the entire document HERE.

Bankruptcy is not the Answer for the People of Detroit:

Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder authorized the Emergency Financial Manager (EFM) for Detroit, Kevyn Orr, to race to file for Chapter 9 bankruptcy so he would beat a state judge ruling that this action violated the Michigan constitution, which says that public employee pensions should not be diminished or impaired.

The AFL-CIO will continue to support our city of Detroit active and retired members in their fight to maintain dignity on the job, a safe workplace, fair wages and benefits for their labor, and against cuts in the pensions they have paid for and earned. We call on President Obama, Congress and the leadership of Michigan to stand with us and with the people of Detroit. 

Bankruptcy must not be used as a tool to impoverish city of Detroit workers or retirees. City workers already have made severe concessions to keep the city afloat. They are not to blame for Detroit’s financial problems, yet they have been making sacrifices all along the way to help the city out.

 Read the rest HERE.

Support the large Retailer Accountability Act in Washington, DC:

On July 10, 2013, the Washington, D.C. City Council stood strong for working families when it passed the Large Retailer Accountability Act (LRAA), which would require retailers with more than $1 billion in annual sales and with stores of more than 75,000 square feet to pay a living wage package of $12.50 an hour.  The LRAA would lift thousands of working families in Washington, D.C., out of poverty and support decent wages across the retail industry.

Large and extremely profitable corporations from outside the District attempted to bribe local officials with promises of jobs, while threatening to cancel the planned opening of stores in Washington if the City Council voted for the LRAA. The City Council’s vote was a brave repudiation of these shoddy threats.

While Washington, D.C., like communities across America, needs more jobs and retail establishments, it wants good jobs that lift up the community and build a future for all residents.

 Read the rest HERE.