News

The AFL-CIO Community Services Program, a national partnership between the United Way and the AFL-CIO, exists to provide resources, services and assistance to union workers and their families during times of hardship. “In Minnesota, there are AFL-CIO United Way partnership programs based out of Duluth, Minneapolis and St. Paul,” Rachel Loeffler-Kemp explains. The focus of the program, she says, is supporting working families. “We know that if we can help support them and the issues they face, our whole community is stronger.”
Receiving the MCA award has reinvigorated Gundgovi’s commitment to serving his parolees and the public. He says it’s an honor to be acknowledged, but the real reward is knowing he’s helping rehabilitate parolees to better themselves and strengthen our communities, and knowing his AFSCME colleagues have his back and share his values.
As AFSCME members, we’re committed to serving the public and giving back. This holiday season, AFSCME Locals around the state lived our union values by taking part in a variety of community giving programs. It’s just one more way we’re walking our talk: helping our neighbors, lifting up working families and strengthening the communities where we work and live.

A new report shows Minnesota is a better state for working people than Wisconsin by nearly every important measure.

The Economic Policy Institute compared the two states’ records following the end of the Great Recession and the election of Gov. Mark Dayton and Gov. Scott Walker, from 2010 to 2017. The EPI says it looked to Minnesota and Wisconsin because of our two states’ proximity and widely diverging political policies.

When AFSCME members stand together, we have power in numbers. Together, we can defend our freedom to take our loved ones to the doctor when they get sick and retire with dignity some day. Together, we have the power to make our voices heard at work and in our democracy. That’s our AFSCME Agenda.

Public service workers across the country are losing their foothold in the middle class. So says an article in The New York Times this week that serves as a reminder of why labor unions are more needed now than ever.

Hardworking Americans’ right to retire with dignity is in danger because billionaires are spending a lot of money to take away our pensions.

John Arnold is one of the worst offenders. He’s a former Enron trader who’s spent $50 million of his own fortune trying to gut retirement security nationally. Enron’s implosion caused billions of dollars of losses to its workers and their families, including a $1.5 billion hit to public pension assets. Yet Arnold escaped with an $8 million bonus right before the crash.

A case the U.S. Supreme Court is taking up this term called Janus v. AFSCME could make the entire public sector “right-to-work” in one fell swoop.

Janus is the culmination of decades of attacks on working people by corporations, the wealthy and the politicians who do their bidding to rig the economy in their favor. The forces behind this case are the same ones that have pushed to limit voting rights, undermine civil rights and attack immigrants.

Thanks to help from AFSCME members, numerous worker-friendly candidates won Tuesday’s election outright or are leading in the polls.

AFSCME members and retirees volunteered hundreds of hours of their time to tirelessly call voters and knock on doors across the state in the weeks leading up to the municipal and school board elections.

AFSCME Council 5 has a new executive director.

John Westmoreland, the former assistant director, started his role Nov. 1.

He replaces Council 5’s founding director Eliot Seide, who is retiring.

“Our union is in good hands,” Seide says.  “Under John’s leadership, our union won’t miss a beat as we continue our program with energy and discipline.”    

Westmoreland says he plans to meet with leaders of every local and build “a coalition of the willing.”