Workers Working for A Safe and Prosperous Future

Joining union and environmental leaders from around the world, AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka (UMWA) made clear that the labor movement is committed to combating climate change—but not at the expense of working people’s livelihoods and dignity. Speaking at the Labor Center at the University of California, Berkeley, yesterday, he argued that “as a labor movement, it is our job to ignite the flames of justice, not contain them. And that’s exactly how we’ll be successful in the fight against climate change: by demanding justice for working people and ensuring no one is left behind.

  • A global effort to combat climate change is fundamental to a safe and prosperous future but, as President Trumka reiterated today to thousands of attendees at the Global Climate Action Summit in San Francisco, that effort will succeed only if working people have a seat at the decision making table.
  • Check out a few highlights from the event below, and read President Trumka’s full remarks here.

“Make no mistake, this is a tough issue for us. But, in the labor movement, we’re used to tough issues and hard choices. We’re prepared to do the right thing for our people and our planet. And we know that this fight can—and must—be about investing in a better, more inclusive, more just future....[a]bout creating good jobs and good lives for working families.”

  • “Climate strategies that leave coal miners’ pension funds bankrupt, power plant workers unemployed, construction workers making less than they do now...plans that devastate communities today, while offering vague promises about the future...they are more than unjust...they fundamentally undermine the power of the political coalition needed to address the climate crisis.”
  • “This is a remarkable time for collective action. Teachers from West Virginia to Arizona...workers in transportation, journalism, energy and more are coming together for a voice on the job. The popularity of unions recently hit a 15-year high. And we’re just getting started. We can bring this energy and momentum to the fight against climate change. Let’s join together. Let’s get the job done. And let’s do it the right way.

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A Moral Imperative

A Moral Imperative

Union Matters

Fighting to Fix the New NAFTA

From the AFL-CIO

For the better part of a generation, our global trading system has been rigged to enrich corporations at the expense of working people—and no deal has done more damage than NAFTA. We are hungry for a North American trade deal that lifts wages and improves livelihoods. The new NAFTA, also known as the United States–Mexico–Canada Agreement (USMCA), as proposed falls short, and that’s why America’s working families will keep fighting to fix it.

Here are three reasons why the labor movement opposes the new NAFTA:

  1. There is nothing in the current deal to fix the outsourcing of good-paying American jobs to Mexico and other low-wage countries. 851,000 U.S. jobs were lost already due to NAFTA.
  2. Unless Mexico finishes and implements full labor reform and stronger rules and enforcements are added to the NAFTA text, Mexico’s workers will continue to face wages as low as $2 per hour or less and receive no protection from threats and violence when trying to unionize.
  3. Monopoly rights for Big Pharma would keep drug prices sky high, and new rules would undermine protections such as workplace safety.
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