Relief for the Postal Service: The Working People Weekly List

Relief for the Postal Service: The Working People Weekly List

Working People Weekly List

Every week, we bring you a roundup of the top news and commentary about issues and events important to working families. Here’s the latest edition of the Working People Weekly List.

Congress Passes $50 Billion U.S. Postal Service Relief Bill: “In a rare display of bipartisanship for a narrowly divided Congress, the 79-19 vote follows approval by the U.S. House of Representatives in early February and sends the bill to President Joe Biden for his signature. AFL-CIO President Liz Shuler, whose union represents postal workers, said the bill was the culmination of ‘15 years of efforts to fund and strengthen USPS.’”

Phinney, Crowley and Toner: Workers Have a Climate Plan for Region: “Amidst omicron, political discord and extreme weather disasters, 2022 hasn’t brought much good news. But flying under the radar is a game-changing story about state budget surpluses that could set New England on a path to tackling some of the biggest issues of our time: climate collapse and deep inequality. Studies show that New England is warming faster than the global average. We got a glimpse of the impacts of climate breakdown during storm-fueled power outages from Hurricane Ida and this winter’s nor’easter—but intensifying weather is just the beginning. Rising seas could wipe out entire communities along our region’s coastline.”

‘A Voice That Needs to Be Heard’: “Asked about specific legislative goals for this new enhanced partnership, Randi Weingarten, AFT president, cited the AFT’s and AAUP’s previously announced New Deal for Higher Education. The proposed legislative agenda seeks reinvestment in higher education at the state and federal levels, the end of mass employment of low-paid adjunct instructors, academic freedom surrounding the teaching of inequality and U.S. history, student debt relief, and increased college access. Weingarten said the expanded relationship between the AFT and AAUP is a ‘game changer for higher education, and I think it’s a game changer for democracy. Democracy is under assault, and a strong higher education movement is needed to bolster and protect it. And I think this partnership is more than the sum of its parts.’”

Solar Panels; Liz Shuler; Local Sports; The PLAYERS : “Liz Shuler, the first female president of the AFL-CIO, spoke in Jacksonville on Friday about her vision for growing the power of labor in America, especially after two years of the pandemic.”

Punching In: No Retreat, No Surrender in $15 Per Hour Wage War: “The labor movement won’t compromise on a minimum wage less than $15, largely because rampant inflation has made that number less significant than it used to be, AFL-CIO President Liz Shuler said in an interview with Bloomberg Law. ‘Fifteen dollars, when we were fighting many years ago, sounded high,’ Shuler said. ‘But today it’s continuing to lose value if we don’t index it to inflation, so we think that’s the baseline.’”

MLB Players Association Launches $1 Million Fund to Assist Seasonal Workers Affected by Owners’ Lockout: “‘Whether you’re a worker on the baseball field, or a worker behind the scenes, we all deserve respect and dignity on the job,’ AFL-CIO president Liz Shuler said in a statement. ‘The labor movement will do everything in our power to support these and all workers.’”

Biden to Use Federal Purchasing Power to Increase U.S. Manufacturing: “Goods can be purchased by the federal government with tax dollars if just 55 percent of their parts were manufactured here. On Friday, President Biden plans to unveil a new regulation upping that standard to 75%. The new rule updates the Buy America Act, a 1930s-era law that requires the federal government to use taxpayer dollars on goods that are manufactured domestically.”

America Added 678,000 Jobs in February, Smashing Forecasts: “The U.S. economy added 678,000 jobs in February, exceeding economists’ expectations. It was the best month for job growth since July. The nation has 2.1 million jobs to go before hitting the February 2020 level and recouping all positions lost in the pandemic, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported Friday.”

The Economy Is Recovering Fast. But We Need to Ensure It Works for Everyone: “Over the last 12 months, the economy has added 6.6 million jobs, an astonishing pace. And while there is still a significant gap in the labor market, we are on track to return to pre-pandemic labor market conditions before the end of 2022—a recovery that is roughly eight years faster than the recovery from the Great Recession, according to our own calculations. And that’s because, unlike in the aftermath of the Great Recession, Congress did what was needed to spur a strong recovery this time around. We would have millions fewer jobs today if Congress had not enacted the Covid relief and recovery measures it did. And these policies have not only made the recovery faster overall, but particularly so for historically disadvantaged groups.”

Kenneth Quinnell
Tue, 03/15/2022 – 10:32

Updated: March 17, 2022 — 9:25 pm