News

AFSCME members who work in health care and social services jobs face workplace violence daily. Now they are closer to having it.

Winter brings a special set of challenges to the worklife of AFSCME Local 818 member Michael Thompson, who for the last four years has served as the Superintendent of Field Services for the New Bri

It's the holiday season, which means it's time for our annual Council 4 Holiday Toy Drive.

Better wages. Check. Better working conditions. Check. And, thanks to unions, we now know there is also a union difference for workers who have access to critical benefits like paid parental leave.

According to recent data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, only 17 percent of all U.S. workers have access to paid family leave.  

As more Americans realize unions may be their best bet to reverse economic trends that favor the rich and powerful, the labor movement faces relentless attacks from the very forces that benefit the most from economic inequality. Shadowy front groups funded by billionaires spend millions of dollars attacking unions in the courts, in the media, and at the ballot box. 

At a time when our country needs real investments in infrastructure, education and public services, congressional leaders are doubling down on tax cuts for the rich.

It was 10 years ago this month that the 2008 financial crisis kicked into high gear. When storied Wall Street bank Lehman Brothers shut down, bankers walking out of the building carrying cardboard boxes of their possessions made the perfect image for TV cameras.

No politician running for office today would openly advocate for more wealth inequality in our country, where the richest 1 percent of the population owns 40 percent of the wealth. Even candidate Donald Trump in 2016 promised to stand up for the “forgotten men and women of our country,” who feel betrayed by a rigged economic system that benefits a small minority at their expense. Yet every single day, President Trump and congressional leaders seem determined to do more to increase wealth inequality than to alleviate it; do more for corporations and the wealthy than for single parents working two or three jobs to make ends meet.

Like others around the world, I mourned the death last week of Aretha Franklin. The Queen of Soul set a new standard for enduring classic songs with both artistic and political impact, like her mega-hit “Respect,” which became an anthem for both the civil rights and women’s movements.

And that song is on my mind as we embark on a week of action dedicated to shining light on the stakes for women in the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court.

Roughly 1,500 miles separate Hartford, Connecticut from Angola, Louisiana, but if one Council 4 Corrections Officer’s journey is any indication, those areas are closer than you think – especially in the aftermath of the Supreme Court’s anti-union decision in Janus v. AFSCME.

Be sure to watch the brief video on this page featuring Leighton's reflections on why "Right to Work for Less" is harmful.