White collar workers seek representation, view unions favorably

More people are seeking union representation now than anytime in decades. While the increase was boosted by the pandemic, union enthusiasm and favorability was on the rise before COVID-19 hit.

Many unions represent workers in blue collar professions, such as construction or transportation. However, more white collar professionals are seeking representation for various reasons. Department of Professional Employees Communications Director Katie Barrows discussed organizing professional employees and why they are seeking representation. Continue reading

NLRB swinging toward labor following years of pro-corporation decisions

The makeup of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) is shifting back to favor labor after years of favoring management and corporations during the Trump administration. President Joe Biden is filling spots on the board to tip the scales toward organized labor.

United Food and Commercial Workers Union Assistant General Counsel Amanda Jaret discussed how President Biden is swinging the NLRB back toward workers, the issues they are currently working on and more. She also spoke about labor-related cases recently considered by the U.S. Supreme Court. Continue reading

State labor federation takes their own approach to organizing

Labor friendly candidates and members of the labor community are winning elections nationwide. In Vermont, the labor community is taking on a new strategy to enact change to ensure labor friendly policies are enacted.

Vermont AFL-CIO President David Van Deusen joined America’s Work Force Union Podcast to discuss the politics of Vermont, action taken in the event that there was not a peaceful transition in the White House, neighboring states defeating so-called “Right to Work” and more. Continue reading

Democrats seek avenues to bypass Republicans, advance agenda

Congressional Republicans have made it their mission to control the U.S. from the minority and obstruct the Biden administration and Congressional Democrats at every turn.

AFL-CIO Director of Government Affairs Bill Samuel discussed how Democrats are working around obstruction tactics, an ongoing coal miner strike in Alabama and what it is like getting back into work after COVID-19 restrictions are being lifted. Continue reading

Corporations rob S.C. schools out of millions of dollars

States like South Carolina have decimated their education budgets in the name of attracting corporations to the state. Many are finding that plan has backfired, as the local workforce is not equipped for the jobs created.

America’s Work Force Union Podcast independent labor voice Tom Buffenbarger discussed why some states are losing their ability to develop an educated workforce, the removal of unemployment benefits and more. Continue reading

Construction along the Gulf Coast picks up after pandemic slow down

Texas is booming with new construction and renovations of all sorts. Although the COVID-19 pandemic caused some projects to pause or slow down, plenty of work pushed ahead.

Building trades unions in Texas are increasing their market share and taking advantage of the abundance of work. Houston Gulf Coast Building and Construction Trades Council Executive Secretary Paul Puente joined AWF to discuss the building boom and how union affiliated contractors are helping to train the next generation of tradesmen and tradeswomen. Continue reading

Miners strike in Alabama for better benefits and wages

Throughout the U.S., the labor movement is growing in new industries such as technology and development, and it is rejuvenating in sectors like mining working and other labor-centric industries.

United Mine Workers of America Director of Governmental Affairs Phil Smith joined America’s Work Force Union Podcast to discuss an ongoing strike, how the workers rose up and what is being offered. He also gave an update on the current state of the mining industry. Continue reading

Graduate students win union contract, build dedicated membership

Graduate students often work in the capacity of employees, yet do not receive the same compensation or treatment an employee would receive for doing the same tasks and work. Unions are noticing this, and they are organizing grad students.

The UAW is one union who took notice and organized graduate students at the University of Connecticut. UCONN GEU-UAW Local 6950 President Jordan McMillan joined the AWF Union Podcast to discuss her experience in the union and what is at stake in upcoming negotiations. Continue reading

Urban construction rebounds as COVID-19 vaccine becomes available

Many cities were slated to have building booms prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, economic uncertainty and lockdown orders stopped many projects from moving forward.

Cleveland, Ohio was one rising city with plenty of construction planned that was put on hold or slowed down. Cleveland Building and Construction Trades Council Executive Secretary Dave Wondolowski joined the AWF Union Podcast to discuss the ongoing economic rebound and how it is affecting construction projects in the city. Continue reading

Unions look to capture work in the clean energy sector

As the energy sector begins to move away from fossil fuels towards renewable energy sources, building trades unions and affiliated contractors will have to invest resources into preparing members to perform this new work.

While much of the work is currently performed by non-union tradesmen and tradeswomen, NXTGEN Clean Energy Solutions Founder Russ Bates believes the industry can be captured by union labor. He discussed the industry and where it is heading on the AWF Union Podcast. Continue reading