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Last Friday, State employees sat down at the bargaining table with the State of Florida to discuss what the future will look like for nearly 49,000 dedicated public service workers who have not see

AFSCME Local 161 members and retirees are finally able to put some of the Great Recession behind them after they won a case that went all the way to the Florida Supreme Court. Now, members and retirees will soon be receiving checks for their share of a $800,000 settlement. 

In October 2012, Hurricane Sandy battered the east coast of the United States, causing billions of dollars in damage across 24 states. The hurricane quickly became known in the impacted region as “Superstorm Sandy.”

Shileen Shaw knows firsthand how the storm got that name.

“We had never seen anything like it,” says Shaw, recalling the damage her East Orange, New Jersey, home suffered at the time.

Workers Memorial Day is this Sunday, April 28, when we honor workers killed or injured on the job. On this day in 1971, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) was formed.

For almost half a century, OSHA has been charged with helping to ensure safe and healthy working conditions for men and women across this country. But under the Trump administration, OSHA is failing us. As we observe Workers Memorial Day, it’s clear that we can do more – much more – for worker safety.

Megha Desai is a public defender in Multnomah County, Oregon. In a given week, she might work upwards of 60 hours. Right now, she has about 145 open cases.

“It's like a conveyor belt. Every day you work on your assigned cases, new ones roll in,” said Desai, a member of Local 2805 (Council 75). “There's a joke in the office: If you don't come in on the weekends, you’re screwed for the next week.”

The first weekend of April was an exception: It was her wedding. 

All-knowing sources of information. Tour guides to the highways and byways of history. The friendly voice of a morning story time. If that’s all you think of when you think of your library staff, you’d do well to meet some of AFSCME’s library workers, whose reach goes far beyond their libraries’ walls.

Today is National Library Workers Day, when we honor those professionals who keep our libraries running: librarians, technicians and other staff, including custodians, security and maintenance workers.

Fifty-one years ago, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. traveled to Memphis to help rally the community around 1,300 AFSCME sanitation workers who had gone on strike.

In the 1980s, I was living and going to school in Minnesota when women who worked for state government won a big victory. They got the state to increase the pay of women in “female dominated jobs” by passing a pay equity bill. In other words, they put a dent in the gender pay gap. As a student, I researched and wrote about the process of crafting, passing and implementing that legislation. And I learned something that I have never forgotten: the union made it happen. And not just any union. Our union: AFSCME. 

AFSCME FLORIDA Council 79 Elects New Officers

Orlando – The men and women of AFSCME Florida Council 79 elected new officers at their convention, held March 29 to March 30 in Orlando. The new officers are as follows: