On Labor Day, we recognize and honor the achievements of America’s working people. In 2017, this annual celebration comes at a critical time for our state. Collective action is on the rise—yet so are the attacks on our pay, health care, retirement security, and rights on the job. The biggest threat we currently face is the Constitutional Convention.
On November 7th, Election Day, you will be asked to vote on whether or not to hold a state Constitutional Convention. It is an incredibly important decision as the New York State Constitution guarantees a long list of protections and rights.
That is why I am asking each of you to take the Labor Day pledge to VOTE NO on Prop 1 on November 7th. Click here to sign the pledge and learn more.
As we enjoy the fellowship of our loved ones at a barbecue, fireworks or other community events, it also is important to reflect on the best ways working people can come together to build an economy that works for all of us. I encourage everyone to join with your sisters and brothers to participate in a Labor Day event near you.
In growing numbers, working families across the country are taking action to win the freedom to negotiate a fair return on our work so we can provide for our families. As a result of our unity at the bargaining table and the ballot box, working people in 2016 won the largest pay increase in years. A strong majority of Americans have a positive view of unions. Working people are organizing, from traditional manufacturing, to higher education to the digital economy. New York continues to lead the way with your support!
But our fight is not just about union members, we fight for all working people. Just over the past few years we fought for and won; raising the minimum wage, ensuring paid family leave, increasing unemployment insurance benefits, protecting workers’ compensation and securing Buy American legislation to help create and maintain good manufacturing jobs here in New York State. And, it’s these accomplishments that have put a gigantic target on our collective backs.
We will not back down. With your support and our community partners we will continue standing up to the corporate-backed politicians who for decades have continued to take away the freedoms unions have won for all of us. Whether it’s the expansion of misleading “right to work” laws, rollbacks on workplace safety or the assault on our pay and benefits by Republicans in Washington DC, it is critical that we continue to organize and mobilize around an agenda that gives working people the freedom to join together. We will not be divided. In particular on this Labor Day, don't forget our sisters and brothers still fighting against the very worst of corporate greed at Spectrum communications.
President New York State AFL-CIO