After four months of negotiations, some 1,800 analysts at the federal Government Accountability Office (GAO) will vote next week on a tentative interim contract agreement. The workers are represented by GAO Employees Organization/International Federation of Professional and Technical Engineers (IFPTE) Local 1921.
If ratified, the interim agreement will be in effect until a master agreement is reached. The tentative pact sets up the basic rules for the new union’s relationship with GAO management, such as dues collection, use of GAO resources and grievance arbitration.
WIN Week In Review October 3-5, 2008
By Doug Cunningham
The economic catastrophe caused by unregulated free market irresponsibility threatens millions of working people as well as the entire U.S. financial system. Economist like Josh Bivens at the Economic Policy Institute believes a bailout is needed, but it should be targeted to cushion the economic blow to working people.
[Bivens]: “Essentially it will transform what could be a real economic disaster back to the sort fo garden-variety recession that we’re in right now.”
Ed Ott is Executive Director of the New York City Central Labor Council. He wants to see direct aid to the millions of people at risk of losing their homes.
The U.S. House reversed course today and approved a $700 billion Wall Street bailout package aimed at calming jittery nerves in the financial markets and reviving the credit markets. The vote was 263–171.
On Monday, the House narrowly defeated a similar bailout bill. The new bill, unchanged from the version passed by the Senate on Wednesday, was immediately signed by President Bush.
But action on an economic recovery package for working families remains stalled. Today’s unemployment numbers—159,000 jobs gone in September and more than 760,000 so far this year—shows the desperate need for Main Street relief.
Last week, a West Virginia coal company tried to drive a wedge between the Mine Workers (UMWA) and Barack Obama. The UMWA members showed they wouldn’t stand for it.
On Monday, more than 440 UMWA members called a one-day work stoppage at the Blacksville, W.Va., mine to protest an attempt by Consol, the coal company for which they work, to manipulate the election. Every member took part, halting coal production for the day.
Consol had allowed a camera crew from the National Rifle Association (NRA) onto their worksite, and management instructed miners to talk with the camera crew, who asked dishonest and leading questions meant to sow doubts about Obama.
||SMWIA Local 10 member Jim Bowman and granddaughter Victoria
We try to keep all our fishing, hunting and outdoors enthusiasts up to date with the latest from the Union Sportsmen’s Alliance (USA)—such as the NASCAR trip for two and the group’s bass boat giveaway.
But for even more outdoor news, check out USA’s Notes from the Woods and Water monthly newsletter. In the current issue, you can learn more about:
* The USA Best Shot Photo Contest that offers a monthly prize of a #110 American-made Buck knife to the best photo, judged on quality, creativity and content.
* The premiere this weekend of season four of the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership’s “Life in the Open” on the Versus Country network. Support from the Machinists (IAM), Electrical Workers (IBEW), Sheet Metal Workers (SMWIA), Fire Fighters (IAFF), Plumbers and Pipe Fitters (UA), Painters and Allied Trades (IUPAT) and Bricklayers (BAC) help make the show possible.
Joining in one of the most unusual political coalitions of this election season, Colorado unions and business groups have come together to fight three anti-union ballot measures—including a “right to work” for less initiative.
The agreement, announced yesterday, calls for business leaders and business-backed groups, such as Colorado Concern, to join with unions and the union/community coalition Protect Colorado’s Future in mobilizing, voter outreach, debates and fundraising to defeat the anti-worker ballot initiatives.
The union movement’s Million-Member Mobilization to get 1 million signatures supporting the Employee Free Choice Act has nearly reached its goal. With just over 30 days to go before the November elections, some 822,500 people have signed cards and petitions calling on the new Congress to immediately pass and the new president to sign the legislation when they take office in 2009.
The Mine Workers (UMWA) and the California Nurses Association/National Nurses Organizing Committee (CNA/NNOC) are the latest unions to exceed their goals for members supporting the bill. Between them, the two unions collected 20,000 signatures—11,000 for CNA/NNOC and 9,000 for UMWA.
Some 159,000 jobs were lost in September, the largest monthly drop in five years and the ninth straight month—in all of 2008—the U.S. economy lost jobs.
This from Bloomberg business news service:
The world’s largest economy may be headed for bigger job losses as the worst financial meltdown since the Great Depression causes consumers and companies to retrench.
The U.S. Department of Labor report released today also shows the unemployment rate remained at 6.1 percent, largely due to the large number of jobless workers who no longer are counted because they have given up looking for work. In addition to the 9.5 million workers who meet the Labor Department’s official definition of “unemployed,” another 6.1 million are working part-time because they can’t find full-time work, and half a million have given up looking for a job.
Last night’s vice presidential debate between Sen. Joe Biden (D-Del.) and Gov. Sarah Palin (R-Ala.) proved again that Sen. Barack Obama‘s plans for improving our health care system and giving tax breaks to working families are the plans that will really help working families at this critical time.
Biden gave detailed, sharp answers that demonstrated why he’ll be a strong governing partner for Obama. Meanwhile, Palin mostly talked around the important issues. As did her running mate, Sen. John McCain, during last week’s presidential debate, Palin offered rhetoric that didn’t match the reality of the challenges facing our country.
On health care, the differences between the two tickets are wide. Biden explained to the millions of viewers that Obama’s health care plan would expand coverage, improve quality and cut costs. Biden also described the risks involved should McCain’s health care tax be implemented.