|District Council 57|
200 enthusiastic participants converged on San Jose for Council 57’s Sixth Leadership Conference on September 27th and 28th. The conference theme was “Catch the New Wave,” and the top goals of the conference were to cultivate new, younger leaders and to inspire our members to be part of the new energy in the labor movement where workers are increasingly standing up and fighting continued cuts and challenges to their rights. Council 57’s Board, under the leadership of President Cynthia McCabe, made it a priority to recruit new leaders to attend which was highly successful: over half the participants were at the conference for the first time. Over three-quarters of the Councils affiliated Locals sent members. Read more
What does one do to cope with the wrenching and inexplicable loss of a beloved child? If you are Local 2700 member Beverly Bradley, you devote yourself to honoring your son and preventing other families from such a tragedy by establishing the Darius Jones Foundation. Darius died of cardiac arrest at the age of 15 playing basketball in a school game. Spectators failed to step in, believing that the coaches could handle the situation. The coaches weren’t aware someone so young could suffer cardiac arrest, so valuable minutes were lost while emergency crews were summoned. “There was no action plan,” said Bradley, known as Bev. “There was even a nurse there watching her friend’s child play. It still haunts her to this day that she didn’t step in.” To compound the tragedy, an Automated External Defibrillator (AED) which could have saved his life was there in the gym, locked in the weight room where no one could get to it. Read more
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Sunrise Recreation and Parks District members of AFSCME Local 146 fought off layoffs and won more time to bargain alternatives. Leaders and activists revealed to their Board that workers were having to sacrifice while it is “business as usual” for Management. read more
Despite the vast sums of money poured into the state, working families were the big winners after Tuesday's election. President Obama was decisively re-elected to a second term. Here in California, passage of Proposition 30 will ensure that cuts to public schools and public safety will not become a reality. Defeat of Proposition 32 demonstrates that ordinary people don’t believe that extraordinarily wealthy men should be able to buy elections and shut labor unions out of the political process. For the first time in decades, Democrats will enjoy a super-majority in both houses of the state legislature, removing the gridlock that has become our state budget process. View AFSCME Council 57's election victories here. Read more
Six Reasons Why Government Outsourcing Hurts the Middle Class
A new In the Public Interest backgrounder brief provides a comprehensive review of recent research that shows how the public sector provides quality middle-class jobs. It also describes how privatization eliminates these good jobs, increasing economic inequality without much savings to taxpayers.
Lilly Ledbetter was the featured speaker at AFSCME Council 57’s Fifth Annual Leadership Conference with the theme, Up to the Challenge: Solid Locals, Strong Community Alliances. Her courageous legal battle against pay discrimination with the Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company is an inspiration to union leaders at a time when there are no easy victories. read more
Pension Reform Not Priority With Voters, Poll Says . . .
Despite recent setbacks in San Jose and San Diego at the ballot box, the San Francisco Chronicle reports that a recent Field Poll suggests pension reform is not a priority for voters. read article
UP TO THE CHALLENGE
Friday, Saturday & Sunday, September 21, 22 & 23, 2012
Details and Registration (pdf)
Some exciting features of this year’s Conference:
Summer is coming: Learn how to protect against ticks!
AFSCME members who work outdoors run the serious risk of coming into contact with disease-infected ticks. Lyme disease is the most commonly reported vectorborne illness in the U.S. In 2009, it was the 5th most common nationally notifiable disease at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In the same year a survey of 3600 people with Lyme Disease in California showed that 50% of respondents had to quit work or school due to Tick Borne illness. AFSCME Council 57, Local 444 and Local 2019 are jointly sponsoring an Educational Forum on “Preventing Tick Borne Diseases.” Join us on Saturday, June 9th from 11am to 2pm at the East Bay Regional Park District Shoreline Center in Oakland. It will be especially beneficial for our members who work outdoors, but also for our friends and families who enjoy outdoor recreation. The event is free and light refreshments will be provided.
Cynthia Mc Cabe
Delegates Elect New President
AFSCME Council 57, representing 25,000 workers across California, announced the new elected officers. Elections took place at the meeting on Saturday, April 28, 2012, in Oakland. read about new officers
SACRAMENTO—AFSCME members from across California came together in Sacramento this past week for an intensive campaign training program, statewide PEOPLE convention and lobby day at the state capitol. These members gained new skills, worked with new organizing tools and joined together as part of the greater fight to protect workers' rights in San Jose, San Diego and across the Golden State. more
Fighting for Retirement Security
The Calpensions blog reported how City of San Jose unions have involved state legislators in our efforts to push the City to reveal how they arrived at such an inflated dollar amount for their unfunded retirement liability. AFSCME was cited in the blog: “The president of the largest city worker union, Yolanda Cruz of AFSCME Local 101, told the council her union has been “scapegoated” for not participating in negotiations. She said she challenged the pension numbers more than a year ago.“We could not get confirmation on how the numbers were achieved -- what data was used, how it was calculated and why it was using projections that were overstated at best,” Cruz said.” read more
On February 28, several AFSCME Council 57 members and staff went to Sacramento to attend the last joint legislative committee hearing on pension reform. The topic discussed at the hearing was the proposal to raise the retirement age to 67 for all workers in California. AFSCME Local 444 President Ruben Rodriguez spoke against the proposal in the public comment part of the agenda. read more
UC study says hybrid pensions would hurt lowest-paid workers
Gov. Jerry Brown's plan to put future state and local government employees into hybrid pension plans and push back the full retirement age for new hires would hit low-paid workers the hardest, according to a recent academic analysis.
Researcher Nari Rhee of the pro-labor UC Berkeley Center for Labor Research and Education concludes that while Brown's suggested package of changes to public retirement systems contains "several sensible proposals," the pension design and age threshold changes "may impose a disproportionately large burden on low-wage workers." read more
The AFSCME Council 57 Delegate Assembly Votes to Support The Millionaires Tax of 2012 Initiative
The AFSCME Council 57 Delegate Assembly voted to support the Millionaires Tax of 2012 Initiative, a measure that experts say would raise $6 to $9.5 billion in the first budget year alone. The Millionaires Tax of 2012 will raise enough to begin:
Statement by Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis on Bureau of Labor Statistics report on union members in 2011
Despite reports decrying losses to the labor movement, Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis reports that the unionization rate of wage and salary workers remains almost unchanged. Furthermore, Union Women make 34.6% more than their non-union counterparts.
AFSCME Ranger Shows Public Where Eagles Soar
AFSCME Local 2428 member Ranger Steve Diers hooks nature lovers up with eagles at Pardee Reservoir, as one of his many jobs with East Bay Regional Parks District. Read more about the Eagle Tour in Calaveras County
AFSCME mourns the loss of long-time Local 2700 activist Octavia “O.T.” Bazile.
The Labor Movement Mourns the Loss of a Respected Union Leader, Walter Johnson
Visitation 4pm - 9pm Friday, January 20th at Cypress Lawn Funeral Home, 1370 El Camino Real, Colma. A memorial service will be held at 1pm the following day, Saturday, January 21st at Grace Cathedral, 1100 California St., San Francisco. Donations are requested in his memory to Our Redeemer's Lutheran Church, 609 Southwood Dr., South San Francisco, CA 94080.
City of San Jose
AFSCME members in the City of San Jose are in the heart of the battle to keep decisions about pensions at the bargaining table, not at the ballot box. Read more
In an LA Times Op-Ed, Dave Low of Californians for Retirement Security shows how Unions are part of solving the pension situation.
When the Legislature reconvenes next month, one of the front-and-center issues will be public pension restructuring. California's public employee unions intend to be vigorous participants in this effort. It is important to note, though, that unions have long been active in negotiating changes at both the state and local levels that have reduced public costs while continuing to ensure decent retirements for public workers. Read Article
Council 57 President Linda Tremble helps welcome Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis to the AFSCME Women's Conference
AFSCME Council 57’s fourth annual Leadership Conference was described by many as “the best ever.” Over 150 rank and file officers, board members, stewards, and activists convened in Santa Clara under the conference theme “Building the Union Through Crisis-Emerging Stronger and Smarter Through Troubled Times”…..read more
Linda Gregory - Honored - 3rd Annual “Evening with the All-stars” Event Sponsored by the UC Berkeley Center for Labor Research and Education.
Our own Linda Gregory was among the distinguished honorees at the recent third annual “Evening with the All-stars” event sponsored by the UC Berkeley Center for Labor Research and Education. The event was founded to celebrate the spirit and strength of working people and to honor people who have given great inspiration, carried out acts of immense courage, and done the day-to-day hard work to improve the lives of working families in our communities, our state and our nation as a whole. In her many active years in the labor movement as Council 57 Associate Director and Business Agent, in her many years in the leadership (and ultimately the presidency) of the San Mateo Central Labor Council, she has done all of the above, and much more. We are grateful that Linda continues with the Council in her capacity as Training Coordinator, and congratulate her in this award.
TAKE ACTION: Tell Governor Brown to Protect Workers from Misclassification
Send a message today to protect workers’ rights and increase state revenue!
The Gap Between the Rich and Working Class is Wider Than Ever Before
At AFSCME Council 57’s Leadership Conference, Dr. Sylvia Allegretto decried how the gap between the rich and working class is wider than ever before. She described it as a conscious effort to take dollars from working people and stuff it into the pockets of corporation executives. She expands on this theme of the fallout from the Great Recession…read more
Dems/ Governor Reach Budget Pact
Democratic lawmakers and Governor Brown reached a budget deal that bridges a $9.6 million deficit. The budget features a combination of cuts and deferrals in education spending. It also establishes “trigger” cuts in three tiers in the event that the projected additional $4 billion in revenues does not materialize. “This budget is the most austere fiscal blueprint California has seen in more than a generation,” observed California Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg.
AFSCME members in San Jose are in a fight for collective bargaining rights that they could have never anticipated. They have fought back and that has made a difference.
In the past week, Mayor Chuck Reed announced he is delaying action on both a vote for a fiscal state of emergency and language for a ballot measure on pension and fiscal reforms until at least August. The Attorney General has also said that the Mayor’s approach to pension reforms “raises serious questions” in a letter you can read here.
We need your help to stop this Wisconsin-style attack on our own backyard. Please sign the petition authored by Councilmember Ash Kalra.
Think Wisconsin-style attacks on workers’ rights could never happen in California? Think again. . .
Budget cuts have a devastating impact on our families, our jobs, and the infrastructure that keeps our economy rolling.
Call Your Legislator to Say
Volunteer At Your Central Labor Council
The San Jose City Council flagrantly violated collective bargaining rights when it imposed economic sanctions on AFSCME members at its most recent meeting.
ONE OF THE WISCONSIN 14 PUBLICLY STANDS UP FOR US
Borrowing from Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker's anti-union playbook, San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed is boldly attempting to violate city workers’ collective bargaining rights by declaring what he terms a “fiscal state of emergency.” If passed, he and three other City Council members believe they have the right to amend pension benefits for current and future workers without bargaining with city employee unions.
In San Jose, AFSCME International Secretary-Treasurer Lee Saunders rallied hundreds of members of AFSCME Local 101 to march on City Hall in protest of proposed cuts in staffing, pay and benefits for city workers. read more
While increase in revenues mitigated cuts to education, the Governor’s May revised budget still relies on heavy cuts to essential health and human services programs.
Governor's Budget Revised
AFSCME Council 57 continues our pressure on key Republicans to vote for a budget that combines cuts with extending taxes that are already in place.
OPINION ROUNDUP ON THE MAY REVISED BY KEY LEADERS AROUND THE STATE
"With the release of the May revision of the state budget today, the governor provided a pathway to free California from the perpetual budget crises that have plagued our state in recent years. Legislators must act immediately to adopt the governor's balanced proposal to prevent additional devastating cuts to schools, public safety and other essential services.
AFSCME Council 57 Leader Honored
The California Psychological Association (CPA) 2011 Annual Convention is being held in San Diego April 7-10. At the opening day awards ceremony the 2011 award for Distinguished Service was given to our very own Sister Cynthia McCabe!
AFSCME Honored at California Labor Federation Legislative Conference
AFSCME was honored at the recent California Labor Federation Legislative Conference for our work in the November 2010 election. Local 101 in San Jose and Local 829 in San Mateo County were commended for their high level of volunteer turnout, and Council 57 was honored for our collective efforts to raise the bar and improve our overall political program. Council 57 Political Action Director Cheryl Brown celebrated the achievement with AFSCME leaders by saying, “You should be very proud of all you did to be part of Labor’s effort for a “clean sweep” in California’s successes. This is a foundation for future efforts to protect collective bargaining rights for public workers, a good quality of life for working families, and to ensure retirement security for public sector workers.”
Members from AFSCME Locals 2428, 2019, 444 and 955 rallied at the “We Are One” National Day of Action in downtown Oakland on April 4, 2011.
Local 829, San Mateo County members of Council 57, gather in solidarity at the 'We Are One' rally in the County Center Square, Redwood City to support worker rights on the anniversary of Martin Luther King's assassination. The Daily Journal.
Local 1684 marched in the 'We Are One' procession from the Humboldt County Courthouse to the Labor Temple where speakers reflected on the history of public employee's freedom and bargaining rights.
Locals 2700 and 512 stood on Alhambra Blvd in Martinez to show their solidarity with unions across the nation. Traffic passing, honked their horns to show their support..
Over 200 AFSCME members gathered at lunchtime at the First Christian Church by San Jose City Hall. The room was packed and people heard how our struggle at San Jose is connected to the current nationwide fight as well as rooted in the history of April 4. Later that evening at least a dozen members from Local 101 attended the South Bay Labor Council rally.
Local 2703's members join the banner waving union members of Merced supporting Wiconsin public employees.
April 4 California rallies for worker's rights - Council 57's Locals stood in solidarity with working people in Wisconsin and dozens of other states where corporate-bought politicians are trying to take away the rights Dr. King gave his life for. We Are One.
On April 4, 1968, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated in Memphis. He had gone there to stand with AFSCME sanitation workers demanding their dream: The right to bargain collectively for a voice at work and a better life. April 4, 2011 was the day we stood in solidarity with working people in Wisconsin, Ohio, Indiana and dozens of other states where right-wing corporate politicians are trying to take away the rights Dr. King gave his life for.
March 12, 2011 - The Nation
"Wow! You go away for a couple of weeks and look at what happened!" shouted state Senator Jon Erpenbach, as he surveyed a crowd that organizers estimated at well over 100,000 that had rallied to welcome home Wisconsin's dissident senators.
The Labor Federation’s Art Pulaski Shared His Views on How the Battle in Wisconsin Affects All of Us
AFSCME Council 57 members were among thousands of union supporters who converged on Sacramento February 22nd to show solidarity for public workers in Wisconsin. Union members in the Badger State are fighting the fight of their lives to protect collective bargaining rights there, while efforts are mounting in other states to destroy the middle class by eliminating union rights. read more
Patients, staff, and members of our community are put at risk when proper safety measures are not in place. It is time for the California Department of Mental Health tomake SAFETY NOW a top priority at Napa State Hospital and all other DMH facilities.
We Couldn't Have Done it Without YOU!!
Thanks to the numerous volunteers that did phone banking and precinct walking to support our endorsed candidates. We appreciate all you do!
A special thanks to the volunteers that participated 5 times or more:
ATTENTION ALL AFSCME LOCALS: Please send pictures of your AFSCME election volunteers. We will add them to our collection of volunteers that contributed to a great success! Email your pictures to firstname.lastname@example.org
Help AFSCME Local 829 and Council 57 fight the unfair and misguided pension reform ballot measure in Menlo Park!
Call 510-436-2254 for more information, or visit - No on L
Are Your Boots Made For Walkin?
AFL-CIO Executive Vice-President Arlene Holt Baker Returns to her California Roots to Help Us Fight!
Health Access provides a six-month status report on how Californians benefit from new patient protections
Retirement Security rests on a three-legged stool: employer pensions, personal savings, and Social Security. Take a look at what the critics said in 1935 of one of the most significant pieces of social policy legislation.”
AFSCME members in cities are being asked to tighten their belts through wage cuts, furlough days and similar concessions. They provide clean drinking water, maintain water systems for putting out fires, keep police cars in good repair, and ensure that our parks are clean and safe for families to enjoy. Press reports decry how public workers are compensated, but with little emphasis on those at the top of the wage scale. The League of California Cities recently released a survey of how City Managers are compensated around the State……
New Policy Brief Demonstrates How the Governor’s Proposed Budget will further Degrade the Lives of Californians
A new policy brief from the Health and Human Services Network of California and the UC Berkeley Center for Labor Research & Education details the devastating economic repercussions of the Governor’s proposed budget cuts to health and human services. more information
AFSCME Local 829 and SEIU 521 representing the City of Menlo Park employees, along with a city resident, have filed a lawsuit to keep a measure off the ballot which would allow voters to rollback pension benefits for prospective city employees. (complete article)
Governor Schwarzenneger’s revised state budget, released May 14, 2010, proposes drastic cuts to California’s safety net while attacking the jobs of workers who provide those services. Out of $19.1 billion in solutions, $12.2 billion comes in the form of cuts read more
AFSCME Council 57 and our affiliated Locals congratulate the following candidates in their successes in the June 8, 2010 Primary Election:
AFSCME Council 57 members and their community partners are taking Legislators' District Offices by storm to decry the “all-cuts” approach to the budget in the Governor’s May Revision. The AFSCME California Budget Solutions and Alternatives to an All-Cuts-Budget provides concrete effective measures the State can take to resolve the fiscal crisis we are in. Read more……
Governor's Revisions to State Budget
On Friday, May 14, 2010, the Governor released his May Revision to the state budget. The May Revision contained devastating cuts to the human services programs, redirection of funding for local government, and no new revenue to support public sector work.
AFSCME Local 146 Secretary Linda Tremble was elected Council 57 President at the April 25th Delegate Assembly. more
In San Jose, there are almost daily sessions between city officials and union leaders on the topics of cost cutting and jobs. Layoffs could reduce the number of city employees to levels not seen since 1989. Click here for video
A recently released study shows that jobs in the public sector require more education than comparable jobs in the private sector, while public sector workers earn 11-12% less for those jobs. The Center for State and Local Government Excellence and the National Institute on Retirement Security describe how long-term patterns show that the average compensation of state and local employees is not excessive.
AFSCME Council 57 and Local Affiliates’ have made endorsements for the June 8, 2010 Primary. Those marked with an asterix (*) were endorsed by Council 57 according to the best-practices process which includes evaluating responses to candidate questionnaires, interviews with members, the candidates’ track record, participation in AFSCME town halls and other factors. Endorsements (pdf)
Supporters of a ballot measure aimed at reforming California’s budget announced that they have submitted more than 1.1 million signatures in counties across California to qualify the Majority Vote Budget Initiative for the November 2, 2010 election. This exceeds greatly the 694,394 signatures needed o qualify for the ballot. The measure is supported by AFSCME, and unions representing teachers, classified school employees, nurses and firefighters, as key legislative leaders. more
HEALTH ACCESS UPDATE: Friday, April 2, 2010
On March 5th the "March For California's Future" will leave from Bakersfield and end on the State Capitol for a huge rally on April 21st.
The march will call attention to the plight of our communities caused by inadequate funding for local and state services. Our message is clear—State government officials need to fight for our communities interest now and stop the decimation of public services. The budget can be repaired with fair tax increases on the wealthy and closing corporate tax loopholes. However, we need your help to make this a reality.
AFSCME Council 57 is urging all Locals to get involved and make this historical effort to save our community services a huge success. You can help by signing on to support the march, greeting and/or walking with the marchers along the route, organizing a rally or press conference, having a barbecue or picnic for California's Future, inviting the marchers to speak to your union, congregation or club, meeting with legislators in your district, or simply talking about the march to your co-workers and neighbors.
The California Foundation for Fiscal Responsibility, the brainchild of termed-out Assemblyman Keith Richman, has abandoned its efforts to place a measure on the November 2010 ballot which would have called for drastic changes to public employee pension benefits. See their press statement:
Funding for public transit has come under the crosshairs of the governor and Senate in the latest round of budget proposals. Governor Schwarzenegger’s budget proposal is to eliminate $1.3 billion through a “gas tax swap” which would replace it with an excise tax read more
Californians for Democracy halted the signature drive in progress and is withdrawing the first version of the California Democracy Act. more
Governor Schwarzenegger begins his last year in office by putting forth an $82.9 billion budget with nearly $3 billion in cuts to health and human services, and salary cuts for our members who work for the state. more
AFSCME members were among the many health care reform advocates who arched on Sacramento on January 11th with other union members, medical students, nurses and others. more
* Being hit hard by furloughs?
AFSCME Council 57 organized in-district meetings with State Legislators throughout Northern CA and the Central Valley the weeks of October 5 and 12. Locals in Contra Costa, Humboldt, Merced, Sacramento, San Joaquin, San Mateo, Santa Clara and Stanislaus Counties participated. more
How Does the California Budget Crisis Affect YOU? The California budget crisis is affecting our members and their families in the most profound ways. Some of us are impacted by wage and benefit concessions. Some of our families are impacted by social service cuts to children or elder family members. Furloughs are taking their toll on our members’ ability to pay bills, and short staffing at work causes members to bring their stress home. Tell us your story
November '10 Election Endorsements
AFSCME Council 57 organized in-district meetings with State Legislators throughout Northern CA and the Central Valley. Locals in Contra Costa, Humboldt, Merced, Sacramento, San Joaquin, San Mateo, Santa Clara and Stanislaus Counties more
Locals that reported back with photos and stories!
The Battle for Health Care Reform is at its most critical point. Read about labor’s viewpoint, and what you can do to help make history for the better.
This fall, AFSCME Council 57’s Political and Legislative Department took several steps to build our political strength and capacity. Council 57 re-established its Political Action Committee (PAC) and asked each of the Council’s 57 Local Presidents to appoint a representative. Council 57’s Political and Legislative Director will work with the PAC and E-Board to set the direction, priorities and policies of the work. (more)
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