District Council 57

Political & Legislative Action

 Labor and its allies gained traction this week with landmark legislation that will raise the minimum wage statewide incrementally to $15 per hour over the next six years.

With this law, California is making a statement that will echo across the country: No one who works hard should live in poverty.  

Various cities in the state have undertaken their own minimum wage laws. With this new statewide legislation under consideration in Sacramento, many AFSCME members working in kitchen, laundry and custodial jobs stand to benefit.

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It’s not often when we get a chance to speak directly to the public officials who make decisions that affect our communities, but that’s the opportunity that our members received last weekend when they attended the AFSCME California PEOPLE Convention.

A number of our brothers and sisters—representing locals throughout the state—took part in Lobby Day, and they shared their stories of serving the public everyday and asked public officials in the state Capitol to hear and act on their concerns.

As a Council, we worked in collaboration with our brothers and sisters from Council 36 (Southern California) to gain support from key state legislators in our fight to restore funding for an array of state-funded services that will lift up our communities. 

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Standing behind our members’ beliefs and taking our own stance on the election, Council 57 has endorsed Bernie Sanders in the 2016 presidential race.  

Our 14-member Executive Board made the recommendation in January to the Council 57 Delegate Assembly, a group of AFSCME Council 57 members that comprise the highest decision-making body of our statewide organization. The delegates overwhelmingly adopted the recommendation, saying that AFSCME members should vote for Bernie Sanders in the Democratic primary because of:  

  • his support for strengthening the middle class
  • his commitment to make public colleges and universities tuition-free, which would ensure that young people have a better future and better life without having to amass a wall of student loan debt, and
  • a commitment to keeping health care a basic right for all Americans and a right that should not be put solely in the hands of big insurance and pharmaceutical companies  

AFSCME Local 444 was among those urging a Sanders endorsement.

“Who’s the candidate who’s not afraid to use the term ‘working class?’” asked Ruben Rodriguez, a Council 57 Executive Board member and the Local 444 Vice President. “Bernie Sanders. And we are the working class, all of us here.”

Read more here


 

MapLight, a nonpartisan political money tracker, offers a comprehensive voter guide profiling California ballot measures. read more



 

Our political strength lies with our locals. Here is how your local can build an effective political program.  more


 

As a union representing public employees at all levels of government, AFSCME fights to protect and support the work our members do every day. This necessarily involves intensive legislative and political activity locally, in Sacramento, and in Washington, D.C. How does this work? more


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