Workers First Caravan: Working Floridians Rally for Economic and Racial Justice

Wednesday, June 17th, working people and the Organized Labor movement took a stand to continue the fight for economic and racial justice across the nation. Here in Florida, Central Labor Councils, local unions and working people sent a message to put Workers First across the state, leading car caravans and rallying to hold our elected officials accountable.

Events were held in all corners of the state, from South Florida to Tallahassee. The caravans focused on the AFL-CIO’s Five Economic Essentials, demands that will help keep workers safe and help America come out of this pandemic even stronger. You can read about the Five Economic Essentials here.

Working people also rallied to protect our Postal Service from the big money interests attempting to privatize it, as well as calling for racial justice in the U.S. and combating the systematic racism that communities of color experience on the job and in our society.

The Southwest Florida Chapter rallied to save the U.S. Postal Service in Cape Coral, you can read about their event here.

In South Florida, the South Florida AFL-CIO, Palm Beach-Treasure Coast AFL-CIO, and the Broward County AFL-CIO saw incredible turn out at their events. The South Florida Sun-Sentinel has more.

Working people in the Tallahassee area rallied around our State Capitol to send a message to our elected officials that this moment calls for real change. WFSU has more here.

In Gainesville, the North Central Florida Labor Council joined in on the action to tell Rep. Yoho to put workers first and to support the HEROES Act. WJCB has more. Volusia-Flagler called on Rep. Waltz in DeLand to make the right choice for working people. Daytona News-Journal has more on the story. The West Central Florida Labor Council rallied in Sarasota at the office of Rep. Vern Buchanan, while the North Florida Central Labor Council and the Space Coast AFL-CIO rallied to save our vital Postal Service.

The Central Florida AFL-CIO caravaned through downtown Orlando in order to raise awareness for the cause, WESH 2 has more on the story. Members took some excellent drone video to show the full scope of the event, which you can watch here.

Thank you to everyone who came out to support the critical need for economic and racial justice in these turbulent times. Solidarity!

Labor Counts: 2020 U.S. Census



Join the Florida AFL-CIO in ensuring every Labor household counts, make sure you’re counted in the 2020 census. Census information is incredibly important for the allocation of over 1.5 trillion dollars in federal, state, and local programs and services. This data also plays a crucial part in deciding political power and representation in Congress.

Due to the COVID-19 panic, the U.S. Census Bureau has extended the period you can self respond until October 31st of this year. Responding to the census is one of the quickest, easiest and most important things you can do.

Ways to be counted

By Mail

If you have received your paper questionnaire from the U.S. Census Bureau, simply fill out the questionnaire and return it in the enclosed envelope. Make sure the outer envelope’s return address is from the U.S. Census Bureau and the U.S. Department of Commerce.

For more information on completing the census by mail, click here.

Online:

Completing the census online has never been easier, visit mycensus2020.org and follow the instructions to be counted!

Click here to find out more about completing your census online.

By phone:

You can also complete the questionnaire by phone.

Call 844-330-2020 for English or 844-468-2020 for Spanish.

Why it matters

Standing up and being counted helps our democracy function. Federal programs use this information to allocate resources for everything from education to hospitals and your representation in government. In times of crisis like the COVID-19 pandemic or hurricanes, this information helps emergency management and first responders make critical decisions.

Make sure you count, complete your census today!

2020 Legislative Update Week 9: The End Is Here!

This is it! After weeks of all out terror and attacks on the working people of Florida, the Florida Legislature entered it’s final week of Legislative Session.

The week saw last minute pushes by nefarious forces to strip Floridians of their democratic rights, serve giant tax cuts to their corporate masters and further shroud our government from we, the people!

Brave Floridians fought back, stopping the legislature from enacting their campaign of horror and standing up for the working families of the Sunshine State.

Find out more about the ins and outs of this week’s legislative session in Week 9: The End Is Here!

CORONAVIRUS: Be Vigilant, Be Prepared. Don’t Panic.

Across Florida and the nation, working people are taking the necessary precautions to stay safe in the face of COVID-19.

Below you’ll find resources from the National AFL-CIO on how to help prevent it’s spread and the actions Organized Labor is taking to stand up for working people.

CORONAVIRUS: COVID-19
BE VIGILANT. BE PREPARED.

DON’T PANIC.

The COVID-19 outbreak is caused by the novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2. It has spread rapidly around the globe and now throughout the United States. The World Health Organization (WHO) has classified the outbreak as a pandemic. Federal health officials have said we should prepare for severe disruptions to group gatherings and public settings, such as schools and other workplaces, and everyday life, raising a number of concerns for working people.

WHAT DO WE KNOW ABOUT THE VIRUS?

The COVID-19 virus is spreading from person to person, and there has been community transmission in the United States. Workplace exposure is a serious concern. Health care workers and Transportation Security Administration (TSA) agents have become infected with the virus. The virus can spread through the air and survive on surfaces. It can be transmitted even when people do not have symptoms; and symptoms may be mild and may not present for up to two weeks. Symptoms of COVID-19 include fever, dry cough, shortness of breath, muscle ache and fatigue, whereas a runny or stuffy nose and a sore throat are more common with the seasonal flu and common cold. The disease is more deadly than the seasonal flu, with a higher risk of severe disease or death among older people, individuals with an underlying illness, and current and former smokers. Those left unprotected at work are at a greater risk of becoming infected and spreading the virus.

Information on the outbreak and virus is constantly evolving. See the links at the end for the most up-to-date information.

WORKERS AT INCREASED RISK

Working people are at increased risk if they frequently interact with potentially infected or infected individuals. Workers, listed below, are on the front lines and have an increased risk of exposure; however, as the outbreak evolves, all workers may be affected in some way.

  • Health care workers;
  • Emergency responders (e.g., law enforcement, firefighters, EMTs);
  • Airline operations (e.g., pilots, flight attendants, other airport workers);
  • Other transportation operations;
  • Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and TSA workers;
  • Correctional workers;
  • Educators;
  • Cleaning workers;
  • Workers who have been identified as “essential personnel” by their employers during an outbreak or quarantine; and
  • Other workers with broad exposure to the public.

PRIORITIES FOR WORKERS AND UNIONS

  • Comprehensive workplace plans to identify potential exposure routes, controls to mitigate risk, such as isolation, social distancing and personal protective equipment, and training procedures.
  • Emphasis on personal hygiene practices, hand-washing and respiratory etiquette.
  • Protocols to clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
  • Adherence to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommendations when hosting and attending events or large gatherings. These recommendations may change as the situation evolves.
  • Strong standards and guidance from agencies in charge of protecting different groups of workers that recognize the necessity for airborne protections for front-line workers.
  • Adequate supplies of personal protective equipment, especially N95 respirators and those offering a greater level of protection, and respirator fit testing.
  • Plans for supply shortages, including triage and prioritization.
  • Protocols in case of a workplace or community outbreak, including possible self-quarantine or workplace quarantine.
  • Resources and preparation for a surge in demand for health services, including hospital beds and caregivers.
  • Much greater capacity for coronavirus testing, with a priority for testing health care workers who take care of patients.
  • Policies to make it possible for sick workers, quarantined workers, parents of children whose schools have closed and workers caring for loved ones in these situations to stay at home without the loss of pay, seniority or benefits.
  • Policies to ensure that workers are not discouraged by cost considerations from seeking preventive treatment, testing, ongoing treatment or, eventually, voluntary vaccination.
  • Policies to address the pandemic’s impact on the U.S. economy and on specific sectors, with a guarantee that any sectoral assistance actually benefits workers.

WHAT WE’VE DONE

  • Launched immediate and ongoing response and coordination of information and expertise to address affiliate needs.
  • Petitioned the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to issue an emergency temporary standard for infectious diseases to protect all at-risk workers from COVID-19 and future infectious diseases.
  • Procured supplemental funding that included worker health and safety training in emergency response preparedness and workplace procedures.
  • Requested Congress to pass COVID-19 legislation and economic stimulus legislation that includes priorities of working people.

WHAT WE’RE DOING

  • Working with Congress, federal agencies, and state and local governments to ensure workers are at the forefront of the U.S. strategy to contain the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Ensuring working people have the health and safety resources, training, and tools needed to be protected at work during this crisis.
  • Demanding strong enforceable standards to ensure that employers provide workers the necessary protections to keep them safe from all injuries and illnesses on the job.
  • Strengthening and rebuilding our systems of health care, other worker protections, and economic stabilizers whose weaknesses have been exposed by the crisis.
  • Staying tuned to the AFL-CIO webpage below for the latest developments.

MORE INFORMATION

SPECIAL REPORT: HB 1 ATTACKS!

We interrupt your regularly scheduled programming with this special report!

Last week, Union Members across the state stood up to House Bill 1. As always, there’s nothing more disgusting than union busting!

2020 Legislative Update Week 7: The Sinister Session!

The Sinister Session continues it’s all out assault on Florida’s Democracy! Big Money looks for another hand out and the Florida Legislature is happy to oblige! Our right to direct democracy may soon be rendered to ashes!

All this and more in this week’s Legislative Update, The Sinister Session, your guide to the horror coming out of our State Capitol!

2020 Legislative Update Week 6: The Destruction of Democracy!

FLORIDA’S DEMOCRACY IS UNDER SIEGE! DARKNESS CONTINUES TO SPREAD OVER FLORIDA’S GOVERNMENT! OUR LOCAL GOVERNMENTS SILENCED IN THE NAME OF CORPORATE GREED!

The terror continues in this week’s Legislative Update: The Destruction of Democracy. Tune in to find out the whole story on what’s happening in the State Capitol and how working Floridians are fighting back!

2020 Legislative Update Week 5: Razing Our Rights!

Floridians’ right to organize: under siege! Our say in local governments: consumed by big money! Citizens’ voice in our democracy: stifled by the terror of Tallahassee.

Week five of the 2020 Legislative Session saw the thrills, chills and terror continue from the State Capitol here in Tallahassee. Get the full picture with the newest episode of the Florida AFL-CIO’s Legislative Update: Razing Our Rights!