Saturday, July 31, 2021

Play

Educators' unions call for efforts to ensure in-person learning keeps students, teachers, families, and staff safe; and an update on hate crimes by state.

Play

Congress passes Capitol security funding; House Freedom Caucus members want Cheney, Kinzinger out of GOP conference; Schumer closes a deal to advance $3.5 trillion reconciliation package; and a new report says investor-owned utilities try to block rooftop solar.

HEROES Act Would Provide Relief for Public-Sector Workers

Play

Tuesday, June 30, 2020   

SEATTLE -- Union workers say it's time for Congress to support public-sector workers and pass the HEROES Act. The $3 trillion coronavirus stimulus legislation passed in the House in May would provide $875 billion to state and local governments, which have been hit hard by COVID-19.

Carissa Hahn is executive vice president of the Communications Workers of America local in Seattle and works at AT&T Mobility.

"So with everyone depending on public-sector workers, we can't turn our backs on them," Hahn said. "We need to have everyone come together, because the whole community is going to suffer if these workers aren't providing their job services."

Other unions, including the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees and American Federation of Teachers, also are calling on the Senate to pass the HEROES Act.

Legislative specialist with the Communications Workers of America Elena Lopez said the bill has other benefits, including strengthening Occupational Safety and Health Administration work standards. She said OSHA has only issued voluntary guidelines for protecting workers during this pandemic. Greater protections could keep employers from creating unsafe work places.

"It ensures protections so that if workers don't feel comfortable going to work that they can report their employer and not be fired for doing so," Lopez said.

Hahn said it's crucial that relief efforts go to workers, not big corporations. She said the workers in need right now are the backbone of the economy and of communities.

"If our community is in jeopardy, then we're all in jeopardy," Hahn said. "And I think that that moment is becoming very clear right now."

The HEROES Act also includes hazard pay for front-line workers as well as extended paid sick leave and unemployment benefits.

Disclosure: Communications Workers of America contributes to our fund for reporting on Human Rights/Racial Justice, Livable Wages/Working Families. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


get more stories like this via email
In addition to roof repairs and other home improvements to lower utility bills, a Michigan League for Public Policy report recommends expanding utility-shutoff protections to include households with young children. (Adobe Stock)

Environment

LANSING, Mich. - High utility costs are a major burden for Michigan's low-income residents, and a new study says they have an impact on their health…


Environment

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - A new report shows an effort by investor-owned utilities in the Sunshine State to block the growth of rooftop solar. The …

Health and Wellness

By Troy Pierson / Broadcast version by Mary Schuermann reporting for the Kent State-Ohio News Connection Collaboration. As marijuana becomes more …


Across the United States, 46 states have laws allowing for harsher punishment for crimes based on bias. (Ludk/Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

SALT LAKE CITY - With rising numbers of people targeted in hate crimes and related violence, a new report analyzes the hate-crime laws in each state…

Social Issues

BOSTON - Educators' unions are calling on the state to support their efforts to ensure in-person learning in the fall keeps students, teachers…

According to AARP Connecticut, 47% of family caregivers have had at least one financial setback, such as having less money for retirement or savings, or cutting back on their own healthcare spending. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

HARTFORD, Conn. - In Connecticut, more than 460,000 people care for close friends or family members who can't manage on their own - and their …

Social Issues

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - Millions of Americans soon could find eviction notices on their front doors, but New Mexico renters will not be among them - as …

Health and Wellness

CONCORD, N.H. - New Hampshire advocates for affordable healthcare access want Congress to lower prescription costs by allowing Medicare to negotiate …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021