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Health and Safety

President's Pension Tax Destroying Retirement Security

February 13, 2016
By LIUNA President Terry O’Sullivan

Washington, DC - The President’s proposed fivefold tax increase on pensions is a raid on the retirement security of working class Americans. The tax will cost LIUNA's multiemployer pension funds millions of dollars every single year. 

Free To Be What You Will Be

February 11, 2016
By Barry Saltzman

NYC Human Rights Commission Issues Policy Guidlines Fighting Gender Discrimination

The New York City Commission on Human Rights has released powerful guidelines to counter gender-identity discrimination by fleshing out the broad protections listed in the New York City Human Rights Law. Employers who violate the NYCHRL are subject to fines or civil penalties of up to $250,000, as well as damages including back and front pay, compensatory and punitive damages, and attorneys’ fees.

Nurses Urge ‘Safe Staffing’ Laws

February 10, 2016
By Steven Wishnia and Neal Tepel 

Albany, NY - Nurses’ labor unions in New York have been lobbying local governments to support requiring hospitals to have a minimum number of nurses per unit. The Assembly Health Committee approved the Safe Staffing for Quality Care Act on Jan. 21, but similar bills have failed to advance in the past.

Can Jersey Teachers Roll Back Health-Care Payments?

February 8, 2016
By Steven Wishnia and Neal Tepel

Pleasantville, NJ - New Jersey’s 2010 law requiring public employees to pay part of their health-insurance premiums expired last year, and teachers’ unions are likely to try to roll back those payments in their next contracts.

Quest Diagnostics Workers Join UFCW

February 4, 2016
By John Quinn, LaborPress USA

San Diego California - Quest Diagnostics workers in San Diego voted to join UFCW Local 135 in order improve their jobs and working conditions. Better wages, respect on the job, stable schedules, vacation time and sick days are some of the priorities for these employees. Negotiations for their first contract are beginning with the entire group very excited.

Illinois AFSCME Responds to Rauner Accusations

February 1, 2016
By Steven Wishnia and Neal Tepel

Springfield, IL - Illinois’ largest state employees union responded Jan. 22 to Gov. Bruce Rauner telling workers that it was stalling contract talks by demanding “across-the-board wage and step increases” and “expensive platinum health-care plans.

January Labor Bulletin

January 27, 2016
By Michael Jordan

What the Cadillac Tax Delay Means for Labor   
The $1.1 trillion budget deal approved by Congress on Dec. 18, 2015, delays the Cadillac tax for two years – from 2018 to 2020 – and raises the possibility of a repeal. In this issue of the Labor Bulletin, we’ll examine what this means for labor unions.

Stale Cookies Don’t Stop Nurses From Voting Union

January 26, 2016
By Steven Wishnia and Neal Tepel

Philadelphia, PA- Nurses at Hahnemann University Hospital voted overwhelmingly Jan. 20 to join the Pennsylvania Association of Staff Nurses and Allied Professionals union.

The Human Cost of Alzheimer’s, Dementia, and Related Conditions

January 21, 2016
By Tom Canty, Vice President and General Manager, Empire BlueCross BlueShield Government, Labor and Special Account

In September 2014, President Obama announced a $100 million federal brain initiative to revolutionize our understanding of the human mind and uncover new ways to treat, prevent and cure brain disorders. In time, this unique public-private sector initiative will hopefully yield new ways to manage Alzheimer’s disease, dementia and other related conditions.

Negotiate Fairer Prescription Drug Prices To Pare Health Costs

January 7, 2016
By Corey Bearak, The Public Ought To Know

Queens, NY – My very first Labor Press commentary covered health care.  I advocate a single payer plan and expect over long-term that we will find our way there.  Health care costs continue to get attention in the news.  Sometimes it involves how company and government plans cover their employees and if savings negotiated with labor get realized.  Other times, the high cost of prescription drugs gets news coverage.  Clearly, drug costs impact health care costs and health insurance. Addressing proliferating drug costs can help reduce the expense of health care and its coverage overall.

What the Case Against Union Dues Is Really About: Friedrichs v. California Teachers Association

January 7, 2016
By Alan Shapiro

Washington, DC- On January 11, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear arguments in a case that greatly concerns all union members working in the public sector, including teachers and other state and municipal workers. The case, Friedrichs v. California Teachers Association, aims to overturn a Supreme Court ruling that has stood for nearly 40 years. In the important and unanimous 1977 decision Abood v. Detroit Board of Education, the Supreme Court upheld the right of public sector unions to collect “fair share” or “agency”fees from workers who choose not to join the union, because those workers benefit significantly from union representation.

Statement of New York State AFL-CIO President Mario Cilento on one-day strike by NYSNA nurses in Gloversville

January 7, 2016

Albany, NY - “We fully support the nurses represented by the New York State Nurses Association (NYSNA), who have been put in the unfortunate position of having no other choice than to go out on a one-day strike at Nathan Littauer Hospital (NLH) in Gloversville.

OSHA Fines Boston ‘Hospital Hotel’ $12,000

January 4, 2016
By Steven Wishnia and Neal Tepel

Boston, MA- The federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration has issued $12,000 in health-violation citations to the Wyndham Beacon Hill “hospital hotel” in Boston, which caters to outpatients and those newly discharged from the city’s hospitals.

Fight For $15 Win At Boston And Tufts Medical Center’s

December 29, 2015
By Doug Cunningham 
Workers Independent News

Boston, Massachusetts - Another win for the Fight For $15 as 2015 draws to a close. Boston Medical Center and Tufts Medical Center staff will now be paid at least $15 an hour. That's the highest minimum wage for hospital staff in the Boston area. Right now the starting wage at Boston Medical Center for staff workers is $13 an hour.

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