Volunteer to Get Out the Vote: Oct. 21 and Nov. 4, 2017

October 18, 2017 // 0 Comments

ATTENTION DC 37 MEMBERS AND RETIREES — Please join DC 37 on Saturday, October 21 and Saturday, November 4, 2017 to help Get Out the Vote for this year’s election. We need volunteers to help inform members about the dangers of the New York State Constitutional Convention. Volunteers are needed from 11:00 a.m. to 2 p.m. and from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. at the following locations: Bronx: Church Of Gods Children – 159 Dreiser Loop (Lower Level) – Bronx, NY 10475 Brooklyn: St. Gabriel’s Church – 331 Hawthorne St. – Brooklyn, NY 11225 Manhattan: 2005 Adam Clayton Powell Blvd., (cor. 120th St) – New York, NY 10027 Queens: 172-02 Jamaica Ave. – Jamaica, NY 11432 FOR INFO AND TO SIGN UP If you would like to sign up, or need more information, please call the DC 37 Political Action Department at (212) 815-1550 or click on the link below: DC 37 Get Out [More...]

The Right-wing Bradley Foundation Plots to Destroy Unions

October 13, 2017 // 0 Comments

By GREGORY N. HEIRES A right-wing network of foundations and front groups has spent decades trying to wipe out unions. One of those anti-union foundations is the Milwaukee-based Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation. A few years ago, the foundation helped Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker successfully attack public employees and withstand a union-led recall effort. Walker’s chief targets were the teachers union and the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, DC 37’s national union. Today, the “Wisconsin Model” — whose core goals are weakening collective bargaining, defunding unions, restricting workplace rights, promoting school vouchers, and backing right-to-work legislation — provides the blueprint for anti-labor and anti-government initiatives around the country. “We are up against a conservative network that is sinking millions and millions of dollars into [More...]

Union Organizes Against Constitutional Convention

October 10, 2017 // 0 Comments

By GREGORY N. HEIRES As the Nov. 7 elections  approach, DC 37 is stepping up its work with a coalition fighting against a ballot question on whether the state should hold a constitutional convention. Established earlier this year, New Yorkers Against Corruption is spreading the word about the danger of holding a convention, which would open the door for special interests to chip away at crucial protections and rights enshrined in the state constitution. The group’s campaign includes a media outreach and door-to-door canvassing. “A lot is at risk,” said Jordan Marks, the group’s campaign manager. “Voting rights. Criminal justice. Environmental protections. Women’s health and a lot more.” Besides working with the coalition, the union is also focusing on informing members about the constitutional convention. Polls show that the convention is not on the radar screen of most [More...]

Six DC 37 Members are in Puerto Rico to Help with Relief Efforts

October 6, 2017 // 0 Comments

By KEVIN ZAPF HANES Six members from New York City-based AFSCME District Council 37 (DC 37) are in Puerto Rico to help residents rebuild their lives after Hurricane Maria devastated the commonwealth. The Caribbean island, home to 3.5 million U.S. citizens, is in desperate need of highly skilled workers. The DC 37 members are lending their expertise to the larger relief effort under way as our union works to help all residents, including thousands of working and retired AFSCME sisters and brothers represented by Servidores Publicos Unidos de Puerto Rico (SPUPR)/AFSCME Council 95, get back on their feet. Partnering with the AFL-CIO and some of its member unions, AFSCME sent five construction workers and a nurse to the island. AFSCME Pres. Lee Saunders said the DC 37 members’ efforts are characteristic of how the women and men of AFSCME show their commitment to service even beyond their [More...]

DC 37 Organizing sets lunch time sessions and training for fall

October 6, 2017 // 0 Comments

The DC 37 Organizing Department has scheduled fall lunch time information events this fall to strengthen the power of our collective voice and equip members with the tools necessary to move forward together. At the top of the agenda: voting “NO” on the New York State Constitutional Convention to protect worker rights and safeguard the pensions of members and retirees, and engaging the union’s membership on this and other issues. In addition, the next general activist training is scheduled for Nov. 2 at DC 37 union headquarters. A second session will be scheduled about two weeks after the first session. To register for the training or for more information, call DC 37 Organizing at (212) 815-1095.  “Workplace info sessions and activist training are part of an effort to strengthen the union from the grassroots,” said Barbara Terrelonge, director of the DC 37 [More...]

Union Activists Demand More Aid for Puerto Rico

October 5, 2017 // 0 Comments

By ALFREDO ALVARADO Union activists from District Council 37, 32 BJ SEIU, and the Communication Workers of America joined elected officials at a rally at Foley Square in downtown Manhattan, demanding President Donald J. Trump and the federal government step up their recovery operations in Puerto Rico and cancel the island’s $72 billion debt. “We can’t afford to waste any more time,” said DC 37 and Local 1549 president Eddie Rodriguez at the lunchtime rally, across the street from Federal Plaza. “Our brothers and sisters on the island desperately need our help now.” Like many Puerto Ricans throughout the United States, Rodriguez has been unable to contact family members who live on the island. Hurricane Maria swept through Puerto Rico after Hurricane Irma and destroyed the island’s power grid. The Oct. 4 rally was organized by Vamos4PR, a coalition of union and community [More...]

Justice for Dreamers

October 4, 2017 // 0 Comments

By HENRY GARRIDO Many of us were morally outraged by President Donald J. Trump’s decision to phase out the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program. DACA protects undocumented immigrants who came to the United States as children from deportation and allows them to work and study here. The day after Trump’s Sept. 5 announcement, I joined New York Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman, the attorneys general of Massachusetts and Washington, young immigrants, nonprofit groups and private companies at a press conference to denounce the repeal. At the press conference, Schneiderman announced that he and eleven other state attorneys general would contest the Trump administration in court, charging that the DACA shutdown violated federal executive policy-making rules. Many immigrants understandably felt Trump’s decision to phase out DACA disrespected their community as well as [More...]

Don’t Like Your Health Plan? October is the Time to Switch

October 2, 2017 // 0 Comments

By GREGORY N. HEIRES If you wish to change your health-care plan, now is the time to act. The city’s annual health-care “reopener” runs from Oct. 2 to Oct. 31. For city employees who change plans, coverage is effective on the date of their first paycheck in 2018. Retirees can only change their plan in even-numbered years. But they are allowed to change plans in an odd-numbered year if they exercise a one-time exception to that rule. Retiree alert! Beware of aggressive marketing During the annual open enrollment period, retirees are inundated with material from insurance companies and other groups that administer Medicare Part D, Medicare Advantage and Medicare Supplemental plans. Edward W. Hysyk, executive vice president of the DC 37 Retirees Association, urged retirees to sit tight and be very cautious about changing their plan. “The health-care coverage we receive from DC 37 [More...]

Hiring Hall for School Lunch Helpers on Oct. 17 and Oct. 19

October 2, 2017 // 0 Comments

Due to popular demand, registration for the Oct. 17 and Oct. 19 hiring hall is now closed. Future hiring halls are planned for the near future. By ALFREDO ALVARADO District Council 37 and the Dept. of Education will be holding a hiring hall to fill part-time positions throughout the city’s school districts. The department is looking to hire Sr. School Lunch Helpers. Their responsibilities include accepting food deliveries and cleaning the school kitchen. Applicants should be able to lift a minimum of 30 pounds. The hiring hall takes place on Tuesday, Oct. 17 and Thursday, Oct. 19 from 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at DC 37 headquarters at 125 Barclay St. in Manhattan. “This is a great opportunity to begin a career at the Dept. of Education,” said DC 37 Executive Director Henry Garrido. “This is our way of reaching out to the community and sharing these opportunities. We look forward to [More...]

Fight Cuts to Workers’ Compensation! Take Action Now!

September 28, 2017 // 0 Comments

By MIKE LEE The union is taking part in an all-out effort to fight proposed changes to workers’ compensation system in New York State, changes that affect all workers injured on the job. The NYS Workers’ Compensation Board has proposed medical treatment guidelines and regulations that would eliminate monetary awards for dozens of arm and leg injuries, while also denying workers the right to have an independent medical examination. The change would also deny benefits and care to workers injured on the job who fail to answer all the questions posed by an employer’s medical examiner. Workers’ compensation, which has been on the books in New York for a century, is being threatened by right-wing business interests, such as the Business Council, which was able to pressure the state Workers’ Compensation Board to issue proposed changes to longstanding regulations earlier this [More...]