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Sign Up for DC37Rewards Aug. 30 to be Eligible to Win a Caribbean Cruise

August 5, 2019 // 0 Comments

Have you been dreaming about a Caribbean getaway? The DC 37 Rewards program, www.DC37Rewards.com, is giving away one $2,500.00 cruise voucher good on Disney, Royal Caribbean, or Celebrity cruise lines. The winner applies the $2,500.00 credit voucher to pay for a Caribbean cruise vacation on the cruise of their choice. To enter to win, you must be a DC 37 member or retiree in good standing registered at DC37Rewards.com by August 30, 2019. The winner will be drawn at random from all contestants registered on DC37Rewards.com before midnight Friday August 30, 2019. The winner will be announced on Monday September 2, 2019. No cash substitutions. About DC 37 Rewards: www.DC37Rewards.com offers big savings at Six Flags, the New York Yankees, Best Buy, Enterprise, Priceline, Jenny Craig, and other companies. DC37Rewards.com helps you save on everyday items plus travel, gym memberships, [More...]

Quick-Thinking Local 2507 Saves a Man’s Severed Arm

July 7, 2019 // 0 Comments

By DIANE S. WILLIAMS A fast-acting Emergency Medical Technician in Local 2507 saved the severed arm of a man who was struck by a train on Staten Island. EMT Francis Jost usually works in Sunset Park, Brooklyn, but on that chilly February night he was working an overtime assignment in his Staten Island neighborhood when the call came over the radio around 10:30 p.m. that a man was struck by a train at the Pleasant Plains station. “When I reached the train tracks someone handed me the arm and my mind went to ice. I need ice fast. ICE HOSPITAL GO!” recalled Jost. “I knew there was a bar nearby where I would go to shoot pool sometimes. If we could get ice and pack the limb, maybe we’d save it.” Turns out his idea worked. The call went out for ice. Jost ran down the station steps with the limb in his arms and met another EMT holding the trash bag filled with ice from Hot Shotz, the [More...]

Union Mourns Intern Killed in Car Accident

January 16, 2019 // 0 Comments

By DIANE W. WILLIAMS The AFSCME family is stunned and saddened by the tragic death of 21-year-old Nadia Mourtaj, a 2018 summer intern in DC 37’s Organizing Department. Nadia and her sister Zeyneb, 15, were in a car accident on Dec. 31, in Charles County, Md. Zeyneb was killed on impact and Nadia died nine days later. They are survived by their mother, Sara Ghebre, and father, Abdelilah Mourtaj. “Nadia was a bright star whose enthusiasm for life and the labor movement was contagious,” said DC 37 organizer Nichole Laing, who helped train the young activist seen in this union video. After Nadia completed the internship, Organizing Dept. Director Barbara Terrelonge said, “Nadia visited New York City in September, marching with DC 37 in the annual Labor Day Parade.” “There were many reasons why I chose Nadia for AFSCME’s program, but what stood out to me was her extensive [More...]

Book Review: The Radical Right’s Plot to Take over America

August 31, 2018 // 0 Comments

  By KEN NASH The Janus v. AFSCME Supreme Court decision in June and our current struggle over Trump’s nomination of Brett Kavanaugh for the U.S. Supreme Court vacancy are only the most recent manifestations of the Right’s decades-long game plan to not only unravel the New Deal of the 1930s and the civil rights revolution of the 1960s but also to establish property rights over democratic rights as the basis for our government. In “Democracy in Chains: the Deep History of the Radical Right’s Stealth Plan for America,” Professor Nancy MacLean of Duke University traces the origins of this counterrevolution’s 60-year plan to eliminate unions, suppress voting rights, privatize public education, and stop action on climate change. The capitalist Right’s agenda is not only to alter specific legislation, court decisions or who gets elected but also to fundamentally alter [More...]

Members Participate in National Night Out Activities Around the City

August 13, 2018 // 0 Comments

By ALFREDO ALVARADO Union activists joined neighborhood residents and police officers around the city for the annual National Night Out. The first Tuesday of August police precincts around the country join with community residents in an effort to build stronger relationships and safer communities. In Harlem police officers from the 32nd Precinct closed down 135th Street between 7th and 8th avenues and set up games for the neighborhood children to enjoy. “This’s a nice thing to do for the community and the kids have a great time,” said Local 1549 member Nakisha Crown, who works as a payroll supervisor. “The police and the community have to work together, so this is a good start.” DC 37 activists joined the Police Dept. and community activists at Baisley Pond Park in Queens, Midland Beach in Staten Island, in the Bronx and at Restoration Plaza near the 79th Precinct on Fulton [More...]

New York City’s Black Women Earn 57 cents for Each Dollar Earned by White Men

August 10, 2018 // 0 Comments

By DIANE S. WILLIAMS Black Women’s Equal Pay Day, Aug. 7, was a grim reminder of longstanding gender and racial income gaps, but data shows women who belong to unions fare much better than those who don’t. “The income gap and pay disparities between men and women and women of color are harsh realities,” said Carmen Charles, Local 420 president, who chairs the union’s Women’s Committee. “The sting of lower wages–and poverty–is especially felt by single mothers and their children,” Charles said. The National Women’s Law Center notes that a college-educated black woman can lose about $870,000 in potential earnings over the course of her career. In New York City, black women earn an estimated 57 cents for every dollar earned by a white man. “In a city like New York that touts its progressive ideals, it is an outrage that Black women in 2018 are still denied [More...]

Union Helps Members Fight Off Unscrupulous Debt Collectors

August 8, 2018 // 0 Comments

    By ALFREDO ALVARADO  President Donald Trump has rolled back financial regulations of all kinds. And now, thanks to his policies, the slimly debt collection business is back. Debt buyers are companies that purchase debt from an original creditor, usually a credit card issuer or a bank. They then try to collect the amount owed. Usually, they sue the debtor without notification. When the unsuspecting consumer does not show up in court, a default judgement is entered, paving the way for his or her salary to be garnished. Sheldon Barasch, supervising attorney for the union’s Municipal Employees Legal Services, does not think highly of the debt collection business. “These debt settlement companies are a total scam,” he said. “We’ve seen this going on for many years.” The MELS Bankruptcy Unit handles as many as 1,000 of these cases annually. A 2009 MELS study found that [More...]

Join DC 37 for a Rally Aug. 15 to Protest ICE Deportations

August 2, 2018 // 0 Comments

    By ALFREDO ALVARADO Union activists from the Northeast will gather in Philadelphia on Wed., Aug. 15 to rally and call for the end of deportations by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement and an end to President Trump’s zero-tolerance policy on immigration. “The administration is so extreme on immigration that they’re deporting the spouses of military veterans,” said Florida U.S. Congress member Darren Soto. And The Washington Post has reported that the Trump administration’s policy of separating families at the border has been unable to reunite 572 immigrant children with their parents. DC 37 activists will be joining Unite Here!, which represents workers in the hotel, food service and transportation industries, and other union and immigration activists at 4 p.m. at Penn’s Landing to call for an end to the Trump policies. In New York City, DC 37 has taken a [More...]

Rookie of the Year Helps Find Where the Wild Things Are

June 19, 2018 // 0 Comments

By DIANE S. WILLIAMS For New Yorkers who want to roam the wild, public parks are urban forests teeming with over 600 species of wildlife. Tracking the migratory and breeding patterns of birds, bats and beasts is Community Coordinator Karolina Janik, a self-described computer nerd who works at North Arsenal of the Dept. of Parks and Recreation. “I always wanted to work in public service and for my work to have purpose,” said Janik, a Social Services Employees Union Local 371 member, who was raised in Baltimore. “Before I moved here, I never realized how much wildlife exists in New York City.” Janik collects data on red-tailed hawk fledges nesting on a 96th Street fire escape and wild coyotes in Pelham Bay. She finds blue, yellow, and orange warblers that dart skyward and make New York City a stopover on their epic annual migration from South America to the Artic. Marshlands along [More...]

A $1.50 Pay Raise

May 28, 2018 // 0 Comments

So far, what critics said about the Trump tax plan is proving to be true: It’s a scam. After its unveiling last year, opponents last described the proposal as a giveaway to corporations and the wealthy with crumbs for the rest of us. Earlier this year, House Speaker Paul Ryan urged his colleagues to talk up the tax law by pointing out that a high school secretary in Pennsylvania was happy with her $1.50 weekly pay raise resulting the legislation. He abandoned that sales job when he realized how silly his spin was. As attention shifts to this November elections, Republican legislators in tough races are backing away from touting the plan, according to a Reuters study. It seems that they don’t want to be identified with their own achievement. As it turns out, the typical CEO is receiving an annual tax cut of more than $51,000. The bottom three-fifths of the population? They are [More...]