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Activists Gear Up for the Jan. 19 Women’s Unity Rally at Foley Square

January 13, 2019 // 0 Comments

By GREGORY N. HEIRES DC 37 members will be among thousands of demonstrators expected to turn out for the Women’s Unity Rally on Saturday, Jan. 19. We will gather at 10 a.m. on Foley Square, at Lafayette and Worth Street, in downtown Manhattan. We encourage participants to come dressed in DC 37’s color–green. To register for the rally, go to http://bit.ly/2019Women. For more information, contact DC 37’s Office of Community Partnerships Director Raul Rodriguez by calling 212-815-1502 or emailing raulrodriguez@dc37.net. The mission is to raise women’s voices through education and activism. Stand with us arm-in-arm in defense of women’s and immigrants rights. The DC 37 Blog is an official online publication of District Council 37, AFSCME, which represents 125,000 public service workers in New York City and surrounding [More...]

AFSCME Members Join Federal Workers in Rally to End Government Shutdown

January 11, 2019 // 0 Comments

AFSCME Pres. Lee Saunders and Janice Fridie (District Council 20). Photo Credit: Lorenzo Soto. AFSCME members today joined furloughed federal workers in Washington, D.C., to call for an end to the government shutdown. Altogether, thousands of people marched from the headquarters of the AFL-CIO in downtown D.C. to the White House, demanding that 800,000 federal workers return to their jobs and receive their paychecks. “This shutdown is hurting our families and our communities,” said AFSCME President Lee Saunders. “Public health is jeopardized. Consumer protection is compromised. Many national parks are overrun with garbage. Food assistance for low-income families is at risk.” Saunders was one of two dozen speakers outside the AFL-CIO who urged President Trump and Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) to reopen the government. AFSCME represents about 3,000 federal workers. Janice [More...]

Shop Stewards Trained for Key Role in Union Building at Local 3005

December 15, 2018 // 0 Comments

By DIANE S. WILLIAMS The first training for shop stewards of Local 3005 was an intense condensed one-day session at union headquarters on Dec. 12. “Our agenda specifically catered to what we needed our stewards to know to better service our membership,” said Local 3005 President Jeff Oshins. “When we formed Local 3005, the leaders set the goal to establish a shop steward program and to engage members to become more active in their union,” Sessions said. “We looked for volunteers. Our search was an easy one: We had no problem as dozens of members reached out to the new leadership in response to our call to action that we put out at our first general membership meeting back in September. I am proud to say six months later we were able to get our first training off the ground.” The one-day program gave the 10 shop stewards an overview of their responsibilities and how to [More...]

DC 37 Stands With Spectrum Strikers

December 10, 2018 // 0 Comments

By GREGORY N. HEIRES Striking workers stepped up the pressure on Charter Communications to return to the bargaining table as the labor dispute drags on. Some 1,800 members of Local 3, a chapter of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, are in a bitter fight over the cable TV giant’s plan to gut their health and retirement benefits. Because of the dispute, a number of workers have depleted their household savings, sold their homes, while others have become homeless. Since the strike began in March 2017, the union counted on the support of New York’s unions and many elected officials, including Gov. Andrew Cuomo and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio. Hundreds of electrical workers and supporters, including a contingent of DC 37 activists, turned out Dec. 5 for a major demonstration at Charter Communications’ headquarters in Manhattan. The Spectrum cable company — a [More...]

Union Wins New Workers at NYC Health+Hospitals

December 5, 2018 // 0 Comments

By GREGORY N. HEIRES A group of about 50 unrepresented public hospital workers recently voted to become DC 37 members. DC 37 and the Organization of Staff Analysis competed to represent the workers. The city’s Office of Collective Bargaining tabulated the vote on Nov. 9. The workers — whose title is patient representative — voted to join DC 37. Their mission at NYC Health+Hospitals is to advocate for patient rights. “I never had any experience with unions before,” said Patient Representative Mira Temer, who works at Kings County Hospital in Brooklyn. “It is nice to know that someone will be there if there is a problem.” But Temer said the rich benefits package of DC 37 is the main reason she voted for DC 37. She complained her household budget was financially pinched by an expensive prescription drug rider for her health-care plan. DC 37’s drug plan has a three-tier [More...]

Welcome to DC 37

November 26, 2018 // 0 Comments

At Meetings Around the City, Public Service Workers Are Signing Up With the Union By GREGORY N, HEIRES DC 37 continues to sign up new members under our Leading the Way campaign to promote the benefits of union membership and encourage rank-and-file participation. Last month, DC 37 held five meetings with mid-level city employees whose misclassified job titles had kept them out of the union during the Bloomberg administration but are now eligible to join or re-join. A sixth meeting was also held in November for City University of New York employees, who recently won a new contract. Union Offers Job Security Many workers who signed union membership cards at the meetings indicated that job security was their top reason for joining. Monifa Thomas, a 20-year city employee who is now a senior project manager at the Administration for Children’s Services, described job security as “an [More...]

DC 37 and City University of New York Announce Tentative Labor Pact

November 3, 2018 // 0 Comments

Nov 2, 2018 – District Council 37, the city’s largest union of municipal employees, and the City University of New York have agreed to a tentative 52-month contract that provides 8.24 percent in raises for the union’s 10,000 members who work in the public university system. The agreement, which is subject to approval by the CUNY Board of Trustees and ratification by the CUNY members of DC 37, preserves the premium-free health-care coverage of members, and will include back pay. It also protects the health benefits of CUNY retirees. The agreement also calls for CUNY to increase its annual contribution for education and professional development, and provides extra funds to boost benefits and address pay inequities. DC 37 Executive Director Henry Garrido said: “We promised members that we would work to reach an agreement that was fair and negotiated expeditiously. Both sides wanted [More...]

We Remember

September 10, 2018 // 0 Comments

  As we approach the anniversary of the terrible events on 9/11, we remember the courage and sacrifice of our DC 37 sisters and brothers who worked tirelessly that day and beyond, risking their lives and health to safe others, give comfort and to keep the city functioning during an unprecedented crisis. In 2011, AFSCME, DC 37’s national union, produced the following documentary on that terrible day, and the hardworking city workers—DC 37 members—who worked throughout the [More...]

Union Celebrates Victory for Public Safety at City Hall Rally

September 7, 2018 // 0 Comments

By DIANE S. WILLIAMS Hours before New York City schools reopened for 1.1 million students, Dept of Education Local 372 and a coalition of grassroots groups and elected officials rallied outside City Hall to celebrate a major public safety victory after Gov. Cuomo ordered the return of traffic cameras in school zones. “School Crossing Guards put themselves in the middle of busy streets every day to protect lives and keep kids safe,” said Local 372 President Shaun D. Francois I. “We prevent traffic fatalities before they happen.” “There are just 2,500 School Crossing Guards in the city. We need more. We need crossing guards at every school,” said Francois. “School safety is a must. Crossing guards are a must. More cameras now!” Francois joined City Council Speaker Corey Johnson, Lt. Gov.  Kathy Hochul, State Sen. Jose Peralta, Assembly members Robert Carroll and Felix [More...]

Help the Union Get Out the Vote

September 6, 2018 // 0 Comments

When hardworking public employees and union members ask how the politics of this country got to where they are now, much of the answer can be found in the midterm elections of 2010. That’s when the progressive agenda of President Barack Obama was critically wounded by insufficient turnout and the extreme right-wing took over Congress and statehouses across the country. This time around, we have the opportunity to thwart Trump’s agenda of nurturing the ultra-wealthy and decimating public services, Medicare and Social Security. It begins with the Democratic Primary on Thursday, September 13. Please note the date. Customarily, we go to the polls on the second Tuesday of September, but out of respect for the memory of those who perished on 9/11, it has been changed. The union urges you to support the Gov. Andrew Cuomo and New York City Public Advocate Letitia James for New York State [More...]