Protesting Paras

Budget axe falls on School District 197’s frontline workers

Despite putting their health at risk while providing essential care during the pandemic, paraprofessionals in the West St. Paul-Mendota Heights-Eagan Area Schools learned Tuesdy night that the district will lay off up to 12 full-time workers from their ranks and replace them with temporary hires.

COVID Testing Site

COVID Testing is Free, Fast and Encouraged for Frontline Workers

COVID-19 testing is fast, safe and open to anyone free of charge at 21 community testing sites across Minnesota. That’s the message state health officials want union members – and all frontline workers – to hear as more businesses, schools and other gathering places begin reopening to the public. As a small group of union leaders toured the testing site inside St. Paul’s Roy Wilkins Auditorium today, state officials emphasized that testing remains critical to containing the coronavirus outbreak. And containing the outbreak is critical to keeping Minnesota schools and businesses open.

AFGE Members

Local veterans, workers call out Union Busting at VA

“It’s just another effort to destabilize the VA because, ultimately, they want to privatize the VA,” AFGE District 8 Vice President Gregg James said. “There are trillions of dollars available if millions of veterans have to go downtown to ge their care.”

GOTV Volunteer

Union Volunteers, broad coalitions power Labor 2020 Political Campaign

Don Slaten has been volunteering in support of his union’s political program for years. Never has he seen a campaign season like this one, marked by social distance, early voting and a highly polarized voting public. “It’s just unreal,” said Slaten, a retired member of Machinists Local Lodge 459 who became active in local politics in the mid-1980s. “I’ve never seen anything like this before.”

In an election cycle with no playbook, Minnesota’s unions have adjusted their approach to politics. Physical distance is now baked into the Labor 2020 campaign strategy, with phone and text banks taking the place of most door-to-door canvassing.