MN nurses union backs mask mandate

The Minnesota Nurses Association is urging state and local lawmakers to make face coverings mandatory in public places, calling it a “necessary measure to protect the public and stave off a resurgence of the vicious COVID-19 virus that has ravaged this state.”   The union’s board … [Continue Reading ...]

As mail volumes plummet, unions push Congress for relief

Perry Schmidt is used to delivering between 1,200 and 1,300 pieces of mail along his route each day. Now, the St. Paul letter carrier is delivering between 400 and 600. He’s not alone. As the COVID-19 pandemic spread across the country, the volume of mail handled by the U.S. Postal Service … [Continue Reading ...]

Pandemic likely to alter unions’ political push, but how? 

By Bill Moore, Special to The Union Advocate  COVID-19 is disrupting life as we know it and may do so for a while yet. But Minnesota labor leaders are determined that it will not stop efforts to inform and mobilize union voters for the 2020 election.   The Minnesota Labor 2020 … [Continue Reading ...]

More than a building, a building block on city’s East Side

By John Crea, Special to The Union Advocate  In Greg Gaut’s “Reinventing the People’s Library,” we find a nicely woven story about a place, a people and a public space.   The place is the east side of St. Paul, where an ancient river punched through the limestone … [Continue Reading ...]

Feature Story

Pandemic likely to alter unions’ political push, but how? 

By Bill Moore, Special to The Union Advocate  COVID-19 is disrupting life as we know it and may do so for a while yet. But Minnesota labor leaders are determined that it will not stop efforts to inform and mobilize union voters for the 2020 … [Continue Reading ...]

Labor in the Community

More than a building, a building block on city’s East Side

By John Crea, Special to The Union Advocate  In Greg Gaut’s “Reinventing the People’s Library,” we find a nicely woven story about a place, a people and a public space.   The place is the east side of St. Paul, where an ancient river punched through the limestone … [Continue Reading ...]

Unions hold vigil for workers exposed to COVID-19

One thousand votive candles flickered on the steps of the State Capitol last night, a tribute to Minnesota's essential workers who have fallen ill with COVID-19. "To workers who have contracted COVID, this is for you," Minnesota Nurses Association President Mary Turner said, opening the … [Continue Reading ...]

Unions move quickly to keep tradespeople safe on jobsites

  Minnesota’s construction industry has not shut down during the pandemic, but it’s not business as usual on the job site either, as local Building Trades unions and their contractors make adjustments to prevent the virus’ spread and keep tradespeople healthy. “Any time you work construction, … [Continue Reading ...]

Workers Memorial Day: Walz issues proclamation, unions plan remote observance

Today is Workers Memorial Day, when unions of the AFL-CIO pause to remember workers who died as a result of workplace injury or illness, and renew the labor movement's commitment to fighting for safe workplaces. While the COVID-19 pandemic has forced unions to cancel their in-person observances, … [Continue Reading ...]

Labor Voices

McCollum focused on keeping workers, families safe during crisis

The global pandemic has elected officials spending less time shaking hands and more time taking calls – so much time, in fact, that Congresswoman Betty McCollum recently treated herself to a pair of Apple AirPods.  “I am on the phone from about 8:30 in the morning to about 6:30 at night, … [Continue Reading ...]

Lessons from labor history can inform our labor movement during COVID-19 crisis

(Peter Rachleff, co-director of the East Side Freedom Library in St. Paul, wrote this essay for The Union Advocate's May 2020 issue.) COVID-19 is the biggest crisis of our lives, and workers are on the front lines. Large, profitable employers expect workers deemed “essential” — those in healthcare, … [Continue Reading ...]

Jigme Ugen: Asian American workers facing two pandemics

– Jigme Ugen is president of the Minnesota Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance. He wrote this column for the May 2020 issue of the Saint Paul Union Advocate. Over 2 million Asian American Pacific Islanders (AAPI) work in healthcare, transportation and service industries. The alarming influx of … [Continue Reading ...]

Nick Faber: Strike, contract campaign led to real gains for St. Paul schools

– Nick Faber is president of the St. Paul Federation of Educators. He wrote this column for the April 2020 edition of The St. Paul Union Advocate newspaper. No one should doubt St. Paul educators’ unwavering commitment to our students. We care so much about what our children need, we were … [Continue Reading ...]