Wilfs’ company turned deaf ear to warnings of wage theft at Viking Lakes development

Tradespeople who worked on the Viking Lakes luxury apartments in Eagan went public last week with accusations of wage theft on the project, owned and developed by the same family that owns the NFL’s Minnesota Vikings. Worker advocacy groups, including the North Central States Regional Council of … [Continue Reading ...]

Workers seek commitment from developers to build with ‘dignity and respect’

As allegations of wage theft continue to bubble up from the Twin Cities’ nonunion construction industry, a worker-led initiative aims to partner with developers to keep labor abuses off their job sites. After months of behind-the-scenes planning and organizing, construction workers this week … [Continue Reading ...]

Safe staffing concerns soar among Minnesota nurses

The Minnesota Nurses Association released data today showing the number of reported staffing concerns from its members doubled from 2020 to 2021, prompting union members who joined a Capitol press conference to plead for action from lawmakers and hospital administrators. “Each one of these … [Continue Reading ...]

Unions’ pre-apprenticeship program puts more Minnesotans on path to construction careers

Thirty-five Minnesotans are a big step closer to family-sustaining careers in the unionized construction industry after graduating from the Building Strong Communities program last week. Elected officials, union leaders, employers and family members gathered for a ceremony May 5 at North Hennepin … [Continue Reading ...]

Feature Story

Safe staffing concerns soar among Minnesota nurses

The Minnesota Nurses Association released data today showing the number of reported staffing concerns from its members doubled from 2020 to 2021, prompting union members who joined a Capitol press conference to plead for action from lawmakers and hospital … [Continue Reading ...]

Labor in the Community

Unions’ pre-apprenticeship program puts more Minnesotans on path to construction careers

Thirty-five Minnesotans are a big step closer to family-sustaining careers in the unionized construction industry after graduating from the Building Strong Communities program last week. Elected officials, union leaders, employers and family members gathered for a ceremony May 5 at North Hennepin … [Continue Reading ...]

Unions honor fallen tradespeople on Workers Memorial Day

Twin Cities Building Trades councils observed Workers Memorial Day with a ceremony on the Capitol grounds today, remembering union tradespeople who died from workplace injuries and illnesses over the past year and rededicating their organizations to the cause of safer worksites. "Every worker, … [Continue Reading ...]

In memoir, United Hospital nurse reflects on experiences in COVID ICU

After accepting a post in United Hospital’s COVID intensive care unit in March 2020, Amanda V. Peterson began writing as a form of what she calls “paper therapy.” Two years later, Peterson is a published author, and her memoir, “Everybody Just Breathe,” sold out its first press run in just three … [Continue Reading ...]

After pandemic hiatus, Plumbers union brings back Water’s Off service day

Dave Hallis’ kitchen drain needed more than a quick fix, and caulking in the disabled Navy veteran’s roll-in shower had begun to separate. So when Community Action Partnership of Ramsey and Washington Counties called Hallis in March to see if he could use some free plumbing repairs, the timing … [Continue Reading ...]

Labor Voices

County attorneys take aim at criminal wage theft

Local prosecutors intend to shine a search light on the shadowy corners of the economy where wage theft and labor trafficking have found a home, especially the non-union construction industry. Ramsey County Attorney John Choi recently hired a full-time investigator to begin delivering wage-theft … [Continue Reading ...]

Roslyn Robertson: ‘Every fatality crosses my desk, and my stomach just cringes’

Each year on April 28, the labor movement observes Workers Memorial Day, when union members pause to remember workers killed or injured on the job – and to recommit to the fight for safe workplaces. It’s a mission shared by the Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry (DLI), led by Commissioner … [Continue Reading ...]

Bree Halverson: Buying clean and fair for workers and the environment

Infrastructure is at the forefront of the minds of policymakers in our state. Minnesota will see an influx of funding from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, passed by Congress and signed by President Biden last year. The Minnesota Legislature is focusing on the state’s significant budget surplus, … [Continue Reading ...]

Push for paid family leave takes on new urgency in pandemic

A union-backed coalition of groups renewed its lobbying push for paid family and medical leave on Valentine’s Day – and not by accident. Love is at the heart of the proposed legislation, advocates said, adding that its failure to gain traction in the Senate over the past six years has cornered … [Continue Reading ...]