Building Trades remember the fallen on Workers Memorial Day


Members of the Building Trades paused yesterday in St. Paul to honor members of their unions who died as a result of work-related injuries or illnesses in the previous year. The annual Workers Memorial Day ceremony was to take place at the Workers Memorial Garden on the Capitol grounds, but organizers moved the event indoors, […]

Ken Peterson: Fight for safer workplaces continues in Minnesota, worldwide


Workers Memorial Day is observed each April 28 because President Richard Nixon signed the OSHA law on that date in 1970. He called it the most significant legislation for working people enacted in American history. The new workplace-safety law was the culmination of decades of work by unions and safety advocates to reduce on-the-job deaths […]

Unions, employers reach out to St. Paul’s East Side at job fair

St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman and Regional Labor Federation Bobby Kasper welcome job seekers and employers to the Union Job & Resource Fair at the East Side Freedom Library.

Union employers, apprenticeship programs and community service agencies set up shop on St. Paul’s East Side last night, recruiting talent from the distinctly working-class neighborhood and beyond at the Union Jobs and Resource Fair. Many Latino, Hmong, Karen and East African families call the East Side home, and the job fair, organized by the St. […]

AFSCME members defend public services during annual lobbying day

Workers who have been injured or assaulted on the job at a state mental health facility stand up during AFSCME Council 5's Day on the Hill rally.

  No one knows more about public services in Minnesota than the workers who deliver them, and state lawmakers had access to an abundance of wisdom today during AFSCME Council 5’s annual lobbying blitz. “The experts in public service are coming to the Capitol,” Council 5 Director Eliot Seide said at the close of a […]

Education secretary’s ‘Tea for Teachers’ taps St. Paul educator

Schatzlein stands to the immediate left of Education Secretary John B. King Jr., at the center of the photo. (U.S. Department of Education photo)

  Erica Schatzlein was checking her email over lunch Feb. 23 when she found an invite to have tea with the U.S. secretary of education. The teacher of English language learners at Nokomis Montessori North was skeptical. “At first I was thinking, ‘Is this real? It looks real,’” she said. “I decided to respond and […]

House Republicans play politics with unemployment extension for steelworkers


Steelworkers pleaded with members of a House committee yesterday to pass a clean bill extending unemployment benefits to workers impacted by the Iron Range mining slowdown, but they couldn’t convince Republicans, who continued holding the relief package hostage for $271 million in tax cuts for businesses. “Believe me, this is not an easy thing for […]

UPDATE: With strike deadline looming, janitors reach landmark tentative pact

Members of the Minneapolis RLF's People of Color Union Members Caucus rally in support of janitors' contract campaign.

    Union janitors in the Twin Cities reached a tentative agreement on a new four-year contract with area cleaning contractors after a marathon bargaining session ended in the early-morning hours March 7. The settlement prevented janitors from staging a second strike. About 4,000 janitors, 90 percent of whom are people of color, will see […]

Retail janitors pledge strikes will continue until conditions improve

Striking CTUL member Luciano Balbuena: "I hope this strike is the last strike we will have to have."

A day after union janitors walked off the job in an unfair-labor-practices strike, non-union janitors organizing with the Twin Cities-based worker center CTUL did the same, picketing early this morning outside Macy’s on the Nicollet Mall. It marked the seventh time in the last three years CTUL janitors, who clean big-box stores, car dealerships and […]

Striking janitors: ‘We do the dirty work, we deserve a better wage’


Union janitors are setting up picket lines across the Twin Cities today, raising the stakes in their fight to win a $15 minimum wage and address alarming workload issues. The one-day strike over unfair labor practices will impact nearly 200 office buildings in the area before the day is done, according to Local 26 of […]

Community backs St. Paul teachers’ call for progress in contract talks

Members of the St. Paul Federation of Teachers rally with supporters before walking into the Teachers at American Indian Magnet School in St. Paul.

  Parents, students and community members rallied with members of the St. Paul Federation of Teachers outside school buildings across the city this morning, demanding progress in contract talks between SPFT and the St. Paul Public Schools, scheduled to resume tomorrow. Wearing hats and scarves in SPFT’s signature red, participants chanted and carried signs expressing […]


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