Bobby Kasper: Solidarity is alive and thriving in St. Paul

  Last month at the East Side Freedom Library, I joined a roundtable discussion with historians, artists, trade unionists and community activists on the subject of solidarity. It was a lively, challenging and essential dialogue, and it served as another reminder of how fortunate we are in St. Paul to have a space like the […]

Council vote gives St. Paul nation’s strongest earned sick time ordinance

Members of the St. Paul City Council today voted 7-0 to pass an ordinance hailed by working people, small business owners, clergy members and other advocates as the strongest earned sick and safe time law on the books nationwide. Mayor Chris Coleman immediately indicated he would support the ordinance, making St. Paul the 35th U.S. […]

Task force recommends extending sick pay to 70,000 workers in St. Paul

  St. Paul’s task force on earned sick and safe time has issued its recommendations, and they include requiring employers to provide workers with one hour of sick time for every 30 hours they work, with sick-time earnings capped at 48 hours per year. If adopted by the city’s elected officials, the policy would extend […]

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

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. […]

Bobby Kasper: This Labor Day, let’s commit to a Raising Wages agenda

Whether you celebrate with a backyard barbecue, a trip to the cabin or by marching alongside fellow union members at the Minnesota State Fairgrounds, Labor Day is our opportunity to celebrate the everyday heroes who make our country great. American workers are the backbone of our economy, and hard work is deeply embedded into the […]

St. Paul unions weigh support for campaign to pass citywide $15 minimum wage

  Backing the emergent campaign for a $15 minimum wage in St. Paul is the right thing to do, labor leaders said in a meeting with AFL-CIO Secretary-Treasurer Liz Shuler last night. But as unions look to reverse the trend of declining density, joining the fight to raise wages is also about remaining relevant. “We […]

A ‘labor hall for the community,’ East Side Freedom Library off to promising start

Since the 99-year-old Carnegie library at Greenbrier and Jessamine reopened as the East Side Freedom Library last year, it’s hosted concerts and film screenings, lectures and panel discussions, an economics workshop and a Juneteenth celebration. The independent, nonprofit library is becoming the center of grassroots community activity, history and storytelling that East Siders Peter Rachleff […]

Unions break ground on new Labor Center in St. Paul

Labor and civic leaders today broke ground on a new hub of operations for St. Paul’s unions. The ceremony took place a week after Catholic Charities assumed ownership of the old St. Paul Labor Centre, better known as “411 Main.” The new labor center will stand at 345 West 7th Street, about one block south […]

Bobby Kasper: Moving our hall, bringing along the spirit of 411 Main

A house is more than its walls and windows, more than the foundation and support beams that hold it together. Memories make a house a home. The friends and family members who gathered there – and the accomplishments that took place under its roof – are as much a part of any house as its […]

St. Paul City Council takes stance against ‘poor trade policies,’ including fast track

The St. Paul City Council took up the fight to stop fast track Wednesday, when members unanimously approved a resolution “opposing the extension of bad trade policies.” “The people of the City of Saint Paul have the best chance to benefit from pending trade and investment agreements only if the process by which they are […]