Photos: Labor, faith, community activists stand up for sick time, resist corporate interference

The Minnesota House passed a bill last night that would strip 150,000 Minnesotans of newly won earned-sick-and-safe-time benefits and block local governments from raising labor standards in their communities. As debate raged inside the Republican-controlled House, opponents from labor, faith and community groups rallied outside the chamber, calling the bill a corporate power grab and […]

Nurses, allies back MinnesotaCare expansion as fix for state’s individual market woes

Union nurses rallied at the Capitol today with family farmers, small business owners, clergy and other allies in their push to expand health care coverage to all Minnesotans – and hold insurance companies accountable. Members of the Minnesota Nurses Association spent the day talking to state representatives about making health care more accessible and affordable, […]

‘End run’ around local sick-pay victories advances at Capitol

Corporate special interests clashed with working people during a Capitol hearing last night on legislation that would roll back ordinances extending earned sick and safe time to an estimated 150,000 workers in Minneapolis and St. Paul. The local preemption bill, authored by Rep. Pat Garafalo (R-Farmington), passed its first committee hearing after a lengthy round […]

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. […]

Advocates stage last-ditch rally for paid family leave

With fiery speeches and foam “No. 1” fingers, advocates of paid family leave rallied outside the Minnesota Capitol today, calling on House Republicans to take up the issue, which Gov. Mark Dayton called “a moral responsibility.” Earlier this month, the DFL-controlled Senate approved a measure designed to prevent workers from being forced to choose between […]

St. Paul clergy: Citywide earned sick time ordinance makes ‘common sense’

  Faith leaders from St. Paul today gathered in City Hall to support a citywide ordinance guaranteeing workers access to earned sick and safe time. “The scripture says we are one body, and when one part of the body suffers, the whole body suffers,” Pastor Ralph Baumgartner said. “And when 42 percent of workers in […]

Faith leaders on earned sick time: ‘Something’s got to happen’

  Faith leaders from Minneapolis today called on elected officials to begin addressing Minnesota’s alarming racial disparities by guaranteeing all workers access to earned sick and safe time. “This is exactly what systemic racism looks like: reasonable people who say, ‘Our hands are tied … because it’s just too costly to change our system,’” Rev. […]

Minimum-wage victory showcases potential of labor-community partnerships

On April 14, Gov. Mark Dayton signed a bill gradually raising Minnesota’s minimum wage to $9.50 per hour by 2016 and indexing the wage so that it keeps pace with inflation beginning in 2018. The bill signing was a victory for more than 350,000 workers statewide who are expected to see a raise as a […]

Bouyed by prayers, workers return to Brooklyn Center Walmart after one-day strike

One day after exercising her legally protected right to strike, April Williams walked back into the Brooklyn Center Walmart for her scheduled shift this morning. But Williams did not take that walk alone. In the parking lot outside the store, about 25 people, including eight clergy members, huddled around Williams, praying for a safe return […]