Support unemployed workers

unemployment

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From Wall Street to Main Street to Capitol Hill, we’re taking action for America’s jobless workers this Thursday.  Find an event near you and RSVP to attend a National Day of Mobilization for the Jobless and Jobs action: [ http://local.americawantstowork.org ].

If Congress fails to act by Dec. 31, nearly 2 million job hunters will lose their emergency unemployment aid in January alone. And without action in 2012, that number will rise to 6 million.

Lawmakers need to be reminded that these aren’t statistics–they’re real people, like Mickey from Battle Creek, Mich. He told us his story: “I have worked since I was 15 years old. I’ve been laid off before but never have I had this much trouble finding employment….I have always given my best to my job and have gone the extra mile.…I am BEGGING you to extend unemployment benefits and the payroll tax and act on it soon.”

And Elizabeth from Kamuela, Hawaii, has struggled, in spite of her advanced degree: “Even with credentials as an advanced practice nurse, I went 2 and a half years without full employment. I lost my house, had a bankruptcy and would have starved had it not been for unemployment benefits.”

Stories like these illustrate why we all need to do what it takes to make sure the voices of America’s jobless workers are heard loud and clear. So Thursday, we’ll bring more than 2,000 unemployed workers and clergy to Capitol Hill. As long-term jobless workers and clergy meet with Congress, we’ll be backing them up at local congressional offices and public spaces across America.

Join the fight for emergency unemployment Thursday. Find out where and RSVP to attend now: [ http://local.americawantstowork.org ].

America has never experienced the record stretch of high unemployment and long-term joblessness that plagues our economy today–not since the data were first collected in 1948. And Congress has never cut back on federally funded unemployment insurance when unemployment was anywhere near this high for this long. (1)

It’s time to demand obstructionists in Congress put a stop to the partisan bickering and reauthorize extended unemployment insurance aid–without delays or strings attached.

Tell Congress that inaction is not an option: find an event near you: [ http://local.americawantstowork.org ].

Thanks for all the work you do.

In Solidarity,

Manny Herrmann
Online Mobilization Coordinator, AFL-CIO

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Columbia Free Trade Agreement ?

AFL-CIO Mike Hall. May 17, 2011.

Until Congress acts on renewing an enhanced Trade Adjustment Assistance Act (TAA) for workers who have lost their jobs because of outsourcing, offshoring and unfair trade deals, the Obama administration will not submit three pending trade deals to Congress, the White House announced yesterday.

Capitol Hill observers said Boehner and Republicans held the TAA extension hostage to force a commitment from the Obama administration to send three pending trade deals— Korea, Panama and Colombia—to Congress.

The AFL-CIO has long-backed TAA. In February, AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka called it a “lifeline for working people trying to get the skills necessary to change careers after their lives have been turned upside down.”

But the AFL-CIO remains firmly opposed to the Colombia, Korea and Panama free trade agreements.

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