Fighting for Safety on the Job

From the AFL-CIO

Monday marked the 107th anniversary of the Triangle Shirtwaist factory fire in New York. After claiming the lives of 146 young immigrant garment workers, this tragedy drove working people to join together and demand safe conditions on the job. More than a century later, we’ve made enormous strides forward. But we’re still fighting for our right to work without risk of injury, illness or even death.

Disasters like the Triangle Shirtwaist factory fire can seem like a sordid history that has been put long behind us. Nearly 50 years after the Occupational Safety and Health Act was signed into law, surely working people can go to work confident that they will return safely to their families at the end of their shifts.

Yet, that is still far from the case. From headline-grabbing tragedies like the Upper Big Branch mine disaster to chronic diseases that quietly haunt workers for years, we still face dire threats to our well-being. Coal mine deaths rose by 87.5 percent last year.

Instead of taking steps to bolster worker protections, President Donald Trump is taking us in the wrong direction. From hiding statistics on worker deaths to cutting workplace inspectors, the Trump administration continues to side with powerful corporate interests over the basic freedoms of working people.

We have given our time, blood and sweat to build the most prosperous nation on earth. And we’re joining together and fighting for the decent working conditions that we deserve.

Posted In: Union Matters

Union Matters

He Gets the Bucks, We Get All the Deadly Bangs

Sam Pizzigati

Sam Pizzigati Editor, Too Much online magazine

National Rifle Association chief Wayne LaPierre has had better weeks. First came the horrific early August slaughters in California, Texas, and Ohio that left dozens dead, murders that elevated public pressure on the NRA’s hardline against even the mildest of moves against gun violence. Then came revelations that LaPierre — whose labors on behalf of the nonprofit NRA have made him a millionaire many times over — last year planned to have his gun lobby group bankroll a 10,000-square-foot luxury manse near Dallas for his personal use. In response, LaPierre had his flacks charge that the NRA’s former ad agency had done the scheming to buy the mansion. The ad agency called that assertion “patently false” and related that LaPierre had sought the agency’s involvement in the scheme, a request the agency rejected. The mansion scandal, notes the Washington Post, comes as the NRA is already “contending with the fallout from allegations of lavish spending by top executives.”

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Corruption Coordinates

Corruption Coordinates