Honor the Sacrifice

From the AFL-CIO

The working men and women of the AFL‑CIO join the Union Veterans Council to wish all a safe Memorial Day weekend. This is a time to respect and remember those who gave their lives for the bedrock freedoms we cherish.

Let’s resolve to honor their sacrifice by redoubling our efforts to secure and make real those freedoms for every worker in America, so working people can win new economic rules built on broadly shared prosperity.

Union members have a historic bond with veterans. Many of our modern trade unions were founded by war veterans who returned home and then banded together for the collective power to win fair pay and good benefits. Over the generations, each wave of veterans has renewed that bond, and the same is true today.

The chances are good that each one of us know, work with or otherwise have a connection to at least one person who has lost a friend or family member to war.

So as we enjoy a cookout or spend time with family and friends, let’s pause in respect. Nothing can prepare a person for the terrible realities, the personal loss and the enduring pain of war.

Memorial Day is sacred, and its truest meaning can never adequately be put into words. Yet we can honor our veterans by fighting for full funding for the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and supporting efforts to train and employ our veterans for good union jobs.

Twenty veterans die from suicide every day, which experts say is in part due to an economy where working people can’t get ahead.

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Posted In: Union Matters

Union Matters

Get to Know AFL-CIO's Affiliates: National Association of Letter Carriers

From the AFL-CIO

Next up in our series that takes a deeper look at each of our affiliates is the National Association of Letter Carriers.

Name of Union: National Association of Letter Carriers (NALC)

Mission: To unite fraternally all city letter carriers employed by the U.S. Postal Service for their mutual benefit; to obtain and secure rights as employees of the USPS and to strive at all times to promote the safety and the welfare of every member; to strive for the constant improvement of the Postal Service; and for other purposes. NALC is a single-craft union and is the sole collective-bargaining agent for city letter carriers.

Current Leadership of Union: Fredric V. Rolando serves as president of NALC, after being sworn in as the union's 18th president in 2009. Rolando began his career as a letter carrier in 1978 in South Miami before moving to Sarasota in 1984. He was elected president of Branch 2148 in 1988 and served in that role until 1999. In the ensuing years, he worked in various roles for NALC before winning his election as a national officer in 2002, when he was elected director of city delivery. In 2006, he won election as executive vice president. Rolando was re-elected as NALC president in 2010, 2014 and 2018.

Brian Renfroe serves as executive vice president, Lew Drass as vice president, Nicole Rhine as secretary-treasurer, Paul Barner as assistant secretary-treasurer, Christopher Jackson as director of city delivery, Manuel L. Peralta Jr. as director of safety and health, Dan Toth as director of retired members, Stephanie Stewart as director of the Health Benefit Plan and James W. “Jim” Yates as director of life insurance.

Number of Members: 291,000 active and retired letter carriers.

Members Work As: City letter carriers.

Industries Represented: The United States Postal Service.

History: In 1794, the first letter carriers were appointed by Congress as the implementation of the new U.S. Constitution was being put into effect. By the time of the Civil War, free delivery of city mail was established and letter carriers successfully concluded a campaign for the eight-hour workday in 1888. The next year, letter carriers came together in Milwaukee and the National Association of Letter Carriers was formed.

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There is Dignity in All Work

There is Dignity in All Work