PA AFL-CIO Working Families Network Call for Rally for Employee Free Choice Act
Speakers: Fred Redmond, Int’l. Vice President USW
William George, President PA AFL-CIO
Eileen Connelly, Executive Director SEIU PA StateCouncil
Please join us for a Rally in Support of the Employee Free Choice Act! On June 6th the Pennsylvania State Democratic Committee is meeting in Pittsburgh, and Senator Specter will be attending for the first time as a Democrat.
Many of our Democratic representatives have already taken strong stands for working families this year. But there is one more thing we need them, including Senator Specter to do: Pass the Employee Free Choice Act.
The Employee Free Choice Act will let workers form a union without harassment or intimidation; hold CEO’s and executives accountable when they break the law; and help workers and employers reach a fair first contract in a reasonable amount of time using mediation and arbitration.
When workers have a voice at work through a union, they are able to bargain for better wages and benefits, including affordable health care and secure retirements. Giving workers the free choice to form a union will help grow our economy from the bottom up and rebuild our middle class.
Come show your support! It’s important that our representatives in Washington see just how important this legislation is to Organized Labor. Lets build the crowd!
PLEASE JOIN US IN PITTSBURGH FRI, MAY 29 SINGLE-PAYER RALLIES
11:30 am – 12:15 pm: Rally in front of Highmark Blue Cross/Blue Shield headquarters, corner of Liberty and Fifth Aves., downtown 12:15 pm – 12:30 pm: Group Walk to UPMC headquarters, Grant St., downtown 12:30 pm – 1:15 pm: Rally in front of UPMC headquarters, Grant St.
Pittsburgh is joining close to 50 other cities across the country this week and next to speak out for single-payer healthcare. A majority of Americans want single-payer; a majority of physicians want single-payer. The only think missing is the political will in Washington for sane and humane healthcare reform.
WE NEED OUR ELECTED OFFICIALS TO REPRESENT THE PEOPLE, NOT THE HEALTHCARE INDUSTRY
PUT PATIENTS FIRST: Support H.R. 676 The National Health Care Act, aka “Expanded and Improved Medicare for All” and S.703 American Health Security Act
sponsored by WPA Coalition for Single Payer Healthcare
Only two years ago Pennsylvania voters gave Bob Casey a victory over the Republican ultra-right darling Rick Santorum in the U.S. Senate contest, and sent several Republican Congressmen packing.
The 2008 election results in Pennsylvania saw a stronger shift of the electorate to the left across the whole political spectrum. In 2008 first-term Democratic Congressmen like Joe Sestak and Jason Altmire strengthened their positions while Kathy Dahlkemper defeated 3rd CD Republican Phil English to gain another Democratic seat in Congress for Pennsylvania.
Barack Obama won Pennsylvania with the help of central rural counties in Pennsylvania shifting to the Democratic column for the first time in decades while the suburban counties around Philadelphia accelerated their shift to the Democratic column. Even though the rust belt along the Ohio River lost Democratic votes, the margin was small. Beaver and surrounding counties voted about 48% for Democrat Barack Obama.
Perhaps more importantly for the 2010 race for U.S. Senator, over 22,000 Pennsylvania Republicans changed their registration to Democrat.
The upshot of these developments is the uneasy alliance between the Heinz-Hillman financial oligarchy and the far-right Mellon-Scaife group has collapsed. The Hillman strategy has been to control Pennsylvania politics by funding conservatives in the Democratic Party primaries and centrists in the Republican primaries. Sen. Arlen Specter has been one of their best investments. He has been able to maneuver for 16 years to prevent labor and progressive forces from gaining a political voice in Washington.
Terre Haute, Indiana. IBEW Local 725 has endorsed HR 676, single payer healthcare legislation introduced by Congressman John Conyers (D-MI). Local 725 is a construction local with jurisdiction in nine Indiana and six Illinois counties.
R. Todd Thacker, Local 725 Business Manager, said: “Health care coverage continues to be a critical issue, either in finding coverage or dealing
with ever increasing costs. Health care needs to be addressed to help the millions of American families who are uninsured and underinsured. The best way to solve the problem is to pass singe-payer health care coverage that would finally put us on the same level playing field with the rest of the world’s industrialized countries.”
Tom Szymanski, Organizer and Business Representative for the local, said in a press release: “Health care coverage and cost increases are always a fight at negotiations. Health care needs to be addressed as a Human Right, not as a privileged right, and must have the profit-motive removed
to be effective in providing coverage for all American families.”
HEALTH CARE IS A HUMAN RIGHT,
NOT JUST ANOTHER
TO BE SOLD FOR PROFIT!
Saturday May 9, 2009
Cranberry Twp. Municipal Building
2525 Rochester Road
o Insurance companies like AARP do not cure the sick, care for patients, or cure disease.
o Giving taxpayer dollars to insurance companies is not healthcare reform
o We want healthcare not health insurance
o Health care insurance premiums are out of control, rising 100% since 2000 and projected to consume all of the average household income by 2025!
o Private insurance offers less choice. 95% of HMO/PPO metro markets in the USA are near monopolies. UPMC and Highmark are dominant in our area!
PUBLIC OPINION POLLS SHOW STRONG SUPPORT FOR A UNIVERSAL NOT FOR PROFIT SINGLE PAYER HEALTH CARE DELIVERY SYSTEM
WHY DOES JASON ALTMIRE REFUSE TO LET HR 676, THE U.S. HEALTH CARE ACT, THE SINGLE PAYER SOLUTION BE DEBATED AS A HEALTHCARE OPTION?
The Troy Area Labor Council has submitted a resolution to the AFL-CIO September Convention, calling for the AFL-CIO to endorse HR 676, and to lobby against “any fallback program of mandated insurance or public option plans which include the wasteful for-profit insurance industry.”
The Troy Council’s resolution also asks that “the AFL-CIO help organize and financially support a ‘Healthcare is a Human Right’ Solidarity March
and Rally in Washington, DC.”
The upstate New York labor council has sent copies of its resolution to all 491 Central labor Councils and Area labor federations requesting “that your Labor Council join with us in submitting this or a similar resolution to this year’s AFL-CIO Convention.”
In the letter, sent to all 491Labor Councils, Mike Keenan, President of the Troy Council, said: “While the discussion of health care reform goes
on in the White House and in the Congress, unfortunately, what we are hearing from the media are mostly the voices of the insurance industry and pharmaceutical lobbies; and misguided politicians who think that the healthcare crisis can be solved by either taxing healthcare benefits or
mandating that we purchase health insurance.”
The AFL-CIO Convention will meet September 14-17th in Pittsburgh, PA. Labor Councils are entitled to vote in the convention. One hundred and twenty-seven Labor Councils have endorsed HR 676, single payer healthcare legislation introduced by Congressman John Conyers (D-MI) and 75 co-sponsors.
In an April 28th statement on Sen. Arlen Specter’s decision to run for office as a Democrat, the AFL-CIO said: “We look forward to continuing an open and honest debate with Senator Specter about the issues that are important to Pennsylvania and America.” http://tinyurl.com/c4cdqo This is a commendable position given the fact that Specter himself is not conducting an honest debate on the Employee Free Choice Act. Specter is a servant of the Mellon and Hillman financial elite of Pennsylvania, regardless of political label. His switch reflects the loss of the Republican Party in Pennsylvania to the far-right Scaife money.
In an April 5th email Sen. Specter made the following statement: “There has been a mixed reaction to my announcement that I will not support legislation known as the Employee Free Choice Act, also referred to as Card Check, because I simply could not go along with legislation which would remove the secret ballot. The secret ballot is very fundamental in our democratic process so people can exercise their free will without coercion from either side.”