Weekly Update: Keep Fighting.

Take Action:
Unemployed?  Underemployed?  Know someone who is (don’t we all)?

Oregon Wants to Work meets on Wednesday, March 23rd at 5:30pm at the PCC Workforce Training Center on 42nd and Killingsworth in NE Portland. Head to http://www.oregonwantstowork.com to find out what resources will be available at this meeting.  Please pass the word along to your friends and family.

RSVP with Chris Hewitt at (503) 287-3114 or chris@oraflcio.org .

Solidarity Event in Portland draws several hundred workers, and there are many more solidarity events to come.

Yesterday afternoon a rain soaked crowd of several hundred workers gathered in downtown Portland at Terry Schrunk Plaza to rally in solidarity with workers everywhere who are under attack.

“We have to decide:  is this a tipping point that we’re going to organize around, and work hard and get things done?” Oregon AFL-CIO President Tom Chamberlain asked of the crowd, “Are we going to fight for our kids, for our grandkids?”

The answer, of course, is yes.  And there are more events and opportunities coming up where Oregon’s union movement will have the chance to keep fighting.

On April 2nd the British Columbia Federation of Labor, the Washington State Labor Council and the Oregon AFL-CIO are rallying on the United States/Canadian border to show international solidarity for the workers everywhere. Buses will be available from Portland to Canada: Click here to download a flyer with all the details.

On April 4th we’ll meet in downtown Portland to keep Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s dream alive.  43 years ago, Dr. King was assassinated while supporting striking sanitation workers. Stand up against the Koch Brothers who helped put Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker in office and who are holding up contract negotiations for our brothers and sisters in Oregon at Georgia Pacific and at the Wauna paper mill. And stand strong with federal workers whose jobs are uncertain so long as anti-worker corporate-owned politicians in Congress refuse to pass a reasonable budget. Carl Wolfson, comedian and host of the KPOJ Morning Show, will moderate this important rally. Click here to download a flyer with more details.

In Other News….
Union Members from around the State Gather to Learn, Organize and Plan for the future.

Union members from a myriad of locals and cities came together last weekend as part of the University of Oregon’s Labor Education and Research Center (LERC) Metro Leadership school.

Three classes were offered: Current Events in the Labor Movement, Planning for Change in Difficult Times, and Communication Skills for Union Activists. The weekend’s classes gave union members a chance to learn from LERC’s experts and from each other. 

LERC is a valuable resource for union members in Oregon - unless we educate ourselves about our rights and important issues, we won’t be effective at bringing change to our workplaces, our communities and our state.

Learn about upcoming LERC classes here: http://pages.uoregon.edu/lerc/

Oregon is Number 10 in the Nation in Union Strength

According to a recent article, http://247wallst.com/2011/03/10/the-states-with-the-strongest-and-weakest-unions/2/, Oregon is number ten among the United States in union strength.  Much of this strength comes from the last decade of pushing and fighting for our rights – and other Oregon workers noticing what a union was worth and organizing to join with us.

What do you think?  Have our numbers in Oregon improved wages, benefits and workers’ rights?  We want to know what you think: Head to http://www.facebook.com/oregonaflcio and speak up!

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