Delegates to the 30th biennial Wisconsin State AFL-CIO Convention made history by electing Stephanie Bloomingdale (AFT) as the state federation’s first-ever woman president. She will serve alongside newly elected Secretary-Treasurer Dennis Delie (USW).
Speaking at the convention, AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka (UMWA) honored the fighting spirit of retiring Wisconsin State AFL-CIO President Phil Neuenfeldt and told delegates, “I believe the hope and progress of 2018 were made possible by the heroes of 2011,” referring to the worker uprising following passage of Wisconsin Act 10. “Workers are on the march again. We’re writing a comeback story,” Trumka said.
Message of the Day—We’re Writing a Comeback Story
Alongside several pro-worker candidates—including Sen. Tammy Baldwin (Wis.)—President Trumka called for solidarity, warning that victory will only come if working people stand together. Check out some of the highlights from his remarks below, and read them in full here.
“Brothers and sisters, the seeds you planted in 2011 and nourished in the years that followed are alive and well today. Two hundred and sixty-two thousand new members joined unions in 2017, and here’s the best part: Three-quarters of them were under the age of 35. Gallup just did a poll that found our approval at 62 percent—a 15-year high. And new research from MIT shows half of nonunion workers would vote to organize today if given the chance. That’s more than 60 million people.”
“Time and time again, we have fought for every victory. We bled to secure our right to stand together and bargain collectively. We marched and sacrificed to end child labor. We faced down the powers of Washington and Wall Street to win a minimum wage. In the face of seemingly insurmountable opposition, we steadily built a fairer economy and a more just society because we had one advantage on our side: solidarity.”
“Bonded by a common struggle, working people kept fighting and discovered a fundamental truth that carries us to this day: You can’t stop all of us. We are an unassailable force when—and only when—we stand together.”
Kitchen Table Economics
13.2%: A union member earns this much more on average than a nonunion worker with a similar education, occupation and experience in the same sector.