Archive for afscme

VIDEO: "My name is Richard Hayes, and I pick up Mitt Romney’s trash."


Via Azure Ghost

Meet Richard Hayes.

"We're kinda the invisible people."

"Residents do come out and shake our hands... thank us for the job we're doing."

"...Picking up 15, 16 tons by hand, I know that takes a toll on the body."

"Mitt Romney doesn't care about that."

Mr. Hayes is one of "those people" Mitt Romney doesn't "worry about." He's one of the 47%.

And he picks up Mitt Romney's trash:

Richard Hayes is a City of San Diego sanitation worker. His route includes Mitt Romney’s street in the La Jolla, Calif., community where Romney owns a $12 million oceanfront villa.


If Everyone Knew This Astonishing Fact About Unions, We'd All Be In One


The GOP would love to destroy unions. Why? Well, for one, unions are a main source of funding for Democrats. They also happen to make sure their members are treated fairly by their employers... you know, like people instead of slaves.

I can personally vouch for that, being a member of the Screen Actors Guild and AFTRA with a husband who's a member of the Writers Guild of America. The benefits of being protected by a union are invaluable, as was the health care coverage. I say "was" because I have honorary withdrawal status having veered off my acting career path, and Mr. Laffy is currently working as a producer, so he's not able to be under the WGA umbrella for now.

As a result, our health insurance costs are through the roof.

Here's what else they have to offer, via

Found on the Facebook page of the Michigan Nurses Association


VIDEO: It's a Hard Newt Life


Newt Gingrich thinks unionized workers should be fired and child labor laws should also be fired, because, see, children would make awesome janitors.

Aside from my mind being mega-boggled by his embrace of slave labor-- or as I like to call it, child abuse-- the practicality of this is non-existent. I can personally attest to what poor janitors kids would make, having worked in the public school system for well over a decade. Here's what it's like in the real world, Newtie, a place you know nothing about:

It was often a challenge to find a truly willing, ready, and able janitor when we needed one, and who could perform the endlessly hard work it takes to do grounds keeping and upkeep at schools that need constant attention, repair, and cleaning. When we could finally rely on a dependable employee, he was either transferred to another school or quit. Emergencies popped up all the time, like, say, rat infestation or ceiling tiles falling on us at any given moment. Hey kiddies! Who wants to climb a scary-tall ladder or set some traps?

Not only are children physically unable to do what adult janitors do, they also would be, shall we say... unwilling? I worked with theater kids, and the tech crews (who did everything from setting up elaborate sound boards and hanging lights to set building and painting) were trained well, but many had the attention span of the dog in "Up" ("Squirrel!"), not to mention the work ethic of... well... Sarah Palin.

They were good kids who loved their iPods, cell phones, pizza, Red Bull, and significant others but were easily bored, weren't fond of hard work, long hours, or authority figures. You think getting Democrats to come together and do something is like herding cats? Try getting adolescents to exert themselves or even concentrate for longer than three minutes.

The work somehow got done, but come on Newt... hire kids? Really? And the students I worked with were already in their teens; when I worked with younger kids, it was even more difficult.

Don't get me wrong, I loved every second of it; but again, putting aside the obvious lack of ethics, compassion, responsibility, and common sense of Gingrich's "solution" of hiring children to do the work of career custodians, the idea that they have the discipline and physical ability to do the work of professionally trained adults is not only laughable, it's sick.


Newt Gingrich wants to fire union janitors and hire kids to clean schools instead. Seriously. He wants to assign 9-year-old kids to do hard manual labor cleaning up after their more fortunate classmates. It's vicious, backwards and wrong.

Really, Newt? Let him know what you think of his 'idea.':

The US outlawed child labor because it denied children the chance at a real education and allowed employers to exploit children — and because children were often injured or killed on the job. That's why labor unions fought to pass laws outlawing child labor and protecting all workers.


VIDEO: Victory in Ohio! "If you think you can walk on us, think again."


Via email, in part:


Dear AFSCME Sisters and Brothers,

Yesterday, we made history.

The voters of Ohio rejected Gov. John Kasich’s extreme anti-worker bill – SB 5 – when they voted down Issue 2.

In a word, this victory is monumental. It’s an affirmation of our right to bargain collectively. Never before has the public had the opportunity to weigh in on this basic right. Voters said NO to Issue 2 and YES to the right of public service workers to negotiate on issues such as health care, outsourcing, and staffing levels on nursing shifts, firefighting crews and in squad cars.

Working together, Democrats and Republicans, union and non-union workers, as well as teachers, bus drivers, firefighters, corrections officers, police officers, social service workers, nurses and public employees of all stripes sent a resounding message to the powerful forces on the far right who want to eliminate public services, reduce corporate taxes, and take away the rights of hard-working Americans: There’s a price to pay when you turn your back on the middle class.

We would not be celebrating this win if it weren’t for the tireless efforts of your AFSCME sisters and brothers in Ohio. What they accomplished is simply incredible.

The Main Street movement that started in Madison, landed in Ohio, and is now sweeping the country should send shivers down the spines of anti-worker politicians in cities and towns and statehouses across America. The people who work on Main Street — who plow our roads, tend to the sick and protect our communities — will not allow themselves to be scapegoats for the economic crisis created by Wall Street greed.

This victory confirms what we have always known: Working families will rise up, organize, and make our voices heard when lawmakers trample our rights in order to cushion millionaires and corporations.

Make no mistake: Our victory in Ohio is sweet, but the fight to protect the public services and middle class that make our country so great is far from over. So today, we celebrate. But tomorrow we go right back to work — and we hope that we can count on you to continue standing up for the middle class.

In solidarity,


LEE A. SAUNDERS Secretary-Treasurer

Please thank the Ohio public service workers here.