Labor Council
Friday, February 19, 2021
The labor movement has been central to the defense of our democracy and the election of the Biden–Harris administration. The AFL-CIO celebrates the inauguration of a new president and vice president, as well as the strength of our great American democracy.
President Trumka Leads Delegation of Labor Leaders To Meet with Biden, Harris
Wednesday of this week, leaders of the labor movement gathered at the White House to meet with President Biden and Vice President Harris about our shared goal of revitalizing America’s infrastructure. AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka (UMWA) led the delegation of labor leaders that included AFL-CIO Secretary-Treasurer Liz Shuler (IBEW); North America’s Building Trades Unions (NABTU) President Sean McGarvey (IUPAT); Laborers (LIUNA) General President Terry O’Sullivan; Operating Engineers (IUOE) General President James Callahan; Electrical Workers (IBEW) International President Lonnie Stephenson; Painters and Allied Trades (IUPAT) General President Kenneth Rigmaiden; United Association of Union Plumbers and Pipefitters (UA) General President Mark McManus; Ironworkers General President Eric Dean; and Machinists (IAM) International President Robert Martinez Jr. At the meeting, Trumka told Biden, “It’s not just lip service when you call yourself a ‘union guy.’ And that’s why we know—and you know—that we must build back better with unions.”

President Biden ran on a promise to build back better. As we made clear in our meeting with him Wednesday, America can only build back better if unions are doing the building. If we make key structural changes to our economy, we can create a new generation of good-paying union jobs. That means delivering long-overdue COVID-19 relief to working families. It means passing urgently needed infrastructure spending. And, it means strengthening working people’s freedom to organize a union by passing the PRO Act. President Biden understands how urgent this is, and we’re looking forward to getting it done as quickly as possible.
AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka (UMWA) joined Bloomberg TV today to discuss the latest on school reopening plans and how vital it is to create renewable energy jobs the right way.
SAG-AFTRA and the AFL-CIO Co-Host Summit on Labor Innovation and Technology

Today, Friday, February 19, noon to 7:30 pm is SAG-AFTRA and the AFL-CIO’s Third Annual Labor Innovation & Technology Summit, an all-virtual event bringing together leaders in technology, labor, media and entertainment to discuss the future of work. This is a free event. AFL-CIO Secretary-Treasurer Liz Shuler (IBEW) will be discussing how technological evolution is an opportunity for unions to be at the center of a future filled with good jobs and new worker power. We invite you to join us and share this information with your colleagues and members. Click here for more information about tomorrow’s event and click here to register.
Ohio Legislature Introduces Resolution To Protect Steel Worker and Building Trades Jobs
A project critical to protecting the environment and the long-term viability of Enbridge Line 5, a crude oil pipeline that supplies refineries throughout the Midwest, is in jeopardy.

The Enbridge Straits Line 5 Replacement Segment Project would allow for the current pipeline that runs through the Straits of Mackinac to be rerouted through a tunnel in the bedrock beneath the Straits, protecting the waterway and the Great Lakes.

Representative Michael Sheehy (R-46) has introduced a bi-partisan resolution to encourage Michigan to grant Enbridge the Act 16 application to relocate Line 5. The Ohio AFL-CIO Executive Board also voted to support the resolution. Read the resolution here

The Enbridge Line 5 pipeline delivers a majority of the crude oil refined at The Toledo Refining Company (TRC), in Toledo, Ohio. TRC provides over 550 permanent good paying jobs to Northwest Ohio and Southeast Michigan. A vast majority of these jobs belong to the Union members of United Steelworkers Local 912 and several building trades unions. Without the Line 5 Tunnel project these brothers and sisters jobs may be in danger, as well as the supply of transportation and jet fuels in Ohio, Michigan, and the surrounding areas.

To protect good paying jobs and safeguard the environment, it is imperative that the Michigan Public Service Commission grant Enbridge its Act 16 application to relocate Line 5. You can sign the USW petition here.
Congressman Tim Ryan Helping United Steel Workers Keep Jobs In Ohio
Valley Congressman Tim Ryan is working to help United Steel Workers in Niles keep their jobs.
Howmet leadership is currently negotiating with union leadership to downsize the local plant due to lagging business during the COVID-19 pandemic. The factory, previously known as Niles Arconic, is located on Warren Avenue. 
In a letter to the president of Howmet Structure and Wheel Systems, Ryan urged Howmet to consider other options rather than closing down the melt operation.  He pledged to help identify resources and incentives to help keep the factory open and keep Steel Workers employed.
"Without question, the COVID-19 pandemic has had far-reaching economic consequences disrupting aerospace and defense companies across the nation, but through no fault of the hard-working employees whose jobs are at risk. I hope that every available option to alleviate a downsizing would be examined and fully exhausted," said Congressman Ryan.
"As the Vice Chair of the Appropriations Committee, Subcommittee on Defense, I have worked with Howmet and the United Steel Workers on a variety of federal matters. I respectfully ask that Howmet explore every solution possible before rendering a decision with indelible impact to the company and employees. The United Steel Workers want to be a part of the solution and have expressed that to me time and time again over the last several months. I hope that both sides can come together and seek an amicable resolution," he continued.
 Senator Sherrod Brown Leads Colleagues in Urging Amazon to Recognize Workers Seeking Union Representation
U.S. Sens. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) and Cory Booker (D-NJ) led a group of their colleagues in urging Amazon to do right by its workers and support their efforts to freely exercise their right to organize a union. In a letter sent to current Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, and his successor, Amazon Web Services CEO Andy Jassy, the senators expressed support for Amazon workers seeking to organize a union with the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union (RWDSU), and pushed the company to take this opportunity to recognize the true value of its workers to the company’s success and treat them as the critical assets they are. The letter comes ahead of an upcoming election in Bessemer, Alabama, where Amazon warehouse workers will vote to form a union that will represent full and part-time workers.
“Amazon’s profits have soared by 70 percent over the last year because of the hard work of your employees. They have put in long hours and risked their own health during the COVID-19 pandemic to meet increased demand, and they deserve to share in the success they have made possible. Amazon’s employees have the right to join together to bargain collectively for a voice in their workplace, and to vote to establish their rights to negotiate. They also deserve to receive the compensation, benefits, and respect that reflect their true value to the company and to their communities,” the senators wrote in the letter.
The senators also pushed the company to stop disgraceful attempts to coerce Amazon employees out of exercising their voices and their rights under the National Labor Relations Act. And, they also highlighted how the expansion of collective bargaining means workers can earn higher wages, can have more paid time off and negotiate improved healthcare coverage, which not only benefits employees, but also helps strengthen local economies, families and communities. 
We Talked With Biden About Infrastructure
President Biden hosted a meeting on infrastructure today. AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka (UMWA) and AFL-CIO Secretary-Treasurer Liz Shuler (IBEW) attended the kick-off meeting and were joined by labor leaders representing the union members who are ready to rebuild America.
But simply creating jobs isn’t enough. We need good union jobs with a living wage, job security and full benefits.
Sign the AFL-CIO’s Workers First Agenda if you agree.
A strong infrastructure is an equalizer that provides access and opportunity. It connects people to schools, health care, grocery stores and jobs.
And infrastructure jobs must be union jobs. Union members have kept our country running, even during this COVID-19 pandemic. The Protecting the Right to Organize (PRO) Act would provide a fair path to the more than 60 million workers who would join a union today if given the chance—and is the centerpiece of our Workers First Agenda.
It’s time to build back better with unions.
In Solidarity,
IUE-CWA Walmart Action
Who: We continue the fight with our Sisters and Brothers in Bucyrus Ohio! Thanks to our collective efforts Walmart is noticing us, but we can’t stop there! Join IUE-CWA Feb 20, 2021 for the next Walmart Action! 
What: Leafletting Walmart parking Lot to educate shoppers and urge Walmart to not allow GE-Savant to outsource Jobs to China!
When: Saturday Feb 20, 2021 @ 12pm-1pm
Where: 2 Locations:
 1143 Smiley Ave, Cincinnati, Ohio 45240 
10240 Colerain Ave, Cincinnati, Ohio 45251

For information contact Ohio AFL-CIO Southwest Ohio Field Rep, Julien Johnson
Call on Biden to Fire Them All ! 
President Biden cannot fire the Postmaster General. Only the Postal Board of Governors can do that. But they have refused. They continue to rubber stamp his destruction of our national treasure. Biden should clean house and replace them with governors who will remove Louis DeJoy to preserve and protect the public postal service.
Congressman Gerry Connolly, Chairman of the House Government Operations subcommittee, is the latest Congressional representative to call for President Biden to fire the Postal Board of Governors.
“Since his installation as President Trump’s handpicked Postmaster General, Louis DeJoy has been on a mission to send the USPS into a death spiral. Deliberate sabotage, draconian service cuts, and craven partisanship will be his ignominious legacy. 
“Just as reprehensible and destructive has been the enablement of the Postal Board of Governors. They have proven to be a cabal of cowards, complicit in DeJoy’s attacks, derelict in their duties, and unwilling to hold the Postmaster accountable. America deserves a clean slate. President Biden should immediately remove and replace the entire Board of Governors. We need a Board of Governors that will remove Postmaster DeJoy. It is the only way to restore faith in this institution and save the Postal Service.”
Between Louis DeJoy's record and the system's recent difficulties, it's difficult to feel confident about the effects of his "plan." See More
[Washington, D.C.], February 17, 2021 – The International Union of Bricklayers & Allied Craftworkers applauds President Biden’s actions today to strengthen the role of registered apprenticeship in our society and to reaffirm the critical role that union labor provides in the oversight of apprenticeship programs. 

Today, President Biden rescinded former President Trump’s Executive Order that created the employer-dominated IRAP (Industry-Recognized Apprenticeship Program) system. While the construction industry successfully obtained a temporary exemption from IRAP, this action by President Biden effectively regulates them out of existence. His additional action to reinstate the National Advisory Committee on Apprenticeships at the Department of Labor ensures that unions will reclaim our rightful role in ensuring that apprenticeship programs faithfully serve the workers they are entrusted to train and educate. Finally, his endorsement of Congressman Bobby Scott’s bipartisan National Apprenticeship Act of 2021 establishes that President Biden understands and values the role that apprenticeship and labor unions have to play in rebuilding an economy that works for all Americans.
The International Union of Bricklayers and Allied Craftworkers, represents 75,000 skilled masonry-trowel trades craftworkers providing essential construction services across the United States and Canada.
Contact: Yin Yin, Communications Department
Office: 202-383-3112
Pro Act Summary: The pro Act (H.R. 842) has recently been introduced by the 117th congress. The bill currently has 200 cosponsors in the House of Representatives and has been referred to the Education & labor committee for further review. The resolution would still need to pass the Senate without a filibuster or possibly vote by party lines and Vice President Harris as the tie breaker. President Biden has express support for the PRO Act as apart of his “Build Back better” plan and his support for Labor. The Passage of the Pro Act would strengthen unions, penalize employers for violating labor laws and eliminate ALL Right to Work laws. Please participate in our Pro Act Campaign Actions.

For additional information please refer to the Language from Education and Labor Committee HERE  or Follow the Pro act in Congress HERE.
IBEW Local 212 Swears In New Members!
Congratulations, and welcome to the movement!
Unity and solidarity forever!
AFL-CIO Celebrates Black History Month
This February, the labor movement celebrates Black History Month and everything that our Black sisters, brothers and friends have contributed to our country. And as we celebrate Black achievements, Black aspirations and Black lives, we know that there is more work to be done. In the past year, we have continued to witness attacks on Black people from a system that was designed to perpetuate white supremacy. Indeed, “right to work” laws are one of the last vestiges of Jim Crow. Attacks on voting rights continue as well. In our best hours, the labor movement has welcomed into our family people of all backgrounds and races while standing shoulder to shoulder with our Black allies fighting for equality. We honor this year’s Black History Month by recommitting ourselves to the cause of racial justice.
Message from Executive Vice President Gebre
In a new video message, AFL-CIO Executive Vice President Tefere Gebre (UFCW) explained what Black History Month means to the labor movement. He said: “Black History Month is a time for reflection and recognition. A time to honor the barrier breakers and the trailblazers. Leaders like A. Philip Randolph, a trade unionist who had an idea of coupling workers’ rights with civil rights. That idea became the 1963 March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom, where Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his ‘I Have a Dream’ speech. That is our legacy. The inseparable cause of economic justice and racial justice. The inseparable fight for civil rights and labor rights. The inseparable movement for labor and Black lives.”
Remembering the Rev. James Orange
Born and raised in Alabama, the Rev. James Orange came of age in the segregated South. In the early 1960s, he became a leading youth activist in the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s Southern Christian Leadership Conference. Orange’s voter registration efforts eventually would lead to the march across the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama. In 1977, he became a regional coordinator for the AFL-CIO, helping J.P. Stevens textile workers win union representation in Atlanta. In our movement, he led pickets and rallies, marches and protests. Workers in poultry plants, sewing factories and shipyards throughout the South all marched with him for justice. For decades, Orange took part in nearly every major effort by Southern working women and men to form unions and seek a voice in the workplace. He passed away in 2008. Click here to read more about the incredible life of the Rev. James Orange.
Interview with Actor and Activist Danny Glover
Few artists have contributed more to the growth and development of our society than actor Danny Glover (SAG-AFTRA). A civil rights leader and labor activist to his core, Glover has transcended the silver screen to become part of our cultural identity as Americans. As we celebrate this year’s Black History Month, the AFL-CIO spoke with him about the history of the labor movement and the civil rights movement, and where we go from here. We asked Glover about the ongoing union campaign at Amazon in Bessemer, Alabama. He said, “It’s absolutely stunning, important—essential that we can move beyond this place. COVID-19 has exposed the underbelly, in a different way, of what this country is about.” Click here to read the full interview with Danny Glover.
Honoring the Rev. Jesse Jackson
An ordained Baptist minister, the Rev. Jesse Jackson got his start in the civil rights movement as a prominent member of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s Southern Christian Leadership Conference. In 1966, he led the Chicago chapter of Operation Breadbasket, fighting for boycott campaigns that led to increased wealth for Black and Brown communities. In 1971, he founded the Rainbow/PUSH Coalition to advance the cause of civil rights in Chicago and beyond. “At the end of the day, we must go forward with hope and not backward by fear and division,” Jackson is famous for saying. Click here to read more about the work of the Rev. Jesse Jackson.
Top 10 Ways to Celebrate Black History Month with CHPL - See NOW
A Word From Our Community Partners
No one should have to make this choice...
Do I pay for food or heat? It’s an impossible question to answer, but one that many of our tristate neighbors currently face.

When temperatures drop, heating bills rise—and for families already struggling in the wake of the pandemic, this increase forces them to choose between the basic necessities of nourishment and warmth.

Heat or Eat?
No one should have to choose.

Brenda Tolbert, who cares for her two grandchildren, understands this harsh reality. Her daughter lost work in the pandemic and is unable to send as much money as before to provide for her kids.

The assistance Brenda gets from her local food pantry helps her make ends meet, and not have to choose between heat and food.

“Things are very tight, so just being able to know that I can come here and get something extra to tide us over for the month is a blessing,” she said. “It’s been a hard year, but we’re thankful. We have something to eat. We have a roof over our head.”

Families like Brenda’s are why I’m reaching out to you today. Your gift will go straight to work to support our neighbors most at risk of going hungry. This includes seniors on fixed incomes and families facing financial hardship due to the pandemic.

Thank you for helping us ensure that our tristate neighbors have both food and warmth during these cold winter months.

With gratitude,
Kurt L. Reiber
President & CEO
Freestore Foodbank

PS: No gift is too small, every $1 can help provide 3 meals, enough to feel one individual for a day! 

1141 Central Parkway, Cincinnati, Ohio 45202
Phone: 513-482-4500
© 2021 Freestore Foodbank, All rights reserved.
Ohio Department of Health to Hold Series of Town Hall Meetings Focused on Specific Minority Communities
As part of Ohio's continuing efforts to ensure equity in Ohio's vaccination program, ODH is holding virtual town hall meetings focused on specific minority communities. These virtual meetings will involve local medical professionals and community leaders who will guide these conversations to discuss the safety and efficacy of the COVID-19 vaccine.
The meetings are intended to jumpstart conversations and give local leaders and attendees the tools they need to better inform members of their communities about vaccine facts, enhance access to trusted resources, and drive conversations in their own communities about why vaccinations are important. 

The town halls will be streamed on Facebook and YouTube. More details are available at
Ohio COVID-19 Dashboard
Current Trends
Below are the current reporting trends for key indicators calculated from data reported to the Ohio Department of Health. The graphics and information were taken from the Ohio Department of Health Coronavirus (COVID-19) website Thursday, February 18.
Questions and Answers
COVID-19 Vaccination: Ohio's Phased Approach

Questions about COVID-19
Ohio Department of Health call center is ready to answer your questions about COVID-19

Call 1-833-4-ASK-ODH (1-833-427-5634)
The Call Center is staffed from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. each day, including weekends.
COVID-19 By The Numbers
Global Confirmed - 110,027,369
Global Deaths - 2,432,976
U.S. Confirmed - 27,829,771
U.S. Deaths - 490,775

Hamilton County
Clermont County
Brown County
Butler County
Warren County
Just The Facts:
  • Essential workers comprise about 47% of all workers in occupations with a median wage of less than $15 an hour.
  • In 2019, the amount of unpaid household work done by women in the United States amounted to roughly $1.2 trillion.
  • Since its launch in mid-2019, more than 1,000 nonprofit workers at dozens of workplaces throughout the country have organized with Office and Professional Employees’ (OPEIU)'s Nonprofit Employees United (NEU).
Other Important Headlines: