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Support for the Union Labor News
Editorial Submitted by Bill Franks

I’ve been an Executive Council member, the former Chief Steward and an active member of my Union Local, AFT-W 4848 (Wisconsin Professional Employees Council aka WPEC) for close to 15 years.  In the past I served as Chair of our Communications Committee and have written dozens of Articles and submitted numerous Reports to our Members over the years, so let’s put the Union Labor News in the context of the Labor Movement and see why it’s so very important to continue our support for the Union Labor News.

Wisconsin’s importance to


On This Day in Labor History
Submitted by Diane Mandell

By studying the past, we may improve the future.                          

May 1, 1926:

Ford Motor Company adopts a 5-day, 40-hour work week policy for its automotive factory workers.  The following August, Ford Motor office workers were also included in the Monday through Friday work week.  The result was increased productivity, company loyalty and worker pride.  Workers were expected to produce more during the shortened hours.  The shortened work week soon became standard practice in manufacturing across the world.

May 1 – 5, 1886:

Bay View


Sign the Petition to Get Corporate Money out of Politics
Submitted by Sue Handrich-Herr

AFT-Wisconsin has joined the MoneyOutVotersInWI (MOVI) coalition with members from across our state to put Wisconsin on record to overturn the Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision and put us on the path to reclaiming our democracy.

Take this first step with us right now, and help us get big, secret money out of our elections. 

Thanks to the U.S. Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision, the last election cost $5.2 billion, and most of that money came in massive, often untraceable donations from a few


Retirement for All
Submitted by Philip Anderson, Retiree

Being able to retire with some dignity and financial independence was once part of the American Dream. But for many people a secure retirement is slipping out of reach. Many experts claim we are facing a retirement crisis. The Internet is full of grim statistics.

  • Only 42% of private sector workers age 25 to 64 have any pension coverage in their current job.
  • Only half of American workers have access to a 401(k) plan, and only about 30% take advantage of that plan
  • 75% of 401(k)s have an average balance of $60,000. The median account balance is

Sign the Petition to Save Sick Leave at DHS
Submitted by Barb Smith

Encourage your friends and family to sign this petition to support DHS workers, and preserve earned benefits for all state employees. This is a public petition and may be used in communications with legislators and officials at the Dept. of Health Services.  Sign before May 30 please!

Link to Petition


New Attendance Policy at Dept. of Health Services
Submitted by Barb Smith

Actually being able to use your paid sick leave is a given in public workplaces, but recently it has come under attack in the Department of Health Services (DHS), the state’s flagship health agency.   Now after taking a few days sick leave as usual, new rules require a same day doctor’s note for a subsequent sick day taken.  For workers, this is inconvenient and triggers coinsurance costs. It also imposes a burden on the health system for frivolous doctor’s visits.  Women, parents, and those with elder care


WPEC Convention News
Submitted by Greg Georg

On April 27th, held its 21st Annual Convention at the UW Pyle Center.

The business of the convention this year consisted of reports from WPEC officers and committees on their activities of the past year, a discussion of issues facing WPEC, nine proposed constitutional amendments, the election of delegates to the AFT-Wisconsin convention in October 2013, and nine proposed resolutions.

Seven of the nine proposed amendments were passed and are now a part of the WPEC Constitution.The amendments passed covered: General clean-up and corrections of spelling


President’s Corner – Merger Update
Submitted by Greg Georg

As many of you are aware, resolutions were passed at the AFT-Wisconsin (AFT-W) Convention last October and at the Wisconsin Education Association Council (WEAC) Representative Assembly in December setting up a Unity Committee to discuss a possible merger of AFT-Wisconsin and WEAC.  The Unity Committee held its first meeting in mid-December and has held five two-day sessions to this point.  There are twenty-six members on the committee made up from members of AFT-W and WEAC and staff from AFT-W, WEAC, American Federation of Teachers (AFT)


From the Ashes – The Phoenix is Rising

Submitted by Mark Kuechler

With Act 10, Scott Walker and his allies both inside and outside of government attempted to destroy unions in Wisconsin, starting with public ones.  In effect he laid our unions on the funeral pyre and set it ablaze.  He should have paid more attention in school.  If he had he’d have remembered the legend of the phoenix.  A phoenix finds new life by arising from the ashes of its predecessor.  Perhaps he never paid attention when watching (or reading) the more contemporary “Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets” where a phoenix


April 30, 2013.   Representative Terese Berceau and Senator Tim Cullen sent
to all state legislators a proposal to allow county clerks to appoint county–wide Special Registration Deputies (SRD).  They are seeking co-sponsors.

Contact your legislator urging him/her to support this effort to encourage voting rather than trying to suppress it. 

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