Greater Boston Labor Council

representing over 100,000 wORKERS & THEIR FAMILIES.
bUILDING wORKER POWER & POWER FOR THE WORKING CLASS
 

The path to the presidency runs through the labor movement.

Gwen Brown is a PCA in Boston and member of 1199 SEIU. Gwen recently lost her partner of 19 years to COVID-19 and has been working throughout the crisis caring for her clients. Gwen shares her story with us as part of the Greater Boston Labor Council's #FrontlineHeroes series. Our series profiles the work of union members and everyday heroes who are working on the frontlines during the global pandemic. Stories are updated weekly. To read other Frontline Hero stories, click here: https://gblc.us/tag/frontline-heroes.

Amidst the ongoing crisis, our state must forge a new social contract that puts the health and safety of workers at the center of public policy.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, May 18, 2020, 9:30 A.M. EDT
On behalf of the Greater Boston Labor Council

Recent News

Boston area frontline unions have submitted policy proposals and recommendations for reopening. See below to download copies of each union's plan. 

PDF iconMA AFL-CIO

With states reopening for business and millions of people heading back to work, the nation's largest labor organization is demanding the federal government do more to protect workers from contracting the coronavirus on the job.

What's happening: The AFL-CIO, a collection of 55 unions representing 12.5 million workers, says it is suing the federal agency in charge of workplace safety to compel them to create a set of emergency temporary standards for infectious diseases.

Even Labor Secretary Eugene Scalia’s recent letter to AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka, intended to defend his agency’s performance, offers little in terms of real enforcement. The word “guidance” and its variant “guidelines” appear nine times, as well as the observation that “employers are implementing measures to protect workers” (emphasis in original). Absent from the letter: the word “citation.” The word “penalty.”
“This isn’t just about infection control, which is how the CDC looks at it, this is about exposure assessment,” said Rebecca Reindel, safety and health specialist with the labor organization AFL-CIO. “You look at how people are exposed. Your main source of exposure is other people and so where you’re mainly running into other people right now is the workplace.”

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Take Action

Essential public-sector workers we all depend on are on the front lines of exposure to this virus. Please ask your State Representative and State Senator to support H.4631, “An Act Relative State Employees Performing Core Functions”, filed by Rep. Tackey Chan (member of SAG-AFTRA).  

This pandemic has laid bare how intertwined public health and the economy are – and how absolutely vital working people are to keeping every family safe, secure, healthy, and fed. Please ask your State Representative and State Senator to support HD5031 - An Act providing hazard pay for essential workers in the COVID-19 emergency, filed by Rep. Maria Robinson. 

Essential workers are on the frontlines of this pandemic. Occupational presumption legislation would ensure that any essential worker reporting to work outside their home who contracts coronavirus is presumed to have gotten it from exposure at work.