labor

AFL-CIO makes endorsements in state, federal races

The state chapter of the AFL-CIO has announced the names of the candidates the labor group is backing this year’s primary elections. Most are either incumbents or unopposed for the Democratic nomination in their respective races.

Here’s the release from the AFL-CIO:

NASHVILLE, MAY 23, 2022- Following a joint meeting of its Executive Board and Committee on Political Education (COPE) held last week, the Tennessee AFL-CIO Labor Council is announcing its list of endorsed candidates ahead of the August 4th State and Federal Primary Election.

“After a robust discussion, our membership believes that the following list of candidates will best represent our interests in the Tennessee General Assembly and the halls of Congress,” said TN AFL-CIO President Billy Dycus. “Over the past two years, we’ve seen what happens when corporate special interest groups, big business, and greedy politicians continue to have unchecked power and total control of the political process. Working families are tired of being represented by legislators who couldn’t care less about their needs or well-being. It’s time to start chipping away at the supermajority and elect candidates who will stand up and speak out for all of their constituents, not just the wealthy few.”

The Council will hold another meeting in mid-August to discuss additional endorsements for the November 8th General Election, including its positions on the four proposed constitutional amendments.

U.S. House of Representatives, District 2: Mark Harmon

U.S. House of Representatives, District 5: Heidi Campbell

U.S. House of Representatives, District 7: Odessa Kelly

U.S. House of Representatives, District 9: Steve Cohen

State Senate, District 3: Kate Craig

State Senate, District 21: Jeff Yarbro

State Senate, District 29: Raumesh Akbari

State House of Representatives, District 15: Sam McKenzie

State House of Representatives, District 28: Yusuf Hakeem

State House of Representatives, District 41: John Mark Windle

State House of Representatives, District 48: Matt Ferry

State House of Representatives, District 50: Bo Mitchell

State House of Representatives, District 51: Bill Beck

State House of Representatives, District 53: Jason Powell

State House of Representatives, District 54: Vincent Dixie

State House of Representatives, District 55: John Ray Clemmons

State House of Representatives, District 56: Bob Freeman

State House of Representatives, District 58: Harold Love, Jr.

State House of Representatives, District 59: Caleb Hemmer

State House of Representatives, District 60: Darren Jernigan

State House of Representatives, District 67: Ronnie Glynn

State House of Representatives, District 80: Johnny Shaw

State House of Representatives, District 84: Joe Towns, Jr.

State House of Representatives, District 85: Jesse Chism

State House of Representatives, District 86: Barbara Cooper

State House of Representatives, District 87: Karen Camper

State House of Representatives, District 88: Larry Miller

State House of Representatives, District 90: Gloria Johnson

State House of Representatives, District 91: Torrey Harris

State House of Representatives, District 93: G.A. Hardaway

State House of Representatives, District 96: Dwayne Thompson

State House of Representatives. District 98: Antonio Parkinson

April figures show TN employment higher, wages lower

Tennessee employers added 45,000 jobs across the state in the past year, lowering the state’s seasonally-adjusted jobless rate from 4 percent a year ago to 3.4 percent last month, reports the Times Free Press. But the average hourly wage paid Tennessee workers was lower than a year ago.

Continue reading

Politico: TN one of six states with no enforcement of minimum wage rules

Excerpt from a Sunday Politico piece:

As Democrats make raising the minimum wage a centerpiece of their 2018 campaigns, and Republicans call for states to handle the issue, both are missing an important problem: Wage laws are poorly enforced, with workers often unable to recover back pay even after the government rules in their favor.

Continue reading

Senate approves revision in rules for online job contract companies

After a half-hour of debate, the state Senate approved 25-3 Monday night a bill that revises legal restrictions for online “marketplace platform” companies that collect a fee for putting those needing temporary work performed in touch with persons willing to do the job – TaskRabbit, for example.

The bill’s sponsor, Republican Sen. Bo Watson of Hixson, says it’s a business-friendly update to the realities of today’s technology and increasing use of contract services. Critics contend it undermines protections for both workers and those who hire them.

Continue reading

TNDP backs ‘Medicare for all,’ $15 minimum wage and medical marijuana

News release from Tennessee Democratic Party

On Saturday, October 28, 2017, the Executive Committee of the Tennessee Democratic Party passed three resolutions supporting progressive policies. First they weighed in on health care, voicing their support for ‘Medicare for All.’

Continue reading

TN unemployment rate falls to lowest level ever recorded (again)

News release from the governor’s office

NASHVILLE – Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam and Department of Labor and Workforce Development Commissioner Burns Phillips today announced the state unemployment rate fell to 3 percent in September, marking the lowest it has been since the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics began tracking the information in January of 1976.

Tennessee first marked a historic low unemployment rate in June at 3.6 percent, which was bested by the July rate of 3.4 percent, and then fell even lower in August to 3.3 percent.

Continue reading

TN 3.3% unemployment rate is lowest in Southeast

News release from Department of Labor and Workforce Development

NASHVILLE – Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development (TDLWD) Commissioner Burns Phillips announces a preliminary unemployment rate of 3.3 percent for August, declining one-tenth of a percent from the previous month. This marks an all-time low for the statewide unemployment rate and August is the seventh consecutive month Tennessee has seen a decline in the statistic.

Continue reading

Memphis boosts grants to 1968 sanitation strikers to $70K

The Memphis City Council voted Tuesday to increase the grants going to city workers who participated in the city’s 1968 sanitation strike, reports the Commercial Appeal.

The council voted 10-0 to give the 10 retirees and four active employees $70,000 grants, with all taxes paid by the city. The council voted two weeks ago to approve Mayor Jim Strickland’s proposal to give the strikers all-taxes-paid $50,000 grants.

The council also amended the wording of the grants resolution to allow active employees to collect their grants immediately as opposed to when they retire.

TN unemployment rate fell from 5.1% to 4.7% in April, biggest decline since 1984

News release from Department of Labor and Workforce Development

NASHVILLE – Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development (TDLWD) Commissioner Burns Phillips announces a preliminary unemployment rate of 4.7 percent for April, dropping from the revised rate of 5.1 percent in March. This decrease is greater than the tenth of a percentage point fall the national rate experienced in April, which put the U.S. preliminary rate at 4.4 percent for the month.

Tennessee’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate has not declined this much since January of 1984.

Continue reading

Alexander, Corker offer respect for Puzder’s withdrawal

Start of a Breitbart News report

The chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions  Committee expressed his support for businessman Andy Puzder’s nomination for Labor Secretary Wednesday shortly after the CEO of CKE Restaurants withdrew his name from consideration.

“Andy Puzder has the experience and ability to make an excellent Labor Secretary, but I respect his decision,” said Sen. Lamar Alexander (R.-Tenn.), who himself served at Education Secretary for President George H.W. Bush.

“He understands the difficulties American workers face in a rapidly changing workforce and I look forward to continuing to hear his insights,” Alexander said.

A Capitol Hill  source close to the chairman told Breitbart News that Alexander was not pushing for Puzder to withdraw.

The Puzder nomination was a sign of the rapprochement between former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney and President Donald Trump.

Sen. Bob Corker’s press release on Puzder’s withdrawal:

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) released the following statement after Andy Puzder withdrew his nomination for secretary of labor.

“More than three years ago, I had the opportunity to assist Governor Haslam in recruiting Andy Puzder to the Volunteer State, and we are fortunate that he and his company now call Tennessee home,” said Corker. “Andy’s career as a successful businessman and deep knowledge of economic and labor issues made him well-qualified to serve as secretary of labor, but I respect his decision and know he will continue to be an important voice on issues that directly impact American workers.”ot

Note: Alexander’s press release comment, quoted by Breitbart, is HERE.