'We Want to Work': 12 Federal Jobs That Are Vital to the Lives of America's Families

Johnny Zuagar just wants to go back to work. It's been 72 hours since he's been locked out of his job at the U.S. Census Bureau in Suitland, Md., and he's scared.

"I don't know what bills to pay," says Zuagar, who has two young children. "I'm afraid I might lose my house. I don't know how it got to this." Read more »

Union volunteers make improvements to Central Lutheran School in St. Paul

(Union Advocate) Central Lutheran School in St. Paul is now handicapped accessible, thanks to the goodwill donations of three union trades.

Volunteers from Laborers Local 132, Plasterers Local 265 and Cement Masons Local 633 helped build a concrete walkway to the school, located in St. Paul’s Midway neighborhood, from Lexington Parkway. Local 132 paid for the materials, and McGough Construction, a union contractor, footed the bill for removal of the old walkway. Read more »

The Race is On to End 15 Week-Old Strike Between Union Workers and Cretex

More than 12,000 runners participating in the Oct. 6 Medtronic Twin Cities Marathon along with thousands of spectators will get a glimpse of another marathon going on in the Twin Cities. A billboard, located near Hennepin Avenue and Seventh Street, in the heart of downtown Minneapolis, will tell marathon participants that title sponsor Medtronic has failed to listen to striking workers from Cretex, a company Medtronic continues to do business with. Read more »

Customers Call On Cretex to End 3-Month Strike Before It’s Too Late

It's been over three months since 40 construction craft laborers of Local 563 took to the picket lines to fight for fair wages and protect their self-funded pension plans. Union workers at Cretex's Shakopee facility remain hopeful that the strike, which started on June 19, will soon come to a peaceful end. Read more »

Death at St. Paul worksite gets national attention

The death of a worker at the site of the new St. Paul Saints ballpark drew national attention today at the AFL-CIO convention in Los Angeles.

According to news reports, 61-year-old John Valek of Plymouth was killed about 8:10 a.m. during a "partial building collapse" at the former Gillette/Diamond Products plant in Lowertown. Valek was an employee of Rachel Contracting of St. Michael, Minn., which was helping to tear down the building to make way for the new ballpark. Read more »

Across U.S., bridges crumble as repair funds fall short

From the Los Angeles Times, September 3, 2013: Engineers say thousands are close to collapse. And between the recession, sequestration and congressional gridlock, money to fix them is scarcer than ever. Included in the story is the following: Read more »

Striking Cretex Workers Ramp up State Fair Presence to Create Public Awareness and Ask for Support

In addition to manning the picket lines at Cretex' Shakopee, Minn. facility, striking union workers are at the Minnesota State Fair educating the public about their fight to keep their earned retirement funds. The workers, members of Laborers Local 563, will be at the Minnesota AFL-CIO both at the corner of Dan Patch and Cooper Avenues at the fairgrounds until the Great Minnesota Get Together ends on Labor Day. Read more »

Striking Cretex workers deliver heartfelt plea to Medtronic leaders: Tell Cretex to stop playing games with Minnesota families

Union workers from a Shakopee concrete plant owned by Cretex, a Twin Cities concrete pipe and medical component manufacturer, stepped up their efforts today to urge medical technology giant Medtronic to help resolve a nine week-old strike. Workers from Laborers Local 563 made their presence felt inside and outside Medtronic's annual meeting – delivering remarks to CEO Omar Ishrak and shareholders, and holding a peaceful vigil at the company's Mounds View campus. Read more »

Rigorous standards will ensure clean mines

(By: Frank Ongaro, Duluth News Tribune) From President Obama to Gov. Mark Dayton, elected officials have made jobs a top priority. In Minnesota, one thing is certain: There is no better opportunity for creating thousands of great-paying jobs, providing millions of dollars in tax revenue for local governments and generating more than $2 billion in royalties for our schools than the proposed copper/nickel strategic metals mineral development projects. Read more »

Mining industry's view: Let mining boost state manufacturing

By: Hal Quinn, Duluth News Tribune: The economy is a top concern for state manufacturers who question whether Minnesota is a competitive state in which to do business, according to findings from Enterprise Minnesota’s fifth-annual “State of Manufacturing” report released in July. Read more »