Tim Drea: Workers need more than one day of platitudes


We celebrate Labor Day every year and listen to politicians and community leaders tell us how important we are. They tell us working families are the backbone of society and front-line workers saved the day during the darkest hours of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Well, that’s all true. However, it seems like every other day and every year and decade we are fighting the same people that give us the pats on the back one day a year. That can all change and we have the power to make it happen.

On the ballot for voters next year will be the Workers’ Rights Amendment to the Illinois Constitution. If we want to stop the politicians from weakening our rights and whittling away our protections, this Constitutional Amendment will take care of it once and for all.

The facts are that for the last 40 years, union members have been targeted for destruction. Politicians and corporate lobbyists have hollowed out labor laws, and, here in Illinois, we’ve fought back many attempts at limiting our ability to negotiate. We’ve won many battles and we’ve lost a few, too.

The Workers’ Rights Amendment gives working people the protection they deserve — not protection that dissolves when the political winds shift direction.

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The WRA guarantees the right of workers to bargain for safe working conditions, fair pay and benefits. It will make sure patient care is put ahead of profit and construction workers can speak out about safety issues. It will finally stop politicians from taking away workers’ freedom to join and negotiate with their employers.

Not only does it benefit working families, it will also provide an ongoing boost for the Illinois economy by assuring there will continue to be a thriving middle class keeping business prosperous.

Now is the time and we will need your help.

Join the campaign to pass the Workers’ Rights Amendment. Go to www.workersrights.com for more information and sign up to join the campaign to pass this historic amendment.

The Illinois AFL-CIO represents more than two million union members and families.

Tim Drea is president of Illinois AFL-CIO 

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Region: Decatur,Feeds,News,City: Decatur,Region: Central

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September 4, 2021 at 10:37AM

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