Dozens of North Dakota and Minnesota Union members were among the many community members to show up in support of the groundbreaking ceremony at the future site of the FM Diversion Inlet Structure,

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Donald J. Trump made coal miners a central metaphor of his presidential campaign, promising to “put our miners back to work” and look after their interests in a way that the Obama administration did not. Now, three months into his presidency, comes a test of that promise.

Unless Congress intervenes by late April, government-funded health benefits will abruptly lapse for more than 20,000 retired miners, concentrated in Trump states that include Pennsylvania, Ohio and West Virginia. Many of the miners have serious health problems arising from their years in the mines.

AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka gave a major address at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., on April 4, 2017. He assessed opportunities around trade and infrastructure that could create jobs, as well as possible threats to workers' rights. President Trumka spoke about the labor movement's strategy to create a unifying agenda for working families, and the importance it places on ensuring that all workers have the right to bargain collectively for better wages and working conditions.

Brothers and sisters,

It’s week 14 of the North Dakota State Legislature and I have two important asks of you. Please click on the links below to tell our legislature that working people need to be taken seriously.

Brothers and sisters,

This will be a short update as the session is coming to a close and many of those items we have been watching have either passed through or died.

As I talked about last week, SB-2135 is a bill to study the ballot initiative system with the stated purpose of making it better. Unfortunately for several in the legislature, making it better means increasing their own power to control laws by stripping away yours. North Dakota’s citizen-led, ballot-initiative system is the best in the nation and don’t let the legislature tell you differently.

Undocumented workers are refusing to cooperate with U.S. Department of Labor investigations due to deportation fears, in some cases even declining to accept back wages owed to them and running away from staff who show up at their workplace, according to agency employees and internal emails.

Read the full article in The Guardian.

HB-1193 was defeated in the North Dakota Senate on a vote of 44 to 1!

Brothers and sisters,

We just passed legislative week one million and three or thereabouts, and we’re still here. Though this session seems like it has been going for a while, the end is in sight because Monday will be the 55th day of the session out of a maximum of 80. Though there are serious budget fights still going on and more to come, there is also a light at the end of the tunnel… We just hoping it’s not an oncoming train.