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Last year, in communities all across the country, millions of Americans mobilized and called for an economy that works for all of us.

More workers were involved in strikes and other labor disputes in 2018 than at any point in the past three decades, fueled by widespread teacher protests last spring, according to data releas

Last week was a tougher week at the Capital in regards to Labor rights. The firefighter and police collective bargaining bill, HB – 1463, was voted down on the house floor with a vote of 23 yays and 64 nays. This seems bad but it was worse last session, and the good part about this is that the enemies of Labor had to pull out the stops to achieve this vote. Inside friends tell us that the pressure to vote no was immense, especially on the Republican members who wanted to vote yes and several of these changed their minds.

I understand why it would be insane to spend even a day without controllers, troops, Transportation Security Administration screeners, Coast Guard officers, FBI and Border Patrol agents and a laundry list of other truly essential workers employed by the federal government. What I don’t understand is why we tolerate a system that lets elected officials fail to do their one real job — funding the government — with no consequences for anyone in power.

Something funny happened on the way to the labor movement’s funeral.

The longest government shutdown in American history is over for now. On Friday afternoon, Donald Trump announced a deal to reopen government for the next three weeks. The short-term appropriations measure notably includes no funding for his beloved border wall — or steel slat fence, or smart wall, or whatever else he decides to call it in the future.


This was a good week for North Dakota Labor at the Capital. First is the firefighter and police collective bargaining bill, HB - 1463. Last session a similar bill came out of committee with a 12 to 2 vote against it. This year the vote was 6 to 6 with 2 absent. Though by no means is this a complete victory, it is a fantastic improvement.

This last week saw several bills important to Labor.

HB 1217, a bill that would have stopped any government agency from doing a job that private industry could do, was introduced in the House. This is in a state where we have a state-owned mill and elevator and a state bank. Public schools “compete” with private schools. State-owned prisons “compete” with private, for-profit prisons. We oppose this bill.

When women and our allies unite, we build power. That’s true in mass marches and on the job.

“I never realized how strongly unionizing and feminism go together,” registered nurse (RN) Suzanne Levitch, 33, of Johns Hopkins Hospital, in Baltimore, tells Teen Vogue. “There’s not really another way for workers, especially women workers, to be treated fairly.”

The nation’s airlines are blaming the partial federal government shutdown for putting another dark cloud in their path, with few federal workers and contractors taking to the skies and stalled federal agency approvals causing delays in expansion plans, including Southwest Airlines’ much-anticipated service to Hawaii.