Via the NYS AFL-CIO:
New York State AFL-CIO Launches "makingNYwork" to Drive Public Discourse
Toward the Point of View of Working Men and Women
New web video says economic development must create good, long-term jobs
and invest in hardworking New Yorkers, not focus on taxes alone – WATCH
VIDEO AT www.makingnywork.org/pledge
Today, the New York State AFL-CIO launched a new campaign to change the
public policy debate in our state from one that is driven by corporations
and billionaires to one that works for hardworking New Yorkers. The
project - "makingNYwork," is a comprehensive statewide initiative that will
incorporate digital strategy and boots on the ground grassroots
organizing. The campaign is kicking off with the release of a new website
– www.makingnywork.org, as well as a new web video -
www.makingnywork.org/pledge, which discusses economic development, jobs,
and tax policy from the perspective of hardworking New Yorkers.
Mario Cilento, President of the New York State AFL-CIO, said, "For far too
long, working men and women have been forced to play defense just to
protect a basic standard of living in our state. They've had to defend
wages, benefits, and conditions of employment. The result has been
prolonged unemployment and underemployment, worsening income equality and
shocking levels of poverty, which are scourges in our communities. Enough
is enough. The only way this will change is if we start a proactive
conversation based on the needs of everyday New Yorkers who are working
harder and harder but falling further and further behind."
The new website features working men and women from different sectors of
the economy and from all across the state asking their fellow New Yorkers
to join them in the fight to: (1.) Develop Strong, Long Term Industries
with Family Sustaining Jobs; (2.) Invest in Public Services; (3.) Lift low
wage workers out of poverty; (4.) Strengthen Supports for Working Families
- on and off the job; and (5.) Empower Working Men and Women.
In addition, the new web video points out that the state and local
governments give away $7 billion to businesses every year, some through
programs such as Industrial Development Agencies, many of which do not
provide adequate transparency, accountability, or standards to ensure that
we are creating good, sustainable jobs, not poverty jobs. The video also
focuses on the obvious but often overlooked link between taxes and the
delivery of critical services, such as: education; roads, bridges, and mass
transit infrastructure; police, fire, and sanitation; and public health
care and care for the disabled, just to name a few.
"Tax breaks alone are not an economic development policy," added Cilento.
"We need to invest in New Yorkers and the services they rely on, and create
new ladders to the middle class. New Yorkers don't want a handout; they
just want a chance to succeed. That's how we make New York work for
hardworking New Yorkers."
Over the coming weeks and months, the makingNYwork campaign will build
grassroots momentum through town hall meetings, door-to-door canvassing,
and phone banks to educate union members and the general public about the
campaign, and enlist their support for this legislative session and beyond.
The New York State AFL-CIO is a federation of 3,000 affiliated public
sector, private sector, and building trades unions throughout the state
representing 2.5 million members, retirees and their families. Our State
Federation, which is the largest and most diverse in the country, is
committed to making New York work for hardworking New Yorkers. For more
information on the Labor Movement in New York, visit www.nysaflcio.org.