America’s Work Force Union Podcast
Shawna Bader-Blau (The Solidarity Center) / Samira Brooks (SEIU VA 512)

Shawna Bader-Blau (The Solidarity Center) / Samira Brooks (SEIU VA 512)

March 31, 2021

The Solidarity Center Executive Director Shawna Bader-Blau was the first guest today on the AWF Union Podcast. She spoke about the history of their organization and their funding, their mission to help workers obtain safe and healthy workplaces and keeping collective power across borders for all workers.

Also featured on the podcast today was Samira Brooks, a homecare worker with SEIU VA 512. She spoke with AWF Union Podcast host Ed “Flash” Ferenc about her responsibilities during the COVID-19 pandemic, national day of action for homecare and healthcare workers and the constant fight for workers to get what they deserve.

James Burrows (Montana AFL-CIO) / Kristine Grow (Coalition for Medicare Choices)

James Burrows (Montana AFL-CIO) / Kristine Grow (Coalition for Medicare Choices)

March 30, 2021

Montana AFL-CIO Communications Director James Burrows was the first guest on today’s show. He spoke about worker mobilization efforts over the last six months, pushing labor issues to the forefront, the history of so-called “Right to Work” in Montana and the long history of attacks on workers rights to collectively bargain.

Kristine Grow of the Coalition for Medicare Choices also joined the AWF Union Podcast today. She discussed Medicare Advantage and why it is so popular, how Medicare Advantage supported seniors during the COVID-19 pandemic, and what legislation could affect Medicare Advantage.

Greta Callahan (Minneapolis Federation of Teachers Local 59) / John Costa (Amalgamated Transit Union)

Greta Callahan (Minneapolis Federation of Teachers Local 59) / John Costa (Amalgamated Transit Union)

March 29, 2021

Minneapolis Federation of Teachers Local 59 Teacher Chapter President Greta Callahan was the first featured guest on today’s show. She spoke about educators helping their students understand what may happen in the Derek Chauvin case, unfair labor practices with the state’s unwillingness to negotiate with teachers, rapid reopening of schools causing issues and more.

Amalgamated Transit Union International President John Costa was also featured on the America’s Work Force Union Podcast. He spoke about keeping transit workers safe, ending mass layoffs, the ATU’s response to the pandemic and vaccinating their members.

John Shinn (United Steelworkers) / John Russo (Working Class Perspectives)

John Shinn (United Steelworkers) / John Russo (Working Class Perspectives)

March 26, 2021

United Steelworkers International Secretary-Treasurer John Shinn spoke with the AWF Union Podcast today about bringing manufacturing jobs back to America, ending America’s reliance on foreign supply chains for PPE and other medical equipment, and the power of organizing and the PRO Act.

Working Class Perspectives co-editor John Russo was also featured on the AWF Union Podcast today. He discussed his new article “Myth of the Conservative Working Class” and how big corporations are chipping away at working class values.

Jon Schleuss (NewsGuild) / Bill Samuel (AFL-CIO)

Jon Schleuss (NewsGuild) / Bill Samuel (AFL-CIO)

March 25, 2021

Today on the AWF Union Podcast, AFL-CIO Government Affairs Director Bill Samuel spoke about the Republican pushback on President Biden’s labor nominees, Republicans voting against the American Rescue Plan and infrastructure investment and project planning.

Our second featured guest on today's show was NewsGuild President Jon Schleuss. He spoke about newspapers being bought out by hedge funds, which is killing jobs. He also discussed newsrooms getting stronger by organizing with the NewsGuild

Pete Ielmini (Mechanical Insulators LMCT) / John Murphy (International Brotherhood of Teamsters)

Pete Ielmini (Mechanical Insulators LMCT) / John Murphy (International Brotherhood of Teamsters)

March 24, 2021

Our first featured guest on today’s show was Mechanical Insulators LMCT Executive Director Pete Ielmini. He spoke about the winterization process for pipes and how Texas was not at all prepared, the difference between winterization and energy conservation and higher return on investment from good insulation.

Also featured on the AWF Union Podcast today was International Brotherhood of Teamsters Vice President At Large John Murphy. He spoke about pension relief language in the newest COVID-19 relief bill, why pension protection plans are so desperately needed and how the American Rescue Plan was passed.

Mike Knisley (Ohio State Building and Construction Trades Council) / Tom Buffenbarger (Independent labor voice)

Mike Knisley (Ohio State Building and Construction Trades Council) / Tom Buffenbarger (Independent labor voice)

March 23, 2021

Ohio State Building and Construction Trades Council Secretary Treasurer Mike Knisely joined the AWF Union Podcast today to discuss the Biden Administration’s action on passing a COVID-19 relief bill that included pension protections, borrowing money to invest in state and federal infrastructure and why the passing of the PRO Act will positively impact organized labor.

The AWF Union Podcast Independent Labor Voice Tom Buffenbarger was also featured on the show today. He spoke about the passage of the PRO Act, a merger between Canadian Pacific Railway and Kansas City Southern Railway. He also touched on a potential infrastructure plan.

Monty Anderson (Seattle Building and Construction Trades Council) / Jonna Huseman (Transportation Trades Department)

Monty Anderson (Seattle Building and Construction Trades Council) / Jonna Huseman (Transportation Trades Department)

March 22, 2021

Seattle Building and Construction Trades Council Executive Secretary Monty Anderson was the first featured guest on today’s episode of the AWF Union Podcast. He spoke about how the Seattle Building Trades navigated the pandemic, project labor agreements in the area, heating and ventilation systems in schools and diversifying the workforce.

Also featured on the podcast today was Transportation Trades Department Director of Communications Jonna Huseman. She discussed the highlights of the American Rescue Plan for the transportation industry and investing in infrastructure.

Matt Grills (The American Legion) / Rich Fiesta (Alliance for Retired Americans)

Matt Grills (The American Legion) / Rich Fiesta (Alliance for Retired Americans)

March 19, 2021

Today on the AWF Union Podcast, American Legion Editor Matt Grills spoke about the April edition of the publication. He previewed stories discussing the reintroduction of civics in American classrooms, the Fitness for Life challenge and shipments to U.S. soldiers fighting in the Vietnam War.

Also featured on today’s show was Alliance for Retired Americans Executive Director Rich Fiesta. He spoke about the American Rescue Plan and the highlights within, the PRO Act passing the House and the battle it faces in the Senate, and changing how the filibuster works.

Lynn Rhinehart (The Nation) / Pat Gallagher (USW/NCALF)

Lynn Rhinehart (The Nation) / Pat Gallagher (USW/NCALF)

March 18, 2021

On today’s edition of the America’s Work Force Union Podcast, contributing writer to The Nation, Lynn Rhinehart spoke about the need for labor law reform, Amazon’s anti-union tactics, and getting the PRO Act passed by the Democratic-controlled Senate.

Our second guest on the show today was United Steelworkers District 1 Director Pat Gallagher. He spoke about Cooper Tire being acquired by Goodyear, China’s steel dumping in the United States and why anti-union employers are against the PRO Act.

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