Jackson City Endorsements 2017

Huron Valley Area Labor Federation, AFL-CIO, votes to endorse Derek Dobies for Mayor, Andrew Frounfelker for reelection as the 5th Ward City Councilmember and Colleen Sullivan for the 6th Ward City Councilmember.

We endorsed these candidates for a simple reason. They will fight for working people.
When a few billionaires can use their nearly unimaginable wealth to influence our politics, our jobs, and our lives, working people across the nation are standing up to say, “we’ve had enough.” That’s why the Huron Valley Area Labor Federation is standing by these candidates.
Our endorsement process is designed to be comprehensive and efficient. Candidates who fill out the HVALF’s on-line questionnaire are invited for interviews. All candidates must fill out the questionnaire to be recommended or endorsed. Everyone who fills out an HVALF questionnaire is invited to meet with the HVALF’s Committee on Political Education (COPE) for an interview. The COPE discusses information gathered from the questionnaire, the interview and other sources, and makes recommendations to the full HVALF delegate body at its next monthly meeting. The delegate body discusses the COPE’s recommendations and votes on each.

Free and independent trade unions – the collective organizations of America’s working people – have been a cornerstone of our democracy for over a century. We are working hard to rebuild our labor movement. We support strong candidates who will unequivocally stand up for working people and their unions. Their support is vital to our efforts to build a strong labor movement, a stronger democracy, and a better America.


LEO Bargaining Kickoff Rally – Fri 10/27 12 PM


Sisters and brothers,
LEO begins bargaining with the UM Administration tomorrow morning, and to mark the occasion, we’re having a kick-off rally from noon to 1pm Friday 10/27 at Pierpont Commons on North Campus.

It would be great to have you with us as we launch what is without a doubt the most ambitious set of bargaining demands we’ve put forward since our first collective agreement.  If you can come, please contact me and I’ll send you more details re. parking, which can be challenging on North Campus. (The free bus from UM’s Central Campus is also available.

In solidarity,
Ian Robinson
President, HVALF

HVALF Endorsement of Community Mental Health Millage

At our October 3rd meeting, HVALF delegates voted to endorse Washtenaw County’s proposal for a public safety & community mental health millage, which will be on the ballot this November 7th.

While the millage is more complex and less transparent than we would like, we nonetheless believe (based on our knowledge of the commitments of the majority of Commissioners and the Sheriff) that most of the funds raised will go to community mental health needs and, closely related, to keeping people with such needs out of our criminal justice system. These are vital priorities for our community that we whole-heartedly share with the Commissioners who back this millage.

We also believe that the workers on the front lines of community mental health service delivery — both those who are county employees and those employed by service providers that contract with the County — are seriously under-paid. Many of the latter are making around $9/hr, less than a McDonald’s worker, despite the much heavier responsibilities that they have. Entry level County employees doing this work start at about $14.66/hr., though they do get benefits.

Working with Commissioners who share this conviction, we will do our best to ensure that some of the millage money is used to raise the pay of those who do this vital work. If we are successful, this should help to reduce turnover, particularly among the lower paying service providers. Lower turnover, in turn, means stronger relationships between consumers and service providers, and the higher quality of service that results from increased knowledge and trust.

Rally at Ann Arbor VA Hospital – Tues Oct 3


Photo courtesy AFGE

This Tuesday, October 3rd, from noon to 1pm, there will be a RALLY at Ann Arbor’s VA Hospital (2215 Fuller Rd, Ann Arbor)!   AFGE Local is organizing the rally to draw public attention to the fact that some 49,000 positions in the VA are vacant.

These vacancies are very critical to be filled for the many doctors, nurses, mental health professionals, and other essential caregivers.

Our Veterans (and all people in the US) deserve quality health care, not fights with big hospital corporations to receive the care they deserve.