In a bill to be passed by Congress this week, the federal government’s 2.1 million employees will be granted paid parental leave for the first time. It’s an unprecedented move in the United States—the only industrial nation without guaranteed national paid leave. As workers fight for their rights nationwide, the new policy establishes a crucial opening for people across all industries to demand these benefits and more.
This week’s Take Action Now give you three ways to fight for workers’ rights to unionize, to paid family leave, and to a fair wage.
Take Action Now gives you three meaningful actions you can take each week whatever your schedule. You can sign up here to get these actions and more in your inbox every Tuesday.
NO TIME TO SPARE?
People across the country deserve the same rights to paid parental leave as federal government employees will soon enjoy. But today, just 19 percent of the US workforce gets paid family leave and just 40 percent receive personal medical leave through employer-provided short-term disability programs. Under the FAMILY Act currently before Congress, workers coast to coast would be granted up to 12 weeks of partial income while they take time for health conditions or childcare. Use Family Values At Work’s letter template to tell your elected officials to support paid family leave for all workers.
GOT SOME TIME?
Graduate student workers at Harvard University and the University of California, Santa Cruz continue their strikes this week demanding living wage increases and other benefits. Since the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) ruled in 2016 that graduate students at Columbia University could form a union, student workers have mounted numerous successful organizing drives across the country. But now, Trump’s NLRB has proposed a rule that would strip graduate students of these rights. Submit a public comment to the NLRB before January 15 sharing why you stand with students rights to unionize.
READY TO DIG IN?
For decades, politicians and CEOs have been aggressively chiseling away at workers rights to organize, driving wages down and inequality up. The PRO Act currently before Congress would crucially expand workers protections under the National Labor Relations Act—(tell your representatives to support it here.) As we continue to fight to strengthen unions, it’s also crucial that we support worker power wherever else it exists. Connect with your local chapter of Jobs with Justice to see how you can fight for worker rights in your community, support farmworkers by donating to the Coalition of Immokalee Workers, and sign up to volunteer with the National Domestic Workers Alliance.
Take Action Now will resume on Tuesday, January 7.