America wants to work

BY:Scott Marshall| September 2, 2011

Labor Day 2011 is just around the corner. Will it be a day off to just go to a picnic, or will it be a day to demonstrate the need for good jobs now? The need for jobs is obvious. Let’s take action and get our friends, co-workers and neighbors involved. The country we save could be our own!   The Fight For Jobs Last week we wrote about the jobs bill Rep. Jan Schackowski (D-IL) is drafting. This week, over 70 progressive organizations signed a letter to President Obama on this bill and the need for him to make job creation priority number one. Want to help? Sign this petition from the AFL-CIO titled, “America Wants to Work.”   Another jobs bill in the works – Rep. Marcy Kaptur (D-OH) says, “Rather than allowing the economy to stagnate and leaving our public assets to deteriorate, we can build our way out of this economic downturn. We simply need to remember one of the important lessons of the “greatest generation”: useful work transforms lives and builds our nation forward. ” She has introduced a bill for a 21st Century Civilian Conservation Corps. In the 1930s, the CCC was up and running and employing almost 300,000 Americans within three months, performing essential work in conservation projects on public land. Many national and state parks still rely on buildings and trails constructed by the original CCC.   Around the Nation

  • President Obama has chosen Alan Krueger as chairman of the Council of Economic Advisors. Krueger, who has authored reports for the progressive Economic Policy Institute, is a step in the right direction to get the administration focused on jobs.
  • A Michigan Republican shows great disdain for the poor of his state. Republican Rep. Dave Agema wrote on his Facebook page, “let them that will not work, not eat.” People’s World author John Rummel has the story.
  • “To save a dime, they lost a dollar.” Minnesota budget cuts eliminate program that helps immigrant doctors gain certification. “Many of them could be qualified to do this job with just a little bit of extra training,” Nicholson said. “You desperately need people to do this job. Why not get them out in the game? To tackle some of the health care problems Minnesota is facing we need all hands on deck.”
  • Snow plowing cut back in New Hampshire. The New Hampshire state Department of Transportation must cope with an 11.5 percent reduction in its maintenance budget this year, a 13 percent cut next year and a 25 percent drop in funds available for sand and salt. As a result, state transportation officials are contemplating a number of austerity measures, including scaling back the number of plows in service between 9 p.m. and 4 a.m. and waiting until 5-7 inches of snow has fallen on side roads to begin plowing instead of 3-6 inches as in the past.

Labor Day Online and in your neighborhood To find an event in your area, or to watch the AFL-CIO’s Labor Day video or vote for your favorite worker click here. Please make sure to visit the People’s World online for the best in worker’s news!                




    Scott Marshall is a vice chair of the Communist Party and chair of its Labor Commission. Scott grew up in Virginia where he first became active in the civil rights movement in high school, working on voter registration and anti-Klan projects in rural Southern Virginia and Tennessee. He was also active against the war in Vietnam.

    Scott has been a life long trade unionist and was active in rank and file reform movements in the Teamsters, Machinists and Steelworkers unions in the 1970s and '80s. He was co-chair of the Save Our Jobs committee of USWA local 1834 at Pullman Standard in Chicago and active in nationwide organizing against plant shutdowns and layoffs. He was a founder of the unemployed organization Jobs or Income Now (Join), in Chicago, and the National Congress of Unemployed Organizations in the 1980s.

    Scott has worked for the Communist Party since 1987 when he became the district organizer for the party in Illinois, a post he held until he was elected chair of the National Labor Commission in 1997. Scott remains active in SOAR (Steelworkers Active Organized Retirees). He lives in Chicago.

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