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    • XIV. Right to Organize and Building the Labor Movement
      Declining union membership, now around 11 percent including public sector, impacts democracy in the country as a whole. There is a decline of strike activity in this country. The labor movement faces huge challenges, including internally. Unions must find solutions for disaffected members, including organizing internally, training shop stewards and educating members. Members often do not become involved until there is a strike. Unions must involve members by giving them something to do - activity breeds action. All power arises from the membership. In order to involve members, the union must internally organize. The power of the union depends on the support of the members. Unions need to create committees, such as action committees and internal organizing committees that also can educate members in the history and purpose of the labor movement and about economic and social justice issues. Unions must connect with communities and become part of the social movement because everything is inter-connected. Unions have not always engaged in issues that exist in the community, such as the problem with prisons and systemic racism. Unions need to connect and support organizations within communities. There needs to be a labor/community program. There needs to be forums within the community to look at issues affecting all unions. Unions must connect with each other through labor councils and federations. When unions exist as a separate structure it causes conflict with other unions. Unions need to look at labor movements in other countries. We cannot let the diminishing membership of unions diminish the visibility and role of unions in both the community and among the members. Unions are struggling with the democratic process. Currently, there is no power in unions because they are controlled by the few. Power needs to start from the bottom. Many union members see their union as working with corporations to keep workers in line. It always seems that unions have to yield to prevent layoffs. Concessions make us weaker. Unions cannot bring new members into a broken system. The right to organize can only work with a functional union. We need to organize against the attack on organizing and fight for the freedom to organize. Unions need to support immigrant workers. To be in a truly democratic United States, workers need to have a union in their work place. We need to fight for and protect the right to organize and pass legislation for card check recognition. We need to develop internal organizing committees within existing unions in an effort to increase and encourage member participation and involvement and as a means of developing a true rank-and-file led organization. We need to join with community organizations as a means of strengthening both the labor movement and social justice. We need to support international working class solidarity and fair trade by joining international and regional labor organizations.
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    • 1 year, 11 months ago

      San Francisco Living Wage CoalitionSan Francisco Living Wage Coalition

    • XV. Progressive Taxation of Corporations and the Wealthy
      Real democracy equals economic democracy. Super-majority requirements to raise taxes are undemocratic. It is a tyranny of the wealthy minority. We need to tax corporations. On local, state and federal levels, corporations need to pay their fair share of taxes. The government should raise taxes to fund social programs for welfare, childcare, and health care. We need to end the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy. All taxes should be progressive. We need federal laws to avoid state-to-state disparities or conflict. We need to increase the income tax on people earning $250,000 per year or more.
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    • XVI. Fair Trade
      Free trade creates problems with competition within the work force itself. Fair trade has the goal of fairness to the workers themselves and to prevent capital from controlling the work force. The labor movement in the United States needs to join and participate in international and regional labor organizations. The U.S. labor movement needs to listen to and understand the foreign experiences of the neoliberal era, and promote international solidarity, fair trade and social justice.
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    • XVII. Fully Funded Public Transit
      Public transit service is further cut under the guise of “consolidation.” Public transit has to compete with highway and roadway construction for the same pot of money and usually gets the cub’s share, while road construction gets the lion’s share. Public transit funding is too dependent on sales tax, which is a volatile source given inevitable recessions. Costlier commuter train systems that benefit a wealthier class take funds from urban bus systems. There are systematic political attacks on transit workers to cut their wages and benefits and minimize budget cuts to management. Fossil fuel costs will inexorably increase as public transit use decreases and the environment will continue to take a beating. Congestion pricing for commuting and parking would help encourage people to use public transit and contribute to funding. Smart development would encourage public transit by clustering transit hubs where concentrations of people ride public transit and major shopping centers are. Public transit should be 100 percent subsidized by businesses in proportion to the percentage of their workers who ride public transportation to work. Transit unions need to unite to beat back takeaways, to fight for cost-of-living increases as a human right, and efficient, affordable and reliable public transit as a right for all. Public transit should be free to ride. There should be more frequent service, especially at night. We need to build a coalition between transit advocates, transit unions, green organizations, and renewable energy providers as part of a movement centered on environmental justice.
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    • XVIII. Public Funding for Arts and Culture
      We are cultural workers in resistance to the current oppressive society. Our role is the creation of a counter culture, to reconstruct the cultural landscape. To have the freedom to express our cultural opposition and discontent we must have affordable housing and a guaranteed wage. One challenge is to put out the view that there is no such thing as apolitical. We must be aware of the political messages being out by the current oppressive society. Whereas we know that everyone is an artist, whereas art is the interconnection of all cultures. Whereas we note that art is intrinsically political.
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