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August 19, 2019

Member Spotlight: Kenny Newsom

The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) is the world’s largest voluntary health agency dedicated to finding cures for blood cancers. The UFCW has been a longstanding partner with LLS since 1982. Together, UFCW members have raised over $86 million through participating in Light the Night walks and other fundraising efforts.

UFCW Local 1059 president Randy Quickel with Local 1059 steward Kenny Newsom

One such member is Kenny Newsom, a UFCW Local 1059 member who works at General Mills in Wellston, Ohio as a building maintenance electrician. UFCW Local 1059 members at General Mills work hard to produce Totinos pizza rolls, but in his spare time Newsom enjoys using his carpentry skills to build furniture that he donates for the yearly UFCW Local 1059 auction to raise money for Light the Night.

“It’s been four years now,” says Newsom. “One year I was making an Ohio State table, it’s got the block o and buckeye leaf and all that in it. My union rep stopped by one day when I was in my workshop working on it and I said, ‘Hey, would Randy like to have this to auction off for Light the Night?’ and that’s how it got started.”

Newsom’s donations have raised over for Light the Night since he first got involved. Over the years, he’s made end tables, an indoor bar, a poker table, and an outside furniture set.

“I took workshop in high school, but then I worked for a cabinet factory for 29 years before I worked for General Mills. The cabinet factory shut down, but I learned quite a bit there. But mostly I learned from my father. He did that as a hobby like I do, and I just picked it up as I got older. I enjoy building it all. It’s a hobby for me so I just enjoy doing it.”

Newsom works nights at the General Mills plant, but doesn’t let that stop him from getting involved. In addition to being active with Light the Night, he also has been a steward for the past five years.

“After my first year or so was up I said, it’s about time to get involved. There was a position that opened up and I went to see my union rep and said ‘I want to be a steward’ and he said ‘ok’ and I’ve been there ever since. Negotiations are probably my favorite part. That and helping people when you can.”

“I work from 10:30 at night until 6:30 in the morning. I don’t think it’s a barrier to being involved, it’s just a matter of being disciplined. Coming home and getting in bed and getting your sleep. But I’m also a union steward there also and I go talk to new hires all the time about what I deal with as a union steward and try to give them a little education in what the union’s all about for them.

I just wish there were more education for younger people to know what a union can do for them. I try to tell them I worked non-union for 29 years, it’s ‘either our way or see ya,’ you know what I mean? It’s like you get a 5 cent raise this year and you either stay working or you go find something else. At least with the union, you’ve got a voice.”

If you would like to get more involved like Kenny Newsom, Light the Night has a website just for the UFCW. Visit to find information on a Light the Night Walk near you, register your Local Union’s Light the Night team, or set up your team’s fundraising page:

If you are interested in participating in the walks, talk to your local to see if there is already a Light the Night team. If not, ask about forming one and make sure your local’s team is registered on the UFCW Light the Night page. After your team is registered, you can recruit walkers and send them to your team page to register.

The UFCW Light the Night website will track our fundraising progress as well as keep a list of the top-performing UFCW locals and fundraisers. So be sure to check it often.

Funds raised by your team will go towards discovering breakthrough therapies and cures for people suffering from blood cancers like Leukemia, Lymphoma, Hodgkin’s disease, and Myeloma.

“LLS is very proud of our partnership with the UFCW, whose members have supported LLS relentlessly by raising essential funds needed to fight blood cancer,” said Louis J. DeGennaro, Ph.D., LLS’s president and CEO. “The UFCW is helping LLS make it possible to accomplish more than any other cancer nonprofit to advance cutting-edge research and cures for patients.”

For more information about the LLS, please visit www.LLS.org.


August 12, 2019

Reliable Consumer Credit Counseling Advice and Discounts for Union Members

UFCW families can turn to Union Plus Credit Counseling through the non-profit Money Management International (MMI). Certified, experienced consumer credit counseling advisors listen to you and your needs, then help you develop a plan of action for debt repayment that you can follow to help eliminate your debt.

No confusing gimmicks or overwhelming options. Just sound advice that’ll help you stop collection agencies from controlling your financial life.

Budget Analysis and Credit Counseling

You can get a FREE consumer credit counseling session, budget analysis and money management advice to get back on the road to financial recovery. Complete a confidential request for consumer credit counseling online or call 877-833-1745 — available 24/7.

Your Free Session Covers:
  • Complete financial review, including budget analysis and credit management counseling.
  • Assistance in budgeting or advice on sources of additional income.
  • Advice on how to work with creditors
  • An Action Plan that summarizes your financial situation, provides a budget and timeline for reaching your debt management and repayment goals, and restates action items.
  • Referral to a social service organization in your area, if appropriate.
  • Referral to Union Plus Legal Service or Union Plus Mortgage Assistance program, if appropriate.



Consumer credit counseling is currently available in the United States, but not available in Puerto Rico, Guam, Virgin Islands, and Canada.

Who is eligible?

  • Dues-paying labor union members of participating unions
  • Retired labor union members
  • Spouse, domestic partners, and children (age 18+) may be included. (Not eligible for monthly DMP fee rebate but will get the reduced set up fee.)
  • Widows/widowers of union members
  • Union Plus credit cardholders
Debt Management Plan (DMP)

After the initial credit counseling session, if you need additional assistance to eliminate debt, your counselor will develop a customized debt management plan (DMP) for you. With the Union Plus Debt Management Plan (DMP) grant, you don’t need to pay any of the DMP set-up fees. Union members who complete one year on a DMP are also eligible to apply for reimbursement of the monthly fees.

In short, a DMP allows you to make one simple monthly payment to MMI, and authorizes MMI to pay each of your creditors on your behalf based on the debt repayment plan terms negotiated with them.

MMI also works with creditors to stop collection, waive or reduce interest charges, and eliminate finance charge or late fees, wherever possible.


July 31, 2019

What you can do right now to prepare for a hurricane

With August as the month with the second highest number of hurricanes and September just ahead topping the list, now is the time to make sure you have a plan in place to protect your home and family.

What you can do right now to prepare for a hurricane

1.) Build an emergency kit

2.) Make a family communications plan

3.) Make a shopping list of what you’ll need to pick up before a storm hits

Experts recommend having a 3 day supply of non-perishable food as well as 3 gallons of water per person. Having your shopping list ready to go well ahead of time can help you make sure you aren’t forgetting anything last minute.

4.) Make a to-do list of last minute home preparations

Include last minute to-do tasks like making sure rain gutters and downspouts are clear or loose outdoor furniture is tied down. Having a clear list will help you have a realistic understanding of how much time you need and who needs to do what.

5.) Assess the flood risk of your home

Learn the elevation level of your property and whether the land is flood-prone. This will help you know how your property will be affected when storm surge or tidal flooding are forecasted. Identify levees and dams in your area and determine whether they pose a hazard to you.

6.) Research flood insurance, home and property insurance

Look into flood insurance, if you don’t already have it, to cover damage in case of a storm. Also, check out your current insurance coverage to determine if hurricanes and other natural disasters are covered under your policy.

7.) Plan your evacuation

Learn community hurricane evacuation routes and how to find higher ground. Determine where you would go and how you would get there if you needed to evacuate.

8.) Know how you will protect your windows

Permanent storm shutters offer the best protection for windows. A second option is to board up windows with 5/8” marine plywood, cut to fit and ready to install. You don’t need to wait for a storm to have plywood cut and ready to go. If you don’t have the storage space for cut plywood, you can still measure your windows, make a list of how much plywood you would need to buy, and make sure you have the means to cut it to size and affix it in place. You don’t want to be learning how to secure your windows for the first time with a storm looming. Don’t forget to reinforce your garage door, too. If wind enters a garage it can cause dangerous and expensive structural damage.

9.) Reinforce your roof to reduce the likelihood of your roof being blown off during a storm

Install straps or additional clips to securely fasten your roof to the frame structure. This will reduce roof damage. If retrofitting your house with straps turns out to be too difficult, you can still reinforce your roof with construction adhesive.

10.) Be sure trees and shrubs around your home are well trimmed so they are more wind resistant

11.) Install a generator for emergencies and make sure you know how to use it safely

July 31, 2019

What is a “union contract?”

In a non-union setting, the employer makes all the rules. They may promise to listen to employee input, but at the end of the day, they aren’t required to take any of that input seriously and ultimately still get to decide what the final policies are. But in a union setting, the rules are negotiated by the union and the employer with the union representing the best interests of the workers and the employer representing the best interests of the company.

The union has the right, as well as the legal obligation, to speak with one voice for all the employees that make up what is known as the “bargaining unit,” or employees covered by a particular contract. When we talk about having a “union contract,” what we mean is the official rules that have been agreed upon by the employer and the union, and that have also been voted on and accepted by the majority of the union membership covered by the contract.

How do contracts help a workplace run smoothly?

Contracts can help ease possible tensions between you and your managers by making it really clear what the agreed upon rules are, as well as what to do when they are violated. Confronting your manager one on one can end up feeling like a personal attack or criticism with someone you have to work with every day and maintain a good relationship with. In the end, many people just decide to let minor problems go rather than risk creating an uncomfortable situation or even just seeming like they aren’t a team player.

With a written contract and union representation you have someone to call who isn’t your boss who can help you get the issue resolved if a problem comes up. It can also help you make sure you’re taking advantage of all the benefits you are entitled to by clearly spelling them out.

What does a union contract cover?

So what goes into a contract? Anything the union members feel is important and that can be successfully negotiated with the company is fair game. This usually covers the basics like wages, raises, processes for discipline and termination, safeguards against favoritism, scheduling, retirement benefits and health care, but can also include creative language for concerns specific to the unique needs of the bargaining unit such as language protecting LGBTQ workers’ rights, weather-related policies, rules regarding accommodations for religious beliefs, or policies regarding the impact of online sales or automation. This is one of the main advantages of having a union contract instead of just relying on labor law alone – getting a law passed is time-consuming and may result in rules that aren’t even appropriate for all worksites. A contract gives you more control to make enforceable rules that are more of a custom fit solution rather than one-size-fits all.

How are contracts formed?

Many times unions use pre-bargaining polls or surveys to take the pulse of what the hot button issues for the membership are, but they often also have a pretty good sense of what’s been going on just from the kinds of grievances and other issues that have come up since the last round of negotiations with the company.

Exactly how the negotiations or bargaining process takes place is often determined in the individual contracts, but in general, a team of representatives from the union is pulled together who will be the ones responsible for sitting down the employer and going over proposals. This team is referred to as a “bargaining committee.” Because negotiations themselves are time-consuming and require a tremendous amount of effort from everyone involved, they are often necessarily small teams that can act efficiently and get work done while still remaining large enough to represent the needs of the unit as a whole.

Formal negotiations often begin with the union bargaining committee presenting the initial proposals to the company at an official negotiations session at a time and location agreed upon by both sides. Either at that same session or in a future negotiations session, the employer then presents their proposals. The process always includes face-to-face formal discussions with notes taken so there is a record of what was said in case there is a dispute later on. Sometimes negotiations are led by a single representative who acts as a spokesperson the whole time, or alternatively there may be multiple spokespeople for different issues within the contract.

Both sides go over point by point all the proposals in the contract, which can be quite time consuming, but when both sides reach a tentative agreement about what the final rules should be, there’s still the question of having them formally adopted by each side. For the employer, this might mean having it voted on by their board of directors or some other type of approval from a higher up in the company. For the union, this means taking the final contract to the members for a vote. Actual voting can take place through ballots in the mail or at in person meetings.  We call this vote to accept a contract a “ratification” vote.

If the majority of the bargaining unit votes to reject the contract, however, sometimes it’s back to the drawing table and the union and the employer continue trying to work out a solution that will work for both sides. If common ground can’t be found, a neutral third-party mediator may be called in. Worst case scenario, the union may vote to go on strike if the employer continues to refuse to budge. The employer version of this is called a “lock out,” which is when the employer closes the facility.

Both strikes and lock outs are rare as both sides have quite a bit of incentive to avoid them, but often negotiations only start to get news coverage if there is a strike or a lockout, which can lead to a false sense of how common they really are. Annually, only about 1% of negotiations end in strikes. Smooth labor negotiations rarely make the news, even when they result in significant improvements to wages and benefits.

Contracts usually have a specific amount of time that they are good for before they expire, generally around 2 to 5 years. Once that term is up, it’s time for the union and the employer to sit down at the table again and negotiate a new contract, usually taking the old one as a starting point. The whole process starts over, ending with the members ratifying the new, hopefully-improved contract.

Without unions, workplaces operate like dictatorships: decisions are made by an elite few while workers bear the consequences of policy decisions. Democracy can be a sometimes messy process, but the end result is worth it – better workplace policies that fairly take into consideration the needs of both the employer and the employees.

July 26, 2019

New Poll: Americans Strongly Oppose USDA Move to Weaken Food Safety at Pork Plants

As America’s largest private-sector union representing thousands of pork workers, UFCW works to protect the safety of the hardworking men and women at swine slaughter plants as well as the food they pack and process. A new poll released this week shows that a strong majority of Americans agree with us and oppose the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s proposal to weaken food safety standards by eliminating line speed limits and drastically reduce inspections at pork processing plants.

The recent USDA proposal would cut federal safety inspectors at processing plants by 40 percent and would allow the slaughter line speeds to run at any speed the company wants.

Both of these changes would endanger the safety of these workers and the food millions of Americans across the country count on to feed their families every day.

According to the poll from Hart Research Associates, 64 percent of Americans “opposed the USDA’s proposal to eliminate the speed limits on pig slaughter lines.” Opposition was strong across all party lines with 69 percent of Democrats, 66 percent of Independents, and 58 percent of Republicans agreeing that speed limits should remain in place.

Poll respondents in the Midwest, where a large portion of the pork industry is based, expressed even stronger disapproval of the proposal, with 70 percent opposing the proposed changes to plant safety requirements.

Just last month, UFCW President Marc Perrone issued a statement in opposition to the proposal:

“For over 100 years, USDA inspectors have played a vital role in ensuring the safety of our pork. This change to USDA meat inspection rules would dramatically weaken the critical protections that Americans depend on to be able to select safe, healthy food to feed their families every day.

“Shifting the responsibility onto pork workers, instead of the USDA inspectors who are specifically trained for this critical job, is needlessly reckless and dangerous. Our members in pork plants work incredibly hard already and stand with families across the country to demand USDA keep our food safe and let inspectors do their job.”

We stand in agreement with Americans across the country deeply concerned by this USDA proposal that threatens the safety of workers at these plants, as well as the safety of the pork products for consumers in the United States and around the world.



July 25, 2019

Behind the scenes at Chef Boyardee

In Milton, Pennsylvania, UFCW Local 38 members at ConAgra work hard to make one of the iconic pantry dinners—Chef Boyardee.

The plant is the only ConAgra plant where Chef Boyardee products are made.

See for yourself

Inside the plant

Employees at the plant are members of UFCW Local 38, they can go to work knowing they have a union contract and a say in their wages and benefits.

The man behind the legend

Did you know that Chef Boyardee was a real person?

From the Chef Boyardee website: 

Hector Boiardi’s story begins in 1897 in the Northwest Italian town of Piacenza. Young Hector quickly gravitated toward the hospitality industry. By age 11, he was working as an apprentice chef at a hotel in his hometown. Like many early 20th century Europeans, Hector made his way to America, arriving at New York’s Ellis Island in 1914.

Hector had little trouble finding work. He joined the culinary staff at New York’s ritzy Plaza Hotel, where the following year he became head chef. Chef Hector also earned work at The Greenbrier Hotel in West Virginia, where he oversaw catering for the wedding reception of President Woodrow Wilson.

So how did a young chef go from cooking for a U.S. president to creating what we now know as Chef Boyardee?

Like many young chefs, Hector Boiardi dreamed of owning his own restaurant. With the help of his wife, Helen, Hector’s restaurant, Il Giardino d’Italia, opened its doors in 1924, in Cleveland. The name means “Garden of Italy,” and Chef Hector’s garden was quickly in full bloom with lines that stretched out the door!

Chef Hector’s delicious pasta dishes were so popular among patrons that they began asking for his recipes. Chef Hector had a better idea. Why not sell a take-home version of his delicious dishes? He began cleaning milk bottles and filling them with his pasta sauce, accompanied by uncooked pasta so that patrons could enjoy his food at home. From these humble beginnings came the Chef Boyardee pasta dishes still enjoyed today.

Chef Hector realized he had a winning business proposition with an opportunity to serve not just the customers of his Cleveland restaurant. Hector teamed up with his brothers Mario and Paul to found the Chef Boyardee company, using a phonetic spelling of the family’s last name to make it easier to pronounce. By the late 1930s, Hector was headed east to set up his kitchen in Milton, Pennsylvania, which remains the home of Chef Boyardee today.

Although Il Giardino d’Italia has long-since closed its doors, the pasta dishes first served there remain classics of Italian-American cuisine. With delicious meat, pasta and sauce and no artificial flavors, colors or preservatives, they’re sure to remain family favorites for years to come.

July 22, 2019

Co-op workers in Minneapolis raise wages through union membership

Congratulations to the members of UFCW Local 1189 who work at the Wedge Co-op in Minneapolis on ratifying a new contract that raises wages and improves benefits.

UFCW Local 1189 members at The Wedge Co-op in MinneapolisThe three-year contract, which was ratified by an overwhelming majority of the members, includes a wage scale that adjusts each year of the contract to comply with the new Minneapolis minimum wage increases. The new contract also includes orientation language that allows a steward to spend up to 30 minutes with each new member on paid time to explain the benefits of union membership, as well as successorship and relocation language, which was a top priority for the hardworking men and women of the co-op.

“The wage scale in the contract makes me think of Paul Wellstone and a belief I share with him that ‘we all do better when we all do better,’” said Nathan Coombes, who served as a member of the negotiating committee. “As the Minneapolis minimum wage rises over the three years of our contract, the majority of us see our pay rise, as well. I’m proud of my co-op and this contract.”

Wedge Co-op stresses the importance of democratic control and autonomy as part of their core principles as a cooperatively run business, and the improvements made for workers in the new contract are an example of what can be achieved when workers are empowered by their union membership and have a democratic say in their working conditions.


July 16, 2019

Protecting your constitutional rights during a workplace raid

In the United States, every person — whether documented or undocumented — has the constitutional right to remain silent and refuse to answer questions of the police, FBI, or ICE, whether on the street, in a car, or at home.

Under the law, ICE must have proof you are not from the United States to deport you. They can use the following information against you:

  • If you run and ICE catches you
  • If you tell ICE where you were born or that you don’t have papers
  • If you carry false documents
  • If you carry papers from your country

If you are questioned by ICE, you are NOT required to reveal any information, such as your name, address, or home country. If you are questioned or detained, however, it usually is a good idea to give your name so that friends, family, or your attorney can locate you.

What you can do now

The targets of the mass raids are individuals who have been ordered deported.  Any individuals that were issued deportation orders because of failure to appear in court, should contact a reputable immigration lawyer, nonprofit, or immigrant rights organization to help them file a motion to reopen their order of deportation.

  1. Gather and keep important documents in a safe place, make copies, and make them accessible to a trusted person.
  2. Identify reputable immigration, family, and defense lawyers for rapid response. Speak to a family law attorney about the need to sign a power of attorney for the caretaking of children and handling finances.
  3. Obtain travel documentation for all family relatives.
  4. Carry a Know Your Rights card with contact information of reliable attorney and other emergency contacts. Memorize important phone numbers.

If you are stopped by ICE or if ICE comes to your home

DO NOT OPEN THE DOOR if an immigration agent is knocking on the door.

DO NOT ANSWER ANY QUESTIONS from an immigration agent if they try to talk to you. You have the right to remain silent.

DO NOT SIGN ANYTHING without first speaking to a lawyer. You have the right to speak with a lawyer.

If you are outside of your home, ask the agent if you are free to leave and if they say yes, leave calmly.

GIVE THIS CARD TO THE AGENT. If you are inside of your home, show the card through the window or slide it under the door. The cards read:

“I do not wish to speak with you, answer your questions, or sign or hand you any documents based on my 5th Amendment rights under the United States Constitution. I do not give you permission to enter my home based on my 4th Amendment rights under the United States Constitution unless you have a warrant to enter, signed by a judge or magistrate with my name on it that you slide under the door. I do not give you permission to search any of my belongings based on my 4th Amendment rights. I choose to exercise my constitutional rights.”

These cards are available to citizens and noncitizens alike.

During a workplace raid

To report a raid use United We Dream National Raid Hotline 1-854-363-1423 or send a text message to 877877.

  1. ICE must have a judicial warrant (a warrant SIGNED BY A JUDGE) or the employer’s permission to enter the workplace.
  2. ICE can enter a public place without a warrant.
  3. Workers should stay calm.
  4. Workers should not run. Union representatives should not warn workers that immigration has arrived or urge them to run.
  5. A union observer should document (write, not film) events taking place during a raid.
  6. Workers have the right to remain silent.
  7. Workers have the right to an attorney.
  8. Workers have the right to refuse to sign anything without talking to an attorney.
  9. ICE is not supposed to take someone’s fingerprints unless ICE already has a reason to arrest them. Workers should NOT consent to being fingerprinted, and if they are, they should say out loud that they do not agree with being fingerprinted.

If ICE arrests you, you have the right:

  1. To remain silent and refuse to answer questions. Anything you say may be used against you.
  2. To understand the charges against you. If you need an interpreter, ICE must provide one.
  3. To be represented by an attorney (at your own expense) and to receive a list of agencies offering free legal services before answering questions.
  4. To refuse to sign documents, such as for voluntary departure. It is particularly important to consult with an attorney before signing if:
      • You are afraid to return to your home country
      • You have lived in the U.S. for at least 10 years
      • Your family members have amnesty or other papers
      • You already have a pending ICE case
      • You are accused of using false documents
  1. To make a telephone call to an attorney, family member, consulate of your home nation, friend, or the union (memorize their phone numbers).
  2. To be released on bond and to have a hearing to reduce your bond if you cannot afford it.
  3. To have a hearing before an immigration judge and to appeal any adverse decision by the judge. You have the right to stay in the U.S. while you appeal.

How can the UFCW help workers during workplace raids?

The union should enforce employer obligations on issues that affect immigrant members. The union could be liable for failing to represent members if it fails to challenge employer abuse. The union has no reason to determine the immigration status of a worker; unions must represent all workers regardless of status. However, a union representative must not assist a worker in presenting documents that the representative knows are false.

  • The union may request information about and bargain over employer I-9 audits.
    • Request information about the reason for and the scope of the audit, and request copies of any documents the employer received from any government agency.
  • The union may represent workers in reverification of work authorization documents.
    • Employers are only allowed to reverify identity and work authorization documents for expired documents, such as an expired work permit or visa, but not for a lawful permanent resident card with an expiration date. If the reverification is based on the expiration of the employee’s work permit, bargain for an unpaid leave of absence. Object to unlawful reverification of current workers such as non-citizen nationals, lawful permanent residents, refugees, asylees, or individuals with temporary protected status. Weingarten allows a union representative or steward to be present if an employer seeks to meet with a worker regarding employment authorization or other immigration issues. Grieve any adverse actions against workers based on unlawful reverification attempts.
  • If an employer gets a SSN “no-match” letter, the union can remind them that:
    • A “no-match” letter does not provide authority for an employer to terminate, suspend, lay off, or impose other discipline on an employee, and an employer who does may violate federal labor law.
    • The purpose of a “no-match” letter is to notify an employer when a reported employee’s name or social security number does not match Social Security’s records. The SSA has no authority to enforce the immigration laws, and the employer should give employees an opportunity to update their documents and information.
  • Ensure that contracts have provisions that state: “The Company will not discipline, discharge or otherwise act against any worker who is absent from work for up to [NUMBER] days because of arrest, detention or incarceration, and those days will not count against the worker’s time and attendance record.”
  • Engage with employers about immigration enforcement to establish protocols for their interaction with ICE in the workplace. (E.g. confirm that ICE may not enter private property without a warrant signed by a judge.)
  • Train members, stewards, and staff on the basic rights of individuals during an immigration enforcement action, the union’s rapid response plan, and family safety plans.
  • Establish relationships with local community leaders, allies, non-profits, immigrant rights groups, and legal service providers to be in communication during raids and mobilize the community to support workers and families.

Additional Resources

Here is a list of local organizations that can support you and your community if you are impacted by a raid or other immigration enforcement activity:

Baltimore, MD

CASA Hotline 1-855-678-2272

Chicago, IL     

Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights: 1-855-435-7693 (1-855-help-my-family)The Southwest Organizing Project (SWOP): 773-471-8208 ext 120
The Resurrection Project: 312–666-3062
National Immigrant Justice Center: 1-855-435-7693 (1-855-help-my-family)
West Suburban Action Project (Proyecto de Acción de los Suburbios del Oeste): 708-410-2000

Houston, TX

For Families and Their Education (FIEL Houston): 1-713-364-3435

Miami, FL

Americans for Immigrant Justice: (305) 573-1106
Florida Immigrant Coalition (FLIC): (305) 571-7254

New York, NY

New York Immigration Coalition (NYIC): 212-627-2227
Make the Road NY: Brooklyn: 718-418-7690

Queens: 718-565-8500
Staten Island: 718-727-1222
Long Island: 631-231-2200
Westchester: 914-948-8466

BAJI New York, NY — Telephone: (347) 410-5312
New Sanctuary NYC https://www.newsanctuarynyc.org/

Newark, NJ
Make the Road NJ: 908-368-1196

San Francisco, CA
SIREN: Text this number for rapid response: 201-468-6088
SF Rapid Response Network: 415-200-1548
Alameda County Rapid Response: 510-241-4011
San Mateo County Rapid Response: 203-666-4472 (203-NOMIGRA)
Santa Clara Rapid Response: 408-290-1144
Marin County Rapid Response: 415-991-4545

Southern California:
CHIRLA: 888-6CHIRLA (888-624-4752)

Atlanta, GA
Los Vecinos de Buford Highway: 770-715-7200
Asian Americans Advancing Justice: 404-890-5655
Coalicion De Lideres Latinos (CLILA): 706 529 9216
GA Latino Alliance for Human Rights: 770-457-5232

Denver, CO
Colorado Rapid Response Network: 1-844-864-8341
Colorado Immigrant Rights Coalition: 303-922-3344

New Orleans, LA
New Orleans Workers’ Center for Racial Justice: Message them on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/NOWCRJ/

Washington, DC
DMV Immigration Crisis Hotline 202-335-1183
CASA: 1-855-678-2272


July 15, 2019

UFCW makes history in California with cannabis safety trainings

The UFCW recently hosted the first-ever, industry-specific 30-hour Cal-OSHA trainings for cannabis workers in California to help increase job skills and strengthen workplace safety.

The cannabis industry is the fastest growing job sector in the U.S., and the trainings were held in coordination with the UFCW International’s Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) Office, the UFCW Western States Council, and UFCW Local 770.

“By developing training that is state-specific, industry-specific, and meets the specific needs of workers in the cannabis industry, we know that UFCW members attending these trainings will be safer and the industry will be safer. This training can serve as a model for the rest of the country,” said Robyn Robbins, director of the OSH Office.

Over 30 union cannabis workers and representatives from UFCW Locals 8GS, 324, 770 and 1167 attended the trainings during the weeks of June 10th and June 17th at UFCW Local 770’s Ricardo F. Icaza Workers’ Center in Los Angeles.

“It is very exciting to be a part of this groundbreaking training and to know that the health and safety of our cannabis members is being addressed directly by UFCW trainers by providing an industry-specific curriculum,” said Paul Edwards, who is the director of training and development at UFCW Local 770.

Last year, the UFCW Western States Council helped to pass AB 2799, legislation that requires licensed cannabis businesses in California to have at least one employee and one supervisor complete the 30-hour Cal-OSHA course within one year of licensure.

“California’s cannabis industry creates thousands of jobs where workers must know how to be safe and how to report violations,” said Amber Baur, the executive director of the UFCW Western States Council. “We are proud to be part of these innovative trainings so workers can gain familiarity with their responsibilities and safe practices under Cal-OHSA, saving lives and preventing needless harm.”

Attendees to the Cannabis OSHA Trainings at UFCW Local 770 hold up their training certificates

July 15, 2019

UFCW Stands with Amazon Workers in Prime Day Strike

America’s Largest Private-Sector Union Backs Amazon Workers in Push to Strengthen Pay, Address Unsafe Working Conditions

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union (UFCW) announced its strong support of the strike by Amazon warehouse workers in Minneapolis on Prime Day to address working conditions at the plant. UFCW President Marc Perrone released the following statement in support of these workers:

“Amazon workers are sending a powerful message to Jeff Bezos this Prime Day: It’s time to stop putting profits ahead of people. With the recent move to one-day Prime shipping, Amazon workers are being forced to meet impossible demands at increasingly unsafe speeds.

“Americans have had enough with a broken economic system that rewards shareholders with billions of dollars while hardworking men and women receive pennies from the very companies they make a success. We are proud to stand with these brave Amazon workers on Prime Day as they fight for what’s right.”


The UFCW is the largest private sector union in the United States, representing 1.3 million professionals and their families in grocery stores, meatpacking, food processing, retail shops and other industries.

Our members help put food on our nation’s tables and serve customers in all 50 states, Canada and Puerto Rico.

Learn more about the UFCW at www.ufcw.org