Elections

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“Battleground 2014” Is Underway

Battlegrounds-Photo-2UFCW members must be prepared for the November 4thmidterm elections – 2014 cannot be a repeat of 2010. To help make it easier for members to engage politically, we have launched Battleground 2014.

Battleground 2014 provides information about the most important Congressional and Gubernatorial races. UFCW members will be able to use this site to find out more about the candidates and access important voting information and deadlines.

There is a lot at stake on Election Day this year. At the federal level, control of the U.S. Senate is on the line.

Republicans are only six seats away from controlling the Senate and seven of the most vulnerable seats up for election this year are currently held by Democrats. We must work hard to ensure the Senate does not fall into anti-worker hands.

Gubernatorial elections are just as important. Governors from Michigan, Ohio, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania, all of which spent the last four years attacking workers, are now up for reelection. They need to be shown that when you hurt workers, you lose elections.

UFCW Decries Supreme Court Campaign Finance Ruling

UFCWnewsWASHINGTON, D.C. — The United Food and Commercial Workers International Union (UFCW) today released the following statement in response to the Supreme Court ruling in McCutcheon v. Federal Election Commission which removed limits on the total amount a person can donate to political campaigns in an election season.

“The Supreme Court has once again struck a blow to our democracy. This decision is a gift to billionaires like the Koch brothers that want to unduly influence public policy and an affront to working families who are having their voices drowned out by a monsoon of big money. Elections should not be like auctions—for sale to the highest bidder. Yet this decision combined with Citizens United has created a wild west of campaign finance that allows a few superrich Americans to disproportionately impact the outcome of elections. It is long past time to fix our political system by correcting these harmful decisions and moving toward public financing of campaigns.”

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The United Food and Commercial Workers International Union (UFCW) represents more than 1.3 million workers, primarily in the retail and meatpacking, food processing and poultry industries. The UFCW protects the rights of workers and strengthens America’s middle class by fighting for health care reform, living wages, retirement security, safe working conditions and the right to unionize so that working men and women and their families can realize the American Dream. For more information about the UFCW’s effort to protect workers’ rights and strengthen America’s middle class, visit www.ufcw.org, or join our online community at www.facebook.com/UFCWinternational and www.twitter.com/ufcw.

 

Black History Month Celebrations: Show Host Richard Fowler Empowers Youth to Make a Difference

To continue our celebration of Black History Month, we are sharing another story of someone who has made a great impact on civil rights and economic equality. That person is Richard Fowler.

After years of going into the voting booth with his mother as a young child, Fowler learned the importance of being an active voice in one’s community. Working with the NAACP, he has helped over 1000 young voters in his native Florida to get registered and organize. He has also worked as a campaign manager for political candidates, to work on issues that uplift women, youth of color, and LGBTQ and low-income communities.

Working with youth in order to empower them to make a difference in their own and their communities’ lives is clearly important to Fowler, who has trained about 2,000 young people on how to make their voices heard through messaging and media. Fowler’s trainings no doubt draw on his experiences as the host of his own radio show (The Richard Fowler Show), which has recently partnered with the popular show The Young Turks. Additionally, Fowler serves as the interim director of Generational Alliance, which is made up of over 20 youth organizations dedicated to increasing collaboration and coordination within the youth movement through the following methods:

1. Create cultural spaces for young progressive leaders
2. Sit in progressive spaces that have historically left out underrepresented communities
3. Provide trainings for staff of members’ organizations to fill the leadership development gap
4. Help organizations collaborate on advocacy issues they align with
5. Uplift and promote their communications efforts through media training, booking and digital organizing

Fowler’s work at the Alliance and at his own show also includes educating folks on important issues, like the Affordable Care Act, via YouTube videos.

Fowler is carrying the torch of the leaders of the civil rights movement who came before him, using new media and technology to inspire young people to make a difference in new ways. To learn more, you can follow him on Twitter @RichardAFowler.