Recent Press

This Labor Day weekend is a great opportunity to take a break, relax, and reflect on the accomplishments of working people across the country. But within the labor movement, the break will be brief, because worker organizing across the United States is rapidly building momentum, and support of unions continues to rise. 

“This week, the national Gallup Poll showed approval of unions in our country has risen to 71 percent, the highest it’s been in nearly 60 years and a full 10 percentage points higher than it was just five years ago,” West Virginia AFL-CIO President Josh Sword said. “Workers in all fields are fed up with decades low wages, unsafe workplaces, unaffordable health care, and a lack of respect and dignity on the job.

“More and more, working people are realizing that when they have the freedom to join together to negotiate a fair return for their work, they win the power and voice they need to level the playing field.”

The following is a statement from West Virginia AFL-CIO President Josh Sword regarding the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022, the result of months of negotiations led by Senator Joe Manchin and Majority Leader Chuck Schumer.

“This compromise legislation offers serious and significant help for our country’s working families, who aretruly struggling right now. Here in West Virginia, where downturns in the economy hit hardest, particularly in our distressed coalfield communities, this legislation could very well be a game changer. I see many benefits for West Virginians on the horizon as a result of this bill, including the creation of good union jobs, reductions in health care and prescription drug costs, preservation of the Black Lung Disability Trust Fund, and tax reform that will finally force billionaire corporations to start paying some of their fair share and will boost our country’s economy.

CHARLESTON – To honor the 15 West Virginia workers who died on the job in 2021, the West Virginia AFL-CIO and the Kanawha Valley Labor Council will hold an in-person event at noon, Thursday, April 28, at the state Capitol commemorating the 34th annual Workers Memorial Day.

“As we do each year, we will read the names of West Virginia victims of workplace injury and illness, take a moment to pay tribute to them, and vow to keep fighting for the promise of safe jobs for all workers,” West Virginia AFL-CIO President Josh Sword said. “In 2021, 15 West Virginians lost their lives while on the job. They were first responders, public safety officers, coal miners, and machine operators, and they should have returned home safely to their loved ones.”

On April 28, unions of the AFL-CIO throughout the country will observe Workers Memorial Day to remember thosewho have suffered and died on the job, and to call for action to make workplaces safe.

The West Virginia event will be broadcast via Facebook Live.

WHAT:                      34th Annual Workers Memorial Ceremony   

WHEN:                      Noon, Thursday, April 28, 2022

WHERE:                   Lower Rotunda, State Capitol, Charleston

The IUPAT DC 53 Painters Union is holding a peaceful protest on the West Virginia Capitol grounds at the corner of Greenbrier Street and Washington Street East on Monday, February 21 10:30 am – 1:30 pm to raise awareness of attacks on West Virginia’s working families.

Senate Bill 2 “Relating to unemployment benefits program” would reduce the number of weeks workers are eligible for unemployment from the current level of 26 weeks to as little as 12 weeks, with a maximum of 20 weeks in times of high overall unemployment. Lead sponsor to this bill is Senator Tom Takubo from the 17th District.