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AFGE Remembers 9/11

Twelve years ago on September 11, 2001 the course of American history was changed forever. Union workers were there that day — working in the buildings that were struck, flying on the airplanes that were used as weapons, charging into the chaos in the seconds and minutes after the attacks to save as many lives as possible, and conducting rescue and recovery efforts in the hours and days that followed. Today, the American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE) remembers all of those who perished in the horrific terrorist attacks and honors the survivors of that tragic day.  

Since 9/11, AFGE members continue to work on the frontlines to ensure safety for the American people. In spite of savage budget cuts, AFGE members at the Department of Defense continue to support our military’s mission; AFGE border patrol agents secure our borders; and AFGE Transportation Security Officers safeguard our air travel.  

“Our hearts are with the victims of the attacks on September 11, 2001. AFGE members are committed to protecting this country and ensuring that nothing like this ever happens again,” said AFGE National President J. David Cox Sr.

 

AFGE Receives LEED Certification for HQ Renovation

The American Federation of Government Employees today received its official Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification from the U.S. Green Building Council.

AFGE received LEED Gold status for renovations to the 10th floor of the headquarters building in Washington, D.C. The renovated floor features energy efficient technology and equipment and LED lighting to allow for significantly more natural light. The renovations were made without using harmful or noxious plastics or solvent odors, and 100% air quality testing was done prior to move-in.

AFGE is pursuing LEED certification as it renovates all of the floors it occupies in the building.

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AFGE hopes its new energy-saving initiatives will lead to lower operating costs, a healthier staff, increased productivity and other incentives, AFGE National President J. David Cox Sr. said.

We have made a commitment to be environmentally and fiscally responsible. We are looking for ways to make our older facility more modern.

A representative from the U.S. Green Building Council presented President Cox with the LEED plaque. Also on hand were representatives from E Construction Group, Ward Consultants, Green Capital Advisers and the District of Columbia Government.

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Prior to the awards ceremony, E Construction Group treated AFGE headquarters staff to a breakfast of made-to-order omelettes and fresh fruit.

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AFGE Member Testifies about the Impact of Sequestration and Furloughs

AFGE member Jennifer Cari-Green testifies about the impact of furloughs at the Senate Budget Committee hearing.

AFGE member Jennifer Cari-Green testifies about the impact of furloughs at the Senate Budget Committee hearing.

Last week, AFGE DoD Local 1502 member Jennifer-Cari Green testified about the impact of sequestration and furloughs at the Senate Budget Committee hearing. Jennifer is a single mother, college student, and secretary at the Madigan Army Medical Center. She discussed how being furloughed has made both her personal and professional life more challenging. “It is extremely difficult to come to work, and do justice to this job, to care for our patients with the level of compassion, patience, concern and courtesy they deserve when you know you don’t even have enough money to buy the bare necessities as a working adult. To know that all your efforts at being a hardworking, self-reliant, and dependable woman and mother are for naught,” says Jennifer.

Click here to see the video of Jennifer’s testimony. It begins at the 51:29 mark.

Click here to see photos from the testimony.

Below are the links to news articles featuring Jennifer’s testimony.

The News Tribune

The Fiscal Times

Family Security Matters

Army Times

Free Beacon

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AFGE Granted First Ever Department of Justice Sexual Harassment Class Action Suit

Bureau of Prisons Local 506 was successfully granted the first ever class action sexual harassment case at the Department of Justice. More than 360 women at the Coleman Federal Prison in Florida were subjected to daily harassment by male prisoners at the facility and management failed to take action. This is a huge victory for not only AFGE but for the entire labor movement.

Source: http://www.wftv.com/videos/news/alleged-cover-ups-at-prison/v3qgs/

Click here to read more about the case from The Miami Herald.

AFGE member shares furlough story on “Inside Government”

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Listen Now! 

Tune in now to AFGE’s “Inside Government” as a union member speaks out on the impact of being furloughed. The show, which originally aired on Friday, May 24, is now available on demand.

AFGE Environmental Protection Agency Local 704 member Elizabeth Lytle, a cancer survivor and disabled veteran, described her experiences as a federal employee going through sequestration, including the financial and emotional toll of mandatory furloughs.

But first, Maryland Citizens Health Initiative President Vincent DeMarco discussed the latest on Maryland’s implementation of the Affordable Care Act and benefits set to take effect in 2014.

Lastly, Bill Fletcher Jr., author of “They’re Bankrupting Us!: And 20 Other Myths about Unions,” dispelled myths about unions and the labor movement.

Listen LIVE on Fridays at 10 a.m. on 1500 AM WFED in the D.C. area or online at FederalNewsRadio.com.

For more information, please visit InsideGovernmentRadio.com.

Help Promote USDA’s Summer Free Lunch Program

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) provides free or reduced price lunches to 22 million children during the school year through the National School Lunch Program (NSLP). In the summer, the program reimburses organizations that serve children meals at feeding sites. Churches, schools, camps, recreation centers, playgrounds, and parks in neighborhoods with high percentages of low income families can provide summer meals to children.

USDA wants AFGE’s help in spreading the word about NSLP throughout your communities. The goal is to help make a positive impact on the lives of underprivileged children by promoting participation in the Summer Meals program and making the community aware of its benefits.

To learn more about USDA’s Summer Food Service Program and how you can help publicize it to your community, please visit http://www.afge.org/index.cfm?contentID=3304.

Celebrating National Nurses Week 2013

Originally posted on AFGE Members Tell Their Stories:

AFGE honors and recognizes the commitment of federal nurses in providing world-class healthcare. Below is a slide show highlighting some of our AFGE federal nurses.

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Have You Been Affected by Furloughs? We Want to Hear From You!

More than 700,000 federal government employees will experience up to a 20 percent pay cut due to forced furloughs. Are you an AFGE member affected by furloughs?  We want to hear from you about how furloughs are affecting your family, your life, and your community. Please click here to share your story with us and have your voices heard. If you would like to submit a photo with you entry please email it to afgecommsquad@gmail.com.

Please be sure to include your name, location, the federal agency you work for and your AFGE local number. So many of our members have shared their experiences and we want to hear from YOU!

Listen now! MSNBC’s Chris Hayes discusses workplace safety on “Inside Government”

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Listen Now!

 Tune in now to AFGE’s “Inside Government” for a discussion on workplace safety. The show, which originally aired on Friday, April 26, is now available on demand.

Chris Hayes, host of MSNBC’s “All In with Chris Hayes,” looked back on the Boston Marathon bombings and Texas fertilizer plant explosion to highlight the value of public employees and workplace safety.

GovLoop Community Engagement Director Andrew Krzmarzick then provided tips for furloughed federal employees facing a work backlog and highlighted the benefits of government agencies using social media.

Greg Brooks, president of AFGE’s Federal Aviation Administration Local 2282, discussed the latest developments on furloughs at the FAA. Brooks also addressed the short- and long-term consequences of sequestration, including the impact on national security.

AFGE Small Business Administration Council 228 President Elaine Powell-Belnavis then discussed the union’s labor contract agreement with SBA, which covers 2,000 federal employees and provides a range of benefits from an updated awards program to an expedited arbitration process.

Listen LIVE on Fridays at 10 a.m. on 1500 AM WFED in the D.C. area or online at FederalNewsRadio.com.

For more information, please visit InsideGovernmentRadio.com.

AFGE NATIONAL PRESIDENT RECOGNIZED BY YITZHAK RABIN CENTER

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Left to right: AFGE District 11 NVP Gerald Swanke; District 5 NVP Everette Kelley; NST Eugene Hudson Jr.; Women’s and Fair Practices NVP Augusta Thomas; National Pres. J. David Cox, Sr.; District 10 NVP Roy Flores; District 7 NVP Arnold Scott; and Dalia Rabin-Pelossof.

An executive conference room was dedicated today at the Yitzhak Rabin Center in Tel Aviv, Israel, as part of the tribute to American Federation of Government Employees National President J. David Cox Sr., recipient of the 2012 Public Service Award from the American Friends of the Yitzhak Rabin Center. The Center is the official memorial to Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, who pursued public service through his country’s Labor Party. Rabin, winner of the 1994 Nobel Peace Prize (along with Shimon Peres and Yasser Arafat), dedicated his life to the pursuit of peace, justice, and public service. Yitzhak Rabin was slain by an assassin in 1995, but his efforts to bring together people of disparate backgrounds to work for peace and social progress continue through the work of the Center.

The AFGE delegation met with Israeli labor leaders and members who work in various government agencies, including the Tel Hashomer hospital where many wounded soldiers are treated by medical personnel represented by AFGE’s Israeli counterpart, the International Union of Government Employees. The delegation also visited an Air Force base to meet with local union representatives to discuss their working conditions, union rights and agency missions. The unions pledged continued future contacts and to work in solidarity to improve the voice of workers in their respective countries.

At the dedication ceremony, Cox remarked:

“The message of the AFL-CIO is that ‘work connects us all.’ That fundamental truth is why the labor movement has been the vehicle for human progress all through history. People differ in terms of religion, belief, gender, age, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, language, and ability – but when we join together in a union, none of that matters. We become brothers and sisters in the struggle for dignity on the job and a better life for everybody.

“The struggle for peace is really the same as labor’s struggle,” continued Cox. “My hope and prayer is that this space will be a place where people from all backgrounds will come together and find common ground, working for labor solidarity, peace, and a better life for all peoples.”

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