Countdown to Possible Shutdown

Countdown to Possible Shutdown

On January 25th Congress passed and the President signed a bill to end the government shutdown through February 15, giving Congress three more weeks to reach a deal on border security.  Bipartisan congressional opposition to the President’s demand for a physical border wall remains constant. Yet, despite signs of bipartisan progress in House and Senate negotiations on viable alternatives, President Trump has deemed these talks “a waste of time.”   

As a possible  alternative to a shutdown, the President now suggests the most extreme and constitutionally dubious step of declaring a “national emergency” at the southern border, allowing him to bypass the need for congressional approval to reallocate funds for his wall.  This unprecedented approach also faces strong congressional opposition, as well as serious legal challenges.  There is little doubt that a new government shutdown within the next two weeks remains a very real and serious threat.

Working with the American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE), we have launched a new countdown website called www.shutdownticker.com where members and the public can contact members of Congress and tell them they do not want another government shutdown. I encourage you to share this website with your members, as well as the sharable social media graphics on the site.

If you have any questions about the potential shutdown, please do not hesitate to contact Scott Frey at sfrey@afscme.org. If you have questions about the website or social media campaign, please contact Blaine Rummel at brummel@afscme.org.

Lee A. Saunders, President, AFSCME

PA Public Employee Pension Forfeiture Bill

State Senator John DiSanto will soon reintroduce SB113, legislation to strengthen the Public Employee Pension Forfeiture Act to require the forfeiture of pension benefits for public employees that are convicted or plead guilty or no contest to any job-related felony offense. 

This legislation closes a loophole that allowed convicted former state Sen. Robert Mellow to have his $245,000 a year pension restored despite a guilty plea and serving prison time on federal conspiracy charges–which currently is regarded as a non-pension forfeiture crime. This is just one of many examples of public officials betraying the citizens and forcing taxpayers to pick up the tab. 

Anti Union Scam Alert

Anti Union Scam Alert

By Lee Saunders, President, AFSCME

Have you been contacted by a group called the Freedom Foundation?

Don’t be confused by their name — they’re interested in crushing your freedom, not defending it. They’re one of the anti-worker groups (funded by billionaires like the Koch brothers) spending tens of millions of dollars contacting us and trying to trick us into quitting our unions.

Have you heard from them? We want to know. Click here and let us know what you’ve experienced, so we can track these anti-union groups and their dirty tricks.

They might be targeting you online with ads on your computer. They might be emailing you, sending you mail, or calling you on the phone. They might even have shown up at your door.

They could be calling themselves by a different name — like “The Buckeye Institute,” “The Illinois Policy Center,” “Liberty Justice Center,” “Mackinac Center for Public Policy,” or the “Commonwealth Foundation.”

No matter what misleading name they picked for themselves, their agenda is the same: Trick AFSCME members into leaving our union — so working families lose our seat at the table, and the same corporate fat cats funding these attacks grow richer and richer.

To fight back against their propaganda, we need to know what they’re up to. That’s where you come in:

Click here to fill out our “scam tracker” form and report any contact you’ve received from these anti-union groups.

Thanks for helping us keep an eye on these con artists.