Press Room

Press releases and statements from the Michigan AFL-CIO.

Bieber Hails Gilchrist as Whitmer Running Mate

Lansing- Ron Bieber, President of the Michigan AFL-CIO released the following statement regarding Democratic Gubernatorial nominee Gretchen Whitmer choosing Garlin Gilchrist II as her running mate:

“Garlin Gilchrist is an excellent choice to join Whitmer on a ticket that will fight for the freedoms of working families. Gilchrist’s time working for the city of Detroit was spent using technology to build a more transparent government, a true benefit to all citizens. His platform for city clerk focused on the essential issue of making voting more accessible, something all levels of government should strive for. Gilchrist will further excite voters who are ready for a new direction in Lansing. The Whitmer/Gilchrist team will get to work and get things done for the working people of Michigan.”

Reaction to Lyons as GOP Lt. Gov. Choice

Lansing- Ron Bieber, President of the Michigan AFL-CIO released the following statement in reaction to Republican Gubernatorial nominee Bill Schuette choosing Kent County Clerk Lisa Lyons as his running mate:

“The Schuette-Lyons ticket sounds like the DeVos dream team for rigging the rules in favor of wealthy corporate special interests. Lisa Lyons spent her time in Lansing attacking the freedoms of working people and their families. She voted to give a massive tax break to corporations and balanced the budget by taxing the pensions of hard working seniors and cutting hundreds of millions of dollars in education funding. She voted for the disastrous right-to-work law which undermines our ability to protect the things we need to sustain our families. Her comparison of teachers to hogs needing to be slaughtered shows she doesn’t value the experience of educators in our classrooms. Lisa Lyons has shown us time and time again where her loyalties lie, and it’s not with the working folks of Michigan.”

Kavanaugh Nomination Troubling for Working Families

LANSING – The Michigan AFL-CIO released the following statement from President Ron Bieber regarding the nomination of Judge Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court:

“Judge Kavanaugh has a record of siding with the interests of corporations and employers and siding against the interests of working people and their families. The opinions that have been written by Judge Kavanaugh would undermine the freedoms of working men and women, make the work place less safe and make it harder to earn a fair wage to sustain a family. His nomination comes at a time when wealthy corporate interests continue to attack the freedoms of working people to further rig the rules in favor of the rich and powerful. Now more than ever, it’s important for working people to exercise their freedom to stand together to protect what our families need to build a better Michigan and a better America.

“Working families need a better deal and we need a government that works for everyone in all three branches. We are determined to make our voices heard and to elect leaders who have our back. The Senate should reject this nomination and demand a justice who has a record of supporting the rights of working people.”

Amid increased organizing and rising support for unions, Supreme Court rigs rules against working people

LANSING – The Michigan AFL-CIO issued the following statement today from President Ron Bieber on the Supreme Court decision on Janus v. AFSCME 31.  

“As billionaires and corporate special interests seek to further rig our economy against working people across the country, this is the latest attempt to take away our rights to join together in unions.  It is a shame that these special interests have manipulated the Supreme Court to further their harmful agenda.

This decision comes at a point in time when thousands of Michigan workers are recommitting to join unions and are launching new organizing drives, and as support for labor unions has risen to its highest level in years.  Indeed, Michigan added 52,000 new union members in 2017– the biggest annual jump in union membership in Michigan in over a decade. Even more importantly, it means there are now more union members in Michigan than there were in 2012 — the year Gov. Rick Snyder signed right-to-work legislation into law.

So we have faced these attacks before and we have weathered the storm well.  The labor movement remains a strong and vibrant force for working people and will continue fighting to sustain our families, improve our workplaces and make our communities stronger regardless of the court’s ruling.”

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