Author Archives: Joe Doc

Johnny Doc reelected to lead Building Trades

– John  Dougherty, leader of the politically-connected electricians union, was reelected Wednesday to a four-year term as head the Philadelphia Building Trades Council, an association of unions involved in construction. There had been some rumblings that his leadership would be challenged, but no challenge materialized. Dougherty, who holds the title of business manager of the Council, was reelected by acclamation.

Also reelected was his entire slate, which included Wayne Miller, president of the Building Trades Council, and Patrick Eiding, secretary-treasurer of the Council. All three men have other jobs — Dougherty, sometimes known as “Johnny Doc,” is business manager of Local 98 of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers; Miller is business manager of Local 692 of Sprinkler Fitters union, and Eiding leads the Philadelphia AFL-CIO.

Dougherty took over the leadership of the council on Dec. 1, 2015, after Patrick Gillespie, the council’s former leader, announced his retirement and shepherded Dougherty into the top spot. His supporters credit Dougherty with creating a hassle-free labor situation at the Democratic National Convention last summer and with raising the profile of the city’s construction workers.

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Happy Memorial Day 2017 In Memory of Those Who Made The Ultimate Sacrifice

– On this Memorial Day 2017, as we gather to celebrate the start of the summer season with family and friends, let us always remember the reason why we are celebrating and pay homage to those members of our U.S. Armed Forces who gave all so that we may experience the freedoms that we enjoy everyday as Americans.

Let us also remember those military families who have watched their loved ones go off to war only to never return and let them know that their loss is also our loss and they too will never be forgotten!

It Is Our Duty To Remember!

In Solidarity!


Union: Up to 40K walking off the job at AT&T this weekend

From The Associated Press

– The Communications Workers of America union says that up to 40,000 AT&T workers have started walking off the job over contract fights with the phone company. They’ll return to work Monday.

 That includes 21,000 workers on the wireless side of the company, which the union says raises the prospect that some cellphone stores could be closed this weekend in Washington, D.C., or one of the 36 states affected. Wireless workers want wage increases that cover higher health care costs, better scheduling and promises from the company to not cut jobs.

Some 17,000 other potential protesters come from AT&T’s home phone, internet and cable division in California, Nevada and Connecticut. Another 2,000 are DirecTV workers in California and Nevada.

Dallas-based AT&T says it has a contingency workforce” ready in preparation for the walkouts.

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41 million people deserve a raise – The Fight For $15

By David Cooper

– In the eight years since the federal minimum wage was last raised, the buying power of a minimum-wage paycheck has fallen 10 percent due to inflation — and this erosion is not even half of the decline in the value that has taken place since the late 1960s.

Despite a much richer economy and a more educated, more productive workforce, minimum-wage workers today are paid roughly 25 percent less per hour than their counterparts almost 50 years ago.

In a recent paper, I examined the effect of the Raise the Wage Act of 2017, a bill that would gradually raise the federal minimum wage to $15 by 2024, the equivalent of $12.50 in today’s dollars.

The proposal would directly lift the wages of 22.5 million workers. On average, these low-wage workers would receive a $3.10 increase in their hourly wage, in today’s dollars. For a directly affected worker who works all year, this equals a $5,100 increase in annual wage income, a raise of 31.3 percent. Meanwhile, an additional 19 million workers earning more than $15 would also see their wages increase from a spillover effect as employers adjusted their pay scales to the increase. A total of 41.5 million workers would benefit from this proposal, which is almost 30 percent of the workforce.

Contrary to common misperceptions about low-wage workers, the people who would benefit from such an increase are not just teenagers working in part-time jobs. Ninety percent of workers who would get a raise if the minimum wage were increased to $15 in 2024 are age 20 or older. The average worker who would be affected is 36 years old, and 70 percent are at least 25 years old. The majority of workers work full time, and more than a quarter have children.

Workers of color and women would disproportionately benefit from raising the minimum wage to $15 by 2024, as 40 percent of black workers and one-third of Hispanic workers would receive an increase in pay. A majority of the workers who would be affected are women (55.6 percent). More than 19 million children — nearly a quarter of all children in the United States — would benefit from an increase in their parents’ pay.

Targeting a national $15 per hour minimum wage by 2024 is a bold proposal, but policymakers must be bold — otherwise they will never overcome the many decades when the minimum wage rose modestly or not at all, and a minimum wage job will never provide workers with a decent income.

If we raised it to $15 by 2024, for the first time ever, the minimum wage would no longer be a poverty wage and tens of millions of workers — mostly adults who on average provide more than 60 percent of their family’s income — would have more money to support themselves and spend in their local communities.

David Cooper is a senior economic analyst at the Economic Policy Institute. He wrote this for

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