*This editorial was submitted by the Central New Mexico Labor Council
Almost everyone has felt unheard or powerless as an employee, at some point or another – perhaps that very thing has happened the last couple of years as we’ve felt the pandemic come and go.
Thankfully, workers in Albuquerque have rights and resources available in their workplaces become unsafe or unsympathetic to their needs. That’s because workers’ rights advocates, including your labor unions, have a long history of working with the city council to enshrine those protections in law. But while local labor leaders continue working to improve working conditions, those wins cannot be taken for granted.
In this year’s runoff election, voters in two city council districts have an important decision to make – between the long-standing Albuquerque value that there is dignity in a hard day’s work and policies that would put workers’ well-being ahead of corporate interests.
Albuquerque: the leadership of local labor unions wants you to know what is at stake in this runoff election – you have the opportunity to add two more advocates for working families to the city council.
Tammy Fiebelkorn and Rob Grilley both have opponents who have taken small fortunes from the big corporate interests which aim to control them and the city council. Why might the bosses not want Tammy and Rob on the city council? It’s because both candidates support policies that put workers’ interests first.
Especially coming out of the pandemic, we need a city government that will help rebuild the middle class. Now is our moment to make that very thing happen. Tammy and Rob support programs that help working-class people gain highly employable skills that are always in demand. From a legislative perspective, both candidates are chomping at the bit to revamp the pipeline from apprenticeship to career – our city council should renew relationships with highly successful private contractors to provide on-the-job training, competitive wages, a pension, and a medical plan.
Tammy’s and Rob’s opponents are supported by big boss corporate interests that oppose pro-worker policies such as a higher minimum wage. Many of their donors have histories supporting union-busting activities. Without Tammy and Rob on the city council, we will continue living in a city that lacks a prepared workforce.
Do you want to learn a trade and start a pathway to a well-paying, secure job? Are you a business owner finding it difficult to fill positions? Tammy and Rob can help implement policies that will train a new workforce for a new economy. One where your graduating children can realize a viable future for themselves. We must rebuild a system that improves the workforce and ensures fairness in collective bargaining agreements.
We know that Tammy and Rob will go to work on day one, advocating for everyday working people because doing so is good business and sound policy.
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