Local 108 RWDSU-UFCW Endorses Senator Frank Lautenberg in his Democratic Primary Battle to Keep his U.S. Senate Seat
At their May 14, 2008 meeting in Maplewood, New Jersey, the Executive Board of Local 108 RWDSU voted unanimously to endorse Senator Frank R Lautenberg in the June Primary and in the general election in November. Local 108 President Charles N, Hall, Jr. brought up the matter and the Board members were asked to consider the endorsement. A lively discussion followed during which all spoke in support of Senator Lautenberg. The Board members cited his strong record of voting with labor for working families, his loyalty to the Democratic Party (returning from retirement to help Democrats keep the seat) and his strong support of the Employee Free Choice Act. A motion then passed unanimously in favor of the Lautenberg endorsement.
President Charles N. Hall, Jr. speaking after the endorsement said “Local 108 is proud to stand with our friend and New Jersey’s Senator Frank R. Lautenberg in his bid for reelection. He record shows he possesses the leadership skills necessary to represent New Jersey’s working families in these difficult times.” Further citing his strong Labor record, and opposition to the war in Iraq, President Hall continued “We will work for Senator Lautenberg by contacting our members to urge them to vote in the June 3rd Primary. We will be there for Senator Lautenberg, because he is there for us.”
PLEASE NOTE: ON MONDAY APRIL 7, 2008 THE NEW JERSEY LEGISLATURE GAVE FINAL APPROVAL TO THE PAID FAMILY LEAVE BILL. GOVERNOR CORZINE HAS PROMISED TO SIGN THE BILL INTO LAW. PAID FAMILY LEAVE WILL BECOME EFFECTIVE IN JULY 2009. MORE DETAIL TO FOLLOW.
On Monday March 3rd more than a dozen members and staff from Local 108 converged on New Jersey's State Capital Trenton to participate in a joint Labor/Time to Care/New Jersey Citizen Action Lobby Day. The purpose of the intense Lobbying effort was to pass Paid Family Leave Insurance in the State Senate.
The members and staff met with several State Senators, and the watched from the State Gallery as the Senate debated the bill. The Family Leave Insurance bill passed mostly along party lines by a vote of 23 - 15. (Twenty one votes are needed for passage.)
Local 108 president Charles N. Hall Jr. expressed pride that the Local 108 delegation was the largest of any union. President Hall said “Paid family leave is a great idea whose time has come. Local 108 members came out to support this valuable new program because otherwise the State Senators hear from lobbyists and businesses, not the people that really matter, our members and the working families."
Family Leave Insurance will allow workers to take up to six weeks paid leave to care for a newborn or sick relative. Unpaid Leave is already available to most workers, but few can afford to take it. Under the new law, recipients will be entitled to collect up to 2/3 of their salary (up to $524 per week) from a state insurance fund paid for by the employee. The worker contribution to the fund will be up to .64 cents per week. It will take effect in 2009.
On March 13th Family Leave Insurance passed in New Jersey State Assembly by a 46-30 vote. It was amended in the Assembly and must now go to the Senate for a final vote. New Jersey's Governor Corzine has expressed his support.
To learn more about this landmark legislation and find out what you can do to help pass Family Leave Insurance in New Jersey, visit the New Jersey Citizen Action website: newjerseycitizenaction.org
On Sunday December 16th representatives from Local 108 RWDSU joined with representatives from other unions of the New Jersey Passaic Central Labor Council to help make the holiday season a little brighter for poor families and their kids in Paterson New Jersey.
Gathered at St. Gerrard's Church in Paterson the families received lunch and then were paid a visit from Santa and then each received gifts of toys for the children. Local 108 representatives Patricia Gonzalez and Ira Stern volunteered to help serve and make the day go smoothly. Local 108 donated the bags of candy given out to the children. More than 100 children attended the event.