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  • Tuesday, March 7, 2006 Remarks for Immigration Rally on Capitol Steps by Change to Win Chair Anna Burger

    March 7, 2006

    I am so proud to stand here with you today so together we can send a loud and clear message to Congress to get our immigration laws fixed. Now!

    When do we need them fixed? NOW!

    Our union was founded by immigrant workers and we remain united by the belief that everyone who works hard in America should have a good job with a paycheck that supports a family, affordable health care, and a retirement with dignity.

    We believe in social and economic justice. We believe that what matters is the contribution that every worker makes, not what country you are from.

    Immigrant workers do some of the most important jobs in this country -- caring for our elderly and children, teaching our children, cleaning our office buildings and hospitals, and other service jobs.

    We all know too well that our broken immigration system allows employers to exploit undocumented workers and drive down pay and benefits for all workers in this country.

    Unfortunately, instead of finding sound solutions, some politicians like Rep. Sensenbrenner want to blame hardworking, taxpaying immigrants for every problem under the sun.

    Some politicians are trying to turn all of us into criminals. They are trying to divide us, to scare us -- they are even trying to waste billions of dollars to build a 700 mile wall!

    America needs real solutions to fix our broken immigration system.

    We applaud Senators McCain and Kennedy for introducing comprehensive reform. It's time for the Senate to follow their lead.

    Because America needs solutions that reward and value all work in this country. Solutions that are fair to all workers. Solutions that mean a better future for all of us.

    America can't afford to wait. We need a solution now.

    When do we need it? NOW!

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  • Monday, March 6, 2006 Change to Win Hires New Issues Campaign Director

    Frank Clemente, Former Director of Congress Watch, Joins New Labor Federation To Build an America that Works for Everyone

    Washington, D.C. - Change to Win labor federation executive director Greg Tarpinian today announced that Frank Clemente, director of Public Citizen's Congress Watch since 1996, has joined the staff of Change to Win as its issues campaign director. In that capacity, Clemente will help build long-range campaigns on health care reform, retirement security, and other key issues of concern to working families.

    At Public Citizen, Clemente served as chief strategist for multi-faceted legislative campaigns on campaign finance and lobbying reform, health care issues, regulatory safety issues, and tort "reform." Under his leadership, Public Citizen developed a major investigative research capacity and produced more than 100 investigative and policy reports.

    Among Clemente's previous jobs, he served as senior policy advisor to the U.S. House Government Reform Committee (formerly the Committee on Government Operations) under chairman John Conyers, Jr., and as issues director for the 1988 presidential campaign of Jesse Jackson. He is also the editor of Keep Hope Alive: Jesse Jackson's 1988 Presidential Campaign, a 256-page book of speeches, position papers and political analysis.

    Tarpinian said "We are excited to have someone of Frank's experience and commitment to social and economic justice. He brings tremendous capacity to help achieve our goals of renewing hope, opportunity, and prosperity for American workers and their families."

    Contact:
    Carole Florman, 202.721.6045 direct or 202.262.1513 mobile

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  • Wednesday, March 1, 2006 Immigration Letter from Anna Burger to Senators Arlen Specter and Patrick Leahy


    Immigration Letter from Anna Burger to Senators Arlen Specter and Patrick Leahy- PDF file

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  • Wednesday, March 1, 2006 Change to Win Unions Target Rep. Henry Cuellar for Anti-Worker Record

    Ads are first effort by new labor federation to hold politicians accountable

    WASHINGTON, DC - Six of the union affiliates of the Change to Win labor federation (CtW) have launched a radio ad campaign targeting Texas Congressman Henry Cuellar (D-TX-28) for a voting record that favors millionaires and big corporations over hard working Americans.

    The ads, which will air in Laredo and San Antonio in both English and Spanish, are the first joint effort of the unions belonging to the Change to Win federation to hold politicians accountable for positions that affect working families.

    The Cuellar ads state "tell me who you are with and I'll tell you who you are," and make the case that Cuéller, with his record of support for President Bush and Tom DeLay is looking out for the wealthy rather than the working families of his district.

    "Change to Win unions have launched this campaign as part of our effort to hold elected officials from both parties accountable to the needs of hard- working Americans," said Anna Burger, Chair of Change to Win. "Rep. Cuellar has worked to privatize social security, supported trade agreements like CAFTA that send good jobs overseas, and voted for tax breaks for millionaires, while most working families are just struggling to make ends meet."

    Different versions of the ads, paid for by the United Food and Commercial Workers, the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, the Laborers' International Union of North America, the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, UNITE HERE!, the Service Employees International Union, and the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America began airing on February 28 and will air through March 6.

    The text of the ad follows. An audio version is available by contacting Carole Florman at 202-721-6045.

    CHANGE TO WIN
    R206x27 "Tell Me SEIU"
    :60

    AS RECORDED

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  • Wednesday, March 1, 2006 Change to Win Unions Mobilize at More than 100 Hotels in Support of Hotel Workers Rising Campaign

    Effort is Part of First Federation-wide Effort to Make Work Pay

    Washington, DC - Hundreds of room attendants, carpenters, laborers, Teamsters, janitors, health workers and other members of the seven Change to Win unions, are taking to the streets and sidewalks of our nation this week to tell the biggest hotel chains that it's time to make hard work pay.

    Union members are leafleting outside more than 100 non-union Hilton and Starwood properties in 60 cities, to let guests know that the hardworking people who keep these luxury hotels running are working for poverty wages, and in many cases, without benefits.

    The mobilization is part of the Hotel Workers Rising Campaign, which was launched February 15-18 in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Chicago and New York. The campaign has now moved across North America and will continue indefinitely.

    "We know that when six million voices are raised together to send a message -- that message will be heard," said Anna Burger, Chair of Change to Win. "The members of all of the Change to Win unions have come together to support the hardworking men and women in the hotel industry and we will not rest until they receive the living wages and basic benefits they deserve."

    There are currently 1.3 million workers in the hotel industry, which is growing rapidly and is more profitable than ever. Still, the median hourly wage for a hotel housekeeper is $8.17. Hotel companies such as Starwood and Hilton are present in every major city, and employ a significant percentage of the full service hotel workers in the U.S. Yet wages for the same jobs vary wildly from city to city, and workers find themselves fighting to keep important benefits like health care and retirement plans, as well as their right to organize a union.

    Contact:
    Carole Florman, 202.721.6045 direct or 202.262.1513 mobile

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