From the Blog
Retirees Build on Success, Look to Protect Retirement Security
More than 100 retirees gathered for the Alliance for Retired Americans Legislative Conference and the Annual AFSCME Retiree Council meeting in the nation’s capital this week, lobbying lawmakers to protect Social Security, Medicare and public pensions.
Texas Pension Board Finds Its Voice for Workers
After months of intense lobbying by AFSCME members, the Texas Legislature has finally put the Employees Retirement System (ERS) on a path to actuarial soundness – without cutting employee take-home pay or retirement benefits.
Illinois Supreme Court Rules Pension Cuts Unconstitutional
The Illinois Supreme Court unanimously ruled that a $105 billion pension change affecting half a million active and retired public employees is unconstitutional.
‘Thank You for Breaking the Law, Governor Christie’
Nearly 1,000 New Jersey residents, including more than 100 members of AFSCME, had a pointed message for Gov. Chris Christie after he called on public employees to send him a thank you note for paying into the state pension system.
The Man Who Out-Burns Mr. Burns
John Arnold is a former Enron executive and Texas hedge fund billionaire who is trying to destroy public pensions across the nation.
Low Savings Mean Retirement Insecurity
Pensions have all but vanished in most workplaces, replaced (if at all) by 401(k)-style savings plans that leave whatever dollars that are put aside for the long haul to the wild gyrations of the stock market.
AFSCME Council 8 Finds Fix for Cincy Pensions
The Cincinnati Retirement System’s seven-year financial roller-coaster ride finally came to an end. Thanks to proposals by AFSCME Council 8, an agreement was reached that protects current and future retirees.
Fighting to Protect Pensions in Indiana
231 public service workers – bus drivers, library workers, health care workers and others — attended a Lobby Day at the Indiana Statehouse to talk to their legislators about the bills affecting their retirements.
Court Ruling Backs City on Promise to Retirees
Public workers and retirees in Stockton, California, scored a major victory last week when a judge approved the city’s plan to emerge from bankruptcy without making cuts to workers’ pensions.
Going Door to Door in Fight for Right to Retire with Dignity
Phoenix city workers’ pensions hang in the balance this November as a right-wing group pushes a ballot measure that would replace secure retirement plans with 401(k)s.
San Jose Cuts Endanger Public Safety
Cutting the pay and pensions of city employees has become a public safety issue for one of California’s largest cities.
Our Election Work Starts Now!
Critical races put AFSCME on the frontlines – register, vote, volunteer.
Shhh! Don’t Make the Rich Guy Feel Uncomfortable
Rhode Island residents want to know how much hedge fund managers are making off state pension fund deals signed by State Treasurer Gina Raimondo.
Court Backs Illinois Retirees on Health Care
In a major blow to a state plan that would have imposed new costs on retired state workers, the Illinois Supreme Court has ruled that the health benefits included in pension packages are protected under state law.
AFSCME Retirees Attend ARA Convention in Las Vegas
AFSCME Pres. Lee Saunders was a featured speaker at the event.
New Data Show Real Truth About Public Pensions
A new Quarterly Survey shows many public pensions are in a healthy position and others are on the mend.
Detroit Retirees Rally against Cuts to Pension Benefits
The city’s proposal would cut pension checks by up to 34 percent.
Right-Wing PACs Take Aim at Phoenix Workers’ Retirement Security
A ballot measure in the fall would ask voters to covert the city’s pension plan into a risky 401(k) scheme.
Defending Our Retirement Security
I’m not looking for anyone’s pity. Nor am I saying I deserve a secure retirement more than anyone else. I’m just looking to set the record straight.
AFSCME Retiree Makes Big Impact through PEOPLE
Retiree Dennis Patrick sends $500 check to AFSCME’s political action program.
Snyder to Detroit’s Retirees: Survive on One-Third Less
Plan filed today in bankruptcy court leaves the city’s retirees to fend for themselves.
AFSCME and Allies Seek to Stop Pension Theft in Illinois
A new law raises the retirement age and cuts cost-of-living increases.
Indiana Union Members Protect Retirement Security, Win Fight Against Corporate Welfare
Legislators voted unanimously against pension outsourcing that would pack corporate coffers with unnecessary fees
Pension Theft Averted in San Jose Court Ruling
Thanks to a recent court ruling, more than 1,000 AFSCME members in San Jose, Calif., can rest assured their pensions aren’t going anywhere. Will other cities take the hint?
Rhode Island AFSCME Members Demand Investigation into State Treasurer Gina Raimondo’s Pension Practices
A new report released by Council 94 raises troubling questions about investment decisions.
Michigan Governor Takes Stand in Detroit Trial, Dodges Questions
AFSCME made efforts to meet with Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr before the bankruptcy filing.
Secretive Koch Networks Fined $1 Million for Illegal Campaign Contributions
“Dark money” spent to undermine unions’ political strength and block revenue hike in California.
New Census Figures Confirm Unions Strengthen Middle Class
Families in union-strong states receive a higher share of state income.
The potential bankruptcy in Detroit is not solely a Detroit crisis; it is an American crisis.
Lawmakers ‘Loot’ Public Pension Funds, Then Blame Retirees for Underfunding
Rolling Stone’s Matt Taibbi writes searing indictment: ‘Looting the Pension Funds.’
AFSCME Members Fighting to Maintain Pension and Protect Public Against Tea Party Ballot Measure
Retirement security at risk for 7,500 Cincinnati workers if tea party has its way
When Trust Turns to Rust in the Motor City
In Rick Snyder's Michigan, there's no money to make good on the pensions seniors in Detroit worked a lifetime to earn, but there's always a few hundred million available for a billionaire who wants an extravagant new sports arena.
Saunders on MSNBC: Don’t Scapegoat Detroit Workers
President Lee Saunders appeared on MSNBC yesterday to denounce attacks against Detroit workers and retirees.
Got Questions About the Detroit Financial Crisis? We’ve Got Answers.
AFSCME’s Director of Collective Bargaining Steve Kreisberg explains what’s happening in the Motor City
Calls Echo for Michigan Governor Snyder to Abide by State Constitution
AFL-CIO, Washington Post, New Yorker: Wrong to blame hard-working Detroit women and men.
Detroit Bankruptcy Scheme Moves Forward, AFSCME Will Fight for Working People
Scheme to use bankruptcy to seize employees’ and retirees’ life savings must be stopped.
AFSCME TV Showcases Next Wavers Taking it to the Streets in Detroit
Conference goers stage demonstration against governor's anti-worker agenda
The Detroit Bankruptcy Filing
A bankruptcy would result in profound hardship for workers, retirees and their families.
Lawsuit Filed to Keep Detroit Out of Bankruptcy
Public service workers ask court to rule Michigan’s Emergency Manager law violates the state’s constitution.
Same Class Warfare, New Class Warriors
Wealthy politicians and “philanthropists” attack pension benefits for retired librarians, teachers, and street crew workers.
Your Story Can Make a Difference
The work you do every day makes a difference. So do your stories. Share your story at www.afscme.org/story.
Protecting Retirement Security through a Pension
City of Little Rock, Ark., is switching to a pension system to protect retirees.
Register Now for Dynamic Legislative Conference
Want to raise your voice for workers? Come to Washington, DC, and do just that.
Wall Street Journal Duo: You’re Not Working Hard Enough
Right-wing bloggers Biggs and Richwine ignore data that show lay-offs cut public services.
We Won in San Diego
AFSCME-endorsed mayoral candidate Bob Filner prevailed over Carl DeMaio, an anti-worker city councilman.
AFSCME’s ‘Pat Quinn Truth Squad’ Is on the March in Illinois
Union spreads message that governor’s proposed budget cuts will devastate critical services.
The Referees Are Fighting for All of Us
Billionaire team owners are trying to take the professional NFL officials’ pensions away.
Warren to Christie: Not So Fast
Senate candidate Elizabeth Warren calls out Gov. Chris Christie on his RNC keynote speech.
They Said What?!
Remarks from anti-worker governors at the Republican National Convention had us scratching our heads.
Risk Is Its Own Reward. If You’re a Corporation
When financial risks turn sour, the titans of finance are quick to point a finger.
Jon Stewart Speaks Out for Public Sector Unions
Daily Show host thinks we should look closely at LIBOR scandal when discussing economic woes.
Protestors Denounce Outrageous RI ‘Pension Insecurity’ Plan
Retirees demonstrate against sweeping changes to state’s public pension system that jeopardize workers’ retirement security.
Twitter Regulates JP Morgan
Politicians, pundits and tweeters call for heavier regulation in wake of $2 billion in losses.
Public Pension Opponents Argue from Both Sides to Distort Truth
Dean Baker contends that politicians are “using heaping doses of the politics of envy" to divide workers.
‘BigWhine’ Should Stop Making Myth About Workers’ Compensation
Despite repeated efforts to confuse the issue, the facts show public workers are not overpaid.
Louisiana Gov. Jindal Takes Aim at State Constitution
Governor could violate state Constitution to impose changes to workers’ pensions, law firm concludes.
Scaled Back Tier 6 Plan Rammed Through N.Y. Legislature
Open government gave way to backroom deals in the middle of the night.
Report: NY Governor’s Plan Cuts Retirement Security 40 Percent
Study by independent organization confirms benefit cut.
DiNapoli: ‘Stop Twisting the Facts’ on Public Pensions
New York State Controller warns lawmakers 401(k)-style plans provide inadequate retirement security.
Policy Experts: Public Pensions Should Be Strengthened, Not Eliminated
Panel addresses efforts to diminish retirement security for working, middle-class Americans.
AFSCME to Wall Street: End Dimon’s Lucrative Double Duty
CEO and chairman has unyielding power over JPMorgan – and unfathomable compensation.
Fear of Inadequate Retirement Savings Forcing More Older Americans to Keep Working
Shift from secure employee pension plans to riskier 401(k) plans is largely to blame.
Killing Pensions to Benefit the 1 Percent
Wall Street Journal continues its push to gut the retirement security of American workers.
Rhode Island Public Employees Call on Legislature to Keep the Promise
Over 5,000 union members and supporters rally at the statehouse to oppose pension overhaul plan.
Rhode Island Public Workers Win Key Pension Ruling
Judge rules R.I. public employees should have their day in court in pension battle.
Telling the Truth about Public Pension Systems
Pension experts rebut the myth that public pensions are unsustainable.
State Revenues Are Coming Back. Walker Says, ‘So What?’
Despite revenue collections beating expectations, right-wing governors move ahead with plans to slash public services.
Telling the Whole Story About Public Employee Pension Funds
Pew Center on the States portrays the public pension system as "broken," but the facts don't back that up.
Maryland AFSCME Members to Rally in Annapolis Today
Protest targets proposed budget cuts to public services and education, changes to retirement security and health care benefits.
Republicans Take Aim at Social Security
Republican legislators in both the U.S. House and Senate have now started moving toward cutting Social Security.
Origins of the So-Called Pension Crisis
Noted economist Dean Baker has written what could be best described as the definitive explanation of the state of public sector pension plans.
O'Reilly Spreads Lies About Public Employee Pensions
FACT: The average annual pension of an AFSCME retiree is $19,000. As Pres. Gerald W. McEntee wrote in USA Today, the real problems facing cities and states were caused by Wall Street, not public workers.
California’s State Treasurer: States Should Not Consider Bankruptcy
Some conservative governors and state legislators and their right-wing allies are floating a dangerous suggestion that threatens the retirement security of public sector workers: Have states declare bankruptcy to get out of their pension obligations.
Rhetoric v. Reality: A Viewer’s Guide to Rep. Paul Ryan’s State of the Union Response
Americans United for Change has put together this handy guide for watching tonight's Republican response to Pres. Barack Obama's State of the Union Address tonight [...]
AFSCME Members to Maryland Lawmakers: ‘Enough is Enough!’
Approximately 150 members of AFSCME Maryland met with their state representatives in Annapolis on Jan. 12 – the first day of the legislative session – to send a clear message that the state’s budget should not be balanced on their backs.
Battling the Lies Against Public Employees
AFSCME International Sec.-Treas. Lee Saunders recently took AFSCME’s “Stop the Lies” campaign to a nationwide radio audience.
Report from the Public Pension Leadership Meeting
AFSCME activists, local leaders and retirees met with key experts and allies to develop strategies and tools to defend our modest pensions against this unprecedented assault.
Stop Believing the Myths About 401(k) Plans
The former publisher of the Las Vegas Review-Journal wrote a column this week calling public employee pensions “grotesque shadows of their initial good intention” and pushing private savings plans as the future of retirement.
Social Security Sense and Nonsense
In a new paper and podcast I’ve tried to correct some of the misinformation that critics of Social Security have been spreading about the program. Here are the facts. Social Security is a well-run, fiscally responsible program.
Could Simpson or Boehner Pass the Social Security Test?
AFSCME President Gerald W. McEntee has a great idea for a reality television show. He suggested it as part of a conference call Thursday sponsored by the Strengthen Social Security coalition [...]
Wake Up, Washington! Securing Retirement
Americans should be able to enjoy a secure retirement after a lifetime of work. AFSCME is participating in “Wake Up, Washington!” Month to encourage Americans across the country to tell lawmakers to keep their hands off Social Security [...]
America's Failed 401(k) Experiment
While the unfunded pension liabilities in many public retirement funds have received an inordinate amount of attention, the larger retirement deficit of most Americans is not generating the level of concern that it deserves.
The GOP’s Bizarre and Cynical “Pledge to America”
One can only marvel at the extreme cynicism evident in the Republican Party's bizarre 21-page "Pledge to America." The document is only the tip of the iceberg and masks the real agenda of Republican leaders.
New Jersey's Pension Fraud Hurts Investors, Taxpayers and Retirees
Last week, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission did something it has never done before. It charged the state of New Jersey with fraudulently misleading investors about the health of the state's pension plan
Celebrate 75 Years of Social Security
This year, over 53 million Americans will receive a benefit they earned and count on from Social Security. For an economy that has failed many, Social Security provides certainty in an uncertain time.
Keep Your Hands Off Social Security!
Years after George W. Bush’s failed attempts to privatize Social Security, his cohorts are renewing calls for privatization. This time they’re using deficit reduction as an excuse.
Wall Street By the Numbers
Across the country this holiday season, Main Street is being starved while Ebenezer Scrooge and his Wall Street friends are feasting.
Mutual Funds and Overpaid CEOs
CNBC's "Street Signs" host Erin Burnett says the numbers take her breath away: mutual funds consistently vote in favor of management proposals that increase executive pay and against shareholder efforts to bring compensation in line with performance.
Fed's Say on Pay
CEO pay reform remains a key element of the federal government’s financial reform agenda. The Federal Reserve recently announced that the agency will police banks’ pay policies to ensure they do not encourage excessive risk taking.
Public Pensions Support Vital Services, Stimulate the Economy
Public pensions offer good value for taxpayers. In addition to providing modest but secure retirements for public employees — emergency responders, firefighters, health care workers, teachers, police officers and more.
Union Retirees: Big Role in Bringing Change
This is the year for passing real health care reform and to begin rebuilding the nation’s middle class by passing laws that give workers a free choice to join a union. And union retirees, will play a big role in bringing about change.
Shame on You, Wall Street
It’s no mystery. The economy is ailing, working families are fighting hard to make ends meet and this week alone, American companies reported as many as 65,000 job cuts.
AFSCME Pension Plan Calls for Corporate Accountability
In the wake of our current financial crisis, the AFSCME Employees Pension Plan has announced its 2009 shareholder program with an emphasis on reasonable executive pay and more director accountability.
Public Employee Pensions Are Not the Problem
John McCain: Risky on Social Security
Give Us a Bailout That Helps Everyone
Social Security Gets Clean Bill of Health from CBO
McCain’s Ignorance About Social Security Is the Real “Disgrace”
Shareholder Say on Executive Pay
Social Security, Still Healthy After All These Years
McCain Puts Retirement at Risk
Benton, AR Local 2957 Beats City Hall Again
The Fight for Investor Rights is Also Our Fight
What’s Wrong with America?
Corporate America: Do The Right Thing
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