PHOTOS: “We Cry Justice” Memorial & Call to Action

PHOTOS: “We Cry Justice” Memorial & Call to Action

On Sept. 18th, dozens gathered at the Unitarian Church of Montpelier to mourn, testify, and pledge to take action to end poverty and the denial of healthcare. We Cry Justice was co-organized by the VWC, Vermont Poor People’s Campaign: A National Call for Moral...
PHOTOS: Forward Together Days of Action

PHOTOS: Forward Together Days of Action

Over 100 people came out last weekend to reject plans to kick millions off of Medicaid in the coming months and demand public officials move forward together, and not one step back on our human rights. Check out the photos from this weekend’s activities...
120 People Join Online Forum on Housing & Healthcare

120 People Join Online Forum on Housing & Healthcare

Do you have a healthcare story? Have you been forced to choose between paying rent or meeting other basic needs? Over 120 people joined this public forum to testify about how their families have been impacted by the housing and healthcare crises in Vermont. Watch the...
PHOTOS: Nonviolent Medicaid Army Week of Action

PHOTOS: Nonviolent Medicaid Army Week of Action

Last week, hundreds of people across the country—from Alabama to Pennsylvania, Texas to Wisconsin—took action with the Nonviolent Medicaid Army to demand health care as a human right amidst a pandemic that has killed over 670,000 people.  Check out...
WATCH: VWC leaders testify on Senate healthcare bills

WATCH: VWC leaders testify on Senate healthcare bills

On April 15th, VWC leaders Jessica Morrison, Grace Beninson, and Ellen Schwartz offered powerful testimony to the Senate Health and Welfare Committee as it discussed healthcare affordability and the future of the All-Payer model and OneCare contract. Grace Beninson...
Join us for our 2020 Virtual Membership Assembly!

Join us for our 2020 Virtual Membership Assembly!

Join us on Saturday, Nov. 14th and Monday, Nov. 16th for our Annual Membership Assembly & 22nd Anniversary Celebration, held virtually this year over Zoom.  This year’s assembly will take place over two days: Saturday, Nov. 14th11am – 12pm: New Member...
July 21: Public Forum on the Cost of Health Insurance

July 21: Public Forum on the Cost of Health Insurance

Join us on Tuesday, July 21st to speak out against health insurance rate hikes in the middle of a pandemic. Green Mountain Care Board Public ForumTuesday, July 21st, 4:30 – 6:30pmCall-in or join online via Microsoft Teams Fill out the form below to let us know...
Pandemic Response Town Hall (Online)

Pandemic Response Town Hall (Online)

Join the Health Care is a Human Right Campaign for an online Town Hall to discuss: How we can have each others’ backs through this crisisWhat this all means for poor and working-class families who were *already* struggling to make ends meetHow we can organize in...

Rutland Healthcare Human Rights Hearing

Local residents testify about impact of healthcare crisis Where: Rutland Regional Medical Center, Conference Rooms 3 & 4, 160 Allen Street, Rutland, Vermont When: 7:00 PM, Thursday, February 12, 2009 What: For months, volunteers for the Vermont Workers’...

Bennington Healthcare Human Rights Hearing

Local residents testify about impact of healthcare crisis Where: Unitarian Universalist Meetinghouse, 108 School Street, Bennington, Vermont When: 7:00 PM, Thursday, February 19, 2009 What: For months, volunteers for the Vermont Workers’ Center...

VWC Statement on Budget Cuts

No one doubts that we are living through difficult economic times. For many working-class Vermonters, the current economic crisis is simply an intensification of the long crisis that we have been experiencing long before the recent financial meltdown. For the last...

Fletcher Allen Techs Need Your Support

Almost 600 hospital technicians at Fletcher Allen Health Care (FAHC) are organizing to form a union, as the nurses did back in 2002. The techs and nurses are now calling on FAHC Administration to recognize their right to organize and not waste thousands of healthcare...

Human Rights Hearing in Barre

Local residents testify about impact of healthcare crisis  Where: Old Labor Hall, 46 Granite Street, Barre, Vermont When: 7:00 PM, Thursday, January 29, 2009  What: For months, volunteers for the Vermont Workers’ Center have been...

Verizon Forum a Success, UVM Wokers get contract and more

UVM WORKERS GET CONTRACT: Thanks for your help!On October 11, members of UE Local 267 ratified a three year agreement guaranteeing all members a minimum wage increase of 4% retroactive to July 1, 2006 and at least 4% in each of the nexttwo years. The contract was the...

Some (Not So) Surprising Laws Affecting Vermont Workers

by Kim Lawson, VWC Hotline Coordinator Volunteers on the Workers Rights Hotline answer phone calls from workers who are feel they have been mistreated on the job. We get all sorts of questions. Some questions are asked often and are easy to answer. For example: Q: Can...

Labor unites to make Burlington a Livable City

Published: Sunday, September 3, 2006Burlington Free Press (versions also published in Times Argus and other VT newspapers) By James Haslam On the evening of Aug. 24, an unusual meeting took place. Burlington teachers, construction workers, University of Vermont...

Rally For Livable Wages at UVM

Student Labor Action ProjectStudents for Peace and Global JusticeRALLYSeptember 29thNOON on the steps of Waterman, UVMforLIVABLE WAGES FOR ALL!DIRECTLY EMPLOYED AND CONTRACTED WORKERS!Come celebrate the Basic Needs Task Force’s recommendation to the...

Organizer Position Opening

Vermont Workers’ Center – Jobs With Justice Organizer Position Job Posting The Vermont Workers Center – Jobs with Justice has an opening for a full-time organizer to coordinate our workers’ rights and economic justice solidarity campaigns. Work in an...

Organizing to Win Affordable Health Care

by Traven Leyshon, VWC Member On May 30th, leaders and activists from Vermont labor and community-based organizations met at the Vermont State Employees Association headquarters to craft an action campaign to build a powerful grassroots, labor-led movement for health...

Hotline Volunteers Help to Achieve Workplace Resolution

To Vitaliy Pristupa, an immigrant from the Ukraine looking for a job, it seemed like a reasonable deal at the time. A private school bus company would train Vitaliy so he could receive a Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) at no cost, in exchange for Vitaliy’s promise...

Vermont Labor Against the War Needs You…

by Traven Leyshon, VWC Member On April 29th, Vermont union members joined the largest labor antiwar contingent ever in New York City. The spirited 15,000-20,000 trade union contingent came from across the country. Altogether, 350,000 people joined the March for Peace,...

Student Labor Action Project: A Two Year Retrospective

by: Katherine NopperLiving Wages–An Issue of Human RightsTwo years ago, a handful of students recognized a problem at the University of Vermont. Amidst major overhaul, both in terms of new building projects and progressive visioning over UVM’s future, conditions for...

UVM Rallies for Better Pay

Burlington Free Press , Friday, March 31, 2006By Jill Fahy, Free Press Staff Writer A group of University of Vermont students, staff and labor rights activists rallied on campus Thursday to demand better wages and working conditions for university workers and...

Case in Point: AP’s Firing of Chris Graff

By James Haslam In a joint letter to the Associated Press (AP), Vermont Congressional delegation of Sen. Jim Jeffords, Sen. Patrick Leahy and Rep. Bernie Sanders expressed that they were “stunned, outraged and saddened by the summary dismissal” of longtime Vermont AP...

SLAP Delivers Demands to UVM Board of Trustees

Students at the University of Vermont, including more than 1,200 who signed the Good Jobs @ UVM petition this past semester, countless staff, faculty, Sodexho employees, housekeeping staff, maintenance workers, construction workers and others all stand together in...

Wal-Mart and the Low Road

By Ellen David Friedman Listen to this commentary on VPR: http://www.publicbroadcasting.net/vpr/news.newsmain?action=article&ARTICLE_ID=872541 If Wal-Mart expands in Vermont – as it clearly intends to do – some will say this is great thing: New jobs and low...

Organize to Win

Organize to Win: Old North End Community Fights to Save Neighborhood Elementary SchoolsBy James Haslam, Director of Vermont Workers’ Center – Jobs With Justice When unions are at their best, workers are united – organizing with their fellow co-workers and crafting a...

Vermont workers recount injustices to rights panel

Shay TottenVermont GuardianDecember 21, 2005 BURLINGTON — A panel of legislative and ecumenical leaders heard testimony from dozens of Vermonters about the challenges they face with low pay, a lack of job security, no health care for their families, and how many...

What teachers’ strike teaches us

Op-ed in Rutland Herald and Burlington Free Press. By James Haslam The Colchester teachers strike was Vermont’s largest and longest strike in recent memory, a big-impact event that provoked wide-ranging discussion all over the state. After taking time to talk...

Op-Ed on Community Standards at UVM

By Colin M. Robinson ’06 The University of Vermont is in a time of both transition and great success. It is a time when national attention around the academics, the student body and the “Vision” of the University is at peak. The administration has...

Labor movement gives all of society a lift

By James Haslam When we celebrate Labor Day, we celebrate the contributions of the hard-working families who get up every day to make society run. Postal workers deliver our mail, iron workers construct our buildings, firefighters and health care workers save our...

Why Montpelier’s downtown union drive ended

By James Haslam – Published: July 15, 2005Montpelier Times-Argus For several years, there was a steady flow of calls to the Workers’ Center’s Workers Rights Hotline from workers in downtown Montpelier. All kinds of workers in all kinds of workplaces...

Taking a trip to nowhere

Brian McGroryBoston GlobeJuly 5, 2005 Their journey should have ended far better than it did. Last week, a group of Vermont bristle factory workers who are being dismissed from their jobs with a mere two weeks severance pay decided to come to Boston and make their...

Action to Defend Immigrant Workers in Bennington

By Eesha Williams | Special to the Vermont Guardian BENNINGTON — Three Latino men at a gathering of about 40 supporters in Bennington Thursday said a Pennsylvania-based construction company had refused to pay them for weeks of work. Only one of the men spoke English....

Speech for Iraqi Trade Union Tour (Jonathan Kissam)

By Jonathan Kissam We are living in an era when the United States government, both at home and abroad, has committed itself to defending the fortunes of a very small group of people. The result of this is exorbitant military funding and the substitution of military...

Speech at Iraqi Trade Union Tour (Dawn Stanger)

By Dawn Stanger I’m Dawn Stanger. I’m a Teamster who works up at United Parcel Service in Williston. I’m also vice president of the Vermont Workers’ Center. My fellow activists and I hope you will join our struggle, and there are sign up sheets...

Brushed off in Vermont

Brian McGroryBoston GlobeJune 17, 2005 If you ever wonder how it is that big business has earned such a bad name these days, look no further than a Boston-based venture capital company by the name of Capital Resource Partners. First, CRP, as it’s often known,...

Speech at Anti-War, Anti-Budget-Cuts Rally

By Dawn Stanger Hello. I’m Dawn Stanger and I’m a Teamster. I work up at UPS in Williston. And I’m here representing folks from the Vermont Workers Center, and U.S. Labor Against the War – USLAW. The Workers’ Center is a coalition of...

Unions work for everyone

Op-Ed in Burlington Free Press, August 26, 2003 By James Haslam The main reason people need unions is to have a voice about their working conditions. As the saying suggests, “united we bargain, divided we beg.” Organizing a union is the only way for...

Victory at Fletcher Allen Healthcare

The Fletcher Allen nurses reached a tentative agreement, moments before the rally this Saturday, June 21st (see their news release below)! Congratulations to all of the Fletcher Allen nurses! You were incredibly strong, committed and united through this whole struggle...

Universal Healthcare Now!

June 2003, Op-Ed in Rutland Herald and Times Argus By Sue Lucas, RN, President of United Nurses & Allied Professionals Local 5109 at Copley Hospital As someone whose job is to heal people when they are sick and keep them healthy, my heart aches because our...

Livable Wage Rally Speech

From Livable Wage March and Rally, April 12, 2003 By Cindy BubrouskiHello! I’m Cindy Bubrouski. I’m an Instructional Assistant at Montpelier High School and have worked in that district for six years. I am also the president and chief negotiator of our...

The Livable Wage Battle Hymn

(to the tune of “Battle Hymn of the Republic”) Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the dayWhen we won’t just work for peanutsWe will work for decent paySo it’s time to stop complainingAnd draw action from our rageIn the fight for a...

Vermonters Need Livable Wages and a Fair Economy

April, 2003 Op-Ed in Burlington Free Press By James Haslam, Director, Vermont Workers’ Center Vermont’s working people are facing the greatest economic crisis in recent memory. Workers in Vermont and around the country are working harder, longer, and more...

Vermont Workers’ Center Resolution Against the War

Adopted at 1/18/03 Steering Committee Meeting WHEREAS, the Vermont Workers’ Center has, in its mission, already resolved to fight for economic justice for all workers; and, WHEREAS, the burdens and dangers of war would fall disproportionately on working people,...

Labor Statement Against the War

At Montpelier Antiwar Rally, January 18, 2003 By Jonathan Kissam Good afternoon. I bring greeting on behalf of the national executive board of the United Electrical, Radio & Machine Workers of America (UE). UE was the first national union to denounce this war,...

Labor Struggles Are Community Struggles

Op-Ed In the Rutland Herald and Times Argus newspapers, December 2002 By James Haslam When workers organize to collectively bargain fair wages, benefits, and safe working conditions they are exercising a basic and important human right. They are struggling for dignity...

Workers’ Center Director Receives Top Labor Award

VT AFL-CIO Press Release, October 9, 2002 Burlington – At the Vermont State Labor Council AFL-CIO Convention Saturday, September 14th James Haslam was awarded the Lena Brown Labor Award, Vermont’s top labor award. Haslam is the Executive Director of the...

The Struggle

A poem dedicated to the Steering Committee of the Vermont Workers’ Center and performed at the 2nd Annual Burlington Labor Day Weekend Parade & Picnic at Battery Park August 31, 2002. By James Haslam All these plant closings keep going down.Town after...

Vermont’s Workers Need to Protect Their Rights

August 2002 By Dawn Stanger, Vermont Workers Center Steering Committee Member It’s only natural for employers to seek concessions from workers. Improvements in working conditions, wages, benefits and Vermont’s environment — all undermine profits. The...

Free Trade Is Bad For Everybody

(That is, except Executives and Shareholders of Mega Corporations) Op-Ed in Rutland Herald, August 2002by James Haslam On August 6th the Rutland Herald ran an editorial “Back On Track” which began “President Bush signed legislation Tuesday giving him...

Three commentaries on the state budget crisis

Three commentaries by Workers’ Center Steering Committee member Dawn Stanger on the state budget crisis. An Op-ed from the Burlington Free Press, a “That’s the Way I See It” commentary from WNCS, and a statement from a February 28, 2002 rally...

Proposed Cuts Will Hurt All Vermonters

Op-Ed in Burlington Free Press, February 2002 By Tenaya Lafore, Vermont Workers Center Steering Committee Member In his Jan. 22 budget speech, Gov. Howard Dean proposed major cuts to health care and other essential public programs. In doing so, the governor threatened...

For-Profit Nursing Homes

By Tanya Waters, RN, Vermont Workers Steering Committee Member For-profit nursing homes have always had their critics, those that say that it is fundamentally wrong for corporations to make profits from the sick and dying. While in Vermont we do not have any...

Globalization Hurting Vermont

By James Haslam, Vermont Workers Center Director It’s become all-too-common that good jobs are leaving Vermont and getting shipped out of the country. Back in September, officials from Stanley Works announced they were shutting down their plant in Shaftsbury...

VWC Organizes Protest Against Union Busting Seminar

On a gray winter day–the first of the seminar–about 100 protesters gather outside the hotel. The demonstration, organized by the Vermont Workers Center, includes not only union members, but church representatives, politicians and students. “We are...