Every week, we bring you a roundup of the top news and commentary about issues and events important to working families. Here’s this week’s Working People Weekly List.
Finding Pride: "It was early on the afternoon of Aug. 12, 2004. I was on an annual family vacation in the Poconos, in northeast Pennsylvania. I was 23 years old. I got word that my then-home state governor, Jim McGreevey of New Jersey, had hastily called a press conference. Rumors about the governor’s sexual orientation had followed him around for years. I remember asking my father what he thought the press conference was about. 'Pay to play or something like that,' he said. There is a long and troubling history of corruption in New Jersey politics. Something told me this press conference would be different. I had a pit in my stomach."
Are You Ready for a 35% Raise?: "Starting today, working people could see a 35% increase in the value of their 401(k)s and Individual Retirement Accounts over a career. That is because new protections designed to ensure the retirement savings system truly works for working people and retirees begin to take effect."
What Does the 'Fiduciary' Rule Mean for You?: "Thanks to the Department of Labor’s new 'fiduciary' rule, which went into effect this week, you are finally legally entitled to retirement investment advice that serves your best interests, regardless of who provides that advice or how they choose to pay for it."
The Bankers Behind Puerto Rico’s Debt Crisis: "Centuries ago pirates prowled the Caribbean brandishing scabbards and rifles; today, they wield fat checkbooks on Capitol Hill."
America’s Freedom to Protest Is Under Attack: "It’s no secret that America’s star is fading on the world stage these days, under a president whose authoritarian tactics have outraged allies and enemies alike. But a recent audit by an international human-rights monitor reveals that, even before Trump’s buffoonery took over the White House, Washington was failing dramatically to live up to its reputation as a beacon of democracy."
Under Trump, Worker Protections Are Viewed with New Skepticism: "'I had the feeling that the administration has already decided what it wants to do,' Peg Seminario, director for safety and health at the AFL-CIO, said of proposed changes to restrictions on beryllium."
Trump Administration’s Proposed Reversal of Contraceptive Services Coverage Is Wrong for Working Women and Families: "The Donald Trump administration’s draft proposal to reverse the Affordable Care Act’s requirement that employers and health plans cover most contraceptive services at no cost is wrong for working women and families. The draft as written allows any employer—whether a church, a non-profit related to a church, or a for-profit corporation—that has any moral or religious objection to choose not to cover these contraceptive services. It also exempts any insurance company with a moral or religious objection from covering contraceptive services."
New U.N. Report: Working People's Freedom to Stand Together Is Under Attack: "A new U.N. report highlights how the rich and powerful prevent far too many working people in the United States from asserting their most basic human and workplace freedoms."
With Pride: What Working People Are Doing This Week: "Welcome to our regular feature, a look at what the various AFL-CIO unions and other working family organizations are doing around the country and beyond. The labor movement is big and active—here's a look at the broad range of activities we're engaged in this week."