KEEP NEW YORK RADIO LIVE
AFTRA’s “Keep NY Radio Live” campaign is aimed at fighting Clear Channel’s efforts to fire DJ’s and replace them with cheaper, out-of-state announcers who pre-record shows through a process called “voice tracking.” These pre-recorded announcements are produced at rates of pay far below New York market standards. During negotiations, Clear Channel has stated its intention to save money by eliminating workers and replacing them with pre-recorded liners.
For additional information, visit www.keepnyradiolive.com.
A BETTER CHOICE FOR NEW YORK
The state AFL-CIO is promoting a campaign called “There’s a Better Choice for New York” in response to Governor Pataki’s proposed state budget. The state AFL is working with New Yorkers for Fiscal Fairness, a statewide advocacy group, which is leading a coalition of 300 organizations and labor unions in a fight against budget cuts. The governor is proposing cuts of $1.7 billion in education, $2 billion in health care and $1 billion in state agency expenditures. New Yorkers for Fiscal Fairness encourages supporters to call (877) 255-9417 (toll free) to voice your objection to the governor’s budget. The phone number will connect you to the offices of the governor, State Senate and State Assembly.
PEOPLE’S RALLY FOR A FAIR BUDGET
Also related to the state budget is the “People’s Lobby for a Fair Budget” campaign sponsored by the Central Labor Council, ACORN and the Working Families Party. Over 1,000 workers, community activists and students met at the CLC for the campaign’s kickoff. The overall message of the rally was to have labor’s voice heard on political accountability and to advocate for other budget balancing options such as a transfer tax or commuter tax.
The People’s Lobby Campaign coordinated several events in early April including citywide leafleting and “accountability sessions” with State Senators Mendez, Padavan, Marchi, Maltese, Vellela and Golden.
REBUILD BY CREATING JOBS
A coalition of labor organizations is calling on the city to develop a $1.1 billion job creation program, funded from the pool of federal money the city received for rebuilding lower Manhattan after Sept. 11, 2001. The Central Labor Council, the Labor Community Advocacy Network to Rebuild New York City and the Center for Workforce and Economic Development released a proposal arguing that New York City needs to give immediate relief to the tens of thousands of people currently unemployed. The proposal says the city could create 25,000 public works jobs such as: school construction; making public space accessible to wheelchairs; fixing up parks; and teaching English as a second language. In addition, the groups propose that the city offer wage subsidies to private sector jobs in the industries most impacted by the attacks.
STATE PASSES ANTI-SMOKING LEGISLATION
Governor Pataki recently signed a bill providing all New York workers (including office, restaurant, bar, bingo, bowling and nightclub workers) with a smoke-free workplace. The law went into effect on March 30, but actual enforcement begins on May 1. The law makes New York the nation’s third smoke-free state after California and Delaware. Several other states, including New Jersey, Connecticut, Rhode Island and Vermont have similar legislation pending.
In the last year, New York City and at least five counties – Nassau, Suffolk, Westchester, Orange and Dutchess – have passed similar legislation. The state ban would apply to localities that either do not have any anti-smoking laws, or that have less restrictive ones. In cases in which the localities have stronger laws, like Westchester and Nassau, those laws would not be pre-empted.