The Stand

SB 5847 would improve access to Public Service Loan Forgiveness

OLYMPIA (Jan. 24, 2022) — Last October, the U.S. Department of Education (DOE) announced a series of changes to the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program, which is designed to give student debt relief to borrowers who work full time in public service. The program, which originated in 2018, was roundly criticized for rejecting nearly […]

We must extend bargaining rights to legislative branch employees

OLYMPIA (Jan. 21, 2022) — This year, the Washington State Legislature has the opportunity to extend collective bargaining rights to the hard-working people who make the legislative process work at the State Capitol, but have been unfairly denied the right to join together and negotiate for better working conditions: legislative branch employees. HB 1806 sponsored […]

Video: Why Washington needs safe staffing standards

As state considers legislation, must-see video from the New York Times features nurses explaining the real crisis   OLYMPIA (Jan. 19, 2022) — Sen. June Robinson (D-Everett) and Rep. Marcus Riccelli (D-Spokane) have introduced bipartisan legislation to create new safe staffing standards for hospitals in Washington state, which will help protect healthcare workers and ensure […]

They ensure state labor laws apply to all

WFSE members won a verdict against a multi-billion-dollar company running a for-profit detention center that was paying detainees as little as $1/day to keep the facility running.   The following is from the Washington Federation of State Employees, AFSCME Council 28 (WFSE): OLYMPIA (Jan. 18, 2022) — The detainees at the Northwest Detention Center in […]

Inslee updates decades-old affirmative action guidance

Executive order aims for more equity in hiring, education and contracting   The following is from the Office of the Governor: OLYMPIA (Jan. 18, 2022) — Gov. Jay Inslee on Monday signed an executive order that rescinds Directive 98-01, a 23-year-old document that was supposed to provide agencies with instructions on how to implement Initiative […]

Apprenticeship bills will boost opportunities

Hearings today on state legislation from Sens. Keiser, Randall to build upon proven successful ‘earn-while-you-learn’ approach   OLYMPIA (Jan. 13, 2022) — Workers in Washington state would benefit from new apprenticeship programs in growing fields, reinvigorated support for existing apprenticeships, and significantly increased state funding for apprentices at public colleges, under two bills scheduled for […]

Lawmakers introduce bipartisan healthcare safe staffing bills

SB 5751, HB 1868 would protect healthcare workers, improve care for patients, and begin to address the staffing crisis   SEATTLE (Jan. 11, 2022) — Members of the WA Safe + Healthy coalition on Monday applauded legislative champions led by Sen. June Robinson (D-Everett) and Rep. Marcus Riccelli (D-Spokane) for introducing bipartisan legislation to create new […]

Wash. State Labor Council sets 2022 legislative agenda

In session that begins today, Legislature urged to focus on policies that benefit workers, improve lives   UPDATED (Jan. 24, 2022) — With more details, including printable one-pagers on priority issues. OLYMPIA (Jan. 10, 2022) — The Washington State Legislature begins its 2022 session today at the State Capitol with another hybrid session of mostly […]

New year brings wage increase, overtime pay

OLYMPIA (Jan. 4, 2022) — On Saturday, Jan. 1, the Washington state minimum wage increased and thousands more workers — including farm workers — gained access to overtime pay protections, all thanks to policies strongly supported by the state’s labor movement. The state’s minimum hourly wage increased 80 cents to $14.49 per hour on Saturday, […]

WSLC: Interpreters United (WFSE) is the best choice at L&I

L&I interpreters urged to choose experienced union that has proven it can win better wages, working conditions   OLYMPIA (Dec. 16, 2021) — In early 2022, interpreters who provide language services for clients of the Washington State Department of Labor & Industries (L&I) will be deciding on union representation. The Washington State Labor Council, AFL-CIO […]

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