NEW JERSEY — It is nice when someone calls you a "hero." But that does not put food on the table for your family, these New Jersey advocates say. Throughout the coronavirus pandemic, elected officials and workplaces in the Garden State held parade after parade for front-line and other essential workers, often centering their campaigns on a single word: "hero." But now it is time for them to put their money where their mouths are, according to a coalition of social justice and labor advocates. Earlier this week, dozens of New Jersey essential workers and representatives from several unions and pro-worker organizations paid a visit to Trenton to deliver a letter to state legislators, demanding "hazard pay" for essential employees across the state. Read their full statement here. Signers to the letter included NJ State AFL-CIO, RWDSU Local 108, UFCW Local 360, UFCW Local 1262, UFCW Local 464A, ATU, JNESO, SEIU 32BJ, NJ State Council, Make the Road New Jersey, New Jersey Policy Perspective (NJPP), Health Professionals and Allied Employees (HPAE), New Jersey Alliance for Immigrant Justice (NJAIJ), New Jersey Working Families Party and NJ Work Environment Council. Read the whole article here: Essential Workers Deserve Hazard Pay – And NJ Has The Cash: [...]
New Jersey’s Clean Energy Transition Could Generate $34.1 Billion in Statewide Economic Activity, Nearly 300,000 Job-Years by 2050
TRENTON — New Jersey stands to gain an average of $1.3 billion in economic activity and 11,000 well-paying jobs annually if the state accelerates efforts to transition to 100% clean energy, fully electrifies its transportation and building infrastructure, and ensures meaningful job standards are in place by 2050, according to studies released today by the Applied Economic Clinic (AEC)... “With strong labor standards, union support, and adequate training, high-quality clean energy jobs will offer competitive wages and benefits and fewer occupational safety hazards,” said Debra Coyle, Executive Director of the New Jersey Work Environment Council. “We recognize that it will be essential to provide adequate resources for workers caught in the transition to retrain and utilize their valuable skills in this new space.” If New Jersey embraces more ambitious clean energy policies and strong labor standards, the study found the state’s clean energy transition could generate about 11,000 jobs annually in the offshore wind, energy efficiency and storage, electrification and solar industries between 2025 and 2050. Over this period, cumulative clean energy job gains could be 6.6 times higher than job losses expected from a reduction in gas-fired power plants and oil heating. Ambitious clean energy policies are significant economic drivers compared to [...]
Some New Jersey Amazon workers upset by an imminent job site closing walked out in solidarity Wednesday, June 1. Bellmawr, NJ - One Bellmawr worker told Eyewitness News he felt he was being treated like "warehouse machinery," not people. Amazon is reportedly closing the Camden County facility and forcing them to take shifts at a warehouse further away, the outlet said. But an Amazon spokeswoman said that Bellmawr's employees are being offered opportunities to work at five different sites that are as close as nine miles from their current location.... Debra Coyle, Executive Director, NJ Work Environment Council, said, "The New Jersey Work Environment Council stands in solidarity with the Amazon workers that walked off the job early Wednesday morning at the facility in Bellmawr," "It’s time Amazon, who made record profits during the pandemic, stops putting profit over people and prioritizes their workers' needs including a living wage, good benefits, and safe working conditions," Coyle said..... Read More: Amazon Workers 'Treated Like Machinery' Strike At NJ Facility: Report
New Jersey Clean Energy Coalition Urges Murphy Administration to Equitably Invest Federal Infrastructure and Jobs Funding
New Jersey Clean Energy Coalition Urges Murphy Administration to Equitably Invest Federal Infrastructure and Jobs Funding TRENTON, NJ – A coalition representing New Jersey’s environmental, business, social justice, conservation, labor, and climate advocacy communities is calling on the Murphy Administration to equitably and strategically invest federal Infrastructure Investment & Jobs Act (IIJA) funds to support residents in greatest need... “Availability of this federal funding represents a historic opportunity for the state to ensure counties and towns – particularly those most impacted by the devastating impacts of global climate change – are supported and prepared to advance New Jersey’s climate, jobs, and justice objectives,” said Debra Coyle, executive director of the NJ Work Environment Council (WEC) and co-coordinator of Jersey Renews... Read More: New Jersey Clean Energy Coalition Urges Murphy Administration to Equitably Invest Federal Infrastructure and Jobs Funding
A proposed New Jersey law aims to ensure that the threat of dangerous mercury vapors is not presented by any floors that get installed in New Jersey schools and child care centers moving forward. The threat already exists at countless schools across the Garden State, but advocates say the current proposal is at least shining a spotlight on the issue, even though it may not go far enough. Under the bill advanced by the Assembly Consumer Affairs Committee, flooring material that contains mercury would not be able to used during the construction or renovation of a school or child care center. Also, any school projects impacting an already existing floor would have to result in proof that the existing floor is mercury-free, or that it will be removed completely. Read More: Mercury-laced floors are still allowed in NJ schools ... for now
The NJ Department of Environmental Protection has announced it finalized the Advanced Clean Truck (ACT) Rule and Fleet Reporting Requirement. New Jersey became the first state on the east coast, joining California, Oregon and Washington, to establish a Clean Trucks program. Read more here.
More than 40 organizations, including unions, and more than 6,300 individuals have signed a petition urging the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to make its emergency temporary standard permanent for healthcare workplaces. Read more here.
Unions, public health, and occupational safety organizations call for permanent OSHA Covid-19 standards for health care and other workers
More than 40 unions and other organizations signed a petition, along with more than 6,300 individuals, to urge the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to adopt a permanent standard on Covid-19 in health care workplaces, building on the emergency temporary standard (ETS) OSHA adopted in June and set to expire on Tuesday, Dec. 21, 2021. The petition also encouraged OSHA to work expediently to issue a separate, broader standard to protect all workers from workplace exposure to Covid-19 and other aerosol transmissible diseases. The petition was delivered to OSHA today, announced National Nurses United (NNU). Read more here.
While President Joe Biden has nominated three people to the independent board that investigates chemical accidents, supporters of the Chemical Safety Board said other steps also must be taken so the agency properly can do its job. A letter from 22 unions, environmental groups and other advocacy organizations to Chair Katherine Lemos, the last remaining member of the board, called for more investigators. Read entire article here.
Statement from Healthy Schools Now on Gov. Murphy’s Budget Announcement: $75 million for schools is a good start; Billions needed to create safe schools for 1.2 million+ NJ students
For immediate release – November 19, 2021 Contact: Heather Sorge, firstname.lastname@example.org, (908) 310-7874 Statement from Healthy Schools Now on Gov. Murphy’s Budget Announcement $75 million for schools is a good start; Billions needed to create safe schools for 1.2 million+ NJ students The following statement on today’s announcement from Gov. Phil Murphy about funding for New Jersey Schools is from Heather Sorge, Healthy Schools Now organizer with the New Jersey Work Environment Council (NJWEC). “We’re pleased to see that Governor Murphy has identified $75 million in previously appropriated funds that can be used for badly-needed renovations and improvements in New Jersey’s public school buildings. "This is just a small down payment, however, on the billions needed to create safe learning environments in both School Development Authority (SDA) districts and Regular Operating Districts (RODs). For example, the State estimates the cost to fund the next round of major projects in just the SDA districts is close to $2 billion. "For too long, students, teachers and staff in many SDA buildings have been exposed daily to mold, mildew, asbestos, lead and vermin. Lack of indoor air quality is an issue and there is a pressing need to update HVAC systems to reduce exposure [...]