Entries by Clayton Sinyai

Anti-Labor Politicians Target Union Rights of Iowa Public Workers, Over Bishops’ Objections

Iowa seems to be ground zero in an assault on worker rights in early 2017. US Representative Steve King of Sioux City — who identifies himself as Catholic — has distinguished himself both by sponsoring national “right-to-work” legislation and as a leading defender of the President’s executive actions targeting immigrants and refugees. At the state […]

Right to Work Heads to US Congress, but Hits Speed Bump in NH

Since last November, anti-labor politicians have made a concerted effort to bring “right-to-work” laws to new areas of the country – laws that aim to weaken unions by allowing individual workers to “opt-out” of paying dues after the majority has voted for a union. Despite heroic efforts by workers in Kentucky and Missouri, right-to-work has […]

EPA Union President Describes Dire Circumstances at the Environmental Protection Agency

In his day job, Catholic Labor Network Vice President John O’Grady serves as President of AFGE Council 238, the labor union representing EPA employees. O’Grady files this report from that embattled public agency: The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is reeling not only from the nomination of Scott Pruitt as the Agency’s next Administrator, but […]

The Labor Movement Responds to Executive Actions Targeting Immigrants and Refugees

Sadly, our new President has begun his term with a series of executive orders and memoranda targeting immigrants and refugees. Happily, the Church and organized labor are swiftly speaking out in defense of these vulnerable workers and families. AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka has issued a statement on the executive actions, which begins: President Donald Trump […]

Kentucky Bishop on Right to Work: “This cannot be seen as contributing to the common good”

Last month in this space I wrote about anti-union “right-to-work” legislation circulating in three states — Kentucky, Missouri and New Hampshire. As the legislation hit the floor in Kentucky, Bishop John Stowe of Lexington issued a remarkable appeal to state legislators defending Catholic social teaching on labor and worker justice, and indicating how that teaching […]

Bishops, AFL-CIO President discuss “Dignity of Work” at Catholic University

January witnessed an impressive gathering at the Catholic University of America, where labor and Church leaders came together for a dialogue on the Dignity of Work and the dangers of an “erroneous autonomy” – the libertarian, free-market vision that shatters solidarity and imagines “looking out for number one” as the summum bonum. San Diego Bishop […]

Loyola Graduate Student Instructors, Researchers to Vote on Union

In recent years, American universities have cut instructional costs by shifting an ever-growing share of teaching duties from costly tenured faculty to part-time adjunct instructors and graduate students with low salaries and few (if any) employment benefits. In response, adjunct faculty at several universities, including Catholic ones, have formed unions. In January 2016 adjuncts at […]

Pope Honors Vatican Employees

Francis: As employer, Vatican “must follow the guidelines of the Social Doctrine of the Church”   Pope Francis would have a difficult time in his ministry without the labors of an estimated 3,000 lay Vatican employees. The Holy Father invited these workers and their families to the Paul VI audience hall in late December to […]