Labor Council Resolution on Green New Deal

February 11, 2019

The below resolution was passed unanimously by the delegates of the San Diego and Imperial Labor Counties Labor Council on January 23, 2019.

San Diego-Imperial Counties Labor Council Resolution in Support of a Green New Deal with Strong Labor Provisions

WHEREAS, the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has determined humanity has twelve years to act to avert the worst effects of a climate catastrophe; and

WHEREAS, climate change poses an immediate and long-term threat to all working people, our communities and our economic security; and

WHEREAS, workers, communities of color and low-income people suffer disproportionately from environmental degradation and climate change; and

WHEREAS, climate change is already harming working families and vulnerable populations through extreme hurricanes, wildfire, drought and flooding, increased stress on the agricultural sector, health impacts like heat stroke and the spread of infectious diseases; and

WHEREAS, without taking concrete action now to address the climate crisis, the well-being and economic future of generations of people will be severely and irreversibly jeopardized; and

WHEREAS, young climate activists and some members of Congress have successfully put the Green New Deal at the center of national discussion about how to address both the climate crisis and our historic level of economic inequality; and

WHEREAS, if climate action is to address inequality, the labor movement must be at the center of shaping climate policies to include just transition for workers, expand collective bargaining rights and create green union careers, particularly in disadvantaged communities; and  

WHEREAS, workers in existing jobs, including firefighters, nurses, construction workers, public transit workers, many in the public sector, and many more are already mitigating the health and environmental effects of climate change, preparing our infrastructure for sea level rise, and advancing California’s clean energy economy through a variety of ways; and

WHEREAS, with the support of the State Building and Construction Trades Council of California, AFL-CIO, California has adopted a goal of 100% renewable and zero-carbon electricity and has demonstrated that clean energy industries can create good, middle-class jobs when linked with collective bargaining agreements; and

WHEREAS, the American Federation of Teachers, the Service Employees International Union, the California Nurses Association, the Labor Network for Sustainability, the Blue Green Alliance, and other labor organizations and their community allies have passed resolutions and/or supported bold policies to address the climate crisis and other pressing environmental issues 

WHEREAS, the Environmental Caucus of the San Diego-Imperial Counties Labor Council Environmental Caucus Mission Statement, unanimously approved by the Labor Council Delegates commits the Labor Council to “Pushing for bold new political and policy initiatives that move beyond lip service to effectively address the two great issues of our age—historic economic inequality and climate change.”

THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, the San Diego-Imperial Counties Labor Council, AFL-CIO supports a Green New Deal that expands collective bargaining and ensures the creation of union jobs through card check neutrality agreements, prevailing wages, project labor agreements, enacting the provisions of the Employee Free Choice Act and requiring direct partnerships with joint labor-management apprenticeship programs; and

THEREFORE BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, the San Diego-Imperial Counties Labor Council, AFL-CIO supports a Green New Deal prioritizing projects, union career opportunities and investments in working-class, low-income and communities of color historically and disproportionality impacted by pollution, high unemployment, poverty and environmental injustice; and

THEREFORE BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, the San Diego-Imperial Counties Labor Council, AFL-CIO supports a Green New Deal that includes a fair and equitable Just Transition for workers impacted by a transitioning economy including a fund to provide severance packages, lifetime income, free education and family healthcare; and  

THEREFORE BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, the San Diego-Imperial Counties Labor Council, AFL-CIO supports a Green New Deal that includes Buy America provisions.

THEREFORE BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED, the San Diego-Imperial Counties Labor Council, AFL-CIO will advocate for a Green New Deal with strong labor provisions in concert with our environmental and community partners. 

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