Partnership Blog

Leadership: The Power of Local Organizing

June 29, 2012 -- Leslie Moody

Across the country, affiliates of the Partnership for Working Families are answering the question: Is any job a good job?

Our affiliates are exposing unfair policies and challenging our leaders to do better. In Seattle, Puget Sound Sage is exposing the double subsidy that the hotel and tourism industry enjoys, at the expense of taxpayer dollars and worker health and safety. In Los Angeles, LAANE is challenging the region to step up and clean up both job quality and neighborhood impact of the waste and recycling industries. In Denver, the Twin Cities and Seattle, to name a few, we are calling for racial and economic equity from transportation related investments and major transit buildouts. And in San Jose, Long Beach, Milwaukee and New Haven, we are organizing for city-wide reform of wages and job creation programs to truly meet the needs of working families.

Bringing Diversity to the Voting Population

June 29, 2012 -- Working Partnerships USA

“Diversity” in California’s Santa Clara County – where Working Partnerships USA is located – is not a lightly used term.

For starters, the 1.8 million people who live there at the southern tip of San Francisco Bay would say the word in more than 100 languages and dialects. Almost 60 percent of the county’s children have at least one parent who is an immigrant. Less than 40 percent are non-Hispanic whites.

Yet in a county so diverse, the voting population is still relatively homogenous, with young people and immigrant communities identified by the county’s Registrar of Voters as comprising a smaller proportion of voters than are eligible to vote.

Behind the Scenes At a Recycling Facility

June 29, 2012 -- Anonymous (not verified)

How can we build an economy using recycled materials? As we look to find green economy solutions that will reduce waste, can we create a new industry and jobs?

The excitement of this prospect led me to join a tour of a recycling facility last month in a major metropolitan city. I started at the tipping floor outside where dump trucks deposit tons of mixed recyclable materials. Then we walked down the side of the building where the bales of separated materials are stored until they are shipped.

Transit Oriented Development in Denver

June 29, 2012 -- FRESC

Developing a transit system that serves all members of a community can transform the quality of life and spur renewal. FRESC is working to ensure that a huge investment in a development project will connect working people to good jobs, affordable housing, and healthy communities.

Mile High Connects, formerly the Mile High Transit Opportunity Collaborative, is a partnership of private, philanthropic, and nonprofit organizations committed to developing inclusive, affordable and livable communities within walking distance of public transit. In November 2004, taxpayers in the Denver Metro region voted to invest in a more environmentally friendly and better connected future by passing a sales tax to fund a mass transit expansion known as FasTracks.

Missed Opportunities

June 29, 2012 -- Ben Beach

Legal challenges to cities’ targeted hiring policies seem to be trending among some construction business groups.

These groups are out of touch.

Targeted hiring policies help those individuals and communities most hurt by the recession by creating new opportunities for real family-supporting careers. Washington DC has a city-wide unemployment rate of 9.9%, with much higher levels in areas of the city with concentrations of people of color. Cities facing similar situations have used these hiring policies to leverage their investment in construction into good jobs for folks who need an economic foothold. In Los Angeles, Oakland and Milwaukee, targeted hiring policies for public construction have meant hundreds of thousands of hours of prevailing wage construction work for disadvantaged residents of those cities.

Lennise’s Story: Seeing Voters’ Challenges Firsthand

June 29, 2012 -- Citizen Action of Wisconsin Educati...

Lennise Vickers of Milwaukee was a first time volunteer for the Citizen Action of Wisconsin Education Fund non-partisan voter mobilization program in the 2012 recall election.

“I wanted to volunteer because I wanted to make sure that people in my county and city were able to get out to vote. The experience taking the individuals to the different polling sites was interesting. Each polling site had different circumstances and things going on. I had one individual who needed curbside assistance because they were disabled and couldn’t get into the polling site. It took a while to get someone to come out and help them vote. At another site, there was difficulty parking. But we made it. They were able to vote.

What it Really Costs When Walmart Comes to Town

April 24, 2012 -- Louisa Abada

What it Really Costs When Walmart Comes to Town
by David Mielach

It's more bad news for Wal-Mart . After a New York Times story alleged that Wal-Mart bribed officials in Mexico to allow the company to open stores in that country, another new report reveals exactly how much it costs a community in dollars and cents when Walmart comes to town.

Beyond the Beltway

March 30, 2012 -- Leslie Moody

Waging campaigns across the country on behalf of working families, we are keenly aware that connecting national outrage with broad-based local movements is the key to change. Already in 2012 we have seen major victories where civic leaders are standing up and changing the way our cities do business.

New Haven: Call for Inclusive Prosperity

March 30, 2012 -- Partnership for Working Families

In recent years, New Haven has experienced a “renaissance” fueled by billions in public and private investment, aimed at attracting new affluent people and businesses, yielding high-end downtown development and the expansion of the education, research and medical sectors. This growth generates wealth for the biotechnology, pharmaceutical, and defense industries. However, not enough of that wealth stays in New Haven, where neighborhoods have not recovered from the thirty-year exodus of manufacturing jobs.

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