Videos of Summer Institute & Upcoming Labor Day Events!

In This Edition:

  • Check Out What You Missed at Labor Summer Institute!
  • National Call-In Day to Fix NAFTA 2.0
  • Join Us for Labor Day Celebrations Across the State!

Check Out What You Missed At Labor Summer Institute

Professor Mike Hillard discusses the Madawaska Strike of 1971


We had an amazing group of union members show up for our 41st Labor Summer Institute last week! We launched this annual program way back in 1971 and (aside from an extended break in the 2000s) every year it's been a blast. If you were unable to make it up to

Orono and wish you could have caught some of the speakers, you’re in luck because videos of the panel discussions are available at the links below.

The international trade unionist panel had a fascinating discussion about the benefits workers in their country enjoy, including universal paid parental leave, paid vacation and national health care. Tommy Murphy, a Unite member from the UK, recalled attending bargaining sessions for paper workers in the US and was shocked that unions here actually have to negotiate over health care benefits because everyone in his country is covered under a comprehensive national plan.

“Why the f---- would you bargain over health care?!” Murphy exclaimed at the time.

Claire Bolduc, Mark Hardison, Paul Cyr and Jon Falk of Maine Woodsman’s Association provided a vivid picture of what it was like to organize loggers leading up to the great strike of 1975.

And Professor Mike Hillard gave a captivating presentation on the Madawaska Paper Strike of 1971, which culminated in a violent clash with police and ultimately a victory for the workers. He also shared his riveting radio documentary about the strike featuring the voices of the people who were there.

Thanks to everyone who participated or helped make it possible for members to attend. If you missed it, stay tuned for the dates for 2020! 

National Call-In Day to Fix NAFTA 2.0!

Please join us on August 20 for a nationwide effort to demand our members of Congress vote no on NAFTA 2.0 until it’s fixed. Greedy corporate executives and the politicians who serve them are currently trying to ram through a seriously flawed rewrite of NAFTA as early as next month. This current version will lock in high prescription drug prices by strengthening pharmaceutical monopolies and it doesn’t do enough to enforce labor protections in Mexico to prevent outsourcing.

NAFTA needs to be replaced with a trade agreement that reigns in the power of corporations and protects worker rights. Congresswoman Chellie Pingree and Congressman Jared Golden are with us, but please ask them to continue to stand strong and vote no on NAFTA 2.0 until it’s fixed.

Join Us for Labor Day Celebrations Across the State!

Labor Day is less than three weeks away and what better way to spend the holiday than with fellow union members at our annual Labor Day celebrations across the state!  Join us for food, music and family-friendly activities in Brewer, Winslow, Lewiston and Portland.

This year, the keynote speaker at the four events will be labor organizer José La Luz , who is most known for leading a successful grassroots campaign to achieve collective bargaining rights for over 120,000 public employees in Puerto Rico in 1998. Brother La Luz became the founding executive director of Servidores Publicos Unidos/AFSCME Council 95 and retired from the union in 2014. He also served as the public policy coordinator for CSEA’s Strong Communities Work program until the end of 2017 and has since been campaigning for Medicare for All.

Central Maine Labor Council’s Labor Day BBQ
Sunday, Sept. 1, 11:30 am - 2 pm
Fort Halifax, US Route 201, Winslow
Free food, drinks & desserts. Lawn games & blueberry pie eating contest!
RSVP to Debbie Dornish, [email protected]

Southern Maine Labor Council Labor Day Breakfast 
Monday, September 2nd
8:00-10:00 am (Doors open at 7 am)
Irish Heritage Center, 34 Gray St, Portland
$25/ticket or $175 table of 8 (student, family, low-income rates available)
RSVP to Wayne Poland at [email protected] or call 207-892-4067
Local unions encouraged to bring banners for a short march at the end

Western Maine Labor Council Labor Day BBQ
Monday, Sept 2, 1 pm - 3:30 pm
IBEW 567 Hall, 238 Goddard Rd., Lewiston
Free food, drinks & desserts. Music, speakers & children’s activities
For more information contact Joe Mailey at 207-212-4226 or [email protected]

Eastern Maine Labor Council Labor Day Celebration
Monday, Sept 2, 4:30 pm - 7 pm
Solidarity Center, 20 Ivers St. Brewer
Speakers, solidarity and picnic with local burgers, hot dogs and pot luck
$5 suggested donation at the door per adult (12 and under free)
For more information contact Melissa Smith at 207-989-5860

Hope to see you there!