AB 5 Heads to Senate Floor + Union Approval Near 50-Year High

Hi Folks,

Congratulations to all on an amazing Labor Day! Great events throughout the state and a special shoutout to SEIU-UHW, the Coalition of Kaiser Unions and CLCs for keeping the heat on Kaiser Permanente with worker-focused actions (including civil disobedience) in the fight for a fair contract.

We’re entering the final stretch of the legislative session. This week we have an update on AB 5, the bill to codify the Dynamex decision and curb worker misclassification. We also have some details on new polling that shows union favorability is at near a 50-year high. The future is #UnionStrong!

Here’s your weekly update.

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AB 5 Clears Final Hurdle Before Floor Vote, Gov. Newsom Signals Support

We’ve been talking about AB 5, the bill to codify Dynamex and ensure misclassified workers receive the basic protections all employees deserve, for months now. Last week the bill passed in the appropriations committee, setting up a floor vote in the Senate.

AB 5 is garnering national attention and all eyes are on California in the next couple of weeks. Getting this landmark bill signed into law would be a huge victory for all workers and position California as a national leader on tackling some of thorniest issues holding workers back in this economy.

On Labor Day, Gov. Gavin Newsom penned an op-ed in the Sacramento Bee saying “Reversing the trend of misclassification is a necessary and important step to improve the lives of working people. That’s why, this Labor Day, I am proud to be supporting Assembly Bill 5, which extends critical labor protections to more workers by curbing misclassification.”

But massive gig corporations like Uber and Lyft, which have built entire business models around cheating workers out of basic protections, are trying to bully the legislature by threatening a ballot measure if they don’t get exempted from AB 5 and Dynamex. Uber, Lyft and DoorDash committed $90 billion to the ballot effort. If they think this show of big money scares working people, they obviously don’t know California unions very well.

Labor Fed Executive Secretary-Treasurer Art Pulaski released a statement vowing that we’ll fight tooth-and-nail to hold gig corporations accountable to the law.

The next step for AB 5 is a vote on the Senate floor likely sometime next week. We need to really turn up the heat on social and in the Capitol to combat the massive lobbying from the other side. For more info on AB 5, including sample social posts and graphics, see our toolkithere.

If AB 5 passes the Senate, it then goes to the Governor’s desk for his signature.


Union popularity on the Rise

In a new poll, Gallup finds that 64% of Americans approve of labor unions, which is near a 50-year high. Public approval is up 16 points since 2008 as more workers explore collective action as a way to fight back in an economy that’s rigged against us.

A few takeaways from the survey:

-- Millennials are most supportive of unions with nearly 7 in 10 saying they approve

-- Women are slightly more supportive than men, with a 66% approval rating

-- 45% of Republicans and 61% of independents approve of unions

The bottom line: Unions are more popular than we’ve been in years. A wave of organizing digital media, teacher and hotel worker strikes along with stronger and more disciplined messaging are all having an impact. People need unions more than ever. And we’re seeing a growing awareness of the fact in polling.


How well is the American economy working for working people? EPI researchers reflect on the state of labor in the United States

“People who work 30, 40, 50 and 60 hours a week should be able to put food on their table, a house over their head and provide a basic living for their family. That’s a value that the Democratic Party has always stood for. I can’t imagine we’re going to give in because tech companies are cool.” - AB 5 author Assemblymember Lorena Gonzalez

So many great articles this week! Here’s some that we’ve been sharing

Opinion: In This Economy, Every Day Should Be Labor Day

Teen Vogue
This Labor Day, I’m Grateful To Be Part of a Union for the First Time

The Hill
Meet the former labor organizer emerging as a huge threat to Uber and Lyft

As Grass-Roots Labor Activism Rises, Will Unions Take Advantage?

LA Times
Column: Uber, Lyft and DoorDash will spend $90 million to avoid paying their drivers better

LA Times
A bill giving workplace protection to a million Californians moves one step closer to law

CalMatters (Art Pulaski op-ed)
Californians must shape the ‘future of work.’ Unions are essential to that future

The Nation
Labor Rights Are Human Rights — It’s Time We Guaranteed Them in the Constitution

LA Times Management Dragging Feet on Contract, Workers Stage Walkout

Yesterday, the LA Times newsroom marched out of the building after chanting “Fair contract now!” It’s been 14 months since the LA Times Guild’s bargaining committee started contract negotiations with management. We stand with the LATimes newsroom and their demand for a fair contract now! Follow @LATGuild to show your support and for updates on their contract negotiations.

Musicians Take to Disney D23 in Fight for Fair Contract

Musicians who record the scores for major motion pictures and television shows were out in force at the D23 Expo engaging with Disney fans, performing live music and sharing information about their grassroots #BandTogether campaign to win a fair contract for new media.

Members of the American Federation of Musicians are coming together across the country to demand a fair contract from major studios including Disney, ABC, Warner Bros., CBS, MGM, Sony, Paramount, and NBCUniversal. As these major film and television studios prepare to launch their own streaming platforms, they are refusing to grant industry-standard residuals and wages to the musicians who work for them.

The Musicians have been joined by unions and community allies in demanding a fair contract for members who are integral to making the magic of film and TV come to life.

Learn more and get involved at


California Ranked Best State for Workers' RightsAccording to Oxfam America's Best States to Work Index, California leads the country in policies on wages, worker protections, union protections and the right to organize. Our Golden State is truly UNION STRONG.

Some truth from our SoCal Labor fam - Follow @LALabor on Twitter!

Repurpose your Instagram Stories for Facebook



If you’re just getting started with Facebook Stories, one of the best ways to hit the ground running is to repurpose Instagram Stories for Facebook Stories. And if you’re finding it difficult to stay on top of each social media platform, re-using the content that you’re already creating for Instagram Stories is a great place to start.

The easiest way to repurpose Instagram Stories for Facebook is to simply use Instagram’s built-in sharing tools. Just know that in order to share your story to Facebook, you first need to link your Instagram account to Facebook in your settings. From there, both your instagram stories and posts will be cross-posted to facebook, maximizing your content exposure and keeping your page up to date!

Job Opportunity

UNAC/UHCP Hiring a Communications Specialist

Health care union seeks communicator-of-all-trades: designer, writer, video editor, social media master and more. Our Comms team supports the organizers, union reps and other staffers who work with 32,000 UNAC/UHCP health care workers in California and Hawaii. This is a fast-paced job where no two days are the same. Communications specialist would be based in our San Dimas office with frequent field work in SoCal. Starting salary is $113,000.