Political Action

The Carpenters mobilize to help all workers gain jobs that are fair, safe and respectful. We continue to expose developers and contractors who exploit workers, cheat our communities, and drag down the standard of living for all of us.

Our Union supports elected officials who support workers — and opposes those who undermine what we stand for. How candidates vote on our issues is more important than what party they belong to. If recent years have shown us anything, it is that bipartisan support is the only way to get things done.

At the State Legislature and at work, we continue to defend and support prevailing wages, strong apprenticeship training, and opportunity for all workers. In Congress, we back officials who understand and will work to improve the lives of working families. We support their efforts to raise the minimum wage, end the abuses of corporate giveaways, and restore workers’ rights on the job.

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Democracy works for those who show up. Showing up includes voting. For information on how to vote in your state, please click on the following:

Iowa
Minnesota
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Wisconsin

Misclassification
Misclassification occurs when workers who should be W-2 employees (earning a wage or salary) are instead fraudulently declared 1099 “independent contractors”.
Illegal misclassification:
• Puts legitimate businesses at a competitive disadvantage, which makes it harder for us to work.
• Cheats state budgets out of millions of dollars in revenue.
• Shifts financial and other risks onto workers, depriving them of unemployment insurance, worker compensation and other legal protections.
• Opens the door for additional illegal activity, such as wage and hour violations and use of undocumented workers.
Evidence suggests that illegal misclassification is growing more rampant nationwide. Recent studies in Illinois, Maine, Massachusetts and Minnesota estimate that as many as 24 percent of construction workers are misclassified. Companies that misclassify workers do it, studies say, because the advantages easily outweigh the risks.
Learn more about how Misclassification hurts you and legitimate contractors.

Prevailing Wage
Prevailing Wage is how federal, state and local government agencies determine the “area standard” for wages and benefits on public construction. As a union construction worker, it is vital that you understand how Prevailing Wage laws are important to your livelihood.
Prevailing Wage laws mean that, on taxpayer-financed construction projects, the government agency matches the wages that workers already earn in the marketplace.
Prevailing Wage helps taxpayers get the best results for their money. It helps taxpayers hold government agencies and contractors accountable because it requires contractors to meet community standards.
Prevailing Wage laws mean taxpayer money won’t subsidize cut-rate contractors. They ensure that public construction projects won’t undercut local workers and destabilize the local construction industry.
Prevailing Wage has a long history of bipartisan support. Nonetheless, anti-union politicians and business groups are constantly trying to undermine the federal Davis-Bacon Act and local Prevailing Wage laws.
Learn more about Prevailing Wage so you can separate the fact from the myth.

Right to Work
So-called “Right to Work” laws prohibit employers and unions from negotiating agreements that make union membership and payment of dues or fees a condition of employment. RTW laws mean lower wages, fewer benefits and fewer protections for all workers.
Under RTW, no workers would be required to pay union dues, but the union would still be required to represent non-payers at its own expense. RTW laws place an unfair financial obligation on workers by requiring them to pay for the representation of those who opt out of paying their fair share. Ultimately, this leaves unions with fewer resources to negotiate fair contracts, workplace safety, health benefits and more.
RTW laws focus on corporate interests, rather than the interests of the working class.
In our Council, Iowa, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wisconsin are already RTW states. Let’s make sure Minnesota doesn’t follow that same path.
Right to Work — Unfair, Unsafe, Unnecessary.

Political Directors: