In support of front-line workers

Landis Larson, West Fargo

The North Dakota AFL-CIO sends thanks to all of the front-line workers who keep our lives going during this pandemic. They are the ones who really keep this country operating.

We have been urging Governor Burgum to follow the AFL-CIO’s “Safety First” plan for re-opening the economy but unfortunately working people have not been included in the discussions. This lack of worker representation “at the table” for these important discussions, at all levels of government, makes it clear who our elected representatives are really representing.

I can only imagine the anxiety that must be generated by having to decide whether to stay at home and losing the only means of support or going to work and risk becoming another statistic of the pandemic due to employers lack of safe work protocol. We are disappointed that the governor’s cabinet chose to create and advertise an easy way for employers to report workers who don’t feel safe going back to work in order to disqualify them from their unemployment benefits, but not a clear way for workers to report feeling unsafe going back.

After seeing the articles and hearing reports of workers safety concerns being ignored and our first possible workplace spread COVID-19 death, I am reminded of the fact that safe working conditions were one of the reasons that unions originally formed. Banding together as one voice has helped workers advance their causes for over a century in, not only in America, but right here in North Dakota.

The North Dakota AFL-CIO and all of its affiliated unions support you in your struggle for safety on the job.

Larson is President Secretary/Treasurer of the North Dakota AFL-CIO


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