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News from BALCONY

December 17th, 2014
Dear Friends of Demos,

It is with a heavy heart that I share the news that our former colleague Donna Parson passed away unexpectedly yesterday after complications from heart surgery. Donna joined Miles Rapoport at Common Cause earlier this year after 12 years with Demos.

Donna played many roles at Demos: her titles included Senior Advisor, Director of the Fellows Program, and member of our Executive Team—but her more apt and informal title was “Mother Demos.” Donna mentored countless people over her career, particularly young women just joining the movement.

Wage Standards are Key to Reversing the Erosion of Wages and Living Standards in New York City

December 16th, 2014

December 16, 2014. Despite considerable growth in the New York City economy over the past two decades, very little of that growth has trickled down to the average worker and his or her family, according to our new report. Wage standards like the minimum wage and the living wage are critical in ensuring that there is a floor under the job market and that workers are adequately paid. Prevailing wage standards, however, are a key means to ensure that skilled labor provides a path into the middle class.

Photos from BALCONY's December 12th Forum on the Impact of Wall Street on the New York Economy Featuring NYS Comptroller DiNapoli

December 15th, 2014
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BALCONY Presents: “The Impact of Wall Street and the Congressional Power Shift on the New York Economy” Featuring NYS Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli and Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney (December 12th)

December 5th, 2014
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(New York City, NY) New York State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli and Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney will highlight the Impact of Wall Street and the Recent Congressional Power Shift on the New York Economy at the Business and Labor Coalition breakfast forum on December 12th. This is BALCONY’s 5th annual forum on the state of the New York Economy.

New York Needs an Infrastructure Bond Act

November 18th, 2014

By Joyce Miller, President and CEO, Tier One Public Strategies

As we in New York recently marked the second anniversary of Hurricane Sandy, the storm that wreaked havoc on the State and cost billions in repairs – much of which is still ongoing – BALCONY believes this is an appropriate time to readdress the critical state of our State’s infrastructure. Sandy was the second costliest storm in U.S. history and exposed how unprepared our State and the nation’s infrastructure systems are to meet the new demands which will be placed on them by climate change and rising sea levels.

Read the entire article here: Infrastructure

Read the article from City&State on-line magazine (page 24) Nov. 24, 2014, here: CityState

De Blasio's First Affordable Housing Test Gets Thumbs Up From City Council

November 14th, 2014
Yesterday, City Council's land-use committee voted to approve the controversial Astoria Cove development project—thanks to an agreement reached by City Council and developer Alma Realty, 27 percent of the development's 1,700 units will be affordable. The full Council is expected to approve the development today.

BALCONY Says Union Busting is Bad Medicine;
Supports Doctors Council SEIU in Struggle for Respect

October 30th, 2014
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10.30.2014 (New York, New York) On Wednesday, October 29th, BALCONY members, led by the Doctors Council SEIU and the New York State Nurses Association (NYSNA), were joined by a coalition that included elected officials, labor, and local community supporters for a rally at Woodhull Hospital in Brooklyn to demand the HHC negotiate a new and fair contract for the City’s public hospital doctors.

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Doctors Rally at Woodhull Hospital for Respect and New Contract; Electeds, Labor and Community Show Support

October 29th, 2014
Doctors Council SEIU

Media Contact: Karen Imas, Connelly McLaughlin & Woloz
212 437 7373 or 917 568 7784

Public Hospital Doctors Stand Together with Healthcare Workers, Elected Officials, Labor and Community Groups for a Greater Voice in Quality Patient Care and New Contracts Now!

As Part of the Doctors Council SEIU “Respect” Campaign, Rally at Woodhull Medical Center Calls on HHC to Provide Safe Staffing and Increase Collaboration with Doctors on Decisions that Impact Patient Care

October 29, 2014 (Brooklyn, NY) - Doctors Council SEIU members at Woodhull Medical Center staged a rally today organized by Doctors Council SEIU and the Commission on the Public’s Health System (CPHS). A strong coalition of political, labor and local community supporters are sending a message to HHC that frontline doctors in the City’s public hospitals work hard day and night providing quality care for all New Yorkers. The doctors, who have been without a new contract for several years, are calling for “Respect” from hospital management and seek more engagement in quality patient care improvements, as well as a new contract immediately.

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News from BALCONY Archives
News From and About Our Members

Amalgamated Bank Hires White House Aide Sam Brown To Lead Business Development

December 16th, 2014
NEW YORK, N.Y, December 5, 2014 – Amalgamated Bank announced that Sam Brown has been selected to lead the bank’s business development team and will expand its outreach to core constituencies such as unions, progressives and the Democratic Party. Brown joins Amalgamated Bank after serving in various positions with President Obama over the past eight years, most recently in the White House’s Office of Public Engagement, run by Valerie Jarrett. Before serving as Director of the White House Business Council, Brown was the founding Chief Operating Officer of Organizing for Action. From 2011 to 2012, Brown served as Finance Chief of Staff for the Obama-Biden 2012 campaign.

The high cost of diabetes -- costs & solutions

December 16th, 2014

Diabetes is one of the biggest drivers of your employee healthcare costs. According to the American Diabetes Association, the total direct and indirect costs of diabetes in 2012 was $245 billion—a 41 percent increase in just five years. Unfortunately, that’s not the only way diabetes can affect your bottom line. It also accounts for 130 million lost workdays each year. Promoting employee health is important. What can you do to help? Find out in our white paper, “The Diabetes – Obesity Link: Costs & Solutions.”

Community Healthcare Network Appoints New President and CEO

December 11th, 2014
Contact: Elizabeth N. Howell, Vice President of Development and Public Relations
(c) 646-763-1723 (e)

Robert Hayes Picture 11 09 SM

New York, N.Y. (December 11, 2014) – Community Healthcare Network (CHN), a nonprofit providing affordable and comprehensive community-based primary and behavioral health care, announced today that Robert M. Hayes will join the organization as the new President and CEO.

PEF hails job classification ruling

December 10th, 2014

By Rick Karlin
Updated 9:02 pm, Monday, December 8, 2014

A major state workers union is declaring victory in a job-classification turf war, although it remains unclear if the state would appeal a trial court ruling that would add 250 members to the union's ranks.

Setting the Agenda: Expert Analysis on Education

December 1st, 2014

Due Process Safeguards Our Students' Education
Karen E. Magee, President of New York State United Teachers

If the hasty rollout of Common Core taught us anything, it may have been the value of teachers speaking out against policies and programs that are not in their students’ best interest.
News from our Members Archives
BALCONY Issues in the News (Related Articles)

State looks to pull 1,000 employees out of PEF

December 16th, 2014

By Rick Karlin

In a move that has sent shock waves through the state's unionized workforce, the Cuomo administration on Monday sent notices to about 1,000 members of the Public Employees Federation telling them the state is seeking to reclassify the recipients as non-union workers.

National Labor Relations Board Permits Employees to Use Workplace Email Systems for Union Activity

December 15th, 2014

In a landmark 3-2 decision, the National Labor Relations Board (“NLRB” or “Board”) reversed its own precedent and found that employees now have a presumptive right to use their employer’s email system to engage in communications relating to concerted activity protected by Section 7 of the National Labor Relations Act—including union organizing—during nonworking time. Purple Communications, Inc., 361 NLRB No. 126 (Dec. 11, 2014). According to the Board, an employer may rebut the presumption by demonstrating that special circumstances necessary to maintain production or discipline justify restricting employee rights, although the Board stated that these exceptions will be “rare.” The ruling is the latest pro-union decision from the Board, and carries significant consequences for employers everywhere because of the importance of workplace email and the prevalence of policies restricting the use of business email for nonwork purposes.

City reaches deal with principals' union

December 8th, 2014
By Eliza Shapiro, Sally Goldenberg and Clifford Michel

Continuing a pattern of salary raises it established with the United Federation of Teachers, the de Blasio administration has settled a thorny dispute with the principals' union in its nine-year contract, an $891 million deal with the Council of School Supervisors and Administrators (C.S.A.)

December 5th, 2014
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By NYC Public Advocate Letitia James

As 2014 draws to a close and we prepare to celebrate the holidays with family and friends, I’m reminded of how we came into this year with so much excitement and room for hope. We had a new progressive government for our city, which I've been honored to be a part of, and we finally began to work through some long-neglected issues of social justice and fairness, beginning with reforming stop and frisk.

Council approves Astoria Cove, touting concessions

November 26th, 2014
The Capital

By Gloria Pazmino Nov. 25, 2014

The City Council overwhelmingly voted to approve a massive redevelopment project in the Queens waterfront on Tuesday, the first major land-use approval under Mayor Bill de Blasio.
BALCONY Issues in the News Archives