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    News and Updates


September 1, 2011

Mr. President, It Is Time to Think Big

Washington, D.C. – The following is a statement issued by United Food and Commercial Workers International Union President Joseph Hansen:“Daniel Burnham, the preeminent Chicago architect who designed the Flatiron Building in New York City and Union Station in Washington, D.C., once said, ‘Make no little plans. They have no magic to stir men’s blood and probably will not themselves be realized.’ “This Labor Day, the national unemployment rate hovers around 9 percent, and more and more of the country’s wealth is concentrated in the hands of a few at the expense of working Americans. It is clear that we need to think big and create a bold jobs plan that will lift Americans out of poverty and rebuild the middle class. But as the country waits for President Obama’s jobs speech next week, too many in Congress are still creating a confusing conversation focused on cutting the deficit at the expense of our most vulnerable citizens—a tactic that will do nothing to create new jobs. “The wasted economic potential of the millions of Americans who are unemployed or underemployed is a national tragedy that must be addressed. But the tragedy goes deeper than statistics alone. In all this turmoil, many Americans have lost confidence in their government and believe they will never achieve the American dream of owning a home, sending their children to college or retiring comfortably. If the national conversation continues to be manipulated by those who put their own interests ahead of the poor and middle class, our country will never fully recover from this downward economic spiral. “It is time to announce a bold infrastructure rebuilding plan to fix our roads, bridges, schools, airports, railways and seaports. It is time to invest in a WPA-type jobs program to clean up and fix up abandoned and vacant properties to alleviate blight in distressed neighborhoods.“Investing in our country will pay big dividends today and in the future. Having our government prime the pump will create infrastructure jobs which, in turn, will have a wave effect across our entire economy and create jobs in all our economic sectors. These newly created jobs will also generate additional tax revenue. Most importantly, this new influx of jobs will restore the confidence of our citizens in our country and in our government. It is time to think big.”

August 2, 2011

Statement on the debt agreement by president Joe Hansen




(Washington, D.C.) – The following is a statement issued by Change to Win Chair and United Food and Commercial Workers International Union President Joseph Hansen:

“‘The deal reached by Congress and the Administration to raise the U.S. debt ceiling is a bad deal for workers. Congress has failed to offer leadership toward job creation. This legislation threatens the social safety net that seniors, children and the unemployed rely on. Even worse, leadership has capitulated to extreme demands that will further threaten the economic security of regular working people.

Americans are working hard to rebuild the middle class – they are working multiple jobs, putting in long hours, and making personal sacrifices to help their communities stay strong. Workers deserve better from elected leaders with a serious commitment to job creation, not simply cuts to the budget. Economic recovery demands a shared sacrifice from Wall Street and the wealthy to match what is asked of regular Americans.'”


The United Food and Commercial Workers International Union (UFCW) represents more than 1.3 million workers, primarily in the retail and meatpacking, food processing and poultry industries. The UFCW protects the rights of workers and strengthens America’s middle class by fighting for health care reform, immigration reform, living wages, retirement security, safe working conditions and the right to unionize so that working men and women and their families can realize the American Dream. For more information about the UFCW’s effort to protect workers’ rights and strengthen America’s middle class, visit