Linking Community and Labor for a Better Future

Building a Brighter Day
Building a Brighter Day

 Making Transit Affordable for All!


CLU’s Public Transit Public Good campaign is proud to announce that the Youth and U-PASS Pilot Projects along with Senior Discounted passes were approved on December 11, 2014 by the MassDOT Board of Directors. This would not have been possible without the leadership and determination of the Youth Affordabili(T) Coalition (YAC), Mass Senior Action Council, students at Northeastern, Tufts and Harvard university, as well as many other coalition partners. We will continue to move our state towards a more affordable and equitable public transit system!


For more details regarding both programs click here:


Building Bridges, Building Muscle, Building Momentum


In partnership with Atlanta's Georgia Stand Up and many other community organizations, CLU has been working relentlessly to bridge the divide between community and labor. While labor unions are extending their services to community organizations, community organizations are "expanding their agendas to include job creation and training". Integrating the two is a win-win situation for both, deepening their relationships for years to come. Community and Labor could be thought of as a civil war; United we stand, divided we fall.

Read more about CLU's efforts on connecting community and labor by clicking this link

How Many Paychecks Are You Missing?


"Wage theft is a far bigger problem than street and highway robberies, convenience store robberies, bank robberies and gas station robberies combined," said Rich Rogers, executive secretary-treasurer of the Greater Boston Labor Council and "right now, too many workers are on their own when faced with wage theft." said Darlene Lombos, executive director of Community Labor United, a coalition of community and labor organizations. On October 24, 2014 Boston's Mayor, Martin J. Walsh, signed an Executive Order to establish strong requirements for city contracts in an effort to prevent wage theft. In other words, employers will finally be held accountable for their unjustifiable acts of cheating workers out of their pay.


Click the link to read the full story on the most powerful wage theft executive order passed by Mayor Marty Walsh:



CLU's work recognized -- and studied

CLU is winning national recognition for our groundbreaking work. "This Is How to Create a Green Economy That Works for All," Michelle Chen's article in The Nation, spotlights our Green Justice campaign for combining economy, environment, and especially equity. And check out this national webinar on the Green Justice energy efficiency campaign, which drew 90 organizers, policy specialists, and opinion-makers.

Check Out CLU's Energy Efficiency Toolkit

Released in spring 2014, our toolkit summarizes our campaign, lists the stakeholders, and provides tips for organizers, utility customers, and weatherization workers who want to bring our breakthrough reforms to more cities in Massachusetts -- or duplicate them in other states.

Good Jobs, Strong Communities

CLU's new report, Good Jobs, Strong Communities – An Agenda for Good Jobs in Boston, lists ten ways Boston’s next mayor can make the city’s labor market work for all of Boston, from funding youth jobs to holding companies accountable for the work they contract out. It says the city’s jobs problem is not just a low wages but the growth of no-benefits, no-security, no-leverage work in our economy.

Use Our Imagination!

In September Community Labor United and the Design Studio for Social Intervention launched the Department of Public Imagination. Chelsea Collaborative, Chinese Progressive Association, and Massachusetts Senior Action Council are hosting three artists who will work with their members, form creative action teams, and express their aspirations through public cultural projects. The facebook page is

CLU's Energy Efficiency Campaign: A Triple Win for Economy, Environment, and Equity

Building a Brighter Day: Energy Efficiency Innovations Yield High Returns for the Commonwealth shows that CLU and the Green Justice Coalition have won a healthier economy, a healthier environment, and healthier families in Massachusetts—improvements worth $21 for every dollar invested in home weatherization. Download an executive summary here.

“This is a triple win for Massachusetts,” said Jeremy Shenk, deputy director of Community Labor United. “We are strengthening the state’s economy by saving consumers money and creating new jobs. We are making our environment more sustainable by burning less fossil fuel. And we are increasing equity and opportunity by raising weatherization workers’ wages.”

Working with utility companies and the state’s Energy Efficiency Advisory Council, GJC has opened up the state’s energy efficiency programs to low-income communities and communities of color over the past four years. It has also improved wages and job quality for home weatherization workers. Those higher wages and other workplace reforms could save the government over $44 million a year in higher tax revenues and money it won’t have to pay out in public benefits. The health benefits—from reduced workplace injury and death, lower asthma rates, warmer and healthier homes, and more money for food—will yield another $10.7 million a year.

Other Reports from the Green Justice Energy Efficiency Campaign

Public Information for Better Programs: Why Energy Efficiency Data Reporting Must Be Timely, Consistent, Statewide, and Transparent shows the many benefits of regular reporting from the state and utility companies. Basic data, such as locations where efficiency work is being done, and the amount of financial and energy savings to Massachusetts residents, significantly enhances program design and delivery

Report Says "Pre-Weatherization" Pays! Recommendations on Pre-Weatherization and Tiered Incentives shows that a small subsidy will allow low-moderate income residents to weatherize their homes, save more than the cost of repairs, recover the money they are paying into Mass Save, and weatherize the oldest, draftiest homes in the Commonwealth. (“Pre-weatherization” measures fix conditions that keep a house from being weatherized such as knob and tube wiring, appliances that emit carbon monoxide, and asbestos.)

"Public Transit, Public Good" Transit Campaign

Early in 2012 transit riders and workers gathered to protect the state's public transit systems by launching the "Public Transit–Public Good" campaign. Our report, Route to Our Future, said we need to fund Mass. transit, fix it, and make it fair. The campaign has scored impressive successes: winning seats for riders on regional transit authority boards, getting "forward funding" and more funding for transit authorities, and limiting MBTA fare hikes to 5% every two years. For more information see

May Day March brings labor and immigrants together

See this awesome May Day video from the Carpenters Union: (For the full-length version, go to

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