Linking Community and Labor for a Better Future

An Act to Prevent Wage Theft and Promote Employer Accountability
An Act to Prevent Wage Theft and Promote Employer Accountability

Join us for the 11th Annual CLU Salt of the Earth Awards this Friday! 


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Tickets will be sold at the door.

CLU Presents: The Path to Better Public Transit 

The Public Transit Public Good campaign has been working towards an affordable and efficient public transportation system that invests in workers and meets the needs of riders.  We recognize that the best long-term solutions will come from working together with our legislators to find ways to invest more concrete resources in our public transit system, just as we all did in 2013.  In that spirit, we offer the Path to Better Public Transit report to this important debate.


The Path to Better Public Transit report represents a critical ground-level perspective that is too often shut out of the debate. Recommendations in the report made by the Public Transit Public Good campaign include maintaining the fare cap (no more than a 5% increased every two years), upholding the Taxpayer Protection Act (also known as the Pacheco Law), and drawing closely on the knowledge and expertise of transit riders and workers in order to make well-informed reforms and investments. 




Community Labor United in the Boston Globe!

Wage theft has become a common statewide practice within the construction industry today. "For more than three years, workers doing asbestos removal and demolition jobs for several Woburn companies were paid in cash, resulting in more than $700,000 in unreported wages, federal prosecutors charged in an indictment last week ... Meanwhile, construction workers around the state — particularly immigrants hired by subcontractors — say they sometimes go for weeks without pay. When they do get paid, it can be less than promised, and overtime pay is virtually nonexistent." Wage Theft is alive and rising! Click here to read full article.


Gaming The System – How Employers Short Change Workers And Get Away With It 

Gaming the System: How Employers Short-Change Workers and Get Away With It is a 2015 report by Community Labor United as part of the Good Jobs, Strong Communities campaign working to protect and promote the interests of working class families in Massachusetts. Gaming the System follows in the steps of numerous studies and reports released over the past decade highlighting the growing crisis of wage theft and employee misclassification associated with the increasing use of subcontracting and outsourcing hiring models that allow employers to distance themselves from their responsibilities to their employees. Click here to view the report.

 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:


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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