February 17, 2023 —

President Spence weighs in on workforce crisis 

With a looming shortage of more than 12,500 state workers, the governor’s budget calls for investing more than $18 million in programs to boost the lagging workforce. 

PEF President Wayne Spence was quoted in an Albany Times Union article on the state of the state’s workforce: “PEF is very pleased that Gov. Hochul advanced a concrete plan to rebuild the state workforce to ensure the continued efficient and effective delivery of all state services.” PEF will testify before a joint budget hearing about rebuilding the State Workforce on March 1. 

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Tesla workers launch union campaign, firings follow a day later

Several employees at a Tesla factory in Buffalo were fired a day after launching union organizing efforts, according to Tesla Workers United, but the company says they’re not related.

The workers received an email February 15 updating them on a new policy that prohibits them from recording workplace meetings without all participants’ permission. The fledgling union, Tesla Workers United, says this violates federal labor law and ignores New York’s one-party consent law.

Tesla said the firings are not related to the unionization efforts.

If the union drive is successful, it would be the first for Tesla, which has avoided unionization at U.S. facilities, despite the fact many major automobile manufacturers have unionized plants in the U.S.

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Dorm resident assistants want to unionize 

Resident assistants who work in the dorms at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) in Troy are unionizing. 

Seventy-six percent of the resident assistants signed petitions to form a union, which is enough to allow the union to form without an election if RPI agrees. If the college doesn’t, there will be an election, most likely in the spring. 

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