So, New Mexico workers found the next best thing. They launched the Susana Minimum Wage Listening Tour, featuring a cardboard cut out of the governor who would listen to testimonials of workers who were affected by her veto.
“We’re here to ask: Why did you sell us out and throw us under the bus?” asked Working America organizer David Garcia Diaz, “How can you reconcile giving out-of-state corporations a multi-million dollar tax break while our people continue to struggle?”
Like the real Governor Martinez, the cardboard cutout did not respond to questions.
Want to have a listening session with the cardboard governor in your town? OLE and Working America organizers are holding sessions across the state. Email Brenda at email@example.com to set up an event in your community.
In New Mexico, people from across the film industry have come together through REEL Working America. Their goal: to expand opportunities for the film industry in the state and advocate for people who work in film.
Six of our members have stepped up to form an Advisory Board for REEL Working America. These six volunteers will each take on a role advocating on different issues in film. They’re eager to take the practical steps that will mean more jobs and better working conditions for people who work on all aspects of film production.
With a strong, energetic Advisory Board in place, REEL Working America is ready to make New Mexico’s film industry the best it can be. We’re proud to introduce the new Advisory Board:
Actors Outreach Chair: Ross Shaw’s passion is acting. He has been fortunate enough to have been found a path in film and television acting in his own backyard. His great new career also includes theater and commercials. For him, being the Actors Outreach Chair means exploring the acting community and striving to help aspiring actors succeed.
Fundraising and Membership Chair: Actress Dalisa Marlene Contreras has been in the film industry since 2009. She was born and raised in Albuquerque. She was first introduced to New Mexico Films with her first role as a background performer in Terminator Salvation. She has been involved in shows like Breaking Bad, Scoundrels, In Plain Sight and The Odds ,as well as many films. She joined Reel Working America so that way we could make a difference not only in our film community but also to increase opportunities for those who want to become actors. She joined the Advisory Board to bring people together to help New Mexico Film grow and make it better.
Events and Publicity Chair: Catharine Pilafas received her Bachelor of Arts in Acting and minor in Dance from the University of Northern Colorado. After making her New York theatre debut in Victory Garden’s off-broadway production of “Conviction,” Catharine shifted her career focus to film and television in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Catharine has appeared in: Longmire, In Plain Sight, Fatal Encounters, Void, Dead Billy, and Billy Shakespeare. Also, a member of New Mexico Women In Film, Catharine is excited to continue to contribute to the film industry in New Mexico, and bring her passion for event producing to Reel Working America. An avid athlete, and practitioner of yoga, Catharine loves to be active along side her husband, writer, Adam James Jones, and their pug, Tobey.
Political Chair: Patrick Wier is a screenwriter and college instructor living in Albuquerque. A New Mexico native and graduate of the University of New Mexico, he worked as a journalist for newspapers and magazines in Texas and Oregon for about 25 years before entering graduate school, where he was awarded an M.A. in literature. He is a self-described life-long political junkie.
Independent Filmmaking Chair: Shelley Carney is the producer of New Mexico Media Makers at UPublic TV as well as an 8-part web series called “Joysticks”. She is an actor and screenwriter and she is working on the team producing the Albuquerque Film and Media Experience. She is excited to take part of the Advisory Board as Independent Filmmaking Chair.
Background Performers Outreach Chair: J. Nathan Simmons is originally from Oklahoma but has worked in the film industry in New Mexico since ‘91. He founded newmexicoactors.com in 2000 and now he is writing and producing his own work, with the help of talented friends and colleagues. He is excited to take part as the Background Performers Outreach Chair for Reel Working America.
We already knew that the general concept of a minimum wage increase was popular with Minnesota, with 70 percent saying they support an increase without mentioning a number. But new polling shows that a substantive increase – one that would give Minnesota one of the country’s highest minimum wages – also has a majority behind it.
Public Policy Polling, which independent studies have shown to be one of the most accurate pollsters in the country, asked Minnesotans about minimum wage along with a battery of other issues. The question “Would you support or oppose raising the minimum wage to $9.50 per hour?” received 54 percent supporting, 37 percent opposing, and 10 percent undecided.
To put that in perspective, that large minimum wage increase was more popular with those surveyed than Gov. Dayton (49 percent approval), DFL legislators (36 percent), Republican legislators (23 percent), and using money from the cigarette tax to pay for the new Vikings stadium (35 percent).
In fact, the only question that unified Minnesotans more than raising the minimum wage was allowing liquor sales on Sunday (62 percent).
24 percent of those identifying as “very conservative.”
59 percent of women.
45 percent of independents.
29 percent of Republicans.
61 percent of 18 to 29 year-olds and 51 percent of those older than 65.
The Minnesota House passed a bill earlier this month raising the minimum wage to $9.50 by 2015 and indexing it to inflation, but the bill did not receive a full vote in the Senate before the end of session. The Senate passed its own version, which raised the wage to a meager $7.75 and ignored the question of inflation.
These numbers show what many Working America members already know: that fighting to put more money in the pockets of workers has support across the ideological and partisan spectrum, and that pursuing policies that raise wages can only help, not hurt, an elected official’s standing with the public.
The issue of raising the minimum wage can next be brought up in Minnesota in February 2014.
Memorial Day is the unofficial kickoff to the summer holiday season. While the day honors those who have given their lives defending the nation—and Jimmy Gilbert, director of the AFL-CIO’s Union Veterans Council, will write more on that next Monday—the weekend also marks the start of grilling season. Here’s some union-made food and drink to get your barbecue off to a great start.
Our list comes courtesy of Union Plus, the Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers (BCTGM) and the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor’s LA Labor 411′s website. You can find these and other union-made products on your smart phone with the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) Buy Union app for iPhones, Androids and other phones.
Hot Dogs, Sausages, Other Grill Meats
Ball Park, Boar’s Head, Calumet, Dearborn Sausage Co., Fischer Meats, Hebrew National, Hofmann, Johnsonville, Oscar Mayer. See MORE.