12 reasons Labor Should demand a Green New Deal

Labor shouldn’t just back the Green New Deal, it should help lead the way, write  JEREMY BRECHER AND JOE UEHLEIN.

Workers have gotten a raw deal. Employers and their Republican allies are trying to eliminate workers’ rights both in the workplace and at the ballot box. But even when Democrats controlled the presidency and both houses of Congress, they did little to protect, let alone expand, the rights of working people. Workers need a new deal.

Now, an alliance of social movements and members of Congress are proposing a Green New Deal to create millions of jobs by putting Americans to work making a climate-safe economy. This program meets the needs of—and has the potential to unite—the labor movement, environmentalists, and all those who have been the victims of inequality, discrimination, racism and, now, climate change.

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Planning for a Just Transition

The Labour Party’s consultation document, A Greener Britain, seeks proposals about different aspects of environmental policy. In this series of articles, Redgreenlabour supporters offer their thoughts. Please comment on these contributions which the authors may well revise and submit to the consultation in due course. We also urge you to submit your own responses to the Party – whether as individuals or through your branches, CLPs, unions, SERA or other environmental groups. The deadline is 24th June.

Question #5; ‘How can jobs be created and existing skills and workforces maintained in a future low-carbon economy?’

The transition to a sustainable economy will require many people to change their occupation. In Britain, many unions have been reluctant to take serious environmental action for fear that rapid change in employment would mean job losses, writes Andrea Grainger. Many remember Thatcher’s efforts to shut the pits which resulted in huge unemployment and the devastation of mining communities. Job losses however are not a natural consequence of the transition to a sustainable economy, but rather the result of poor planning, disrespect of working people, and overconfidence in trickle-down economics. A Just transition is possible.

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