L.A. Labor Shows the Way to a “Green New Deal”

The LA Fed is going green. Again.

In a resolution passed this week, the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor, AFL-CIO (LA FED) is advocating for “a Green New Deal or similar effort” to address climate change and economic inequality.

The LA Fed envisions an initiative that provides opportunities for women and people of color as well as people from low-income communities. Ideally, the Green New Deal would protect existing union jobs and create new ones.

Under the resolution, the LA Fed has committed to continue its support for policies and programs driven by affiliates and allies that address the climate change crisis, increase safety and air quality on industrial sites with an emphasis on sustainability and renewable energy.

“The Los Angeles labor movement has spent years fighting for a better environment through building worker power,” LA Fed President Rusty Hicks, said in a statement. “The window to address a looming climate disaster is shrinking dramatically, and we already see working people’s lives bearing the brunt of that disaster, in their homes and at their jobs, fighting fires, navigating floods, and enduring rising temperatures and dirtier air.”

“Economic inequality and threats to the environment are deeply intertwined, and a Green New Deal framework is vital to fighting both.” Hicks continued, “We don’t have time to pit jobs against the environment. We never did.”

Previous green campaigns championed by the LA Fed and its affiliates have included reducing car pollution through the expansion of a city rail system and ensuring clean and safe water across Los Angeles County with the passage of Measure W.

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