Statement of New York State AFL-CIO President Mario Cilento on Siemens Energy 

Albany, NY - The lives of hundreds of dedicated employees, their families, and an entire community has been upended by the callous decision of Siemens Energy to dramatically reduce the workforce at its Dresser-Rand facility in Olean.

The fact the company did not even sit down with workers or consult with the union before announcing the elimination of hundreds of jobs is unconscionable and frankly, unacceptable.

Albany, NY - John Sweeney was one of the true giants of the labor movement.

At one point in his decades-long career as a union activist and labor leader, he served proudly on the board of the New York State AFL-CIO where we felt his visionary leadership and devotion to our movement firsthand.

Born in the Bronx in 1934, John found a calling to improve the lives of working people and passionately fought to organize workers rising to president of the National AFL-CIO until his retirement in 2009.

The NYS AFL-CIO and its affiliates have worked tirelessly to enact safety standards and protocols for essential workers throughout the pandemic and to ensure that those workers and their families who have become sick or died receive the medical care, wage replacement and death benefits necessary. Passage of quarantine sick leave, death benefit and workplace safety standards for public sector workers and a slew of related executive orders and guidance from various state agencies on these issues are just some of the ways we have fought the effects of COVID-19.

 It goes without saying that cutting health care funding in any way during the worst health care crisis in our history makes no sense at all. Likewise, cutting any other vital public services – mental health, education, transportation, assistance for the elderly or the many other vital public programs that support our communities will be counterproductive to a quick recovery.

On behalf of the 2.5 million members of the New York State AFL-CIO I want to wish everyone in the New York State legislature and all labor representatives who work in Albany a healthy and Happy New Year. Given the circumstances of the ongoing heath crisis caused by the pandemic and the disastrous effect that it has had on our economy, our jobs and the state budget, it would be an understatement to say we have challenging times ahead.

Albany, NY - "We congratulate New York’s Senior Senator Chuck Schumer on his imminent elevation to Majority Leader.  We also thank Georgia’s Labor Movement and union members from New York and all across the country who helped deliver Tuesday’s victory for working people," said Mario Cilento, president of the New York State AFL-CIO.