A Green Economy Creates Good 'Green Jobs'

LIUNA, the Laborers’ International Union of North America, will join with a coalition of labor, business and environmental groups to release High Road or Low Road?  Job Quality in the New Green Economy. This new report is an in-depth, detailed and well-documented examination of how we can build America with green jobs if we make sure those newly created jobs are family supporting with good pay, benefits and working conditions.

If new green jobs live up to their potential, they won’t just help our planet, they will help working families.  But that won’t happen by creating minimum wage jobs – workers making minimum wage cannot afford to heat their homes, let alone make them energy efficient, buy hybrid cars or spend time worrying about global warming.

The bottom line is this: If it does not put green in working people’s pockets, it is not a green collar job.  If it does not enlarge and strengthen the middle class, it is not a green collar job.  And if it does not ensure workers get respect, receive good benefits and have the freedom to join a union, it is not a green collar job -- it’s just another job, like those typical of the Bush era, that drives down middle class standards.

We believe a green economy with real green collar jobs can help our country and get our economy moving now -- and keep it moving for generations to come.  But we will only succeed if we make sure that the people who build the green economy and keep it running have good jobs that allow them fully participate in that economy.  As taxpayers invest in the green economy, our government is obligated to ensure that our investment supports communities and working people.

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