PUTTING MICHIGAN BACK TO WORK
- Placement of all major corporations under social ownership and worker control under the principles of economic democracy.
- A massive state and federal public works program to rebuild our cities and communities, administered and controlled by elected assemblies of working people.
- Reopening of all closed and closing factories under workers’ control, retooled (if necessary) to produce staple items for human need.
- Creation of a Statewide Pension Authority, under democratic control of elected workers’ assemblies, to hold the assets of private pension funds and 401(k) retirement funds, and a levy against corporate assets for any pension fund deficits.
- State and federal cultural works projects to develop and bring cultural activities into working communities.
- Creation of a Workers’ Superfund to pay a worker’s full wages and benefits, as well as necessary educational and/or retraining costs, for workers who lose their job due to environmental transition, downsizing, corporate restructuring or capital flight.
- Cut the workweek with no loss of net pay or benefits to spread available work around in accordance with the aim of producing for use and public need, rather than for the maximization of private profit.
- A 100-percent capital flight tax on corporations who attempt to leave the state.
REBUILDING OUR COMMUNITIES
- Creation of a neighborhood reconstruction program, to build quality, community based housing, controlled and administered by democratically elected assemblies of construction workers and future residents.
- Rent control for all existing and future rental units based on usable square footage, and the right of tenants to organize into unions and conduct rent strikes and strikes over conditions.
- Support for the formation of housing cooperatives and nonprofit land trusts.
- Creation of a housing rehabilitation service, democratically controlled by construction workers and residents, to aid homeowners and renters in renovations and maintenance, and seasonal weatherizing.
- Repeal Act 226 of 1988, which prohibits Michigan counties, cities, villages, and townships from establishing local rent control ordinances
Citizens of Flint are still without water and the government depends on us to send bottles of water. Bottles of water! We cannot fix the issues in Flint without fixing the system that created them.
We can start by:
We can start by:
- Not electing government officials that sit on their hands and/or disregard the needs of others for financial gain
- Placing Flint under community control - no emergency financial managers
- Creating boards of elected citizens to determine and oversee community needs - then actually listening to what they have to say and help them with resources in order to meet those needs
- Bringing in professional tradesmen, volunteers and anyone who is able to train and certify unemployed, and underemployed, citizens to fix and maintain infrastructure
- Boosting their economy with good paying, unionized, jobs - fixing and maintaining their infrastructure, construction and other trades including installing solar panels
- Working with scientists and conservationists to do a massive clean up of the Flint River
- Sucking it up and providing the finances in order to fix the waterlines (which will be cheaper in the long run) and hooking their water system up to the clean water of Lake Huron - It's about saving lives!
SAFE AND EFFICIENT ACCESS TO TRAVEL
- Government-subsidized programs to expand foot and bicycle paths. Creation of pedestrian ways that exclude vehicles from downtown areas of cities and towns, accessible only by mass transit.
- Creation of fully funded high-speed rail transportation systems between the major cities in Michigan, with fares set low enough to be a viable alternative to the use of the automobile.
- Creation of an elevated train/subway system in Detroit, and commuter lines from Detroit to suburban communities.
- Subsidies for socialized mass transit so that fares are affordable to all.
- Establishment of a democratically controlled Highway Redevelopment Commission to explore ways to transform the state’s roadway infrastructure into a non-invasive, environmentally friendly system.
- Replacement of all diesel-powered buses by electric- and CNG-powered coaches.
- Establishment of state-owned auto insurance, with rates on a sliding scale based on income, administered by an elected state Insurance Commission.
- Replacement of salt for snow removal on roads with an ecologically sound chemical substitute that does not deteriorate the roads, so as to preserve our state’s resources and reduce the need to rebuild roads.
- Establishment of a state agency for road repair.
- Increase the quality of new road repairs so as not to require constant repair, which increases fuel consumption, causes accidents, and creates tension.
LIFTING THE TAX BURDEN OFF OF WORKING PEOPLE
- An amendment to Michigan’s Constitution to replace the state’s flat-rate income tax with a steeply graduated income tax structure, with people below the poverty line paying no income taxes.
- Top-bracket tax rates for millionaires and billionaires at 80 percent
- Restoration of the estate tax, capital gains tax and luxury tax on a progressive, steeply graduated scale.
- Elimination of the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, the Michigan Strategic Fund, the Venture Michigan Fund, and all other subsidies, tax breaks and credits for the benefit of corporations and individual capitalists (also known as “corporate welfare”).
- Tax benefits for renters equal to those for homeowners.
- A 100-percent tax on the profits of war goods and weapons manufacturers.
PROTECTING WORKERS' DIGNITY
- We must raise the minimum wage in Michigan to $18.00 per hour. Increasing to $10.00 in 2018, $12.00 in 2019, $14.00 in 2020, $16.00 in 2021, and $18.00 in 2022. Raise the minimum yearly salary to $36,000 for salaried workers.
- An uninterrupted weekly break, of no less than 64 hours, for all workers, with exception for flex-time.
- A minimum of three weeks paid vacation, and a minimum 24 days of personal time off, for all workers.
- Abolition of mandatory overtime. Employees working voluntary overtime must receive double pay.
- Increased unemployment compensation at a living wage and indexed to the cost of living.
- Establishment of a guaranteed annual income at a living wage for those outside the work force.
- Price controls and freezes on all staple food items and essential services, established by democratically elected assemblies of producers and consumers.
- Support for the right of any number of interested workers in a workplace to form a union and bargain with their employer, with no limits on the subjects upon which employees and unions may bargain with employers.
- Automatic union recognition based on card check and neutrality.
- Democratic control by the membership of all labor unions, independent of employer and government domination and influence.
- Support for the right of all workers, particularly workers in service industries, the unorganized, under organized and unemployed to organize labor unions, associations and cooperative societies.
- Support united labor action including secondary strikes, sympathy strikes and secondary boycotts, factory committees, and ultimately the expropriation of the work place.
- Support of the right of first-time and part-time workers to full benefits.
- Repeal of all legislation such as the 1994 Public Act 112 amendments to the Michigan Public Employment Relations Act, the federal Hatch Act, Taft-Hartley Act, and Landrum-Griffin Act, and 2012 Public Acts 348 and 349—comprising Michigan’s so-called “right-to-work” laws.
- Abolition of the National Labor Relations Board, replaced by community-based elected commissions composed of at least 50 percent working people.
- Support for the right of workers to organize workplace committees and assemblies, to hold shop meetings on company premises, elect their supervisors, and administer health and safety programs.
- Support for the right of workers, consumers and communities to information on plant safety, hazardous wastes, toxic substances, and the quality of goods and services.
- Support for the right of workers to strike over health and safety issues.
- Support for the right of all workers to organize irrespective of job titles and responsibilities, citizenship status, method of payment or sector of the economy where employed.
IMPROVING THE RURAL ECONOMY
- Formation of cooperatives to represent small and family farmers in negotiating contracts with canneries and grocery/produce distributors.
- Technological and resource incentives to small and family farmers that agree to form a cooperative.
- The right of farm workers to organize into unions to gain better wages and benefits, quality housing and working conditions, and for negotiating contracts.
- Placement of corporate-run “factory farms” into public ownership, administered and restructured by democratically elected farm workers’ assemblies.
- A parity system that guarantees farmers a full return on the cost of production.
- Creation of grants, no-interest loans, micro-credits and technical help to farmers, including help to shift farm production from non-essentials to staple foods and fibers.
- The right of farmers and farm workers to organize unions for good wages, housing, and working conditions (including the right to be protected from pesticides).
- Labeling of genetically modified foods, and the banning of genetically modified seeds designed to be sterile.
- Democratic control of agricultural research and the complete testing of agricultural products.
- Increased funding to the U.S. Department of Agriculture to carry out full inspections of domestic and imported agricultural products to make sure they meet standards for food safety.
- Full disclosure in the labeling on agricultural products, including listing the country of origin.
- Full funding for research geared toward the elimination of pesticide use.
A PEOPLE'S BUDGET, APPROVED BY THE PEOPLE
- Establish a policy of direct, popular participation in the formulation and passage of municipal, county and state budgets. These “Participatory Budgets” would be drafted by the people themselves, and adopted by elected assemblies. Communities would be presented with the amount of money that is received annually, the budget lines that could be funded and possible recommendations from an elected Budget Commission. Meeting in community assemblies, elected delegates and members of the community would debate and decide on how much each budget category would receive and when, and then adopt it.
- Working people are the most qualified to know which services should receive priority funding and which should be cut. Since working people are the majority of the population, and the recipient of the overwhelming majority of municipal, county and state services, we believe they are the most qualified to decide these issues.