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Congressional candidate John Callahan endorsed by Pennsylvania AFL-CIO

08.31.10

SEPTEMBER 2010, Allentown/Bethlehem/Easton edition of The Union News

Congressional candidate John Callahan endorsed by Pennsylvania AFL-CIO

BY PAUL TUCKER
THEUNIONNEWSABE@AOL.COM

REGION, August 17th- The United States House of Representatives (15th Legislative District) Democratic candidate, Bethlehem Mayor John Callahan, has received the endorsement of the Pennsylvania State American Federation of Labor and the Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO) in Harrisburg for the November election. Mr. Callahan and Independent candidate Jake Towne are challenging incumbent Republican Congressman Charlie Dent.

In the Primary election in May, Mr. Dent defeated fellow Republican Matt Benol while Mr. Callahan had no challengers.

Mr. Dent is seeking a fourth two-year term in representing the Lehigh Valley in Washington, DC. Mr. Dent’s labor voting record has decreased each term since first being elected. He voted against raising the minimum wage, voted against providing loans to the American automobile makers and voted against the Employee Free Choice Act/Card Check (EFCAct).

AFL-CIO delegates met on August 12th and announced Mr. Callahan was endorsed by the labor federation for the November election.

The newspaper previously reported Mr. Callahan summitted a AFL-CIO candidate questionnaire indicating he would support the labor community if elected.

According to the questionnaire, Mr. Callahan would vote for passage of EFCAct.

He would also oppose a national “right-to-work” bill that would prohibit unionized workers and their employers from voluntarily agreeing to “union security” contract language. He vowed to support the raising of the federal minimum wage and automatic adjustments on an annual basis of the mimimum wage.

Allentown/Bethlehem/Easton MSA unemployment rate decreases slightly to 9.7 percent

08.31.10

SEPTEMBER 2010, Allentown/Bethlehem/Easton edition of The Union News

MSA unemployment rate decreases slightly to 9.7 percent

BY PAUL LEESON
THEUNIONNEWSABE@AOL.COM

LEHIGH VALLEY, August 4th- According to labor data provided by the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry, Center for Workforce Information and Analysis in Harrisburg, the Allentown/Bethlehem/Easton Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) seasonally adjusted unemployment rate is 9.7 percent, decreasing by two-tenths of a percentage point from the previous month. The MSA includes Lehigh, Northampton, and Carbon Counties of Pennsylvania and Warren County, New Jersey. Twelve months ago the unemployment rate for the region was 8.8 percent.

There are fourteen Metropolitan Statistical Area’s in Pennsylvania and the Allentown/Bethlehem/Easton Metropolitan Statistical Area is tied with the Erie MSA and the Williamsport MSA for the second highest unemployment rate. The Scranton/Wilkes-Barre/Hazleton MSA, and the Johnstown MSA, are tied for the highest unemployment rate at 10.2 percent.

The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in Pennsylvania is 9.2 percent, unchanged from the previous report, which was released approximately four weeks ago. There are 591,000 Pennsylvania residents without jobs, but the number does not include residents that have exhausted their unemployment benefits and stopped looking for work.

Pennsylvania has a seasonally adjusted workforce of 6,437,000 and 5,847,000 of them have employment. The national seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was reported to be 9.5 percent, decreasing by two-tenths of a percentage point from the previous report. However, the reason the unemployment rate decreased was because of the workers that have exhausted their benefits and have stopped looking for work. Unemployed workers in Pennsylvania can receive up to 99 weeks of benefits. Should they be employed longer than 99 weeks, they will no longer be counted in the labor data.

There are 14,623,000 residents nationally unemployed but counting workers that have exhausted their benefits or have been unable to find full-time work there are more than 20 million Americans without jobs.

The State College MSA has the lowest unemployment rate in Pennsylvania at 6.5 percent with the Lebanon MSA the second lowest at 7.6 percent.

Northampton County has the lowest rate in the MSA at 9.5 percent and Carbon County has the highest at 11.3 percent. Lehigh County’s unemployment rate is 9.8 percent.