In This Section

Newsletter for the Movement for Economic, Climate, and Racial Justice


A new report by Columbia University and Robin Hood shows that 1 in 4 children in NYC lived in poverty in 2022, the highest rate since 2015. What happened after 2015 that alleviated some of that financial precarity? Studies show it has to do with a win by the worker-led Fight for 15 movement: Governor Andrew Cuomo joined the call and raised the minimum wage to $15/hr in a state. Raise the wage and poverty goes down? Funny how that works. And yet, we find ourselves today with a Raise Up NY coalition that is fighting tooth and nail against the highest levels of poverty in almost a decade. Two steps forward, two steps back. So what’s the point?

The All-Nite Images 

Historian and journalist Vijay Prashad’s observation that “history jumps in zigs-and-zags” is the spiritual cousin of Angela Davis’ call that “freedom is a constant struggle”. There is no straight pathway to victory, and it will take disciplined struggle to get there. What New York do we want to see a decade from now? Is your vision confined to the scope of the shareholder’s quarterly profit report or the length of your office term? Zig. Or does your vision uphold the values of a constant struggle that centers a multigenerational shift towards a green economy that works for all? Zag. If our leaders aren’t asking themselves these questions, we’ll be up in Albany this budget season to make sure they answer.


Together, we can win a stronger, more resilient New York in 2024. Please consider donating to ALIGN so we can continue building coalitions fighting for economic, climate, and racial justice.





We’re Not Leaving Upstate Workers Behind

This month, Raise Up NY went up to Albany for a lobby day to let elected leaders know that Gov. Kathy Hochul’s minimum wage raise simply doesn’t do working class New Yorkers justice, especially upstate workers. In other words, we’re not done fighting. 

Under Hochul’s minimum wage deal, upstate workers only earn $16/hour, while downstate workers get $17. In addition, there is a dangerous loophole that would stop minimum wage increases during times when unemployment increases. Let’s be clear: these were provisions pushed by corporations and their business lobbyists to put profits before workers. It is also based on a false premise that upstate workers can survive on a lower standard of living, where upstate rent and cost of living data says otherwise

New Yorkers are struggling. The Raise Up NY coalition pushed the Governor to win a modest increase that will alleviate some of that burden. That’s a win. But we can’t sit back and celebrate when we know that the Governor’s political compromises lead to missed meals or the threat of eviction. We came to Albany in the dead of winter because we know that the dollar difference in upstate New York is worth fighting for. More importantly, it sets the stage for bigger, transformative wins ahead.


NYS is a leader… in warehouse worker injuries.

We have a solution.

Keith, a warehouse worker in upstate New York, talks about their workplace injury

and the need for the Warehouse Worker Injury Reduction Act. Photo by Alex Moore.

Keith is a warehouse worker who was badly injured at an Amazon warehouse in upstate New York. A computer desk hit the base of his neck. Amazon’s on-site care gave him aspirin and an ice pack and sent him back to work. This is unacceptable. And sadly, not an isolated incident. 

A new report by National Employment Law Project shows the increasingly alarming data surrounding New York’s warehouse injuries. Here are a few numbers that will give you second thoughts about the joy of same-day delivery:

  • One in 11 New York State warehouse workers experiences an injury requiring medical attention each year.
  • The New York State warehouse worker injury rate is 54% higher than the national average for warehouse workers.
  • Warehouse workers are injured more frequently than workers in any other industry in New York State.

The good news is that we’re already winning the building blocks to get injury numbers down. We won the Warehouse Worker Protection Act at the end of 2022, which added more transparency to the dangerous quotas placed on workers. Keith is now joining us to fight for the Warehouse Worker Injury Reduction Act so that warehouse workers are designed to keep warehouses safe. New Yorkers love to be #1. Let’s make New York the safest state to be a warehouse worker.

Executive Director Theodore Moore speaks in Albany to call for the 

Warehouse Worker Injury Reduction Act. Photo by Alex Moore.


NYC Students Need Climate-Resilient Schools

Climate Works for All rallies outside of NYC City Hall to call for Green Healthy Schools.

Photo by Ellie Lau.

At the end of January, Mayor Adams’ State of The City was filled with wisdom to #GetStuffBuilt and reminded us to #StayFocused and #Grind. Thanks Eric. But one critical thing the Mayor didn’t address is NYC students’ vulnerability to the climate crisis. 

Recently in an excellent article in City Limits, Jenille Scott, ALIGN’s Climate Director reminded us of the cycle we are stuck in:  “If we’re not investing in upgrading our schools and developing that resilience to expected storms now, we will end up spending more money to fix the damage later.” Hurricane Sandy cost 42 New Yorkers their lives and the taxpayers $19 billion dollars. Our Green, Healthy Schools campaign is about preventing that damage and heartbreaking loss as much as it is about creating safety, stability, and wellness in our community. It’s a fight against a rising body count caused by climate disasters and economic austerity.Faiza Azam, ALIGN’s labor and climate organizer, talked to Prism about the crux of our campaign: “Ensuring that Mayor Adams invests in Green, Healthy Schools will create thousands of jobs, save the city billions, and protect New Yorkers, especially those in working-class communities who live in areas that are historically disadvantaged.” That’s a vision that young New Yorkers can get behind. It’s a good thing they are fighting for it too.


ALIGN in the News

Spectrum News 1 – Injury rate among New York warehouse workers highest in nation

Politico PM Newsletter –  New York #1

City and State NY – Report: Warehouse injuries in New York are on the rise

Prism – NYC climate activists say the city isn’t doing enough to fight for green schools – 1 of every 10 workers at Amazon’s distribution center in Clay was injured in 2022

City Limits – How Climate Change is Hitting NYC Public Schools

The Chief Leader – Employers who rip off workers could be stripped of their ability to do business

Politico NY – Waging battle on the minimum wage

Staten Island Live – 2 Staten Island Amazon warehouses dubbed dangerous by labor coalition


ALIGN can’t do it alone. We need your support to sustain our movement and keep winning in 2024. Can you make a donation to fight for our vision for economic, climate, and racial justice