CFL announces new relief fund



April 07, 2020

Chicago Federation of Labor Announces New Relief Fund for Workers Impacted by Outbreak


April 7, 2020



Chicago Labor Relief Fund to Make Direct Payments to Workers Who Have Lost Hours, Jobs


CHICAGO – Today, the Chicago Federation of Labor (CFL) and its non-profit partner the CFL Workforce and Community Initiative announced the launch of the Chicago Labor Relief Fund, an effort to make direct payments to Chicago and Cook County union workers impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak. The fund, which will receive donations from philanthropic efforts and directly from the general public, is designed to help workers who have seen their hours cut or jobs completely destroyed because of the widespread economic damage done by the pandemic.


“This outbreak has devastated the livelihoods of thousands of Chicagoland families, and we just cannot wait to get much-needed economic relief to working people,” said Chicago Federation of Labor President Bob Reiter. “The Chicago Labor Relief Fund will make direct payments to workers who are wondering how they will pay their rent or buy groceries for their family. In times of crisis, the labor movement demonstrates why we are the backbone of this city, and the CFL is proud to give back to the working women and men of this city through the Chicago Labor Relief Fund.”


The Chicago Labor Relief Fund has already been seeded with funding through the Chicago Community COVID-19 Response Fund, and that initial funding is being distributed in $500 increments to 500 families impacted by the crisis. The Chicago Labor Relief Fund will continue to accept donations from all philanthropic sources, including direct donations. Those interested in donating should visit Digital ads on social media platforms are encouraging everyone chip in and support the effort.


"Light bills, gas bills, staying on top of a car note - I was the only one working in a family of 4 before I got laid off,” said Catrinia Dailey who was laid off as a Phone Operator at the Holiday Inn Mart Plaza. “This helps with the essentials. I had food, but was struggling with the essentials, so this money is going to be a bit to everything," she added.


“The CFL Workforce and Community Initiative is proud to launch the Chicago Labor Relief Fund to help support workers during this catastrophe,” said Jay Rowell, Executive Director of the CFL Workforce and Community Initiative. “Thank you to the Chicago Community COVID-19 Response Fund — including the City of Chicago, United Way of Metropolitan Chicago, and the Chicago Community Trust — and GCM Grosvenor for their generous seed money. We would also like to thank the Family Independence Initiative who provided their payment portal as the vehicle to get funds to those most in need. Labor is proud to be a part of this team effort to support working people.”




The Chicago Federation of Labor is the third-largest central labor council of the AFL-CIO representing nearly 300 unions and labor organizations comprised of half a million union members in Chicago and Cook County.

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