As Maine’s workers prepare to celebrate Labor Day this weekend, Maine’s largest labor unions are making clear what the next priority is in the fight for workers’ rights in Maine—re-electing Governor Janet Mills and keeping Paul LePage and his virulently anti-labor policies out of the Blaine House. Governor Mills has so far been endorsed by the Maine AFL-CIO, Maine Education Association, and Maine Service Employee Association, each of which praised her record of fighting to expand protections for workers and their families.

Each of the unions also made clear that a third term for LePage is a dire threat to Maine’s workers. LePage once insisted that “I don’t care about labor laws or protections,” and chipped away at workers’ rights by:

  • Pushing anti-union right-to-work legislation.

  • Overseeing an anemic Department of Labor that in each of his last two years in office returned to workers less than half the unpaid wages recovered by the Mills administration last year, despite estimates suggesting Maine workers may have lost up to $30 million in 2017 due to wage theft.

  • Dialing back Maine’s child labor protections because “employers could benefit.”

  • Spending years fighting any form of minimum wage increase for Maine workers, even after voters approved an increase in a 2016 referendum.

  • Vetoing a bill to ensure Maine kept up with federal requirements on tracking and reporting violations of workplace safety laws

“Labor Day weekend should be a time to relax, enjoy the end of Maine’s beautiful summer, and celebrate hard-won protections for Maine’s workers and the contributions they make to our state,” said Drew Gattine, Chair of the Maine Democratic Party. “Unfortunately, because of Paul LePage’s campaign to retake the Blaine House and once again wage war on Maine’s workers, we have to keep fighting. Governor Mills has been a champion for labor protections in Maine, and our state’s workers can’t afford to lose her.”

Since taking office, Governor Mills has has cracked down on wage theft, child labor, and hour violations, and lowered costs and made health care and child care access easier for Maine’s working families.