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How We're Surviving Right to Work: Boston Postal Workers Use Grievances to Build the Union

Tue, 05/16/2017 - 13:53
How We're Surviving Right to Work: Boston Postal Workers Use Grievances to Build the Union May 16, 2017 / Alexandra Bradbury<? if(isset($entity->premium) and $entity->premium == 1) { echo "Print Only"; } ?> Dispatches from the Front Lines of Right to Work

The open shop is the rule for private sector workers in 28 “right-to-work” states, for public sector workers in 25 states, and for federal workers all over this country. That means workers covered by a union contract get to enjoy the benefits of representation without being members or paying dues.

How We're Surviving Right to Work: Oil Refinery Workers Get People in Motion

Tue, 05/16/2017 - 11:53
How We're Surviving Right to Work: Oil Refinery Workers Get People in Motion May 16, 2017 / Alexandra Bradbury<? if(isset($entity->premium) and $entity->premium == 1) { echo "Print Only"; } ?> Dispatches from the Front Lines of Right to Work

The open shop is the rule for private sector workers in 28 “right-to-work” states, for public sector workers in 25 states, and for federal workers all over this country. That means workers covered by a union contract get to enjoy the benefits of representation without being members or paying dues.

Book Review: How Electrical Workers Powered Up Their Union

Fri, 05/12/2017 - 13:03

For unions in corporate America, it’s always been hard times. Even in labor’s heyday—the 1940s, ’50s, and ’60s—unions had to struggle for everything. Plus, back then organizers risked being tarred as stooges for Moscow.

Interview: The Pitfalls of 'Buy American'

Thu, 05/11/2017 - 17:28
Interview: The Pitfalls of 'Buy American' May 11, 2017 / Chris Brooks<? if(isset($entity->premium) and $entity->premium == 1) { echo "Print Only"; } ?>

Backed by a huge banner reading “Buy American—Hire American,” President Trump declared in March that his administration would make the U.S. the “car capital of the world” again.

“For decades, I have raised the alarm over unfair foreign trade practices that have robbed communities of their wealth and robbed our people of their ability to provide for their families,” Trump said. “They’ve stolen our jobs, they’ve stolen our companies, and our politicians sat back and watched, hopeless. Not anymore.”

Peter Winkels, a Hormel Strike Leader, 1948-2017

Tue, 05/09/2017 - 16:23

Peter Winkels, the former business agent for Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) Local P-9—which gained worldwide fame for its 1980s strike against the highly profitable Hormel Co.—died on April 23. Winkels, who had suffered from diabetes and other illnesses, was 69.

How Black Lives Matter Came to Philadelphia’s Schools

Mon, 05/08/2017 - 12:13

When teachers in Seattle planned a Black Lives Matter action in response to an incident of violent racism last October, our caucus of teachers in Philadelphia got inspired.

Seattle’s John Muir Elementary had received bomb threats after planning a motivational event where elementary students on their way into school would be greeted by hundreds of African American men. After the threats, the union’s representative assembly voted to support the event, and thousands of educators wore Black Lives Matter T-shirts to support their students of color.

Beyond $15: New Book Shows Why Community Allies Are Crucial

Fri, 05/05/2017 - 12:04

Editors’ note: The nation’s first successful fight for a $15 minimum wage ordinance was won in the small city of SeaTac, Washington, in 2013. A new book by one of the campaign’s leaders, Jonathan Rosenblum, tells how they did it.

Philadelphia Union Wins Equal Pay for Immigrant Nurses

Fri, 05/05/2017 - 10:03
Philadelphia Union Wins Equal Pay for Immigrant Nurses May 05, 2017 / Samantha Winslow<? if(isset($entity->premium) and $entity->premium == 1) { echo "Print Only"; } ?>

It started when a few nurses at Temple University Hospital told stewards that they weren’t being paid for their experience.

One of the first to speak up was Jessy Palathinkal, who had become a nurse in India in 1990. She got her U.S. nursing license when she moved here in 1995. But when she started working at Temple, her placement on the pay scale was as though those five years of nursing never happened.

She asked why. Human Resources told her the hospital didn’t count years of experience in foreign countries.

Union Meeting Exercise: The 'Right to Work' Stress Test

Wed, 05/03/2017 - 09:17
Union Meeting Exercise: The 'Right to Work' Stress Test May 03, 2017 / Labor Notes Staff<? if(isset($entity->premium) and $entity->premium == 1) { echo "Print Only"; } ?> */ /*-->*/

As the labor movement stares down the threat of national “right-to-work” legislation, we’ve been getting more requests for resources to help union activists get ready. To bring our new Labor Notes “Preparing for Right to Work” workshop to your local, email training[at]labornotes[dot]org. Meanwhile, here is a short exercise you can try in your next union meeting.

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