Massachusetts Union News

It’s official… Our staff is going union!

Massachusetts Jobs with Justice - Wed, 2017-06-28 11:33
Massachusetts Jobs with Justice Staff join the Greater Boston NewsGuild – CWA   On June 26, the Staff of Jobs with Justice Massachusetts today petitioned for, and received, voluntary recognition with the NewsGuild – CWA. They will be the newest members of the Greater Boston NewsGuild – CWA, local 31032.   Members of the new unit said that being part of the NewsGuild is a natural extension of the principles that guide their work. “The staff of Jobs with Justice are committed to the principles of workplace democracy, and we know that unions are the best vehicle we have available to ensure that workplace democracy thrives.” said Lily Huang, an Organizer.   Fellow Organizer, Eric Bauer echoed this, saying, “As we advocate for unions for the workers of the Commonwealth, it is only right that we should embody our values in our own role as workers.”   In a mission statement, Jobs with Justice staffers explained why unionizing is a natural extension of the principles that guide their work:   “We believe that unionizing our staff will help to foster a worker-centered culture in our organization, allowing for full participation in important conversations about the direction and execution of our [...]

MTA releases statement on commissioner’s death

President Barbara Madeloni: “Our heartfelt condolences go out to Commissioner Chester’s family.”

UMass Lowell Adjunct Faculty: First Class Performance, Second Class Pay

Massachusetts Jobs with Justice - Mon, 2017-06-26 15:36
On June 20th, 2017, UMass Lowell held the 2nd annual Women in Leadership Conference. Founded by Chancellor Jacqueline Moloney, this conference brings together leading women professionals in business, education, government, and the nonprofit sector to share their expertise and to engage in conversations about building their careers and leading healthy and productive lives. The conference was meant to lead, empower, and inspire. This goal, though, stands in direct contradiction with UMass Lowell’s ongoing mistreatment of its adjunct faculty. UMass Lowell’s adjunct faculty, who make up 61% of the faculty at UMass Lowell, have been working under an expired contract for two years and have been fighting for parity in pay and benefits with the rest of the adjuncts in the UMass system. These adjuncts receive 32% less pay than their counterparts at UMass Boston and Amherst for doing the exact same work, which includes teaching 57% of all the undergraduate courses. The UMass Lowell Administration refuses to extend the same healthcare and retirement benefits to its adjunct faculty. Also, more than 50% of the adjunct faculty are women. There is an obvious problem when UML is promoting the financial well-being and holistic health of women while simultaneously refusing to empower [...]

June 26, 2017: JwJ Summer Workshop _ Let’s Talk: Communicating Our Cause!

Massachusetts Jobs with Justice - Mon, 2017-06-26 15:00
Massachusetts Jobs with Justice 2017 Intern/ Volunteer Education Series Third Workshop Let’s Talk: Communicating Our Cause! How we talk about the issues that matter most to us is just as important as the issues themselves. In a world where we’re constantly flooded with information, we need to communicate in a way that cuts through the clutter and leaves an impression. In this session, you will get some advice on how to write and speak with passion to tell your story and forge powerful relationships Date and time: Monday, 6/26/2017, 6:00 p.m. Workshop Leader: Natalia Berthet (Organizer at Massachusetts Jobs with Justice)

Member advocacy halts misguided DESE proposal

DESE has nixed proposed licensure regulations that would have trampled on educators' free-speech rights.

Five honored at 2017 MTA Human and Civil Rights Awards banquet

Annual event thanks “role models, risk-takers, organizers and innovators” who make the world a better place.

Time is Running Out: What We can do to Save Francisco

Massachusetts Jobs with Justice - Mon, 2017-06-19 14:25
June 16, 2017 On Friday, an urgent rally was held in front of the John F. Kennedy Federal Building in support of Francisco Rodriguez, who is facing deportation. Union members from the SEIU32BJ and supporters from various organizations rallied to protest ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement)’s decision to suddenly, and without explanation, change his next check-in date and to demand that ICE grant Francisco’s stay of removal. On Tuesday, June 13th, Francisco went to his immigration check-in and was accompanied by more than 40 community members to bear witness, support him and his family, and take a stand against unjust immigration laws and deportations. Together we chanted and sang songs of solidarity as we waited for Francisco. In the morning, he was told to return in December 13th for his next check-in, meaning he has six months to stay in the U.S. However, just six hours later, ICE called back Francisco’s lawyer and said that Francisco has to return for his check-in on July 13th with a plan ticket to El Salvador in hand. In the next few days, ICE will decide whether or not he can stay with his family in Chelsea. We need to put a spotlight on [...]

UPDATE: We Still Need Your Help to Stop Francisco’s Deportation!

Massachusetts Jobs with Justice - Mon, 2017-06-19 14:24
The fight’s not over yet! Thanks to all who have already taken action to stop Francisco’s deportation and keep him home in Chelsea! We’ve collected over 3,000 signatures across 2 petitions. You can read more about Francisco’s case below and here. On Tuesday, June 13th, Francisco went to his immigration check-in and was accompanied by more than 40 community members to bear witness, support him and his family, and take a stand against unjust immigration laws and deportations. Together we chanted and sang songs of solidarity as we waited for Francisco. In the morning, ICE said that Francisco has until Dec 13th for his next check-in, however, just six hours later, ICE said that Francisco has to return for his check-in on July 13th with travel documents. This is urgent– please call ICE and them to grant Francisco his Stay of Removal! Call: New England Regional ICE office Immigration officer Gary Roltsch: (781) 359-7500 X7625 New England Regional ICE office (Burlington, MA): 781-359-7500 (General line) Community Relations officer Alexia Koplewski: (781) 359-7511 Sample script: “Hi, my name is __ and I live in__. I am calling to ask you to grant Mr. Francisco Rodriguez Guardado’s stay of removal. His A-Number: [...]

Standing With Francisco Rodriguez

Massachusetts Jobs with Justice - Mon, 2017-06-19 14:23
Francisco Rodriguez has lived in the U.S for ten years and is a father of two children and baby on the way. He is a church goer, school committee member and is employed as a janitor at MIT. Rodriguez also owns his own carpet cleaning business. Rodriguez has never been convicted of any crimes and pays all of has taxes. Yet he is currently in the Trump administration’s crossfires. Since Trump’s inauguration, harsh deportation and unjust immigration practices have been implemented throughout the U.S. Many immigrants have been detained and taken away during their routine check-ins at the ICE. At his last check-in, Rodriguez was warned that there was a strong possibility of deportation during his next check in in June. On June 13th, Francisco  Rodriguez and his family anxiously entered the Immigrant and Customs Enforcement in Burlington, MA. But they were not alone. Outside ICE headquarters, a rally was held to support Rodriguez. People from various groups and organizations came together to fight this injustice. Groups like Jobs with Justice, Unitarian church groups, MIT student groups, members of Rodriguez’ union, SEIU32BJ, as well as others whose community has been enhanced by having Rodriguez be a part of it. During [...]

Refusing To Be Invisible and Demanding Respect: Logan Airport Workers Fight for a Living Wage

Massachusetts Jobs with Justice - Mon, 2017-06-19 14:22
June 15, 2017 The workers at Logan airport are invisible to most of us. In our frantic rush to catch a flight, it’s all too easy to take these men and women for granted. But it’s precisely because they are ignored that it’s been possible for the airline industry to treat them with contempt for so long. An obscenely low wage barely allows these workers to meet basic needs, like providing food, shelter, and health care for themselves and their families. And sometimes they aren’t even paid minimum wage. These human beings are invisible to too many of us, treated more like tools than professionals. But these workers are not staying silent. They refuse to be invisible and are demanding the respect they deserve. They have been fighting for decent wages and benefits for years, and on June 15, 2017, SEIU32BJ led a rally to show solidarity with not only union workers at Logan, but the many workers who have no union at all. How is it possible, though, that some workers at Logan could have union representation while others have none? Khalida, a member of SEIU32BJ involved with community strategic partnership, explained that the workforce at Logan is fragmented, [...]

Fair Share Amendment Passes with 134-55 Vote at the Massachusetts House of Representatives

Massachusetts Jobs with Justice - Mon, 2017-06-19 14:21
On June 14th the Fair Share Amendment passed in a 134-55 vote at the Massachusetts House of Representatives. Also known as the “millionaires tax,” the Fair Share Amendment is funded by a 4% tax on yearly incomes over $1,000,000. The tax is estimated to generate roughly 2 billion dollars in revenues, with money being allocated to social support systems and community investment. Such investments would lead to more affordable higher education, improved K-12 public schools, as well as better public transportation, roads, and bridges. During the debate on the floor of the House, detractors of the amendment faulted it for presupposing that the money collected will actually serve to improve social support systems and communities. One representative warned that, once the bill was authorized, there would be no going back. Another representative argued that a raise in taxes on the wealthy in Massachusetts would cause wealthy taxpaying business owners to flee to states with lower tax rates. In leaving Massachusetts, these entrepreneurs would bring with them their wealth, need for labor, and job market opportunities. These concerns should be considered, as funds would actually need to be properly allocated for any positive changes to be realized. However, the fact that [...]

Public Hearing on the Paid Family Medical Leave

Massachusetts Jobs with Justice - Mon, 2017-06-19 14:20
June 14, 2017 Yesterday a hearing for paid family leave was held at the Massachusetts state house. Testimony was heard from the representatives of the three bills. There was also testimony from private citizens who support the creation of paid family leave; from academics who have studied the bills and their potential effects; and from opponents of the program. A short video was shown in which local small business owners voiced their support of the program and talked about the role it could play in their business and the lives of their employees. The three bills propose to create a system that allows for the existence of a paid family leave program in Massachusetts. At its core the program would have the employers (or employers and employees) pay a small premium per employee, per year. This money would be put into a fund that employees could withdraw from in the event of a leave of absence. This would allow for the employee to retain at least some of their income, thus relieving them of the added stress of financial burden in an already difficult time. It would also allow the employer to hire a temporary replacement without having to pay [...]

Legislators’ vote sends Fair Share Amendment to 2018 ballot

Constitutional Convention overwhelmingly approves measure for second time.

JwJ 2017 Summer Workshop _ Researching to Organize: Finding the Bad Guys!

Massachusetts Jobs with Justice - Mon, 2017-06-12 12:50
Massachusetts Jobs with Justice 2017 Intern/ Volunteer Education Series Fifth Workshop Researching to Organize: Finding the Bad Guys! These days it’s clear that big money drives our politics and our economy, but who are the people behind all that money? If we want to stop corporate greed from bankrupting us all, we need to put names and faces to the 1% who run this system. Using examples tracing the big money behind charter schools, In this workshop we will learn some of the tricks of the trade for identifying the real targets in our fights. Date and time: Monday, 07/17/2017, 6:00 p.m. Workshop Leader: John Donahoe (Researcher at 1199SEIU)

JwJ 2017 Summer Workshop _ Cultural Activism: The Art of Change

Massachusetts Jobs with Justice - Mon, 2017-06-12 12:49
Massachusetts Jobs with Justice 2017 Intern/ Volunteer Education Series Sixth Workshop Cultural Activism: The Art of Change Words are important to get our points across, but art can make people feel the raw emotions behind our causes that make them want to take action. That’s why our movement needs creative tactics to reach the hearts and minds of our audience. In this interactive workshop, we’ll share different ways to incorporate culture in our organizing. Date and time: Monday, 07/25/2017, 6:00 p.m. Workshop Leader: Eroc Arroyo-Montana (Director of Cultural Organizing United for a Fair Economy)

JwJ 2017 Summer Workshop _ The Movement for Immigrant Rights

Massachusetts Jobs with Justice - Mon, 2017-06-12 12:47
Massachusetts Jobs with Justice 2017 Intern/ Volunteer Education Series Seventh Workshop The Movement for Immigrant Rights Learn more about the past and present of the ongoing struggle for the rights of immigrants in the US. From ending deportations to defending immigrant workers’ rights on the job, find out how you can join the fight! Date and time: Monday, 07/31/2017, 6:00 p.m. Workshop Leader: Edwin Argueta  (Organizer at Massachusetts Jobs with Justice)

Help Oscar, Eva, and Their Kids!

Massachusetts Jobs with Justice - Mon, 2017-06-12 11:41
Framingham Father Is Deported By ICE Oscar Millan was detained on Monday, May 22nd on his way to pick up his newborn son from the hospital. He was deported on Thursday, June 1st. A father of two and resident of Framingham for 18 years, Oscar is the primary breadwinner for his family. He, his partner Eva, and their family are beloved members of La Voz de la Comunidad and the Church of St. Stephens. The family needs lots of help and support in the upcoming weeks and months. If you have any questions, you can contact their family friend T.J  (English/Spanish) 508-816-7689. Here’s how you can help: Donate here to the family’s GoFundMe for rent and utilities; https://www.gofundme.com/framingham-family-needs-help Donate gift certificates to Market Basket or Target; Donate healthy groceries and hot dishes for the mama and her two children; Donate diapers, baby formula and clothes for their 1 month old+ male baby; Donate toys or books for their 8 year old boy and  1 month old+ male baby; Feel free to leave contact information so that the Millan family can thank you for your support, and we thank you in advance for all your help. For more information about Oscar’s struggle: About To [...]

Massachusetts Jobs with Justice 2017 Intern/Volunteer Education Series

Massachusetts Jobs with Justice - Fri, 2017-06-09 12:24
Massachusetts Jobs with Justice is offering a wide range of workshops as part of our 2017 Intern/Volunteer Education Series. These workshops will teach you all about your rights at work and how to defend them, how to communicate about issues you are passionate about, the role art plays in activism, and much more. Every workshop will begin at 6:00 pm at the Jobs with Justice office, located at 375 Centre Street, Jamaica Plain, MA 02130. You can check out the full schedule below and if you have any questions, or would like to RSVP, please email gillian@MASSJWJ.NET or call 617-524-8778. In solidarity, Jobs with Justice __________________________________________________________________________________________ Your Rights at Work: What They Are and How to Defend Them What are your legal rights at work?  How do those rights change when you join a union?  This workshop will answer all your questions about what you, your coworkers, and your boss can and can’t do on the job. Date: 6/12/17 Workshop Leader: Gillian Mason, Organizer, Massachusetts Jobs with Justice   Who’s Got the Power?: Friends, Allies, and “Enemies” in the Fight for Justice! In order to change the world – locally or globally – we first need to figure out the [...]

June 15, 2017: Solidarity With Logan Airport Workers!

Massachusetts Jobs with Justice - Fri, 2017-06-09 12:11
RALLY: SOLIDARITY WITH LOGAN AIRPORT WORKERS Low-wage workers are still fighting for dignity, respect and a living wage at Logan Airport. At a time when the airline industry is raking in billions of dollars in record profits, subcontracted workers at our nation’s airports are working for poverty wages and struggling to cover basic necessities like food, housing, and health care. This is unacceptable. Our airport should be a source of good jobs for the people who live and work in Boston. Will you take action on June 15th at Logan Airport to help them win? Date: Thursday, June 15, 2017 Time: 11:30 AM Location: East Boston Memorial Park (143 Porter St, Boston, Massachusetts 02128) — Blue Line T to ‘Airport’ Station For more information, contact Khalida Smalls at ksmalls@seiu32bj.org  or (617) 878-7460. Here’s the link to the event. Please spread words about the rally on your social media!

June 15, 2017: Martha Graham Cracker Cabaret – Things Aren’t Always What They Seem

Massachusetts Jobs with Justice - Fri, 2017-06-09 12:10
Event Description: The world’s tallest and hairiest drag queen and her band are coming for you, Boston. Save us some clam chowda and be sure to send us some Harvard students so we can teach them a thing or two. After the show, enjoy an audience talkback with Martha and Abe Rybeck, founder of Boston’s Theater Offensive. Martha Graham Cracker is considered to be Philadelphia’s best cabaret performer. Created by Dito van Reigersberg, Martha is a powerful 6 foot+ cabaret singer, comedian, and entertainer. In obvious need of manscaping, Martha and her band will provide a marvelous and moving evening of song. Martha was a year-long artist-in-residence at the National Jewish Museum and has performed at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Joe’s Pub in NYC, L’Etage, and elsewhere. Sponsored by the Jewish Arts Collaborative, Keshet, OBERON, and The Theater Offensive Find us on Facebook and Twitter Time: 7:30 pm Price: $25.00 Location: Oberon, 2 Arrow Street, Cambridge, MA https://www.keshetonline.org/event/martha-graham-cracker-cabaret-things-arent-always-what-they-seem/
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