Steward's Corner

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Updated: 1 hour 58 min ago

This Year I’m Thankful for the Revolt Against Two-Tier

Wed, 2021-11-24 17:51
Blog: BlogAuthor(s): Alexandra Bradbury

It’s inspiring to see members in revolt against two-tier at the farm equipment maker John Deere, the hospital chain Kaiser Permanente, the cereal maker Kellogg’s, and the parcel giant

Categories: Labor Notes

Washington Mental Health Workers Win Safety Strike

Tue, 2021-11-23 17:20
Author(s): Sarah Hughes

Nurses and mental health techs at a Tukwila, Washington, facility have won their safety strike after three and a half months on the picket line.

Washington Mental Health Workers Win Safety Strike November 23, 2021 / Sarah Hughes
Categories: Labor Notes

Buffalo Hospital Workers Beat Concessions, Win on Staffing

Fri, 2021-11-19 17:14
Blog: BlogAuthor(s): Dan DiMaggio

After five weeks on strike, 2,000 Buffalo hospital workers returned to work November 10 with what they are calling a “landmark” agreement on their top demand: safe staffing ratios.

Categories: Labor Notes

Teamsters United Takes the Wheel

Thu, 2021-11-18 15:51
Author(s): Alexandra Bradbury

This article was updated November 19 to reflect the final election results.

A new administration will soon take the helm of the 1.3 million-member Teamsters union. The Teamsters United slate swept to victory in this week's vote count, beating out their rivals 2 to 1.

It’s the first time in almost a quarter-century that a coalition backed by Teamsters for a Democratic Union has taken the driver’s seat in the international union.

Teamsters United Takes the Wheel November 18, 2021 / Alexandra Bradbury
Categories: Labor Notes

'We'll Never Be in This Position Again': Striking Deere Workers Hold Out for Better Deal

Thu, 2021-11-11 11:15
Author(s): Jonah Furman

A month into the nation’s largest work stoppage, striking John Deere workers are holding out for a better deal.

For the second time in a month, 10,000 Auto Workers at John Deere stunned both the company and the union leadership November 2 by rejecting a tentative agreement. Workers at the farm equipment manufacturer remain on strike. Company and union negotiators are set to meet today for the first time since the deal was voted down.

The vote was closer than on the first tentative agreement, which was rejected by 90 percent of members. This time, 55 percent voted no.

'We'll Never Be in This Position Again': Striking Deere Workers Hold Out for Better Deal November 11, 2021 / Jonah Furman
Categories: Labor Notes

Interview: Why I’m Voting No on the IATSE Hollywood Basic Tentative Agreement

Tue, 2021-11-09 22:20
Author(s): Sarah Hughes

Sixty thousand film and television crew members are finally set to vote on tentative agreements announced in mid-October. Emboldened by the high turnout for their strike authorization vote, many members are continuing to speak out about the long hours and dangerous conditions they endure to produce profits for Netflix, Amazon, and Disney.

Interview: Why I’m Voting No on the IATSE Hollywood Basic Tentative Agreement November 09, 2021 / Sarah Hughes
Categories: Labor Notes

Why (and How) Michigan Nurses Rebuffed a Raid on Our Union

Tue, 2021-11-09 14:42
Blog: Blog

If you thought union raids had gone out of fashion around the time of the jitterbug, think again. Raids are making a comeback, courtesy of the American Federation of Teachers.

Thousands of nurses at the University of Michigan voted in September to defend the Michigan Nurses Association (MNA), their union of 46 years, against a raid. After going public in a surprise public email on Christmas Day 2020, AFT national staff had organized a nine-month campaign to decertify this bargaining unit.

Categories: Labor Notes

Academic Workers Join Push for One Member, One Vote in the UAW

Fri, 2021-11-05 09:44
Blog: Blog

While the 10,000 United Auto Workers members on strike at John Deere have drawn the national spotlight over the past three weeks, several thousand UAW members have also struck at two other billionaire employers: Harvard and Columbia Universities.

Categories: Labor Notes

Teachers Strike against a ‘Heartless’ School Board in Biden’s Hometown

Thu, 2021-11-04 18:39
Author(s): Barbara Madeloni

It was a long time coming, but when 400 members of the Scranton Federation of Teachers marched out of the school board meeting Tuesday night singing “Solidarity Forever,” they were strike-ready.

Teachers Strike against a ‘Heartless’ School Board in Biden’s Hometown November 04, 2021 / Barbara Madeloni
Categories: Labor Notes

Viewpoint: Building Trade Unions Won’t Win Our Parking Fights Until We Catch the Striketober Spirit

Thu, 2021-11-04 13:52
Blog: Blog

A hundred thousand American workers either went on strike or authorized strikes in October, now known as Striketober. Here in the Pacific Northwest, carpenters began a courageous strike in September, rejecting four tentative agreements in an effort to win a contract that would put them more on pace with the higher-earning trades. One of their demands, to which the bosses did not concede, was fully paid parking.

Categories: Labor Notes

Steward's Corner: How to Think Like an Organizer

Wed, 2021-11-03 08:45
Author(s): Joe DeManuelle-Hall

Union stewards are expected to wear many hats: communicator, advocate, shop floor lawyer, negotiator, mediator. Co-workers rely on good stewards to stand up to management, to know the contract, and to help find solutions even when a workplace problem isn’t covered under the collective bargaining agreement.

It can be overwhelming to take on all this work by yourself. Why go it alone when you could think like an organizer? This means instead of doing all the work yourself, you find ways to spread the work around. Your goals are:

Steward's Corner: How to Think Like an Organizer November 03, 2021 / Joe DeManuelle-Hall
Categories: Labor Notes

Labor Notes News: So Many Workshops!

Tue, 2021-11-02 17:28
Blog: Blog

When a lot happens in the labor movement, a lot happens at Labor Notes. Visit labornotes.org/events for details on online workshops and stewards trainings, as well as in-person Troublemakers Schools. Some highlights:

Troublemakers Schools: Activists will gather for day-long workshops in Detroit on November 20 and Philadelphia on December 11. Masks and proof of Covid vaccine required.

Categories: Labor Notes

As Strike Looms, UC Lecturers Raise the Stakes

Mon, 2021-11-01 05:58
Blog: Blog

After more than two years of stalled negotiations, 6,000 University of California lecturers are preparing to strike. The lecturers do one-third of all teaching but earn just a fraction of what their tenure-track counterparts do, with little in the way of job security.

"I just want a living wage," said Jasper Bernes, a lecturer at the UC-Berkeley after an October 13 informational picket organized by the University Council American Federation of Teachers (UC-AFT).

Categories: Labor Notes

Auto Workers to Vote on Direct Elections for Officers

Mon, 2021-09-27 15:15
Author(s): Jonah Furman

United Auto Workers members will soon vote in an unprecedented referendum to decide whether the union’s 400,000 working members and nearly 600,000 retirees will directly elect their top officers. Ballots hit the mail October 19 and are due back November 29.

The UAW’s executive officers are currently elected to four-year terms by delegates at its convention. An “Administration Caucus” has dominated these positions for the past seven decades, using the powers of appointment available to International officers to wield tight political control.

Auto Workers to Vote on Direct Elections for Officers September 27, 2021 / Jonah Furman
Categories: Labor Notes

Viewpoint: The Battle Continues to Save the Puerto Rican Teachers' Pension

Sat, 2021-09-25 10:14
Blog: Blog

This piece, from American Federation of Teachers Executive Vice President Evelyn DeJesus, is a response to a Viewpoint we published earlier this week, “The AFT Shouldn’t Be Negotiating Away Puerto Rican Teachers’ Pensions,” by the MORE Caucus of New York City’s United Federation of Teachers.—Editors

Categories: Labor Notes

'If Your House Is On Fire You Run': Workers Strike for Safety At Understaffed Mental Health Center

Fri, 2021-09-24 11:00
Author(s): Sarah Hughes

A terrifying scene unfolded the evening of August 1 at Cascade Behavioral Health Center in Tukwila, a suburb of Seattle. A volatile patient had stolen a badge and set of keys from an employee and was running between treatment units for mental health and addiction, taunting patients, vandalizing offices, making lewd comments, touching female staff and patients, and lashing out at attempts to restrain him.

A “Code Gray” was called—a signal for staff to rush to help restrain the man before he could hurt himself or others.

'If Your House Is On Fire You Run': Workers Strike for Safety At Understaffed Mental Health Center September 24, 2021 / Sarah Hughes
Categories: Labor Notes

Viewpoint: Climate Justice Must Be a Top Priority for Labor

Tue, 2021-09-21 14:30

Today’s existential crisis for humanity is the immediate need to shift from fossil fuels to renewable energy. All of us have to. Everywhere. For workers and for our communities there is no more pressing matter than this.

We need to begin a discussion among co-workers, creating demands and acting on them at the workplace and bargaining table. We need to show up at local union meetings, central labor councils, and town halls supporting demands that move us toward a fossil fuel-free future.

Viewpoint: Climate Justice Must Be a Top Priority for Labor September 21, 2021 / Peter Knowlton and John Braxton
Categories: Labor Notes

Washington Carpenter Revolt Swells Picket Lines

Fri, 2021-09-17 18:30
Blog: BlogAuthor(s): Luis Feliz Leon

Two thousand Washington carpenters went on strike yesterday, out of 6,600 who currently work under the master agreement with the Association of General Contractors (AGC). Five jobs were picketed, including construction projects at Facebook’s Building X, the Microsoft’s Campus in Redmond, and Alphabet’s Google.

“I didn’t know what to expect. People can talk on Facebook, but you don’t know until it’s time for people to show up,” said Joe Rice, a general foreman at Local 30.

Categories: Labor Notes

After Voting Down Four Tentative Agreements, Washington Carpenters Strike

Wed, 2021-09-15 16:38
Author(s): Luis Feliz Leon

After narrowly rejecting a contract offer, the union representing 11,600 working carpenters in Washington state is set to start a strike tomorrow.

It’s the fourth offer that members have nixed. A scrappy band of rank and filers known as the Peter J. McGuire Group organized the no vote over inadequate raises—despite pressure from union leaders, who were promoting the deal. They are also seeking reimbursements for high parking costs, increased employer contributions to health care and pension funds, and stronger sexual harassment protections.

After Voting Down Four Tentative Agreements, Washington Carpenters Strike September 15, 2021 / Luis Feliz Leon
Categories: Labor Notes