Teachers’ strikes: The rank and file takes the lead

By MARK BRUNT Across the country, teachers have taken West Virginia’s lead after a successful wildcat strike. In Kentucky, legislators passed a teacher pension reform bill, and, although a strike on the specific day was not planned, so many teachers called out on March 30 that 20 counties were forced to close schools. They remained … Continue reading Teachers’ strikes: The rank and file takes the lead

Negotiations stall at UConn, graduate employees organize sit-in

By UCONN YOUTH FOR SOCIALIST ACTION  Since Oct. 19, 2017, University of Connecticut’s Graduate Employee Union-UAW Local 6950 has been in negotiations with the university administration for a second collective bargaining agreement. Under the leadership of university President Susan Herbst’s administration and the state appointed Board of Directors, the university has hired the union-busting law … Continue reading Negotiations stall at UConn, graduate employees organize sit-in

Hilton hotel workers walk out for a good contract

By ERNIE GOTTA — STAMFORD, Conn. — Workers at the Stamford Hilton Hotel walked off the job Thursday, March 8, to strike for a good contract. They picketed in front of the entry way for nearly two hours, chanting, “No contract, No Peace.” [See the video:  https://www.facebook.com/melissa.abbe.7/videos/10214115775642871/  ] Members of International Women’s Strike Connecticut joined … Continue reading Hilton hotel workers walk out for a good contract

West Virginia teachers’ strike: A militant model for the labor movement

By HUGH STEPHENSON — CHARLESTON, W.V. — West Virginia teachers stunned politicians, the media, and labor officials across the country when they launched a nine-day wildcat strike demanding wage increases and better health-care benefits for all state employees. Some 27,000 teachers from all 55 counties of West Virginia walked out of their classrooms on Feb. … Continue reading West Virginia teachers’ strike: A militant model for the labor movement

Virginia poultry workers under attack by Cargill

By HUGH STEPHENSON  While teachers in West Virginia were occupying the state capitol building and continued their wildcat strike for increased wages and better health care, a Cargill poultry processing plant in nearby Dayton, Va., pursued its campaign to deny the right of plant workers to organize a union. Cargill is an international food conglomerate … Continue reading Virginia poultry workers under attack by Cargill

Labor Briefing for March 2018: West Virginia teachers strike

By BILL ONASCH West Virginia “Wildcats”—Technically, public sector collective bargaining is illegal in West Virginia. But practically, governors have negotiated in the past with teachers—and school service employees including bus drivers, cafeteria, clerical, and maintenance workers—for salary and benefit packages passed by the legislature. While perhaps better than nothing, the teachers have been falling behind. … Continue reading Labor Briefing for March 2018: West Virginia teachers strike

A surefire plan to address gun violence

By BRUCE LESNICK With 346 mass shootings in the U.S. in 2017 and 34 in the first two months of 2018—including the Parkland, Fla., tragedy that cost the lives of 17 high school students and injured 15 others—many are justifiably angry and frustrated. Mainstream politicians dither, debating how best to treat the symptoms of the … Continue reading A surefire plan to address gun violence

Brooklyn meeting builds March 8 women’s strike

By CHRISTINE MARIE On Jan. 30, around 100 people gathered at Verso Books in Brooklyn, N.Y., to participate in the launch of a campaign of action in solidarity with the International Women’s Strike (IWS) that will be held around the globe on March 8—a date celebrated as International Women’s Day by the working-class movement. This … Continue reading Brooklyn meeting builds March 8 women’s strike

Labor and climate groups support Transit Equity Day

By BILL ONASCH On Feb. 5, civil rights, trade union, student, church, and environmental activists in communities across North America will come together in a variety of events to call attention to a looming crisis in public transit. The diversity of these groups indicates that they recognize not only the urgent need to save what … Continue reading Labor and climate groups support Transit Equity Day

Women build resistance to sexual harassment on the job

By ERNIE GOTTA The movement of working women and the fightback against sexual harassment, abuse, and rape on the job is growing. The movement is challenging past practices of human resource departments and management everywhere that are guilty of sweeping sexual harassment complaints under the rug. For generations, women have been silenced on the job … Continue reading Women build resistance to sexual harassment on the job

Labor Briefing: January 2018

By BILL ONASCH Overcoming Hang-Ups—A New York Times story about a Communications Workers of America contract settlement after a long, often bitter fight opened: “Stemming the tide of rising economic insecurity for service workers, a major union has won significant job protection and increased pay for about 20,000 AT&T wireless employees, as well as a commitment … Continue reading Labor Briefing: January 2018

Ontario Federation of Labour opts for political action

By JULIUS ARSCOTT The Ontario Federation of Labour convention, held in Toronto, Nov. 20 to 24, saw several large affiliates that had withheld dues for four years rejoin the House of Labour in Canada’s most populous province. The dues strike by OPSEU, SEIU, and ONA, actuated by a factional battle between conservative union bureaucrats and … Continue reading Ontario Federation of Labour opts for political action

Victory! Hilton workers in Stamford, Conn., vote “yes,” form union

By ERNIE GOTTA (Socialist Action) and WILLIAM LEWIS (Left Voice) On Monday, Dec. 4, workers at the Hilton Stamford Hotel voted overwhelmingly in favor of forming a union. With 110 for and only five against, it was a great victory for workers’ power and promises a better future for over 120 workers. The workers decided … Continue reading Victory! Hilton workers in Stamford, Conn., vote “yes,” form union

Students confront Stamford hotel management

By CONNECTICUT STUDENTS — STAMFORD, Conn. — On Nov. 27, a delegation of students from across Connecticut arrived to tell management at the Hilton Hotel in Stamford that they stand in solidarity with the workers organizing a union. The union vote will take place Dec. 4 after three weeks of management’s anti-union intimidation campaign. We … Continue reading Students confront Stamford hotel management

Rank and file take on company intimidation meetings in Stamford union drive

By ERNIE GOTTA  — STAMFORD, Conn. — It’s 9 p.m. on a Monday night, and Marvin Castaneda, a union banquet server at the Hyatt hotel, is making phone calls to Hilton hotel workers. Initially, he leaves messages. Any unrecognizable number the Hilton workers won’t pick up. They think it might be the company or one of … Continue reading Rank and file take on company intimidation meetings in Stamford union drive

Hilton hotel workers in Stamford, Conn., demand a union!

By HENRY ERIC and C.J. LAPOINTE “Over 85% of us have decided to form this union!” Lupe Martinez, a banquet server, declared as a mass of workers from the Hilton Hotel in Stamford, Conn., confronted General Manager Robert Langevin with their demand for union recognition. The workers’ cheers filled the lobby as Langevin stood there, … Continue reading Hilton hotel workers in Stamford, Conn., demand a union!

Labor Briefing, Nov. 2017

By BILL ONASCH No VIPs in St Louis—The AFL-CIO quadrennial convention to elect officers and pass policy resolutions was held in St. Louis, Oct. 22-25. While many of the biggest unions—the National Education Association, Service Employees International Union, Teamsters, and Carpenters—are not affiliated, the federation still represents 12.5 million workers. In response to police killings … Continue reading Labor Briefing, Nov. 2017

Tragic construction site murder was avoidable

By a WORKING CARPENTER On Oct. 5, a recently fired carpenter, Samuel Perry, 42, arrived at a Midtown Manhattan job site to pick up his last paycheck. He shot his foreman, 37-year-old Christopher Sayers, twice, killing him. He then turned the gun on himself. Both men were members of Carpenters’ Local 212, a concrete construction … Continue reading Tragic construction site murder was avoidable

Fast food workers walked out on Labor Day 2017

By ANN MONTAGUE On this year’s Labor Day, Sept. 4, there were more marches and rallies than in previous years. Several U.S. cities had large labor actions anchored in fast-food walkouts. Britain saw its first strikes against McDonald’s Corporation; activists chose U.S. Labor Day as a nod to the birthplace of the Fight For 15 … Continue reading Fast food workers walked out on Labor Day 2017