Senate Blocks Sick Leave Plan, Imposes Rail Contract in Plainly Anti-Union Move

In a blatantly anti-union move, the Senate overwhelmingly voted on Thursday to override the will of thousands of union railroad workers and impose a labor contract that several unions have voted down in recent months. The resolution, which passed the House on Wednesday, passed 80 to 15 in the Senate, far surpassing the 60 votes needed to move forward. An amendment deemed crucial by union members… Source Source / Read More: Senate Blocks Sick Leave Plan, Imposes Rail Contract in Plainly Anti-Union Move

“Every Worker Deserves Paid Sick Leave”: Progressives Rally Behind Rail Workers

As the House prepares to vote Wednesday morning to force the adoption of a rail contract and avert a rail strike, a growing number of progressives in Congress are calling for the inclusion of a key sick leave demand for which unions and workers have pleaded for months. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont) appears to be leading the charge for the provision in Congress, telling reporters it is “outrageous” that the agreement, negotiated with the White House in September, lacks union members’ paid sick leave request. He is planning to demand a Senate vote on a provision to provide workers with…

NLRB Seeks Nationwide Court Order Barring Starbucks From Firing Union Activists

A federal labor official filed a petition in federal court Tuesday requesting a “nationwide cease and desist order” against Starbucks to block the company from continuing to fire pro-union workers in its efforts to block their unionization campaign, which has seen remarkable success over the past year. National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) Regional Director Elizabeth Kerwin has requested that a court order Starbucks to stop “discharging employees at any of its stores in the United States and its territories for supporting the Union or any other labor organization.” Such an action would “mitigate the chilling effect” that firings have had…

AOC Says Her Twitter Account Hasn’t Worked Properly Since She Criticized Musk

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-New York) hit back at Twitter CEO Elon Musk on the website on Wednesday after Musk, perhaps bothered by comments Ocasio-Cortez made earlier that week, attempted to criticize her in a tweet. Musk tweeted a screenshot of Ocasio-Cortez’s merchandise website, showing a campaign sweatshirt on sale for $58, with the price circled in an attempt to criticize the lawmaker for selling merchandise at that price point. “Proud of this and always will be,” Ocasio-Cortez shot back. “My workers are union, make a living wage, have full healthcare, and aren’t subject to racist treatment in their workplaces. Items…

Starbucks Union Celebrates as Last of 7 Fired Memphis Organizers Is Reinstated

The union behind Starbucks workers’ remarkably successful union drive is celebrating as a group of seven workers known as the “Memphis Seven” have been reinstated after the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) ruled that they were illegally fired by the company. According to Starbucks Workers United, the workers have all returned to their jobs at the now-unionized store as of Saturday, a “triumphant” win for the union, it said. In February, Starbucks fired a group of workers at a unionizing store in Memphis, Tennessee, who the union said made up nearly the entirety of the organizing committee at the store.…

Starbucks Kept List of Pro-Union Employees to Punish, Ex-Manager Says

At least at one point in Starbucks’s anti-union campaign, the company’s upper management maintained a list of pro-union employees that they encouraged managers to seek out and punish, newly unveiled testimony from a former Starbucks manager reveals. David Almond, who used to manage several Starbucks stores in the Buffalo area, said in testimony under oath in August that he had been read a list of workers that the higher ups at Starbucks suspected were pro-union, and told to comb through their records to find a nonunion issue for reprimanding them. The explosive revelation was first reported by Bloomberg, who had…

Workers Make $1.3 Million More Through Their Careers When They’re in a Union

As a union wave grips workers across the U.S. seeking more control over their working conditions and wages, new research illustrates the vast material benefits waiting in store for workers if they unionize their workplaces. A new study published in Cornell University’s Industrial and Labor Relations Review finds that workers who are in a union throughout their careers make $1.3 million more than workers who were never in a union; union members typically make $3.37 million in lifetime earnings, versus $2.08 million for nonunion workers – an increase of over 60 percent. This wage increase comes despite the fact that…

Starbucks Union Organizer Says He Was Fired for Wearing Suicide Awareness Pin

A Starbucks union organizer in Buffalo says that he was fired by the company for refusing to remove a mental health awareness pin that he was wearing to honor a coworker who died earlier this year. As reported by Bloomberg, Starbucks fired prominent union organizer and barista Will Westlake on Tuesday. Westlake worked at one of the stores that had originally petitioned to unionize last year, kicking off what would become a historic union drive. The company said that he was being fired for “refusal to abide by the dress-code policy” and attendance issues. Westlake says that he has been…

GEICO Is Trying to Crush Workers’ Attempts to Form an Independent Union

This article was originally published at Labor Notes. GEICO insurance sales rep Lila Balali first started thinking about a union early in the pandemic. “I didn’t really know what a union was,” she says, “just that it was something for the employee.” She and her co-workers had been abruptly sent to work from home, where she set up a cramped workspace. “We were taking calls on our cell phones, 40 hours a week, our phone to our ear,” she recalls. “You couldn’t get reimbursed or provided a headset. “A billion-dollar company — a Berkshire Hathaway subsidiary, a Warren Buffet company…

Corporations Are Spending a Ton to Stop Low-Wage Workers From Unionizing

Thousands of workers across the country have been busy gathering signatures from their co-workers in the past year. Candy makers at a Hershey’s factory in Virginia. Cooks at a Chipotle restaurant in Michigan. Six employees at a Dollar General store in Connecticut. Their goal: form a labor union to force their bosses to negotiate better pay and benefits after years of brutal working conditions during the COVID-19 pandemic. Many of them are low-paid service employees trying to establish the first unions at multibillion-dollar companies. The recent spike in labor organizing is unusual, according to a Center for Public Integrity analysis…

Biden Promised “Good-Paying Union Jobs,” But It Will Take Organizing to Get Them

Since the historic and controversial Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) was signed into law in August, the economy has begun showing early signs of shifting and recalibrating beneath our feet. Honda Motor Company and LG Energy Solution have announced plans for a lithium ion battery plant, with their sights on Ohio; hiring has ticked up at a small business in Texas that builds wind and solar power plants; and the state of Connecticut is soliciting applications for millions in funding for community-led climate adaptation plans in anticipation of IRA funds to come, plus funding from the bipartisan infrastructure law signed last…

Hundreds Protest as Starbucks Holds Investor Day Without Any Retail Workers

Hundreds of workers took to the streets in front of Starbucks’s Seattle headquarters on Tuesday as the company hosted investors for its biennial investor day, in which executives and investors discuss the company’s outlook — an event that has never once included representation from a Starbucks retail worker, the workers’ union says. Joined by other union members, workers with Starbucks Workers United are demanding that the company give them a say in its strategy and financial decisions and a place at the bargaining table for contract negotiations, which the company has been delaying. They are also asking the company to…

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