Working In These Times

Friday, Oct 18, 2019, 2:17 pm  ·  By Mindy Isser

Why I’m Voting No on UAW’s Deal With GM: A “Third-Tier” Worker Speaks

Raina Shoemaker, a General Motors employee and a UAW member, speaks to the press from the picket line. (Photo by Mindy Isser)  

After 33 days on strike, the leadership at the United Automobile Workers (UAW) has negotiated a tentative agreement with General Motors (GM). Nearly 49,000 UAW members—concentrated mostly in the Midwest, with a few plants scattered in the South and Northeast—will stay out until their contract is ratified. And although union leadership has encouraged the rank and file to ratify the contract, many workers are unhappy with the highlights of the proposed deal. Numerous workers at the General Motors plant in Langhorne, Pennsylvania, tell In These Times that local union leaders are travelling to Buffalo, New York today, to read the full tentative agreement. Members have until October 25 to vote the contract in or to send the bargaining committee back to the table.

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Thursday, Oct 17, 2019, 12:40 pm  ·  By Kari Lydersen

Why Are Chicago Teachers Striking Against Mayor Lori Lightfoot? They’ve Been “Lied To” Before.

Chicago teachers have had it with the city's empty promises. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)  

As a pink sunrise painted the sky on Thursday morning, horns blared seemingly nonstop from semi trucks, commuters’ cars, a concrete mixer and countless other vehicles. They were all supporting members of the Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) and SEIU Local 73, which represents school support staff, on the picket line before dawn outside John A. Walsh Elementary School in Chicago’s heavily immigrant Pilsen neighborhood.

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Wednesday, Oct 16, 2019, 3:27 pm  ·  By Amisha Patel and Nathan Ryan

How to Resolve the Chicago Teachers Strike? Tax the Rich.

The coming Chicago teachers strike is a stark reminder that fully funding public education requires progressive revenue. (Photo by Jim Vondruska/NurPhoto via Getty Images)  

The past year of bold worker action in Chicago—which included the nation’s first charter school strikes—is now headed towards a crescendo as teachers and support staff prepare to walk off the job on Thursday.

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Wednesday, Oct 16, 2019, 11:50 am  ·  By Michael Arria

Trump Is Waging a War On Labor Unions, But You Wouldn’t Know It from CNN’s Dem Debate

Democratic presidential candidates on stage during the Democratic Presidential Debate at Otterbein University on October 15, 2019 in Westerville, Ohio. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)  

Last night, CNN and the New York Times co-hosted a Democratic debate in Westerville, Ohio—and even by the standards of the mainstream media, the omissions were glaring. There were no questions about police violence, affordable housing, Israel, or the climate crisis. However, there was a softball question about friendship inspired by the bond between Ellen DeGeneres and George W. Bush.

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Tuesday, Oct 15, 2019, 3:26 pm  ·  By Jeff Schuhrke

Chicago Teachers Won Public Support for Their Strike. Here’s How.

The Chicago public is more likely to side with teachers than the mayor when it comes to a CTU strike. (Photo by Max Herman/NurPhoto via Getty Images)  

As 35,000 Chicago teachers, school support staff, and park district workers are set to begin a major strike on October 17, they boast the backing of students, parents, community organizations, and local unions who see the potential work stoppage as a crucial battle in the fight for a more just and equitable city. Thanks to the solidarity efforts of community and labor groups, more Chicagoans support the possible strike than oppose it, according to a recent poll by the Chicago Sun-Times.  

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Monday, Oct 14, 2019, 4:28 pm  ·  By Rebecca Burns

What’s at Stake in Chicago Teachers’ Strike: Whether Unions Can Bargain for the Entire Working Class

Ahead of a potential massive strike this week, Chicago teachers are pushing the limits of social justice unionism. (Photo by Scott Heins/Getty Images)  

“Solving Chicago’s affordable housing crisis? What’s that got to do with a labor contract for educators?” 

That’s the question the Chicago Sun-Times editorial board asked last week as the city’s teachers and school support staff inched closer to an October 17 strike date, with little progress made in negotiations for a new contract. 

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Tuesday, Oct 8, 2019, 4:20 pm  ·  By Andy Lee Roth and April Anderson

The Corporate Media Failed to Warn Us About the Trump Admin’s Attack on LGBTQ Workers

Activists rally in support of LGBTQ rights at New York City Hall on October 8, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)  

“Sex,” Katherine Franke, a law professor at Columbia University, told the New York Times, “is a confounding term in our culture, in our language and certainly in the law.” As the Supreme Court opens a new session, its justices are set to tackle the conundrum of defining “sex.” At issue is whether Title VII of the landmark Civil Rights Act of 1964, which bars employment discrimination “because of sex,” applies to gay, lesbian, and transgender employees.

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Friday, Oct 4, 2019, 10:58 am  ·  By Shaun Richman

The Powerful New Idea in Elizabeth Warren’s Labor Platform

Elizabeth Warren has a sweeping new labor platform—a welcome addition to the host of worker-empowering plans put forward by 2020 candidates. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)  

On Thursday, Elizabeth Warren released her long-awaited labor platform, titled “Empowering American Workers and Raising Wages.” The plan provides unions with a long wish list of badly needed reforms and new powers. It also makes a solid case that, like Bernie Sanders, she would be the labor movement’s biggest booster in the White House in generations.

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Wednesday, Oct 2, 2019, 3:56 pm  ·  By Rose Bookbinder

After Largest Workplace Raid in a Decade, Immigrant Workers Are Organizing

Immigrant workers are not backing down in the face of President Trump's attacks. (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)  

On August 7 the poultry towns of central Mississippi suffered the largest workplace raid in the U.S. since 2006. Some 680 chicken-processing workers from seven factories were detained and incarcerated by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).

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Monday, Sep 30, 2019, 7:16 am  ·  By Suzanne Gordon

How Have Health Workers Won Improvements to Patient Care? Strikes.

(More than 2,200 nurses went on strike against University of Chicago Medical Center on September 20. (Photo: National Nurses United)  

On September 20, 2,200 nurses represented by the National Nurses United (NNU) went on a one-day strike at the University of Chicago Medical Center. The Chicago nurses were protesting unsafe working conditions and forced overtime—and had been in contract negotiations with the hospital for months. The Medical Center has just spent $269 million on a hospital expansion that it, insists, represents an “ investment to improve our community's health.”

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