June 23, 2011
Tens of thousands of public workers and their supporters demonstrated at the Capitol in February and March to oppose the collective bargaining changes. They have returned in smaller numbers this week as the Legislature prepared to take up the state budget, and thousands of people rallied on the Capitol lawn shortly after the court issued its order.
“I had a sickening feeling in my stomach,” said Barbara James, a Madison middle school teacher who demonstrated at the Capitol.
In a major blow to Wisconsin state workers last week, the supreme court ruled that Republican law makers were not in violation of the State’s open meeting laws when they passed Scott Walker’s infamous anti-union bill.
For months the new bill had been tied up in court following a ruling against the legislture given by Dane County Circuit Judge Maryann Sumi, following a lawsuit launched on behalf of state workers.
Secretary of State, Doug La Follette, plans to publish the bill soon, at which point it will become law.
June 21, 2011
James Richard Verone
James Richard Verone spent his whole life playing by the rules and staying out of trouble. Having worked as a delivery man for Coca Cola for 17 years, Verone was known as a hard worker and honest man.
Yet when he was laid off from Coca Cola three years ago, Verone was desperate to find work. He eventually found employment as a convenience clerk, yet he began to notice a protrusion in his chest. He developed arthritis and carpal tunnel syndrome, and soon the pain became too much for him to bear. He filed for disability, but he was denied any sort of coverage by the federal government.
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June 17, 2011
Written by: David Cahn , Seattle Solidarity Network and Michael Reagan , Seattle Solidarity Network
The Seattle Solidarity Network in front of a business they were able to shut down when its owner refused to pay a former employee money she was owed.
Seattle recently joined San Francisco, Austin, Kansas City and Denver in making wage theft — bosses cheating workers out of their earned pay — a criminal offense, and rightfully so. Across the country, employers big and small are not paying minimum wage and overtime, or they are forcing people to work off the clock or during their breaks. Others are stealing tips or making illegal deductions from paychecks. Many bosses take advantage of undocumented immigrants, using the threat of arrest and deportation to simply not pay them at all.
A 2009 study by the National Employment Law Project estimated that two-thirds of low-wage workers in Chicago, New York and Los Angeles were denied full payment for their work.
The passage of the Seattle wage theft ordinance can only help working people. Groups like Casa Latina, a local workers center and immigrant rights organization, worked hard for the law to be passed. At a time when so many of us are struggling economically, we need every possible tool to assist regular people.
But, like any theft, wage theft is already illegal.
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June 14, 2011
A great teacher of mine once said that when reading history, and revisiting the atrocious and stupid events that comprise it, there were really only two sensible things we could do: ”you can either laugh or cry.”
I often wonder which of the two options future generations will choose when they study us.
It’s now 2011, and the waves of the 2008 economic crisis continue to crash as hard as ever over the heads of working people the world over.
The latest waves of budget cuts across the country have sparked major condemnation from community organizations and labor unions, leading in some states to demonstrations the size and militancy of which we have not seen in years.
The fight against austerity rages on, but victories have been notably scarce. News of defeats continue to pour in.
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June 3, 2011
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Jimmy John’s Workers Union- Industrial Workers of the World Contacts: Max Specktor, 612-250-7309, Erik Forman 612-598-6205
June 3, 2011
Minnesota Department of Health Reports
MINNEAPOLIS- Two months after Jimmy John’s fired six workers for blowing the whistle on a company practice of forcing sandwich-makers to work while sick, the IWW Jimmy John’s Workers Union has released Minnesota Department of Health documents today revealing eight outbreaks of food borne illness at franchises across the Twin Cities area in the past five years, seven of which were due to employees working while sick at the chain.
The release of the documents seriously erodes the credibility of Minneapolis franchise owner Mike Mulligan who had previously claimed to reporters and employees that, “the company has made more than 6 million sandwiches during its nearly 10 years in business—and no one’s ever gotten sick from eating one.”
Two of the outbreaks, both caused by sick employees, were at the Mulligans’ stores.
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