From July 26th to 29th, Management at Mobile Rail Solutions fired three workers actively engaged in unionizing efforts. The termination of these organizers is a direct attack on their Union drive and apparent retaliation for their recent OSHA filings. Management then threatened to continue firing workers showing no respect for their employees or labor law.
From the Portland Industrial Workers of the World:
On January 18th, a group of workers from Yaw’s Top Notch Restaurant took a stand. Leading the delegation into the restaurant, the group of 10 workers were accompanied by 30 community members from We Are Oregon and the Industrial Workers of the World. To the shock of bosses and customers (and to the smiles of kitchen staff) a worker publicly read a letter addressed to the owners and management demanding over $1,200 in back wages that Yaw’s has refused to pay. Less than a week later, with signed checks in hand, these same 10 individuals celebrated victory won through solidarity.
Why prioritise workplace organisation when some people have argued value production now takes place everywhere?
We work for wages. We spend a huge chunk of our day and our lives at work, so it just makes sense for us to organise there. We don’t see this as a choice for people who want a revolution: we have to be organising in the workplace now, so that when opportunities open up we’re already there. Whether the revolution begins amongst housewives, chronically unemployed, housing struggles, etc., we’re still going to need to deal with workplaces in the transformation of society.
As far as value production now taking place everywhere… well this isn’t actually a new condition, it’s always been true wherever capitalism has existed. Your question implies that since value production occurs everywhere, there’s no need to organise in the workplace. We see it instead as meaning we need to organise in many places.