On Tuesday, the Rail, Maritime and Transport Union (RMT) called over 40,000 workers for a four-day strike that will paralyze the United Kingdom until Saturday. The massive strike occurs after the failure of negotiations with the railway company Network Rail, which did not want to carry out a 7 percent increase in wages as requested by workers in a country whose inflation has already exceeded 11 percent. The latest protests have been led by health workers, doctors, ambulance drivers, postal workers, teachers. This week, nurses, highway maintenance workers and baggage handlers at London’s Heathrow airport will also go on strike.
— source telesurenglish.net | 13 Dec 2022
Across the prestigious University of California system, tens of thousands of workers walked off the job last week for the nation’s largest strike of 2022, and the largest strike of academic workers in U.S. history. The energy was palpable as nearly 5,000 academic workers gathered at UC-Berkeley’s campus November 14 to launch our strike. Over the first week of our strike we shut down classes and lab operations, felt the solidarity from Teamsters drivers and building trades workers who honored our 5 a.m. pickets, marched with our students to the university president’s mansion, and showed the UC just how organized we are—and how ready we are to win big.
According to Auto Workers (UAW) membership surveys, 92 percent of graduate workers and 61 percent of postdocs report being rent-burdened. That is, they are paying more than 30 percent of their monthly income on rent. In fact, the average graduate worker is spending more than half their gross income on housing costs. Our demand for a living wage
— source scheerpost.com | Nov 25, 2022
A new analysis shines fresh light on U.S. railroad giants’ “greedy behavior”—from gorging on their own stock to ramping up fees to pad their bottom lines—as workers struggle for basic rights and benefits in ongoing contract negotiations that could result in the first national rail strike in decades.
Updated figures compiled by the watchdog group Accountable.US and released Tuesday show that BNSF, a subsidiary of billionaire Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway that operates one of North America’s largest railroad networks, saw its net income rise 4% to $4.4 billion during the first three quarters of 2022. Union Pacific, meanwhile, saw its profits jump 11% to $5.36 billion during that period.
In those nine months, Union Pacific spent nearly $8 billion on stock buybacks and dividend payouts to shareholders, Accountable.US notes.
The rail transportation giant CSX reported a 37% surge in Fiscal Year 2021 net income, the watchdog added, and the company repurchased $3.7 billion worth of its own shares during
— source commondreams.org | Jake Johnson | Nov 23, 2022
Because That’s What It Means to Be the Ruling Class
The Congressional decision to prohibit railroad workers from going on strike and force them to accept a contract that meets few of their demands is part of the class war that has defined American politics for decades. The two ruling political parties differ only in rhetoric. They are bonded in their determination to reduce wages; dismantle social programs, which the Bill Clinton administration did with welfare; and thwart unions and prohibit strikes, the only tool workers have to pressure employers. This latest move against the railroad unions, where working conditions have descended into a special kind of hell with massive layoffs, the denial of even a single day of paid sick leave, and punishing work schedules that include being forced to “always be on call,” is one more blow to the working class and our anemic democracy.
The rage by workers towards the Democratic Party, which once defended their interests, is legitimate, even if, at times, it is expressed by embracing proto-fascists and Donald Trump-like demagogues. Dating back to the Clinton administration with NAFTA, the greatest betrayal of the working class since the 1947 Taft-Hartley Act, the Democratic Party has become a full partner in the corporate assault on workers. The cloying feel-your-pain rhetoric, a staple of the Joe Biden White House, is offset by a hypocritical subservience
— source commondreams.org | Chris Hedges | Dec 05, 2022
More than 55,000 education workers in Ontario have walked off the job, pledging to strike for “as long as it takes” in defiance a “draconian” new law amid a bitter fight with the provincial government over pay. The Canadian Union of Public Employees, which represents custodial staff, early childhood education and education support workers, launched the strike on Friday, despite legislation fast-tracked by the Ontario premier, Doug Ford, that bars it from striking and unilaterally imposes a contract on employees.
Ontario fast-tracked passage of Bill 28 earlier this week, which fines striking workers C$4,000 ($2,955; £2,260) a day – nearly a full month’s salary for the average employee. “An important piece of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms is being shredded before our very eyes,” the Canadian Civil Liberties Association, warning that Bill 28 shatters the norm of governments restraint in invoking the clause and putting other rights – free speech, freedom of religion – at risk.
— source theguardian.com | 4 Nov 2022
People incarcerated in the Alabama prison system began striking Monday over what they’ve described as inhumane treatment. Organizers say thousands have participated in the work stoppage.
The protesters have a list of demands, including changes to the state’s parole and sentencing laws. Gov. Kay Ivey has called the list “unreasonable.”
In the wake of the strike, some Alabama prisoners have shared pictures of the miserable portions of cold food now being served, with some calling it an “attempt to starve out protests.” One image shows a hard dollop of grits served with a single slice of cheese and a few bits of canned fruit. Prison officials have said the change to meals is not retaliation, but simply a matter of capacity, since the people who typically cook are not working.
Whether or not you buy that, one thing is indisputable: Incarcerated people, in Alabama and across the rest of the country, perform a tremendous amount of labor both within
— source themarshallproject.org | Jamiles Lartey | Oct 12, 2022
Negotiators for railroad companies and workers have reached a tentative deal to avert a potential strike that was set to start at 12:01 Eastern time, just after midnight tonight, and could have shut down rail service across the United States. This comes after Labor Secretary Marty Walsh met with union leaders and railroad company negotiators for some 20 hours, into the early morning today, with President Biden calling in personally around 9 p.m. Wednesday night to the meeting.
A railroad worker strike could upset the country’s supply chain of food and much more, potentially causing prices to skyrocket. It would also shut down travel for long-distance passenger trains which use the same tracks as freight rail.
The White House announced the agreement in a statement early this morning, calling it an “important win for our economy and the American people.” The deal must still be ratified by union members.
The Washington Post reports it meets one of the workers’ key demands: quote, “the ability to take days off for medical care without being subject to discipline.” Washington Post
— source democracynow.org | Sep 15, 2022
On Wednesday, workers of the former state-owned postal company Royal Mail began a new strike in rejection of their salary conditions. Their action was called on Aug. 26 as part of a campaign to demand a “dignified and appropriate” wage increase from the company. Other protests will be held on Sept. 8 and 9. Currently, the British workers are not happy with the proposal from Royal Mail, which offered them a raise of just 2 percent despite the fact that they were classified as “essential workers” during the COVID-19 pandemic. In today’s walkout, members of the Communications Workers Union (CWU) staged protests outside post offices across the country. Over 100,000 workers are taking part in the strike
— source twitter.com/WallStreetSilv | 31 Aug 2022
On Sept. 10, 2012, I joined thousands of my fellow public school teachers in Chicago and walked off the job.
After facing 30 years of corporate education ”reform” that demonized teachers and led to massive privatization of public schools across the United States, teachers everywhere were ready to fight back. For many of us in Chicago, ahead of the 2012 strike, political developments had shown a range of possibilities for what that fighting back could look like. We had watched intently as protesters took over plazas in Tahrir Square to demand the overthrow of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, as well as the crowds occupying the Wisconsin statehouse to oppose Republican Gov. Scott Walker’s anti-union Act 10.
In Chicago, resistance to the attacks on teachers required us to defeat one of the most powerful Democratic politicians in the country (then-Mayor Rahm Emanuel), endure the
— source inthesetimes.com | Jackson Potter | Sep 15, 2022
Students, teachers, and support staff in Ohio’s largest school district returned to the classroom on Monday after the Columbus Education Association won a new contract and ended its weeklong strike. Gathered at the local minor league ballpark on Sunday, CEA members voted 71% to 29% to approve a three-year contract with Columbus City Schools that satisfies most of the union’s demands, which revolved around improving students’ learning environments and opportunities. In addition to much-needed improvements to learning and working conditions, the roughly 4,500-member union—representing teachers, librarians, nurses, counselors, and other education professionals—was able to secure better pay and benefits.
— source commondreams.org | Aug 29, 2022