Walmart workers around the country are mobilizing for a “Black Friday” strike to protest working conditions, wages and retaliation against workers who speak out. Last week, workers and their allies at a Walmart warehouse picketed and rallied in front of the Riverside County, Calif., facility following last Wednesday’s strike by some two dozen warehouse workers.
The following story was sent to us by a retired BCTGM Local 24 member. It is a true account of a dedicated bakery worker who grew up in and with Interstate Bakeries Corp. (IBC), in its various forms. Like his father before him, he spent his career working hard and supporting his family with good wages and the protection of a union contract. And like his father, he watched as the company was mismanaged and began the spiral of demise.
The Missouri Supreme Court ruled on Tuesday that when cities, school boards and other public bodies bargain with workers’ unions, they must do so in good faith with the intention of reaching an agreement. While that may seem like common sense to most of us, two earlier rulings, including one from 1957, said that while such public entities are obligated to recognize the workers’ unions, they did not have to bargain.
Picture this: You’re home for the holidays, about to dive into that rich, golden-brown pumpkin pie, when suddenly a conversation erupts with your mother-in-law about “deficit reduction” or “debt crisis.” "We spend too much," she says, indignant. "Why can’t the federal government pay its bills—I do." A “harrumph!” is implied by the look she’s giving you. What do you say?
Berry Craig, recording secretary for the Paducah-based Western Kentucky AFL-CIO Area Council and a professor of history at West Kentucky Community and Technical College, is a former daily newspaper and Associated Press columnist and currently a member of AFT Local 1360. Craig sends us this.
James Vetato planned to spend Black Friday wearing out shoe leather on a picket line at the Southside Walmart in Paducah, Ky.
"Now I'll be there Thanksgiving night, too," Vetato said. "Walmart has announced it will be open at 8 p.m. Thanksgiving night, which will prevent a lot of the associates from spending the holiday with their families.”
T-Mobile, the telecom company that earlier this year closed seven call centers in the United States and shipped more than 3,300 jobs overseas, is running its remaining U.S. call center operations under what workers describe as a “climate of tyranny,” says Lothar Schroeder of German union ver.di, which represents workers at Deutsche Telekom, T-Mobile’s parent company. Schroeder spoke with Reuters.