By the end of 2013, Latinos will make up 40% of California's population. By the end of 2050, that number will rise to 48%. The growing Latino and immigrant communities in California are changing the way Californians view immigration reform, New York Times' Jennifer Medina writes. In a state where, a generation ago, voters passed what is considered one of the most anti-immigrant ballot initiatives, recent polls show a dramatic shift in perception of aspiring Americans. Californians now say that "immigrants are a benefit to the state, according to public opinion polls from the Public Policy Institute of California."
A neighborhood on the eastern edge of the L.A. basin and shorthand for the movie and television industries, Hollywood had its own city charter for fewer than 10 years before being annexed by Los Angeles in 1910. By joining L.A., it gained access to the water supply then beginning to flow by aqueduct from the Owens Valley, 233 miles to the north.
D.W. Griffith, Cecil B. DeMille and Charlie Chaplin filmed there but now, in fact, studios and related businesses are situated throughout the Los Angeles metropolitan area, with particular concentrations in Culver City, Burbank, the San Fernando Valley and—of course—the part of town known as Hollywood.
Caroline O'Connor, communications director at the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor, sends us this. Carrying signs that read: “Wal-Mart: Everyday Low Wages,” “Wal-Mart: How the 1% Hurts the 99%” and “L.A. Won’t Be Bought Off,” more than 100 Los Angeles workers from “Hollywood to the Docks” flooded the sidewalk outside of the Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) in support of five Los Angeles Wal-Mart associates departing for the annual shareholders meeting in Bentonville, Ark.
This afternoon on César Chávez day, Pomona College (Calif.) students, workers and union and community activists are taking to the streets in a unique Dining Hall in the Streets action. The event will support the 16 immigrant workers the college fired in December from their long-held dining hall jobs as they were trying to form a union with UNITE HERE Local 11.
Marvin Bing, a member of the AFL-CIO Special Committee on Labor-Community Partnerships, sends us this report on a meeting of AFL-CIO constituency groups in Phoenix.
AFL-CIO constituency groups kicked off the “We Are One Moving America Forward” symposium late last week with a series of great speeches by William Lucy, Ben Jealous, George Gresham, Danny Ortega and Judith Browne-Dianis. A resounding theme: “We can’t let the 1 percent trick us into believing we are different—We are the 99 percent, we are one and if we don’t work together on issues that bring us together, we will fall together.” We are the people who fight for working families, we are the people who fight to protect our students, children, seniors and families. We are the labor movement and together with the community we are unbeatable.
Working people are applauding the Los Angeles County Metro Board of Directors vote last week in favor of a sweeping, agency-wide program that will create 260,000 construction jobs. Officials said the program will dramatically increase the number of workers hired from communities near upcoming transit projects and special attention will be given to applicants who live in areas of high unemployment.
After six months without a contract, the employees and management at three California supermarket chains reached a tentative agreement today. The agreement came just hours after a deadline set by the employees to strike if no progress had been made in contract talks.
The California legislature approved of a bill that would allow expedited judicial reviews of any legal challenges to a proposed downtown Los Angeles NFL stadium and renovation of the neighboring Los Angeles Convention Center. Maria Elena Durazo, executive secretary-treasurer of the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor, says the action is:
a significant step forward in the creation of 23,000 good middle-class jobs for construction and hotel workers, stage hands and grips and janitors. This is our economic stimulus package and it will be financed with zero public dollars. The LA Labor Movement worked hard to score a major victory for all Angelenos.