Wanted: skilled employees willing to work in a hazardous, low-wage environment without training, benefits or a predictable schedule.
This isn’t an ad for working at Walmart. Rather, it’s a list of the reasons that workers at a bike-share venture in Boston voted to unionize with the Transport Workers (TWU) in an election conducted by the National Labor Relations Board conducted on Thursday. The election drew in 95% of eligible voters and led to an overwhelming three-fourths vote for union representation in a clear repudiation of practices that are becoming more common in technology-driven ventures.
As these videos from the Transport Workers (TWU) union show, working people across the country are gearing up to get out the vote and elect candidates on Nov. 4 who support policies that protect or expand our rights, raise wages and work for an economy that benefits everyone, not just the wealthy and CEOs. They are knocking on doors, making phone calls and talking to their friends, neighbors and co-workers. Take a look.
Transport Workers (TWU) Local 527 provides support services for U.S. troops as they train and learn signal command at the Fort Gordon military base in Augusta, Ga. TWU members do everything from issuing and repairing equipment and vehicles to making sure the well water is safe to drink and the facilities are heating and cooling properly.
Next to food trucks, one of the fastest growing trends in cities across the country is bike sharing, with racks of bicycles for rent by the hour or longer positioned around town for easy pick up and drop off. But it takes dozens, and sometimes hundreds of workers, to make bike-sharing operations run smoothly. On Tuesday, the more than 200 workers in New York City’s Citi Bike program chose the Transport Workers (TWU) to help make their jobs run more smoothly, too.
In 2014, the Transport Workers (TWU) union has increased its focus on veterans, particularly through the Veterans Committee's three-day conference, which seeks to unify and empower veterans and support the creation of veterans committees at locals across the country. In the past, the Veterans Committee focused more on service projects and fundraising, but it is shifting toward a more legislative agenda with a concentration on issues that affect veterans.
Women are coming together and improving their workplaces by fighting for policies that include everything from raising the tipped and minimum wage, making equal pay for equal work a reality, demanding more consistent and adequate hours in retail scheduling to making sure everyone has access to affordable child care and can receive basic workplace accommodations during pregnancy. These women workers know collective bargaining and collective action are important for achieving workplace policies that work for women and families.
While John Boehner and his allies in the U.S. House of Representatives play politics with aid to families whose lives were shattered by Superstorm Sandy, numerous unions have stepped up to provide money and supplies to those in need. Here are a few examples of how unions are helping families recover from the storm's devastation.
Dealers are the face of Las Vegas, says Jeff Jaeger, president of Transport Workers (TWU) Local 721. Caesars Palace dealers recently gained their first contract on the job. Now they have the protection that only a written contract can provide in terms of wages, health care, tips and other working conditions. The dealers organized with TWU.
Watch TWU's new video, "Support Your Dealers," to learn more about the recent worker victory in Las Vegas.