Only 13,000 of 146,000 auto workers at the Big 3 companies are on strike, so far. But others still on the job are turning up the heat by refusing voluntary overtime. At all three companies—Ford, General Motors, and Stellantis—Auto Workers (UAW) members have told Labor Notes about overtime refusals. Many Big 3 plants are hugely dependent on overtime to make up for understaffing. Organizing on the shop floor and on Facebook, many auto workers unified so fast to do their part for the strike that they forced management to shut their plants for this entire past weekend. That followed advice from top UAW officers: that members in plants not yet striking had a right to refuse voluntary overtime.
A huge picket line stretched nearly a half mile around the Washington State Evergreen Public Schools headquarters on Sept. 1. It was the first day of school, and 1,500 educators from Evergreen County, on the third day of their strike, were joined by 450 Camas County educators who had been out since Aug 28. Evergreen School District No. 114 is a public school district in the state’s Clark County, and serves the city of Vancouver, Washington. Passing cars honked, and chants rose from a sea of red Tee-shirt-wearing teachers, all carrying strike signs reading “Evergreen Education Association: ON STRIKE!” Numerous local area businesses put up signs in their windows supporting the educators’ strike.
I am one of 1,700 nurses on strike at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital in New Brunswick, New Jersey. We are members of United Steel Workers Local 4-200. The hospital administration has used intimidation, scare tactics, and lies to convince the public that patient care is at the top of their priority list and at the bottom of ours. We have had enough. We are on day 20 of our strike, and nurses are beginning to feel the pressure. Our health insurance ends at the end of this month, and the financial strains of supporting our families on unemployment are growing. We are standing outside of the hospital day and night to show our dedication to achieving a fair contract that benefits us and, most importantly, our patients.
Following on from junior doctors and consultants, a third group of NHS professionals is now floating the idea of strike action. The union involved is once again the British Medical Association (BMA), and the doctors are known as SAS ones, who work mostly in hospitals. While the profession may be slightly different, the reasons for the potential industrial action are the same: pay and working conditions. You might not have heard of them, and their role is quite opaque – but as HEE noted, there are a lot of SASs. The difference with the role is that the person has chosen not to take a career-led pathway. That is, they stop ongoing post-graduate training to become a consultant or GP.
This Tuesday, UPS and Teamsters announced they have reached a tentative agreement for a new contract for UPS workers nationwide, a week before over 340,000 workers were set to go on strike across the country in what would be the biggest strike of its kind in U.S. history. Now that strike is on hold as workers read, debate, and vote on the tentative agreement. After years of stagnant wages and deplorable working conditions, UPS workers have been organizing around the clock to fight for their demands, including much higher starting salaries for part-time workers and ending the two-tier system.
Thousands of workers at hotels across Southern California walked off the job early Sunday demanding higher pay and better benefits, beginning what could be the largest U.S. hotel workers’ strike in recent memory. The strike will affect roughly 15,000 cooks, room attendants, dishwashers, servers, bellmen and front desk agents at hotels in Los Angeles and Orange counties, including the JW Marriott in the L.A. Live entertainment district and luxury destinations like the Fairmont Miramar in Santa Monica. More than 500 workers at the InterContinental and Indigo hotels in downtown Los Angeles were the first to join the strike on Sunday, taking to the streets with picket signs at 6 a.m.
Twenty years ago, Chicago was in the process of one of the greatest — and most misguided — experiments ever attempted to reform public education in America. It was an effort to completely reshape city schools in the image of the market by emphasizing school-to-school competition, merit-based pay, and a disastrous game of survival of the fittest by closing schools that didn’t test well or meet certain criteria set by the business class. If successful, it would have reshaped Chicago in what would later become the new normal in New Orleans, where the city swapped its public schools for charters after reformers took hold following Hurricane Katrina in 2005.
During the first wave of Covid-19, Queens hospitals were on the frontlines of the pandemic. Although they were celebrated as essential workers, some first-year physician residents were only making between $15 and $17 an hour while they routinely worked 80-hour weeks. Nearly three years later, about 300 resident physicians and fellows at Jamaica and Flushing Hospitals have won a new contract after threatening to walk off the job if their demands for better wages and improved working conditions were not met.
New Brunswick, N.J. — Here are some of the senior administrators I did not see joining us on the picket lines set up by striking teachers and staff at Rutgers University. Brian Strom, the chancellor of Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences, whose salary is $925,932 a year. Steven Libutti, the vice chancellor for Cancer Programs for Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences, who makes $929,411 a year. Patrick Hobbs, the director of athletics, who receives $999,688 a year. The president of the university, Jonathan Holloway, who is paid $1.2 million a year. Stephen Pikiell, the university’s head basketball coach, who has received a 445 percent pay raise since 2020 and currently gets $3 million a year. Gregory Schiano, the university’s head football coach, who pulls in $4 million a year.
A strike by transit workers in Loudoun County is now in its third week with no clear end in sight. A county spokesperson said service for Loudoun County Transit began being affected by the strike on January 11. As of Friday, commuter buses that travel between various parts of Loudoun County and D.C. and Arlington, Va. had not been running for more than two weeks. “We have prioritized transit services to optimize any available drivers daily, prioritizing paratransit services, local bus routes serving the Leesburg and Sterling areas, and Silver Line bus routes ahead of commuter bus service at this time,” Loudoun County spokesperson Glen Barbour wrote in an email to 7News. “The impact to bus routes and transit services continues to be updated regularly on our website at www.loudoun.gov/buschanges. Subscribers to our notifications are also receiving the updates directly (sign up at loudoun.gov/busbiz).”
Rail workers across the UK, under the leadership of the National Union of Rail, Maritime, and Transport Workers (RMT), have begun striking again in protest against the insufficient pay offer proposed by rail authorities. The workers went on strike on December 13 and 14 and will continue action on December 16 and 17. Around 40,000 members of the RMT have joined the strike. Following a union vote in which 63.6% of its membership voted to reject Network Rail’s pay offer of a 5% retrospective rise for 2022 and a 4% pay rise in 2023. Workers at 14 train-operating companies are striking in the UK. More actions have been announced for the Christmas week as well. Workers will again step up action in the first week of January 2023.
After over two weeks of the largest higher education strike in US history, postdoctoral employees and academic researchers at the University of California have reached a tentative agreement with the UC system. The agreement will lead to significant wage increases, one of the key demands of the striking workers. However, these university employees will continue the strike action in solidarity with the 36,000 graduate student employees whose demands are yet to be met.After over two weeks of the largest higher education strike in US history, postdoctoral employees and academic researchers at the University of California have reached a tentative agreement with the UC system. The agreement will lead to significant wage increases, one of the key demands of the striking workers. However, these university employees will continue the strike action in solidarity with the 36,000 graduate student employees whose demands are yet to be met.
New York City, New York - Workers at the New York City Starbucks Reserve Roastery in the Meatpacking District have been on strike since the beginning of last week against unsafe work conditions and the multi-billion dollar corporation’s refusal to bargain in good faith with the union for a first contract. The striking workers note how managers at one of Starbucks’s flagship stores refuse to address work conditions that are proving to be health hazards: the store had a recent outbreak of bedbugs in the break room and there has been black mold in the ice machines for months. Two workers who spoke with Left Voice under conditions of anonymity described how management instructed them to discard any ice with mold in it and carry on, without addressing the root of the problem.
California - The three UC unions under the United Auto Workers (UAW) — Student Researchers United (SRU), UAW 5810 representing both postdoctoral and academic student researchers in separate bargaining units and UAW 2865 representing teaching assistants (TA), graduate student instructors, tutors and readers — each Organized strike votes across their four bargaining units from Oct. 26 through Nov. 2. If passed, the votes would give respective unions the power to call a strike should they choose, but would not guarantee they will. UAW 2865’s recording secretary, fourth-year UC Santa Barbara history Ph.D. candidate and TA Janna Haider is one of two representatives from UCSB on the union’s bargaining team.
Cottonton, Alabama - “On the morning of Oct. 1… almost 500 union members from three United Steel Workers (USW) locals at WestRock’s Mahrt Mill paper mill in Cottonton, Alabama, voted to reject a second contract offer from the company,” Jacob Morrison recently reported for The Real News Network. “The refusal to ratify WestRock’s ‘last, best, and final’ offer came as a result of the company insisting on removing contract language pertaining to what the workers there call ‘penalties’ for long hours. Members resoundingly rejected this contract, even though it included an unheard-of $28,000 ratification bonus — increased from an already staggering offer of $20,000, which workers already rejected on Sept. 21.” Workers at WestRock’s Mahrt Mill paper mill have been locked out by the company since early October and say they can’t be bought off with bonuses for signing a contract that will ensure they have even less time for life outside of work.