Thursday, May 24, 2018

How the Plaintiff in Janus v. AFSCME Benefits from His Union

Many in the labor movement are bracing for a likely anti-union ruing in the Supreme Court case Janus v. AFSCME Council 31, which would weaken public sector unions by letting workers receive the benefits of representation without contributing toward the cost. Donnie Killen, who works in the same building as the plaintiff, Mark Janus, shares his perspectives on the irony of Janus's role as plaintiff in the case, here.

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Professional Staff New Hire Orientation

There was a good turnout at AFT Local 1904's Professional Staff New Hire Orientation today.

The Local's Vice President for External Affairs, Jennifer Higgins, led the workshop and invited questions from those attending. Other officers were there to introduce themselves, and to welcome attendees.

Sunday, May 6, 2018

Can Weak Unions Get Teachers More Money (New York Times)?

From a New York Times article by Noam Scheiber (May 5, 2018):

On Thursday, a weeklong walkout by teachers in Arizona resulted in a major victory, as the state’s governor approved a 10 to 20 percent wage increase and a significant investment in public schools.

That followed a roughly $6,000 salary increase that Oklahoma teachers won by threatening a walkout (and later following through). Which in turn came on the heels of a 5 percent raise for teachers in West Virginia, who had shut down schools for almost two weeks.

The teachers were intent on making a statement. “No funding, no future!” they chanted in Oklahoma. And their mantra seemed to carry the day.

That all this took place in so-called right-to-work states, where the power of unions is limited, raises some interesting questions: Do weak unions go hand-in-hand with more effective political activism?

Would strong organized labor prevent teachers from getting their way? After all, in Wisconsin, a state where unions were famously powerful, public sector workers suffered a historic defeat at the hands of Gov. Scott Walker in 2011.

Yet the reality is closer to the opposite.

Full article here.

Thursday, May 3, 2018

Promising Turnout at Solidarity Walk

On Wednesday, May 2nd, 2018 ... a sunny day with high temperatures in the mid-80s ... there was a particularly impressive turnout at the weekly Solidarity Walk. Even Rocky joined the group at one point!