TODAY'S LABOR CALENDAR
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Metro Washington Council and Community Services Agency offices will be closed for the holidays, beginning December 24 and re-opening on Wednesday, January 2. Union City will return on that date as well, but keep up with breaking news on our website, Facebook and Twitter feed and tune in for Union City Radio throughout the holidays on WPFW 89.3FM at 7:15am on weekdays.
It ended with a song, of course. Not all retirement parties end this way but this was Saul Schniderman’s, who’s been singing on DC-area picket lines as long as anyone can remember, so there was lots of singing, including a parody of a “Hamilton” rap and a serenade from DC Labor Chorus Director Elise Bryant. After 20 years as president of AFSCME 2910 and nearly 40 years in the federal government, Schniderman will officially retire in mid-January, but his local decided to turn its annual holiday party on Wednesday into a festive celebration of the longtime activist’s career. AFSCME Secretary Treasurer Elissa McBride lauded Schniderman “for always bringing his head, heart, hands and feet to the labor movement.” Anne Toohey, current Chief Steward of Local 2910, said that “Saul’s singular commitment to justice at the Library of Congress has touched persons at all levels of the institution.” Schniderman’s labor career began at the University of Maryland College Park, when he organized library workers into AFSCME Local 1072. In 1980 his federal career began, eventually landing him at the Library of Congress in 1987 as a cataloger and he was soon elected as a steward for the Library of Congress Professional Guild, AFSCME 2910, where he became president in 1998. “The Guild is a traditional labor union and a professional association whose members have, through organization and collective bargaining, transformed the work environment at the Library of Congress,” said Schniderman. He also co-founded the Labor Heritage Foundation, helped form the DC Labor Chorus and publishes the weekly Friday’s Labor Folklore. And while Schniderman plans to relax and do some traveling after retiring, he’ll return to UMD next year to work with the Meany Labor Archive to put his Inventory of American Labor Landmarks online.
- report/photo by Chris Garlock; photo (l-r): AFSCME Council 20 Executive Director Andrew Washington, AFSCME Secretary Treasure Elissa McBride and Saul Schniderman
Teams forming for CSA’s bowling tourney
This season is all about spending quality time with friends and family and the Community Services Agency has just the way to keep that warm feeling going after the holiday glow has faded. CSA's annual Bowling for Gold Union Bowling tournament is scheduled for Sunday, January 27 out at Crofton Bowling. "This is such a fun time for union members, their family and friends to bowl, hang out with other union members and to raise money for the CSA’s Emergency Assistance Fund," says CSA Executive Director Sonte DuCote. "It’s not too early to start recruiting your team!” she added. Morning and afternoon slots are still available. Teams can have up to five members and your union can have as many teams as you want. Registration is $25 per person which covers the cost of 3 games. For more info contact[email protected].
photo: IBEW's 2018 "Split Happens" team
Today's Labor History
Click here to check out this week's Labor History Today podcast. On this week’s show, labor historian Jean-Christian Vinel, author of “The Employee: A Political History,” and Lane Windham on the Willmar 8.
Powered by children seven to 12 years old working dawn to dusk, Samuel Slater’s thread-spinning factory goes into production in Pawtucket, R.I., launching the Industrial Revolution in America. By 1830, 55 percent of the mill workers in the state were youngsters, many working for less than $1 per week – 1790
A group of building trades unions from the Midwest meet in St. Louis to form the National Building Trades Council. The Council disbanded after several years of political and jurisdictional differences - 1897
Twenty-one Chicago firefighters, including the chief, died when a building collapsed as they were fighting a huge blaze at the Union Stock Yards. By the time the fire was extinguished, 26 hours after the first alarm, 50 engine companies and seven hook-and-ladder companies had been called to the scene. Until September 11, 2001, it was the deadliest building collapse in American history in terms of firefighter fatalities - 1910
Amid a widespread strike for union recognition by 395,000 steelworkers, approximately 250 alleged “anarchists,” “communists,” and “labor agitators” were deported to Russia, marking the beginning of the so-called “Red Scare” - 1919
AFL officers are found in contempt of court for urging a labor boycott of Buck's Stove and Range Co. in St Louis, where the Metal Polishers were striking for a 9-hour day - 1908
Construction workers top out the North Tower of the World Trade Center at 1,368 feet, making it the tallest building in the world - 1970
Walmart Stores Inc., the nation's largest employer, with 1.4 million "associates," agrees to settle 63 wage and hour suits across the U.S., for a grand total of between $352 million and $640 million. It was accused of failure to pay overtime, requiring off-the-clock work, and failure to provide required meal and rest breaks - 2008
photo by Lewis Hine