News: Trash haulers serving routes across Montgomery County and southern Howard County went on strike at 5 a.m. last Friday. They called on their employer, Unity Disposal, to negotiate a fair contract. “We work hard and we provide a vital public service,” said Unity driver Martin Puesan. “Yet too many of us struggle to provide for our families on what Unity pays us. These should not be poverty-level jobs.” Unity employees voted to form a union with Laborers’ Union Local 657 more than 9 months ago; negotiations over a first contract have stalled. Supporters are urged to call Montgomery County Executive Ike Leggett’s office at 240-205-7176 and ask him to call on Unity to negotiate a fair contract.
Here’s today’s labor history:
On this date in 1899, 33 railroad clerks gathered in the back room of Behrens’ cigar shop in Sedalia, Missouri to form Local Lodge Number 1 of a union they named the Order of the Railroad Clerks of America.
In 1905, Idaho Governor Frank Steunenberg, who had brutally suppressed the state’s miners, was killed by an assassin's bomb. Legendary Western Federation of Miners and IWW leader Big Bill Haywood and two other men were put on trial for the death but were ultimately declared innocent .
And in 1936, the GM sit-down strike spread to Flint, Michigan; it would last 44 days before ending in union victory.
Today’s labor quote is by IWW leader William "Big Bill" Haywood:
”If the workers are organized, all they have to do is to put their hands in their pockets and they have got the capitalist class whipped."
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