Workers at Montgomery County Television in Rockville, Maryland, members of NABET Local 31, have reached a new contract agreement. The package has a number of improvements including a three percent wage increase retroactive to July 1, 2015. Several part-time categories were moved to a higher wage rate and travel time payments were more clearly spelled out. The union's negotiating committee is recommending ratification of the package and a membership vote is expected by the end of January.
On today’s labor calendar, the AFL-CIO, Demos, and UC Berkeley’s Haas Institute for a Fair and Inclusive Society host "Dog Whistle Politics and Right Wing Populism in the 2016 Election" starting at 9a at the AFL-CIO. "Candidates who inject disparaging racial, ethnic or gender-based messages into our politics do it to divide working people and divert them from recognizing their common economic interests and keep them from focusing on the real problem - the wealthy and powerful who are undermining democracy and rewriting the rules of our economy," says the AFL-CIO. Go to dclabor.org for details and to register.
And at 1p, tune in to “Your Rights at Work” here on WPFW as Pat Moran, President of AFSCME Council 3 and Corey Upchurch, president of AFSCME 1959, representing DCPS bus drivers, discuss the impact on the local and national labor movement of the Friedrichs case, which was argued Monday at the Supreme Court.
Here’s today’s labor history:
On this date in 1993, the Clinton-era OSHA issued a confined spaces standard to prevent more than 50 deaths and 5,000 serious injuries annually for workers who enter confined spaces.
In 1995, the Pennsylvania Superior Court ruled that bosses can fire workers for being gay.
In 2003, some 14,000 General Electric employees struck for two days to protest the company's mid-contract decision to shift an average of $400 in additional health care co-payments onto each worker.
And on this date in 2014, a 15-month lockout by the Minnesota Orchestra against members of the Twin Cities Musicians' Union Local 30-73 ended when the musicians agreed to a 15 percent pay cut -- management wanted up to 40 percent -- and increased health care cost sharing. They did win a revenue-sharing deal based on performance of the Orchestra's endowments. It was the nation's longest-running contract dispute for a concert orchestra.
Today’s labor quote is by Robert Kuttner:
“Pure capitalism is a system of extremes. It is capable of marvelous innovation and stunning brutality. Only political democracy can temper those excesses, diffuse the benefits and allow the nonrich to fight back.”
American journalist and writer Robert Kuttner is the co-founder and current co-editor of The American Prospect.
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