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Prince George's/Montgomery County COPE Town Hall with Councilmember Tom Hucker: Fri, July 24, 12pm – 1pm
Via Zoom; RSVP here
Coalition to Repeal Right to Work: Fri, July 24, 7pm – 9pm
Zoom; Special guest Delegate Jay Jones from the 89th District of the House of Delegates in Norfolk will speak about worker rights.
National Writers Union Open Meeting: Sun, July 26, 1pm – 2pm
WTU 6's “Share your Story #OnlyWhenItsSafe Virtual Round Table": Sun, July 26, 3:00pm – 4:30pm
Zoom; Register here
Metro Washington Council and Community Services Agency staff are teleworking; reach them at the contact numbers and email addresses here.
UC off next week: Union City will take a brief summer break next week, returning Monday, August 3. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook for breaking labor news. for latest local labor news updates.
Missed yesterday’s Your Rights At Work radio show? Catch the podcast here (or search for Your Rights At Work on your favorite podcast platform); Kayla Blado, president of the Nonprofit Professional Employees Union (NPEU), on union-busting at the Scholars Strategy Network. 18 ways to be a hero (by supporting the HEROES ACT). Plus: Episode 2 of Tales of the Resistance, an original radio serial from the San Francisco Mime Troupe. This week: Novice Nurse: Susie Terse and "The Price of Infection."
“I feel like we are being experimented on…I started wheezing, coughing, I had shortness of breath, and chest tightness.” That was Erica Jones, RN, talking about nurses at MedStar Washington Hospital Center being forced to re-use N95 masks. She spoke at a press conference outside the hospital Thursday morning, organized by National Nurses United, which warned that “decontaminating” and reusing N95 filtering facepiece respirators is unsafe. “I don’t understand why Washington Hospital is not doing everything it can to get us the PPE we need,” said Stephanie Sims, a registered nurse in WHC’s neonatal intensive care unit. “We are being asked to risk our well-being, and the well-being of our communities when it is not necessary.” In addition, nurses say the hospital is not offering nurses testing unless they’re showing symptoms of illness. They’re calling on the hospital to offer testing to any health care worker who is asking for a test, pointing to studies that indicate peak infectiousness with COVID-19 occurs during the pre-symptomatic phase. Read more here.
On June 22nd, in the baking heat of a parking lot a few miles inland from Delaware’s beaches, several dozen poultry workers, many of them Black or Latino, gathered to decry the conditions at a local poultry plant owned by one of President Donald Trump’s biggest campaign contributors. “We’re here for a reason that is atrocious,” Nelson Hill, an official with the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union, told the small but boisterous crowd. Its members, many defined as “essential” workers—without the option of staying home—have been hit extraordinarily hard by the coronavirus. For the previous forty-two years, a thousand or so laborers at the local processing plant, in Selbyville, had been represented by UFCW Local 27. Just two years earlier, the workers there had ratified a new five-year contract. But, Hill told the crowd, in the middle of the pandemic, as the number of infected workers soared, the plant’s owner, Mountaire Corporation—one of the country’s largest purveyors of chicken—conspired, along with Donald Trump, to “kick us out.” Read more in The New Yorker. Illustration by Cleon Peterson
From actors to utility workers, bus drivers to teachers to postal workers and more, the American labor movement is working nonstop to ensure that workers devastated by the COVID-19 pandemic receive the protections and support they need. YOU CAN HELP! We've put together a list of 18 online actions where you can get involved and make sure the voices of working people are heard and their needs are met. It’s also posted on Twitter and Facebook, where you can follow us and be sure to get the latest updates.