For today's labor news reports, go to dclabor.org, and for the latest local labor calendar, go to dclabor.org and click on Calendar.
Here’s today's labor history:
On this date in 1869, Emma Goldman, women's rights activist and radical, was born in Lithuania. She came to the United States at age 17.
In 1905, the Industrial Workers of the World, also known as the "Wobblies," were founded at a convention in Chicago.
In 1935, Congress passed the National Labor Relations Act, creating the structure for collective bargaining in the United States.
On this date in 1985, a 26-day strike of New York City hotels by 26,000 workers – the first such walkout in 50 years – ended with a five-year contract calling for big wage and benefit gains.
And in 1993, A.E. Staley locked out 763 workers in Decatur, Illinois. The lockout by the corn processor was to last two and a half years and went national when union workers from two other Decatur based companies, Caterpillar and Firestone Tire and Rubber, walked out on contract disputes in August 1994 and joined the locked-out Staley workers in protests, picketing and demonstrations. The Staley plants were operated during the lockout by white collar workers and the union ended up giving in to company demands.
Today’s labor quote is the motto of the Wobblies
"An injury to one is an injury to all."
AFSCME Council 26 Executive Director Carl Goldman reports that he was among the DC-area activists to join 3,000 participants at the People’s Summit in Chicago last weekend to talk about how to move progressive issues forward. In addition to speeches, workshops and cultural events, Goldman says the Summit included some really inspiring “reports from the field” from organizers involved in a variety of progressive issues such as labor, racial justice, economic inequality, the environment and challenging neoliberalism. The participants also broke into groups by region to discuss how to take action at the local level.
The final chapter in the historic 45-day Verizon strike was written when the workers overwhelmingly voted on June 17 to ratify new contracts. “It was a tough strike, but this contract, which secures good jobs in our communities and preserve workers’ standard of living shows what can happen when we stand together," said Ed Mooney, Vice President of CWA District 2-13.
On today's labor calendar,
The Labor Heritage Foundation's annual Great Labor Arts Exchange continues today and through the weekend, bringing together labor musicians and artists from across the nation, with a free concert Saturday night honoring LUCI MURPHY. For more info, visit LaborHeritage.org.
And there are two noontime events at the AFL-CIO today:
One is a book discussion on "White Trash: The 400-Year Untold History of Class in America" the other is "Please Don't Touch My Hair: A Convo on Black Hair in the Workplace."
This weekend check out screenings of "Farewell Ferris Wheel" at AFI Docs, about a year in the life of migrant laborers who are also carnival workers.
For full details on the local labor calendar, go to dclabor.org and click on Calendar.
Here’s our weekend labor history:
On June 25 in 1893, more than 8,000 people attended the dedication ceremony for The Haymarket Martyrs Monument in Chicago, honoring those framed and executed for the bombing at Haymarket Square on May 4, 1886.
On June 26 in 1894, members of the American Railway Union, led by Eugene V. Debs, refused to handle Pullman cars, in solidarity with Pullman strikers. Two dozen strikers were killed over the course of the strike.
Today’s labor quote is by Eugene Debs, speaking in Pullman, Illinois, during the American Railway Union's Pullman Strike
"If it is a fact that after working for George M. Pullman for many years you appear two weeks after your work stops, ragged and hungry, it only emphasizes that the charge I made before this community, and Pullman stands before you a self-confessed robber....The paternalism of Pullman is the same as the self-interest of a slave-holder in his human chattels. You are striking to avert slavery and degradation."
Union City Radio’s Chris Garlock hosts, with co-host Ed Smith, Executive Director of DCNA.
This week's guests:
Amy Millar, UFCW 1994/MCGEO; on Montgomery County proposed bill undercutting bargaining rights for county workers.
Carmen Berkley, on “Please Don’t Touch My Hair: A Convo On Black Hair In The Workplace.” Berkley is Director of the Civil, Human and Women’s Rights department at the AFL-CIO.
Labor song of the week: India.Arie - I Am Not My Hair
Workers shortchanged by companies under contract with Montgomery County for cleaning and other services have received over $300,000 in unpaid wages, county officials announced late last week and reported in the Washington Post. About a third of the money came from the settlement of a lawsuit filed against the county by some of the workers and one of the contractors. Four other contractors paid the rest after county audits showed they were not complying with Montgomery’s “living-wage” law, which requires contractors hired by the county government to pay a minimum hourly rate, adjusted annually based on the consumer price index.
Read the rest of the Post report on our website at dclabor.org
On today's labor calendar, UFCW 1994's Gino Renne will discuss the proposed bill undercutting bargaining rights for county workers in Montgomery County on today's "Your Rights at Work" at 1 pm here on WPFW. AFL-CIO Director of Civil, Human and Women’s Rights Carmen Berkley will also be on, previewing tomorrow's talk entitled “PLEASE DON'T TOUCH MY HAIR: A CONVO ON BLACK HAIR IN THE WORKPLACE.”
And starting this Friday, the Labor Heritage Foundation's annual Great Labor Arts Exchange brings together labor musicians and artists from across the nation, with a free concert Saturday night honoring LUCI MURPHY. For more info, visit LaborHeritage.org and for the latest local labor calendar, go to dclabor.org and click on Calendar.
Here’s today's labor history:
On this date in 1914, Charles Moyer, president of the Western Federation of Miners, went to Butte, Montana in an attempt to mediate a conflict between factions of the miner’s local there. It didn’t go well. A gunfight in the union hall killed one man; Moyer and other union officers left the building, which was then leveled in a dynamite blast.
In 1947, Congress overrode President Harry Truman's veto of the anti-worker Taft-Hartley Act. The law weakened unions and let states exempt themselves from union requirements. Twenty states immediately enacted open shop laws and more followed.
And in 1999, a majority of the 5,000 textile workers at six Fieldcrest Cannon textile plants in Kannapolis, North Carolina voted for union representation after an historic 25-year fight.
Today’s labor quote is by President Harry Truman, from his June 20 1947 radio address to American people after vetoing the Taft-Hartley bill:
"The bill is deliberately designed to weaken labor unions. When the sponsors of the bill claim that by weakening unions, they are giving rights back to individual workingmen, they ignore the basic reason why unions are important in our democracy. Unions exist so that laboring men can bargain with their employers on a basis of equality. Because of unions, the living standards of our working people have increased steadily until they are today the highest in the world."
Click here for the entire speech
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