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August 05, 2002

Labor Monday (8-5)

Roundup of labor stories August 5

  • The big labor story this week was the AFL-CIO taking protests to the heart of the "other Ground Zero" of economic implosion--- namely Wall Street. With a broad plan of corporate reform, labor laid out a new union plan of action. Lou Dobbs Praises Sweeney: You know it's cats sleeping with dogs apocalypse for the capitalists when a rightwing financial journalist thinks policymakers should be listening to the AFL-CIO leadership.
  • Threatening to take its protests to Boston and the mutual fund industry, the AFL-CIO scored an immediate victory when Fidelity Investments agreed to meet with the unions to discuss their call for the mutual fund firm to start making its proxy votes available to the public. Making its votes at the 5000 companies it invests public is key to giving shareholders a real role in corporate monitoring of their investments.
  • The Homeland Security bill is caught in a stalemate over the issue of workers rights for its employees, an issue that the Dems to their credit are standing firm on. Said Robert Byrd, ""Bin Laden is not the only target at which this White House is pointing its six-gun. Also clearly in the bull's eye is the job security of thousands of federal employees and the core values of rights for the worker which they represent."
  • Under union pressure, Stanley Works-- the company that became the poster child for tax dodging through incorporating in Bermuda-- has reversed its plans to incorporate overseas.
  • Steal money, go to jail. Steal a job, get a monetary slap on the wrist. That is still the legal standard, as this story details Overnight's mass illegal firing of union activists in order to stop Teamster organizing.
  • People cheered at the heroism of the miners who withstood adversity in the Quecreek mine, but they should be condemning the Bush administration for underfunding the agency in charge of mine inspections and putting industry hacks in charge of safety if they want to stop future accidents.
  • From the heroic to the brutal, NYC cops stay in the news, but when it comes to a pay raise, they get treated like every other low-paid group-- told to giveback benefits like days off if they want to see an increase from their pathetic $31,000 starting rate for new hires.
  • Wait staff in Boston are suing their restaurants for illegally confiscating tips meant for the staff. Business fraud does seem to extend to every nook and cranny of capitalism.
  • In a reversal, UMass-Amherst has agreed to bargain with a union of dormitory assistants, the first time a university has agreed to recognize such a union of undergraduate workers.

    Posted by Nathan at August 5, 2002 08:33 AM

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