Omaha Steve's Journal - Archives
I've been so busy I missed this anniversary yesterday.
October 14, 1964 - The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., won the Nobel Peace Prize. Only 35 years old, he was the youngest person ever to receive the award. In addition to leading the civil rights movement, King was an outspoken advocate for worker rights, particularly for the underrepresented in society. His policy of civil disobedience proved effective not only for African-Americans seeking a seat at a white-only lunch counter in the 1960s, but for miners struggling for justice in the Pittson Coal strike of the late 1980s. Nonviolence, King said, “is not sterile passivity, but a powerful moral force which makes for social transformation.”
The Montgomery Bus Boycott
In 1955, the black citizens of Montgomery, Alabama, inspired by the arrest of Rosa Parks, who refused to give her seat to a white man, began a 13-month boycott of the city bus system. The strike was coordinated by the Montgomery Improvement Association, with King as its president.
Read more: http://www.time.com/time/photogallery/0,29...
Snip: Almost every day since the strike began, state troopers have arrested strikers and their supporters for sitting down in front of coal trucks entering or leaving the Pittston mines and processing plants. There have been more than 2,200 arrests so far.
Suddenly, men and women in an area not noted for its sympathy with the civil-rights movement speak of their kinship with Martin Luther King Jr.
``This is just like the movement in the `60s with the colored people trying to get their rights,`` said Carson Wise Jr., a miner.
The strikers also have traveled by the busload to banks that lend money to Pittston, offices of the company`s directors and the company`s Greenwich, Conn., headquarters to engage in ``informational picketing.``
The nonviolent approach is smart public relations for a union that has lost half its members in the last decade.
``We`re in the land of the giants and we`re the Smurfs,`` said Marty Hudson, the strike coordinator, a former miner whose groomed good looks and white Oxford shirts would disguise him as a yuppie if it weren`t for his chewing tobacco. ``We`ve got to get the support of the communities to win, and we can`t get it with violence.``
October 2, 1935 - President Franklin D. Roosevelt, addressing a crowd in San Diego, asserted the right of all workers to join unions. He said, "It is now beyond partisan controversy that it is a fundamental individual right of a worker to associate himself with other workers and to bargain collectively with his employer."
President Kennedy signs off on a $900 million public-works bill for projects in economically depressed areas - 1962
At the link you can read several items JFK passed over his short time in office that did so much for the MIDDLE CLASS. Dependent child aid, unemployment, job training for teens, area development aid 1961, Federal Unemployment Compensation Extension , Flood Disaster Victims — Study , etc...
Accelerated Public Works Program
S. 2965 — Public Law 87-658, approved September 14, 1962
Enacted into law a bill designed to relieve some of the unemployment problems throughout the 50 States as well as provide for immediate public works programs.
Authorized an immediate $900 million public works program in areas of chronic unemployment to initiate or accelerate projects already authorized or State or local projects for which Federal aid has been previously authorized.
Areas eligible are those designated by the Secretary of Labor as areas of substantial unemployment during at least 9 of the preceding 12 months or designated by the Commerce Secretary as "redevelopment areas" under the Area Redevelopment Act.
Earmarked $300 million of the $900 million to rural areas designated for redevelopment under the Area Redevelopment Act.
Authorized the President to allocate funds appropriated to the heads of the departments and agencies responsible for construction of Federal projects or Federal aid to State or local projects.
Allocated funds to be subject to requirements in the authorizing legislation except provisions limiting allocations of funds among the States and limiting total amount of grants for specified period of time.
Authorized Federal share of cost to be at least 50 percent, and up to 75 percent if the State or local government is not financially capable of raising 50 percent of the funds.
Authorized the President to prescribe rules, regulations, and procedures to assure adequate consideration of the relative needs of eligible areas such as severity and duration of unemployment, the income levels, and the extent of underemployment in eligible areas.
Limited to 10-percent commitments to any one State.
Required that projects to receive aid must be initiated or accelerated within a reasonably short time, must meet an essential public need, must contribute significantly to reducing local unemployment and not be inconsistent with locally approved comprehensive plans, and must be able to be substantially completed within 12 months.
Prohibited use of funds, directly or indirectly, for planning or construction of schools or other educational facilities.
Required that financial assistance provided under this act must produce a net increase in expenditures by the applicant for capital improvement projects approximately equal to the amount of non-Federal funds for the aided project.
In signing the bill into law, President Kennedy stated:
I am today approving S. 2965, a bill which authorizes the appropriation of $900 million to initiate and accelerate Federal public works projects and to provide Federal assistance for a similar expansion of local public works to relieve unemployment and spur economic expansion in those areas of the country which have failed to share fully in the economic gains of the recovery from the 1960-61 recession.
Enactment of this bill is a significant milestone in our effort to strengthen the economy and provide a greater measure of economic security to the unemployed. It is an important companion measure to other efforts already underway. The Area Redevelopment Administration has begun the long difficult task of stimulating the creation of new, permanent jobs in communities which have suffered economic reverses for the longest periods. Through the manpower development and training program, tens of thousands of jobless men and women will soon be learning the skills needed to improve their employment prospects and productivity. Because of expanded distribution of surplus agricultural commodities, thousands of destitute families now have at least the essentials of a decent diet.
I shall shortly transmit to Congress a request for the appropriation of funds necessary to get the program underway. To insure that prompt use is made of the new authority as soon as funds are available, I am today issuing an Executive order designating the Secretary of Commerce as the coordinator of this program. Four principles will guide his efforts:
The funds will be invested in worthwhile and necessary projects designed to make eligible communities better places in which to live and work.
The jobs created will be made available to the maximum feasible extent to the unemployed within the eligible communities.
The program will be administered according to the highest standards of impartiality, economy, and scrupulous honesty.
The program will become operative as quickly as prudent management and respect for the foregoing principles permit.
Every so often somebody brings up Native (now called FIRST AMERICANS) Americans and how they were treated after the white man landed on Americas Eastern shores. It came up today on a Yahoo group I'm on. It got to me. My reply:
Tell that to my several relatives that died on the trail of tears!
My great great grandmother escaped the forced march and was protected by a bi-racial household until it was safe to leave. My great great grandmother never saw any of her family members again.
My favorite flower is the Cherokee Rose. Today it still blooms along the trail paths. My paternal grandmothers maiden name was Hatie Rose. Hatie was the 1/2 breed that harbored my great great grandmother.
http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/ops... of Tears
In 1838, the United States government forcibly removed more than 16,000 Cherokee Indian people from their homelands in Tennessee, Alabama, North Carolina, and Georgia, and sent them to Indian Territory (today known as Oklahoma). The impact to the Cherokee was devastating. Hundreds of Cherokee died during their trip west, and thousands more perished from the consequences of relocation. This tragic chapter in American and Cherokee history became known as the Trail of Tears, and culminated the implementation of the Indian Removal Act of 1830, which mandated the removal of all American Indian tribes east of the Mississippi River to lands in the West.
Early in the 19th century, the United States felt threatened by England and Spain, who held land in the western part of the continent. At the same time, American citizens clamored for more land. President Thomas Jefferson proposed the creation of a buffer zone between U.S. and European holdings, to be inhabited by eastern American Indians. This plan would also allow for American expansion westward from the original colonies to the Mississippi River.
Between 1816 and 1840, tribes located between the original states and the Mississippi River, including Cherokees, Chickasaws, Choctaws, Creeks, and Seminoles, signed more than 40 treaties ceding their lands to the U.S. In his 1829 inaugural address, President Andrew Jackson set a policy to relocate eastern Indians. In 1830 his plan was endorsed by the Congress passed the Indian Removal Act to force those remaining to move west of the Mississippi. Between 1830 and 1850, about 100,000 American Indians living between Michigan, Louisiana, and Florida moved west after the U.S. government coerced treaties or used the U.S. Army against those resisting. Many were treated brutally. An estimated 3,500 Creeks dies in Alabama and on their westward Journey.
Beginning in 1791 a series of treaties between the United States and the Cherokees living in Georgia gave recognition to the Cherokee as a nation with their own laws and customs. Nevertheless, treaties and agreements gradually whittled away at this land base, and in the late 1700s some Cherokees sought refuge from white interference by moving to northwestern Arkansas between the White and Arkansas Rivers. As more and more land cessions were forced on the Cherokees during the first two decades of the 1800s, the number moving to Arkansas increased. Then in 1819, the Cherokee National Council notified the federal government that it would no longer cede land, thus hardening their resolve to remain on their traditional homelands.
FULL article at link.
This picture, The Trail of Tears, was painted by Robert Lindneux in 1942. It commemorates the suffering of the Cherokee people under forced removal. If any depictions of the "Trail of Tears" were created at the time of the march, they have not survived.
Image Credit: The Granger Collection, New York
The trail map:
Nothing to do with the trail, but I thought I'd see who read the entire post.
The United Steel Workers post that started it all (Posted February 20, 2011 at 4:47 pm http://blog.usw.org/2011/02/20/on-wisconsi... /
The Democratic Underground (DU) is providing 24-hour coverage of the fight against Tea Party-backed union busting. It has thousands of posts about what is going on in Madison and around the country concerning organized labor this past week, from how to pay for pizzas for protesters to videos, photos, and late breaking news.
Front page: http://www.democraticunderground.com /
The main spots for info are Late Breaking News: http://www.democraticunderground.com/discu...
(youtube) Political Videos: http://www.democraticunderground.com/discu...
General Discussion: http://www.democraticunderground.com/discu...
The Labor Forum: http://www.democraticunderground.com/discu...
Two days later this DU post also made the USW blog: http://blog.usw.org/2011/02/22/dear-rev-ja... /
Dear Rev Jackson: It Seems Like Old Times AGAIN!
In 1984 Marta voted for you in the Ne. Primary. I voted for Mondale. We both voted for you in the 88 primary. To top it off, we took our three children to the downtown mall to hear you speak. The next morning as people across the state read the Omaha paper, a photo of you standing next to the podium clearly showed our two grade school daughters standing next to you. A very beautiful rainbow coalition picture worth a thousand words. We still talk about that from time to time.
Then came a let down in 2005. You traveled to meet with Terri Schiavo’s parents. We were for death with dignity. It was the first time we ever felt you let us down. It has left us with a bad after taste that has lingered.
Then tonight a nation saw much of the old magic that brought you so close to the nomination in 88. Speaking of workers rights, with so much for ALL America hanging in the balance. Any bad taste has been FULLY wiped away.
Even though you never left the minds of many, a middle class that is on the ropes will remember this night. Remember it until the young students standing up for their future around you in Madison tonight have left the face of the earth. Our family knows this. Just ask our daughters.
Steven L. Dawes
Omaha Steve A.K.A. OS
Shop Steward AFSCME Local 251
Labor Leader of the Democratic Underground
Post # 30,000.
Not bad for a guy that almost quit once over something very stupid a few months ago.
It seems like only a few weeks ago I found the DU. I was having a flame war about politics with a conservative and was winning about "W". He accused me of getting my far out ideas from something called the Democratic Underground. That got me to look for this place.
My fortress of solitude. This has been my hobby home ever since.
Photos of me with Cindy Sheehan:
Asking for advice on how to handle meeting my oldest daughter for the first time: http://www.democraticunderground.com/discu...
The first time I suggested a union group for the DU. It wasn't long before we got upgraded to a Labor Forum. Buy American and rights for animals. My good friend the seal lady (Marie) took her own life a few years ago. Me walking a picket line in Bellevue to ensure the right to an abortion would continue after the shooting of Dr. George Tiller: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/31029377/ns/us... / My support for gays (GLBT) through Pride at Work etc.
Making the DU the first stop for labor supporters when the Wisconsin protests started.
Talking about recent low points in American History like Katrina. The high points like electing President Obama.
To this and many more posts, I raise a glass to toast in cheer to the good times and bad.
I love you ALL.
Omaha Steve & Marta (she lets me have all this time here)
Because of a misunderstanding, Marta and I didn't file before yesterdays deadline. There is a moratorium for a couple months on filing for our races. Our opponents didn't file yet either.
I'm running for the city council against a very well connected Republican.
Marta is running for the school board.
Today was the county party running for office seminar. As soon as I have a treasurer, I will have a Act Blue page for those that asked for it a few weeks ago. Critical since the state just removed all campaign donation limits: http://www.omaha.com/article/20110827/NEWS...
Steve & Marta
Lest We Forget: On this day in 1950, President Harry Truman seized control of the nation's railroads
194 railroads at the time. Today we have only 5 major railroads in the US.
#4 in the series of "Lest We Forget": http://journals.democraticunderground.com/...
August 27, 1950 - President Harry Truman ordered the U.S. Army to seize all of the nation's railroads to prevent a general strike. The railroads were not returned to their owners until two years later.
Aug 25, 1950:
Truman orders army to seize control of railroads
On this day in 1950, in anticipation of a crippling strike by railroad workers, President Harry S. Truman issues an executive order putting America's railroads under the control of the U.S. Army, as of August 27, at 4:00 pm.
Truman had already intervened in another railway dispute when union employees of the Chicago, North Shore and Milwaukee Railway Company threatened to strike in 1948. This time, however, Truman's intervention was critical, as he had just ordered American troops into a war against North Korean communist forces in June. Since much of America's economic and defense infrastructure was dependent upon the smooth functioning of the railroads, the 1950 strike proposed by two enormous labor organizations, the Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen and the Order of Railway Conductors, posed an even greater threat. In July, Truman ordered the formation of an emergency board to negotiate a settlement between the railroad unions and owners. The unions ultimately rejected the board's recommendations and, by August 25, seemed determined to carry out the strike.
FULL story at link.
And this: http://deadpresidentsdaily.blogspot.com/20...
Saturday, August 25, 2007
August 25, 1950:
Truman Seizes the Railroads
In an age of jet travel and the Interstate system, it's hard to imagine how dependent the United States once was on its railroads, but the nation was in 1950. Two months after the start of fighting in Korea, President Truman took a step that, though probably justified by wartime necessity, seems exceptionally radical today. He ordered the Army to take control of the nation's railroads ahead of a strike that would have shut them down.
"On August 25, 1950, President Harry Truman ordered the Army... to seize control of all major U.S. railroads from the 194 owning companies by August 27," writes Shaun Kirkpatrick, U.S. Army Military History Institute, on Army.mil, homepage of the US Army. "The order came before a national labor strike, scheduled for August 28, would have shut down the country's most important means of transportation.
"Secretary of the Army, Frank Pace Jr., said in a statement that day, 'We must not permit the flow of essential support to the forces in Korea to be interrupted.' Assistant Secretary of the Army, Karl Bendetsen, telegraphed the union presidents and rail companies and asked if labor and management would work under Army control. Both sides agreed to comply with the Army's request for continued operations, and the labor unions called off their strike.
"The strike plans arose out of more than a year of disagreements between unions and rail companies over wage demands and desired rule changes. The sides took another 21 months to reach a settlement; meanwhile, the Army retained control of national rail operations while also handling the Korean War.
FULL story at link.
I remember doing duck and cover drills in kindergarten during the Cuban Missile Crisis. I also remember the fear that gripped the US. When was the last time only one life was lost to an international crisis. The finest moment of the Kennedy administration was keeping both sides from pushing the nuclear button! I argue this point with conservatives whenever I hear "Kennedy wasn't such a great President".
Rudolf Anderson, Jr. (15 September 1927 – 27 October 1962) was a pilot and officer in the United States Air Force, and the first recipient of the Air Force Cross. Anderson was killed when his U-2 reconnaissance aircraft was shot down while overflying Cuban airspace during the Cuban Missile Crisis; he was the only casualty that occurred as a result of enemy fire during the confrontation.
On the morning of October 27, a U-2F (the third CIA U-2A, modified for air-to-air refueling) piloted by USAF Major Rudolf Anderson,<51> departed its forward operating location at McCoy AFB, Florida, and at approximately 12:00 pm EDT, the aircraft was struck by a S-75 Dvina (NATO designation SA-2 Guideline) SAM missile launched from Cuba. The aircraft was shot down and Anderson was killed. The stress in negotiations between the USSR and the U.S. intensified, and only much later was it learned that the decision to fire the missile was made locally by an undetermined Soviet commander acting on his own authority.
The engine of the Lockheed U-2 shot down over Cuba on display at Museum of the Revolution in Havana.
See the films Missiles of October & Thirteen Days.
I've posted about this every April in Labor History in the Labor Forum: http://www.democraticunderground.com/discu...
It never gets much attention. Thought I'd put it out in the open for a change.
Ludlow Massacre Monument Junction of Del Aqua and Colorado and Southern Railroad tracks, Ludlow, CO. This monument marks the site where striking miners and their families were killed in their tent colony on April 20, 1914.
The date April 20, 1914 will forever be a day of infamy for American workers. On that day, 18 innocent men, women and children were killed in the Ludlow Massacre. The coal miners in Colorado and other western states had been trying to join the UMWA for many years. They were bitterly opposed by the coal operators, led by the Colorado Fuel and Iron Company.
Upon striking, the miners and their families had been evicted from their company-owned houses and had set up a tent colony on public property. The massacre occurred in a carefully planned attack on the tent colony by Colorado militiamen, coal company guards, and thugs hired as private detectives and strike breakers. They shot and burned to death 20 people, including a dozen women and small children. Later investigations revealed that kerosene had intentionally been poured on the tents to set them ablaze. The miners had dug foxholes in the tents so the women and children could avoid the bullets that randomly were shot through the tent colony by company thugs. The women and children were found huddled together at the bottoms of their tents.
The Baldwin Felts Detective Agency had been brought in to suppress the Colorado miners. They brought with them an armored car mounted with a machine gun—the Death Special— that roamed the area spraying bullets. The day of the massacre, the miners were celebrating Greek Easter. At 10:00 AM the militia ringed the camp and began firing into the tents upon a signal from the commander, Lt. Karl E. Lindenfelter. Not one of the perpetrators of the slaughter were ever punished, but scores of miners and their leaders were arrested and black-balled from the coal industry.
A monument erected by the UMWA stands today in Ludlow, Colorado in remembrance of the brave and innocent souls who died for freedom and human dignity.
In December, 2008, the U.S. Department of the Interior designated the Ludlow site as a National Historic Landmark. "This is the culmination of years of work by UMWA members, retirees and staff, as well as many hundreds of ordinary citizens who have fought to preserve the memory of this brutal attack on workers and their families," UMWA International President Cecil E. Roberts said.
"The tragic lessons from Ludlow still echo throughout our nation, and they must never be forgotten by Americans who truly care about workplace fairness and equality," Roberts said. "With this designation, the story of what happened at Ludlow will remain part of our nation's history. That is as it should be."
The dedication ceremony was held at Ludlow on June 28, 2009.
August 14, 1934 - President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed the Social Security Act into law, creating the most successful anti-poverty program in U.S. history.
My first political action was asking my mom and dad not to buy grapes in the 60's. Going door to door for Bobby Kennedy was next. I've never changed. See my avatar on the left about Nixon and look it up. I see Maria every time I drink wine.
I only buy UFW approved wine btw: http://www.ufw.org/_page.php?menu=organizi...
Yes I hit the Cabernet bottle tonight.
17-year old Maria Isabel Vasquez Jimenez died in 2008 while laboring in the grape vineyards. Her death is hard to accept because it didn’t need to happen. It appears basic heat laws were not observed by the labor contractors, who are accused of failing to provide Jimenez with access to a nearby source of drinking water, shade from the sun, training in how to recognize symptoms of heat illness, and swift medical attention. Maria’s temperature reached 108 degrees on a day California's occupational safety agency issued a heat-danger warning to employers.
There was a crucial court hearing on, Thursday, July 29, on the circumstances surrounding Maria’s death. The judge was expected to decide whether the case against three people charged with felonies for contributing to Maria Isabel’s death would proceed to trial. He also could have weighed in on whether the ex-farm labor contractors will face jail time if convicted. At the defence's request, the judge delayed the hearing until October.
The family strongly feels anyone found responsible for 17-year-old Maria Isabel’s death should be jailed. The UFW is doing all we can to support the family and asks you to lend your support. Please sign the pledge to do what you can to ensure that the people responsible for Maria’s death are prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. Let Maria’s family know that people throughout the nation are standing with them.
PLEASE take the pledge at the link!
Most of you know I was fired illegally for union organizing in June 1980: http://www.nlrb.gov/shared_files/Board%20D...
The next 4 years were the worst years of my life. More on that in a bit.
This afternoon I did something I haven't done in years. I walked into a Starbucks to order something. I told the Barista at the counter I wanted a large iced tea. I then told him I want to make sure my Barista is a union member. You could see I had upset him. He threw his bar towel against the counter and went into the back room. A young black worker came out with the largest smile she could make. She took my order. A few moments later I was at the cash register. As I paid for my tea she politely said in a low voice "thank you for your support". I said "same to you".
I lost it. I remembered in detail being fired at the age of 23 because I wanted a union at my workplace. I had 3 kids to feed. I was black listed. It was 82 when I got my first work after being fired. I worked for 10 weeks as a paid picket in the Hinky Dindy (UFCW) strike. I would not find any work again until late June of 1983. Payroll had some problems. I got my first check for 6 weeks just before Marta went on strike against Ma Bell for 3 weeks. The last unified national strike against AT&T before break up the following first of the year.
I remembered loosing my unemployment appeal. Winning the first round with the NLRB. Loosing the next round with an administrative law judge. My appeal to the board was upheld. Industrial Label appealed to the appellate court in St. Louis. I won there. After close to 4 years I got a settlement check on the condition I turn down in writing my right to reinstatement at the company. Otherwise the company was ready to stall by appealing to the US Supreme Court.
It was a while before I learned it was the first black to sit on the NLRB board that made the difference in my case. Howard Jenkins Jr. was nominated by President Kennedy. He stayed through 5 different Presidents and earned the nickname Mr. NLRB.
My barista of choice asked if something was wrong? I could only say tears of joy as I walked away. I'm sure several people in the store wondered where the nut bag came from.
Squeezed Baristas Shut Down 15th and Douglas Starbucks in Omaha to Protest Cutbacks: http://www.starbucksunion.org/node/3822
Submitted by SWU on Thu, 08/05/2010 - 8:36am.
For Immediate Release:
Starbucks Workers Union/Industrial Workers of the World (IWW)
Contact: Tyler Swain, 402-320-2002
August 5, 2010
Squeezed Baristas Shut Down 15th and Douglas Starbucks to Protest Cutbacks
Workers Demand Reversal of Recession Labor Cuts as Starbucks Returns to Profitability
Press Conference: 4:30 August 5, 15th and Douglas, W. Entrance to Omaha Public Library
Omaha, NE- Baristas and community supporters shut down the 15th and Douglas Starbucks (SBUX) this morning demanding that management reverse all cuts to healthcare, staffing, and benefits that have been imposed during the recession. The baristas claim that executives have no justification to squeeze working families with Starbucks raking in profits of $977.2 million in the past four fiscal quarters.
“We are being squeezed, and we can't take it any more. Since the recession began, Starbucks executives have ruthlessly gutted our standard of living. They doubled the cost of our health insurance, reduced staffing levels, cut our hours, all while demanding more work from us. Starbucks is now more than profitable again. It's time for management to give back what they took from us,” said Sasha McCoy, a shift supervisor at the store.
Since the onset of the recession, Starbucks imposed a series of deep cuts on its workforce. Starting in 2008 as the economic downturn began, the coffee giant shuttered over 800 stores and slashed over 18000 jobs. The remaining skeleton crew workforce was stretched out, forced to push VIA and other promotional products while keeping the stores running with insufficient staffing levels. CEO Howard Schultz then doubled the cost of the company health insurance plan in September 2009, leaving many workers unable to afford medical treatment because of sky-high deductibles and premiums. While the cuts continue, Starbucks made a record profit of $207.9 million in the last quarter according to company figures.
The protesting baristas are members of the Starbucks Workers Union, which is an international campaign of the Industrial Workers of the World labor union. The store action makes the 15th and Douglas location the first Starbucks in Nebraska to have a public union presence. The workers decided to move to unionize after watching their standard of living be whittled away while top executives chose to reward investors with dividends.
Samantha Cole, a Barista at the store said, “I work hard for every dollar I make in order to put food on the table for my family; Starbucks rewards workers with a poverty wage while they give their Wall Street pals dividends. I'm not doing this for myself so much as for the next generation that will grow up in this country. These are the only jobs that are left here- we need to make sure they are good jobs for working families.”
While portraying itself as a ‘socially-responsible’ employer, Starbucks pays Nebraska baristas a poverty wage of $7.35/hr. In addition, all retail hourly workers at Starbucks in the United States are part-time employees with no guaranteed number of work hours per week. According to Starbucks figures released to the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, 40.9% of its employees (including managers) are covered by the company health care package, a lower percentage than the oft-criticized Wal-Mart, which insures 47% of its workforce.
Since the launch of the IWW campaign at Starbucks on May 17, 2004, the company has been cited multiple times for illegal union-busting by the National Labor Relations Board. The company settled numerous complaints against it and was recently found guilty by a judge in New York on more than 30 additional rights’ violations. Starbucks’ large anti-union operation is operated in conjunction with the Akin Gump law firm and the Edelman public relations firm.
The IWW Starbucks Workers Union is a grassroots organization of over 300 current and former employees at the world's largest coffee chain united for secure work hours and a living wage. The union has members throughout the United States and Canada fighting for systemic change at the company and remedying individual grievances with management.
Union baristas, bussers, and shift supervisors have fought successfully toward improved scheduling and staffing levels, increased wages, and workplace safety. Workers who join the union have immediate access to co-workers and members of the community who will struggle with them for a better life on the job.
This is in response to your article today “Grinding axes over unions”.
I’m witting from Nebraska. We are a right to work state. I’m the son of
a scab. My father was 11 years old in 1931 and quit school to support
his family during the depression. He was one of fourteen children. My
grandfather was in jail for bootlegging. (He was also a bigamist). My
dad crossed the picket line. He was working a quarry in Southern
Indiana. The company used young children to place explosive charges deep
in small holes from a drill. On his way home one night, several out of
work men taught a young boy why he should have stayed in school and
shouldn’t cross the line.
Although after W.W.II my father worked in a union shop in Omaha for 32
years, he never joined. He had good pay and benefits for a third grade
education. He didn’t like it when in 1980 I started organizing for the
GAU in a non-union print shop. I was fired once the company felt I had
the votes to get the union in. While my case wound through the system
for over three and a half years, my wife’s union wages at US West keep
us from starving. The best work a union trouble maker could find during
that time was a paid picket for ten weeks in the Omaha area Hinky Dinky
My case file:
My story doesn’t end here. On February 20th last year I was fired in
blatant retaliation for filing an ADA complaint against my employer.
Because a contract was in force, my case moved much faster this time.
Five days before a scheduled arbitration hearing, I was offered
reinstatement with back pay and wages on June twentieth. Four months. My
union paid all the legal fees (approximately $5,000) and asked nothing
I can’t understand people not wanting to pay union dues. When your
outside looking in, things are much different. I don’t feel what my
father did all those years was right. He did earn a retirement, decent
wage, and more. His experience from 1931 had nothing to do with his
career in Omaha. The right to work law weakens unions. Just as it was
designed to do in 1947. Nebraska was one of the first states to use
right to work in 1947.
Steven L Dawes
Shop Steward AFSCME local 251
See these also,
Where are the victims of unions?: http://www.democraticunderground.com/discu...
Grinding axes over unions: http://www.democraticunderground.com/discu...
Source: General Union of Oil Employees in Basra
Sunday, May 13, 2007
Open Letter to US Congress and European Parliament
Open Letter to the Members of he US Congress who Oppose the War on Iraq
To members of the European Parliaments who Oppose the War
Peace be upon you and greetings to you all,
We wish to clarify certain matters relating to events in Iraq for our friends among the members of the US Congress. It is common knowledge that the occupation spared neither the old nor the young, and that Iraq is passing through the most difficult of times because all and sundry are hounding it and covet a share of its riches. We see no good reason for linking the passing of the feeble Iraqi oil law to the withdrawal of the occupation troops from Iraq.
Everyone knows that the oil law does not serve the Iraqi people, and that it serves Bush, his supporters and the foreign companies at the expense of the Iraqi people who have been wronged and deprived of their right to their oil despite enduring all difficulties.
We ask our friends not to link withdrawal with the oil law, especially since the USA claimed that it came to Iraq as a liberator and not in order to control Iraq’s resources.
The general public in Iraq is totally convinced that Bush wants to rush the promulgation of the oil law so as to be leaving Iraq with a victory of sorts, because his project is failing every day and the occupation is collapsing in all parts of Iraq.
We wish to see you take a true stance for the children of Iraq, and we always say that history will remember those who advance peace over war.
With my regards,
Hassan Jum’a Awwad
Head of the Iraqi Federation of Oil Unions
Read more: http://www.basraoilunion.org /
This letter is not copyrighted and is presented in it's entirety on the General Union of Oil Employees in Basra web site.
The ten most recent threads posted on the Democratic Underground Discussion Forums.
A Giant Union Is Planning to Protest the Oscars
Happy Valentines Day, old friends!
NEVER trust government. nt
By No Elephants
Shirley Temple-talented phenom and more, gone at 86
By No Elephants
Asian markets okay with recent disappointing American jobs report and Yellen's appointment.
By No Elephants
Another kind of Cold War
By No Elephants
The ten most recommended threads posted on the Democratic Underground Discussion Forums in the last 24 hours.
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