Teamsters

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Today's Teamster News 08.24.15

Teamsters
Google Express Workers Choose Teamsters Representation  Teamster.org  ...Warehouse and shipping workers at Google Express Services voted today by a strong majority in favor of representation by Teamsters Local 853 in San Leandro, Calif. The 151 workers at Google Express in Palo Alto, employed through contractor Adecco, sought out the Teamsters for help with improving working conditions and treatment on the job...
Google Express workers vote to unionize  USA Today  ...Google Express workers in Palo Alto, Calif. voted to unionize Friday, although the news comes as the newly restructured Google closes two delivery hubs in the San Francisco area. The workers seeking representation are employed by human resources company Adecco to work for Google Express...
These Google workers have voted to join the Teamsters union  Fortune  ...Warehouse and shipping workers for Google Shopping Express, the tech giant’s same day shopping delivery service, voted Friday to join a local chapter of the Teamsters union. The 151 workers had sought to unionize because of what they described as poor working conditions, such as lack of ventilation, low wages, poor benefits, harassment to work faster and with damaged equipment, cracked floors, and failing electrical systems...
NLRB case asks who's really the boss of subcontractors' workers  LA Times  ...In the case brought by the Teamsters, the union maintains that Republic has sufficient control over the wages and work conditions of the Leadpoint workers to count as their joint employer with Leadpoint. The NLRB's general counsel, which says it's taking no position on the facts of the case, supports the Teamsters' interpretation of the law. "This issue is creeping into almost every industry where Teamsters work," including trucking, warehousing and food processing, says Doug Bloch...
Teamsters strike against Sun Tran may go on for a while   Tucson News Now  ...The Teamsters Local 104 Union's prediction that the Sun Tran bus strike may go on for weeks, not days, is coming closer to reality. The strike is now in its 16th day and there are still no talks scheduled. According to Teamsters Spokesman Andrew Marshall, "the federal mediator called me at 8:20 this morning and reiterated again there's no proposal from Sun Tran...
Teamsters break strike record, plan to rally  Arizona Daily Star  ... The strike has passed the record for the longest ever. In 2001, the workers were on strike for 12 days. Teamsters Local 104 is holding a rally at 4 p.m. today, at Ronstadt Transit Center, 215 E. Congress St. Sun Tran spokeswoman Kandi Young said the management continues to work with a federal mediator to try to schedule talks with the union. But Teamsters spokesman Andy Marshall called it lip service...

Global Labor & Trade
Critics of Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal warn about arbitration clause  LA Times  ...Few things have galvanized critics of the 12-nation Pacific Rim trade deal as much as an arbitration clause aimed at protecting foreign businesses from the hazards of investing in countries with weak rule of law and unstable governments. The provision allows multinational investors to sue foreign governments for expropriation and unfair or unequal treatment, giving them the ability to bring cases before a special, extrajudicial arbitration tribunal that is unavailable to domestic investors...
NAFTA countries reignite negotiations over TPP auto-parts dispute  Globe and Mail  ...Negotiators for Canada, the U.S. and Mexico are meeting in Washington to try to break a deadlock over autos – one of the biggest stumbling blocks to a massive Pacific Rim trade pact between 12 countries. They are facing pressure from firms in the Canadian and Mexican auto sectors for a better deal...
Protesters rally against the Trans-Pacific Partnership in Martin Place  Sydney Morning Herald  ...More than one hundred protesters gathered in Martin Place on Sunday to rally in opposition against the Trans-Pacific Partnership. The rally was organised by GetUp! and the Australian Fair Trade and Investment Network and called on Trade Minister Andrew Robb to scrap the United States-led deal, which will "set the rules" for business in the region...
Opponents of secret 'TTIP' trade deal with the US take to the streets  Chronicle Live  ...Campaigners took to the streets on Saturday to campaign against a new trade deal which is so secret that it has to be kept in a locked room in Brussels. Ministers say the planned Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), a treaty due to be signed by the US and EU, will boost exports from the North East by £1.05bn...
Rep. Rosa DeLauro: Now Is The Time to Stop the TPP  (opinion) BNR  ...The latest round of Trans-Pacific Partnership negotiations has again failed to produce an agreement, despite intense pressure on the Obama administration to conclude negotiations before the start of the 2016 primary season. The TPP is in trouble because of serious problems with the agreement highlighted by Democrats in Congress and elsewhere. Now is the perfect moment for progressives to speak out about those weaknesses...
Kenya: Workers' Strikes Plunge Health Service in Crisis  AllAfrica  ...The crisis that has gripped health services has worsened as hospital workers in at least 10 counties threaten to strike over labour disputes with the devolved governments. The public health service in nearly all counties has been marred by claims of ethnic profiling, job stagnation, salary delays and withholding of allowances and poor working conditions...
Workers Win New Labor Law in Iraq  Solidarity Center  ...The Iraqi parliament passed a new labor law on Monday, marking a victory for workers and civil society who have long fought for a legal framework that would protect the interests of workers. The consensus version of the law was hammered out by representatives of workers and civil society with government officials earlier this month during a consultative conference...
China’s Stock Market Is Melting Down—and It’s Taking Markets Everywhere With It  Slate  ...Friday was a rout in the stock markets; Monday is already looking worse. The Shanghai Composite index tumbled 8.5 percent—erasing the last of its gains for the year in its biggest single-day loss since 2007. European stocks have plunged nearly 5 percent. U.S. stocks nosedived at the opening bell...

State & Living Wage Battles
Both sides prepare as right-to-work battle heats up  Joplin Globe ...Southwest Missouri Democrats plan a second town hall meeting to support Gov. Jay Nixon's veto of right-to-work legislation. Groups for and against the measure are gearing up in advance of the veto session that starts Sept. 16 in Jefferson City. The Missouri Chamber of Commerce is leading the charge for the veto override and suggests "an increasing likelihood of a successful vote"...
Minimum-wage debate heats up in Pennsylvania  Times Leader  ...Nineteen U.S. cities and counties experienced mandated wage increases this year; 29 states and Washington, D.C., already require employers to pay workers more than $7.25. Pennsylvania isn’t part of this group – yet. There are five bills pending in the state Legislature proposing to raise the minimum wage, with different methods and standards...
Under John Kasich, Ohio's Charter Schools Became a "National Joke"  Mother Jones  ...In the four years that Kasich has been in office, funding for traditional public schools has declined by almost half a billion dollars, while charter schools have seen a funding increase of more than 25 percent. Much of that funding appears to have been misspent. When State Auditor David Yost visited 30 charter schools unannounced this past fall, he found that in more than half of them, attendance was drastically lower...
NC voter ID case back in state court this morning  Progressive Pulse  ...The state court challenge to the 2013 voter ID provisions of the monster voting law is set for a hearing this morning at the Wake County Courthouse on the state’s request to dismiss the case. That request comes on the heels of the recent amendment to the law providing that voters lacking an acceptable photo ID can still cast a ballot after signing an affidavit...
Supporters of Puerto Rico statehood see opportunity as island's woes deepen  US News & World Report  ...With unemployment at 12 percent, and the public debt reaching $72 billion, advocates for making the Caribbean island the 51st state say the economic woes are strengthening their arguments. As a state, Puerto Rico's municipalities and public utilities would no longer be prohibited from restructuring their debts through bankruptcy. It would also receive more of certain kinds of federal funding that other states get...
Washington Supreme Court Rules All SeaTac Workers Be Paid $15 Minimum Wage  Truthout  ...SeaTac workers have a reason to celebrate after the Washington Supreme Court ruled 5-4 yesterday that the $15 minimum wage passed by a recent voter referendum should apply to thousands of airport employees. SeaTac surrounds Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, and many of its 28,000 residents are employed by companies near and in the airport...
Court Ruling Grants Home Care Workers Minimum Wage, Overtime Protections  Think Progress  ...A federal appeals court has reinstated a rule change that is meant to provide home care workers minimum wage and overtime protections. In 2013, the Department of Labor (DOL) announced that it would make changes to the Fair Labor Standards Act so that this workforce, who care for the elderly and disabled in their homes, would be guaranteed the same labor protections as all other workers...

U.S. Labor
NLRB Declines To Rule On Northwestern Football Players’ Union, Setting Back Player Organizing  In These Times  ...Faced with a decision about whether Northwestern University’s football team players could vote on whether they wanted a union, the five members of the National Labor Relations Board borrowed a tactic from the petitioning players’ game: they punted. They claimed that they could have decided, as the regional director did in March 2014, that the players were employees of the university. But the NLRB declined...
UAW activists pressure Detroit Three to end two-tier wages  Detroit Free Press  ...Auto workers need to continue to speak out to pressure UAW leaders as well as the Detroit Three to eliminate the two-tier wage structure in this year's contract negotiations, according to union members and retirees who spoke Sunday at an event in Detroit. “It’s now or never on ending two tier," said Jim Tyson, who drives trucks that deliver parts for Fiat Chrysler Automobiles...
California high court to hear Gerawan, UFW case  The Packer  ...California’s Supreme Court has agreed to hear a case involving the United Farm Workers and Gerawan Farming Inc., but it could be well into 2016 before the justices rule on whether the union and state officials can force the grower’s workers to join the union. The Fresno-based grower of stone fruit and grapes has been fighting the union and the California Agriculture Labor Relations Board...
Why One Company Is Experimenting With A Four-Day Workweek  Think Progress  ...Fast Retailing, which owns Uniqlo, Theory, and J Brand, will give about a fifth of its employees the option to work four days a week starting in October, Bloomberg News reports. In exchange for a three-day weekend, workers will have to put in 10-hour days when they are at work and some will have to work Saturdays and Sundays...
USW stages massive rally  NWI Times  ...At least 3,000 steelworkers marched through downtown Gary to the gates of U.S. Steel's Gary Works mill, demanding a fair contract that preserves benefits previous generations fought for. Steelworkers carried signs saying "Fair Contract Now" and "Mario Got His $15,000,000. Where's Ours?"...
Robert Reich: In the New Economy, Workers Take on All the Risk  Alternet  ...As Labor Day looms, more Americans than ever don’t know how much they’ll be earning next week or even tomorrow. This varied group includes independent contractors, temporary workers, the self-employed, part-timers, freelancers, and free agents. Most file 1099s rather than W2s, for tax purposes...
Oil Field Workers Keep Dying, and the Feds Want to Know Why  Mother Jones  ...The oil boom in North Dakota and elsewhere has helped the US become the world's leading energy provider and has captured the attention of Hollywood producers. It also has claimed the lives of dozens of oil field workers. Now, that fallout from the boom is drawing renewed attention from government scientists...

Social Justice & Other News
Donald Trump Changes His Tune On Taxing The Super Rich  Think Progress  ...On Sunday, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump struck a populist tone when talking about hedge funds and the taxes they pay. But Trump has not always stuck up for the less well off in his tax reform proposals. As recently as 2011, in his book Time to Get Tough, he actually called for lowering the tax rate on capital gains income as well as dividends... 
We Need to Fix Our Democracy: Lawrence Lessig Weighs Presidential Run to Rid Money from Politics  Democracy Now  ...The 2016 presidential race is shaping up to be the most expensive political race in history. Experts predict as much as $10 billion could be spent by candidates, parties and outside groups on the campaign. A recent analysis by The New York Times shows fewer than 400 families are responsible for almost half the money raised to date...

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