Teamsters

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Today's Teamster News For January 28, 2016

TEAMSTERS

Hawthorne Racecourse Program Sellers Ratify New Contracts  Local 727  ...Teamsters Local 727 representatives secured new one-year contracts for program sellers at Hawthorne Racecourse and Hawthorne-Corliss OTB. The contracts provide job security, protect worker rights, maintain current benefits and working conditions, and also include economic re-opener language in the event that gaming legislation is passed in Illinois. “First and foremost, a strong Teamster contract provides job protection for our members,” said John Coli Jr., President of Local 727... 

Council prepares to vote next week on de Blasio horse deal  Capital NY  ...The City Council could vote as early as next Friday on a contentious proposal to restrict the horse carriage industry, leaving Council members little more than a week to decide on one of the more polarizing proposals of Mayor Bill de Blasio's tenure. The issue took a new urgency this month, when the Teamsters Union, which represents the drivers, and the administration, along with the speaker, hashed out a compromise deal...

Teamsters Statement on Missing Teamster Member Sierra Shields  Teamster.org  ...Sierra Shields, a flight attendant with Shuttle America for Delta and United Airlines flights, and a member of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, has been missing since Jan. 14, 2016. She was last seen leaving New York’s LaGuardia Airport on foot that morning. Teamsters urge anyone with information on the missing flight attendant to come forward...

 

GLOBAL LABOR & TRADE

Latin America Boosts Minimum Wage  Latin Post  ...Latin America is gaining momentum when it comes to the region's minimum wage. According to AS COA, countries like Chile, Colombia, Brazil, Mexico and Guatemala have simultaneously increased their minimum wage after years of recession. Mexico's effort to increase the wage of its minimum earners still puts them on the lowest part of the chart, tagging Mexico as one of the countries in Latin America that has the lowest minimum wage...

Nigeria: Kwara State Water Corporation Workers begin indefinite strike  Bellenaija  ...Workers of Kwara State Water Corporation on Tuesday embarked on indefinite strike following the refusal of the management to pay their four months’ salary. The workers under the aegis Amalgamated Union of Public Corporations, Civil Service Technical and Recreational Services Employees (AUPCTRE) accused the management of not paying September to December 2015 salaries...

India: Sanitation workers on strike for non-payment of salaries in Delhi  NewsGram  ..Delhi municipal sanitation workers staged a protest against the non-payment of their salaries leading to which they dumped garbage outside Deputy Chief Minister Sisodia’s Camp office in east Delhi. The protestors have threatened for an indefinite strike if their demands are not fulfilled at the earliest. They have demanded for an immediate release of funds of their salaries, which they say are pending for a long time...

Analyst: Trans-Pacific Partnership 'unlikely to go ahead'  NZ Herald  ...As the date for the signing of the Trans-Pacific Partnership in Auckland draws nearer, local and international commentators are making their views heard, with Washington-based analyst and director of public citizen global trade watch Lori Wallach saying it is unlikely the agreement will go ahead. Although studies around the agreement showed New Zealand would be one of the 'winners', the studies had ignored significant downsides to the agreement...

Larry Summers Skeptical of TPP Passage This Year  Bloomberg  ...Former Treasury Secretary Larry Summers says Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal unlikely to be approved this year. Summers notes that 4 candidates leading in polls for presidential nominations -- Republicans Sen. Ted Cruz and Donald Trump, Democrats Hillary Clinton and Sen. Bernie Sanders -- all oppose TPP...

Police door knock 'known activists' ahead of TPP protests  NZ Herald  ...Police are checking in on "known activists" around the country ahead of TPP protests later this week. Scout Barbour-Evans, a Dunedin transgender activist who goes by the gender-neutral pronoun "they", said an officer knocked on their door about 10 this morning. The officer wanted to know what the plans were for anti-Trans-Pacific Partnership action in Dunedin, Scout said...

Where Are the Jobs? New Reports Show TPP Fails Workers  AFLCIO  ...When it comes to the Trans-Pacific Partnership, the operative question for Americans to ask is “Where are the Jobs?” According to two new independent analyses, they’re nonexistent. The Barack Obama administration, as part of its full-throated defense of the deal, is touting a new report from the Peterson Institute that claims the TPP will increase exports and raise wages...

‘Corporate power grab:’ Govt’s refusal to release TTIP documents sparks outrage  RT.com  ...The government’s refusal to publish sensitive information that could reveal the negative impact TTIP might have on Britain’s health service has been condemned by campaigners, who warn the EU-US trade deal is undemocratic. While proponents of TTIP say the trade agreement will modernize trade tariffs and reduce regulatory constraints on exporters, critics say it amounts to a corporate power grab...

Colombia cuts oil price view, more austerity likely -finance minister  Reuters  ...Colombian Finance Minister Mauricio Cardenas on Monday cut the government's oil price forecast, saying this could spell more austerity measures in order to meet the country's fiscal deficit goal. He cut the estimate for this year's average oil price to $34.7 per barrel from an initial $50, adding that the tumble in oil prices will affect the Andean country's tax intake and economic growth...

 

STATE & LIVING WAGE BATTLES

Prevailing Wage Repealed by WV House; Moves to Senate  WOWK  ...On a vote of 55 to 44, the House of Delegates voted to abolish the state's "prevailing wage" law. Organized labor is not happy about the repeal, because members feel it is going to result in lower pay and benefits on state construction projects. "It's terrible; it's going to hurt our workers; it's going to hurt our communities," said Steve White, of Affiliated Construction Trades...

Unions say Rauner's political agenda hurting families  WREX  ...The Illinois AFL-CIO had a union teacher, painter, steelworker, fire fighter and others to denounce what they say is Gov. Bruce Rauner's anti-union agenda a day before his State of the State address. They said at a news conference Tuesday that the Republican governor's ideas would hurt the economy and families...

2 bills seek to establish minimum wage in New Hampshire  WCAX  ... New Hampshire lawmakers will consider two bills seeking to establish a state minimum wage. New Hampshire Public Radio reports the state's current minimum wage is set at a federal rate of $7.25 an hour, the lowest in New England. A bill in the Senate wants to increase that to $12. A second bill in the House would phase in the increases, raising the minimum wage to $9.50 an hour by 2019, and set a rate for tipped employees at $4 an hour...

Wage Increase in Long Beach to Benefit 54K Workers  Equal Voice  ....can a vote to increase the minimum wage truly help people in a historic era of inequality? working families and wage increase supporters in Southern California pointed to the Jan. 20 vote by the Long Beach City Council which boosted hourly pay to $13 by 2019 and included a path to $15 as prime evidence...

Iowa Fast-Food Workers Seeking $15 Wage to Strike Ahead of Republican Debate  Bloomberg  ...On the day of the final Republican debate before the pivotal Iowa caucus, fast-food workers will be staging their first-ever strike in the state, demanding a $15-per-hour minimum wage and union rights. “Forty-eight percent of workers in Iowa are paid less than $15 an hour,” Kendall Fells, national organizing director of the Fight for $15 movement, told Bloomberg Politics... 

Witnesses express concerns about North Carolina voter ID law  WRAL  ...Those challenging North Carolina's voter identification law say they worry that Hispanics and the homeless may have trouble voting this year. The NAACP and U.S. Justice Department witnesses presented their concerns during a hearing on the law Wednesday. Maria del Carmen Sanchez of Carrboro testified in a videotaped statement that she had trouble renewing her driver's license because her name did not match the one on her U.S. passport... 

Why the $15 Minimum Wage Is Economically Feasible  (opinion) Truthout  ...The immediate pushback against these campaigns has questioned whether it's feasible to expect businesses to adjust to a minimum-wage hike of this size without generating major negative unintended consequences. This opposition to a $15 minimum comes not only from expected corners - e.g., self-interested restaurant-industry lobbyists from the National Restaurant Association - but also from many economists...

 

U.S. LABOR

CWA Members Ready to Take Contract Fight to a New Level  DCLabor  ...Verizon last week rejected CWA's latest contract proposal, reports CWA District 2. "In fact, almost every proposal the union has placed on the table has been rejected by the company," says CWA. Contracts covering nearly 40,000 CWA and IBEW workers at Verizon expired last August. Verizon "is still not hearing us so it is more important than ever that we take this fight to a new level," CWA told its members...

Loyola faculty votes to unionize  Chicago Tribune  ...A group of Loyola University Chicago's adjunct and nontenured instructors has voted to form a union, the latest in a string of successful organizing efforts among faculties at private colleges concerned about low pay and insecure working conditions. The instructors voted 142-82 to be represented by the Service Employees International Union Local 73...

FCA-UAW members to receive $4,000 in profit sharing  Detroit News  ...bout 40,000 United Auto Workers members with Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV will receive profit sharing payments of up to $4,000 for 2015. The bonuses are the largest under the automaker’s four-year contract with the UAW from 2011, up 45 percent from the previous high of $2,750 in 2014. Employees will receive the payment on Feb. 19...

Lyft Agrees to Settle Class-Action Lawsuit With California Drivers  New York Times  ...For more than two years, ride-hailing companies have fought with their drivers over the drivers’ employment status. Now, one of those companies has found a way to bury the hatchet. Lyft, a popular start-up based in San Francisco, agreed late Tuesday to settle a class-action lawsuit brought in 2013 by Lyft drivers in California. The drivers had sought to be recognized as full-time employees...

Low pay, university 'corporatization' cited as reasons for unionization at Pitt  Business Times  ...The United Steelworkers and some University of Pittsburgh faculty members are hoping to organize a union at the storied public institution. The attempt to unionize encompasses both full- and part-time faculty, and graduate employees who work for the university. At Pitt, the worker complaints are about low pay and lack of freedom, according to United Steelworkers...

Obama to Urge Easing 401(k) Rules for Small Businesses  New York Times  ... President Obama will propose in his 2017 budget new rules that would make it easier for small businesses to join together to form 401(k) retirement plans for their workers, even if the businesses are in different industries, administration officials said Monday. The officials said that the proposal, if accepted by the Republican-led Congress, could make retirement plans available to more people...

 

SOCIAL JUSTICE & OTHER NEWS

Poverty and Racism Aren't the Same, But Black People Are Getting Screwed by Both  Gawker  ...Racial inequality and economic inequality are not synonyms, but they are as closely linked as it is possible for two things to be. They are the bread and butter of American problems. The close correlation between race and poverty clearly has its roots in historic racism—and, for black people, the legacy of slavery, which was a very direct system of building white wealth at the expense of black people... 

Families in Fear: The Atlanta Immigration Raids  SPLC  ...Rather than fulfill its commitment to protect and provide refuge to families fleeing violence and persecution in these countries, the Obama administration has taken the same fatally flawed approach to law enforcement that has led to our nation’s mass incarceration crisis. Under President Obama, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has pursued needlessly aggressive – and potentially unconstitutional – law enforcement action against vulnerable immigrants...

Flint Residents Demand An End To Sky-High Bills For Contaminated Water  Think Progress  ...Flint residents — who have been struggling with elevated levels of lead in their drinking water ever since the city switched its water source from Detroit to the Flint River in early 2014 — are calling for a moratorium on water bills and the prevention of shutoffs for people who don’t pay. On Thursday, the advocacy groups Organizations Food & Water Watch and Water You Fighting For will deliver petitions with nearly 20,000 signatures...

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