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Today's Teamster News For January 25, 2016

TEAMSTERS

Treasury Department Cancels Minneapolis Public Forum on CSPF Rescue Plan  Teamster.org  ...The Treasury Department announced today that due to concerns over inclement weather across the eastern region, the public forum on the proposed Central States, Southeast and Southwest Areas Pension Fund rescue plan originally scheduled for Monday, Jan. 25 in Minneapolis, Minn. will be cancelled and rescheduled for a future date...

S.F. bus firm sidelined after threat of Super Bowl picketing  SFGate  ...A private San Francisco bus company enmeshed in a labor dispute will be sitting on the sidelines for Super Bowl 50 after threats of picketing by the Teamsters union and pressure from City Hall. The Teamsters and Bauer’s are in a battle over whether the company’s corporate-shuttle drivers should join the union, a step taken by several other firms that operate the buses for tech companies...

 

GLOBAL LABOR & TRADE 

Montreal white collar workers set to strike  CBC  ...The City of Montreal's 8,000 white collar workers will strike as of midnight to put pressure on city officials to negotiate a collective agreement. The strike is one of 37 rotating strike days, including a general strike day planned for March 1 — the same day that municipal taxes are due. White collar workers will also refuse to do any overtime hours as of Monday...

Tunisia Union Federation Backs Kasserine Jobs Protest  Solidarity Center  ...Days of economic protests in Kasserine, Tunisia, are the result of “the persistent marginalization” and “the ruling elite’s failure to achieve the hopes and expectations of Tunisians,” especially the young, according to the country’s union federation, Union Générale Tunisienne du Travail (UGTT). “The UGTT supports the legitimate demands of hundred of thousands of marginalized and unemployed,” the federation said in a statement...

Top U.S. Trade Official Defends Exclusion Of Climate Change From Trans-Pacific Partnership  IBTimes  ...U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman said Friday an embattled 12-nation trade deal was not an appropriate vehicle for fighting climate change. Responding to environmental groups' criticism that the Trans-Pacific Partnership does not include provisions to deal with carbon emissions, Froman told the World Economic Forum in Switzerland such provisions are better dealt with at the United Nations than in trade accords...

South America Takes to the Streets Against TPP  TeleSUR  ...Citizens in Argentina, Chile and Peru took to the streets in droves Friday night to protest the Trans Pacific Partnership trade deal, which will affect 12 countries and has already seen major objection from citizens world wide. “This march is informative, because this treaty was negotiated by countries in secret and behind our backs, the most affected,” said one of the leaders of the mobilization in Peru's capital Lima...

Protesters hit the streets to oppose Malaysia signing Trans Pacific Partnership  Economic Times  ...Thousands of Malaysians protested against plans to join the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) on Saturday, just days before parliament is due to open a debate on the free trade pact. Prime Minister Najib Razak's government has argued that Malaysia, which relies on exports of commodities, minerals and electronics, cannot afford to stay out of a trade zone whose participants account for 40 percent of the global economy...

WTO Needs Far-Reaching Digital Trade Pact, Experts Say  Law360  ...Policymakers around the globe should begin thinking about negotiations for an expansive World Trade Organization agreement devoted solely to digital trade, e-commerce and telecommunications issues, according to an expert paper circulated at the World Economic Forum Friday... 

TTIP Trade and Investment Agreement Enters New and Dangerous Stage As Democracy is Dismantled in Secret  (opinion) Global Research  ...TTIP negotiations continue in the shadows in both America and the EU and they enter a new and dangerous stage as existing legal barriers that would inhibit certain types of (harmful) trade are dismantled in favour of a new set of rules termed ‘regulatory cooperation’. It sounds collaborative, it is, but just not in the public interest... 

Portugal PM will roll back austerity and maintain fiscal discipline  Financial Times  ...Portugal’s new Socialist prime minister is confident he can roll back years of punishing austerity with the support of the radical left without antagonising his eurozone partners, international creditors or investors. “The future is not about working longer or having more or fewer bank holidays. It’s about ensuring more investment in education, science, innovation and technology”...

For 'Opening Their Hearts' to Refugees, Greek Islanders Inspire Worldwide  Common Dreams  ...As the Guardian reports Sunday, an official Nobel nomination is being planned for the inhabitants of the Greek islands that dot the nation's Mediterranean and Aegean coasts for offering their courageous and humane assistance to those attempting the perilous crossing from Turkey or North Africa in hopes of a better life...

 

STATE & LIVING WAGE BATTLES

Virginia Urges Supreme Court to Let Redistricting Plan Stand  Roll Call  ...Virginia’s election officials urged the Supreme Court on Thursday to keep in place a new, judge-selected redistricting plan for this year’s congressional elections, putting the officials at odds with 10 current and former members of the state's Republican delegation in Congress. Halting the plan, put in place Jan. 7, would again allow “racial packing" to taint elections following the redistricting that occurred after the 2010 census...

Local legislators share input on Indiana minimum wage debate  WTHITV  ...Indiana’s minimum wage is $7.25 per hour. Senate Bill 211 is a proposal that would increase the wage to $11.25 per hour. Legislators were asked their thoughts on raising the minimum wage, as well as what they think the minimum wage should be. “I’m in support of increasing the minimum wage and I think it should be $10 an hour,” said Clyde Kersey, State Representative (District 43)...

Senate committee okays minimum wage hike  Delaware Public Media  ...Sen. Robert Marshall’s (D-Wilmington West) ambitious minimum wage hike is headed to the Senate floor. Marshall’s Labor Committee gave a thumbs up to his latest minimum wage hike proposal, which would boost Delaware’s rate to $10.25 an hour by 2019. But an amendment Marshall placed with the bill late last year would more than double the bill’s original phased in steps...

Proposed Measure Would Raise California's Minimum Wage to $15 by 2021  West Hollywood Patch  ...San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee and California Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom joined a labor group this week in submitting voter signatures to the city’s Department of Elections for a ballot initiative that would raise the minimum wage statewide. The Fair Wage Act of 2016, sponsored by the Service Employees International Union United Healthcare Workers West, would raise the minimum wage to $11 in 2017...

North Carolina GOP Accused Of Intentionally Suppressing Black Votes To Preserve Their Majority  Think Progress  ...On Monday, residents of North Carolina are taking the state to court, arguing that North Carolina legislators designed a new voter ID law to stifle growing minority turnout that threatened the Republican majority in Raleigh. The state is claiming that the law was passed to prevent voter fraud, though there is no evidence of widespread fraud at the ballot box... 

West Virginia University right-to-work study relies on flawed data and analysis  EPI  ...A recent paper on so-called right-to-work laws relies on flawed data and analysis, according to research by Economic Policy Institute economists Elise Gould and Josh Bivens and research analyst Will Kimball. Gould, Bivens, and Kimball analyze a recent paper and find that that the study relies on questionable research methods that skewed the results in favor of right-to-work legislation...

 

U.S. LABOR

Chicago Car Wash Workers: Owner Took Their Tips, Said They Were His  In These Times  ...When the owner of Zips Car Wash on Chicago’s near west side told workers that customers’ tips belonged to him, they were not happy. Confiscation of tips is at the heart of an ongoing labor struggle for Latino workers at Zips and the Arise Chicago Workers Center, which has led a fight for the rights of car wash workers citywide since launching a campaign in 2012...

DHL challenge to NLRB leafleting decision fails - D.C. Circuit  Reuters  ...A unanimous three-judge panel of the U.S Circuit Court of Appeals Court for the D.C. Circuit on Thursday affirmed a ruling from the NLRB that DHL cannot prevent workers from leafleting in a mixed-use area in its facility at the Cincinnati Airport, which is the company's only U.S. hub...

USW to try to organize Pitt faculty, grad students  TribLive  ...The United Steelworkers union Friday announced plans to try to organize faculty and graduate student employees at the University of Pittsburgh and its branch campuses. Spokeswoman Maria Somma said “hundreds” of Pitt employees have contacted the Pittsburgh-based international union seeking representation... 

A.F.L.-C.I.O. Seeks to Curb Payouts to Bankers Who Go to Washington  New York Times  ...Big Wall Street banks are pushing back at an attempt by the A.F.L.-C.I.O. to ban an executive perk that rewards executives who leave their posts for jobs in the government. So-called government service golden parachutes allow bank executives heading for top government jobs to be paid their unvested stock and equity awards when they leave, rather than forfeit them as they normally would at resignation...

UAW union hoping for ‘reset’ on Volkswagen labor relations  Omaha.com  ...The United Auto Workers union is hoping a management overhaul at Volkswagen in the aftermath of its diesel emissions cheating scandal will help ease an impasse over collective bargaining at the German automaker’s sole U.S. plant. But on a visit to Chattanooga earlier this month, new Volkswagen CEO Matthias Mueller said he hasn’t made up his mind about politically sensitive labor issues at the factory...

Local SEIU Votes To Strike If Contract Isn’t Reached By Feb. 14  CBS  ...Thousands of janitors and other service workers in the Twin Cities could soon walk off the job as contract negotiations continue with employers. On Saturday, SEIU Local 26 voted to authorize a strike if a contract isn’t reached by Feb. 14. The union represents 4,000 janitors, 2,000 security officers, window cleaners and other service workers. They’re fighting for a $15 minimum wage...

The Hospitality Industry’s Two-Tier Workforce  The Nation  ...At a major chain hotel in Orlando, where tourists are always stopping through to enjoy the town’s glitzy theme parks and resorts, many workers are just stopping through as well. They are distinguishable by their light-blue uniforms—different from the regular staff’s logoed shirts—by their Jamaican accents, and by the fact that come summer, when other staff might be looking forward to paid vacation, or maybe a raise, these “guestworkers” will be sent home, having exhausted their work visas...

How Politicians Divide, Conquer, and Confuse American Workers Based on Race  National Journal  ...Since the 1960s, Amer­ic­an work­ers have been sub­jec­ted to a steady drum­beat of polit­ic­al mes­sages de­signed to di­vide them by race and class, res­ult­ing in a dra­mat­ic weak­en­ing of bar­gain­ing power and job se­cur­ity. That is the con­clu­sion of an ana­lys­is of nearly 50 years worth of polit­ic­al and eco­nom­ics data... 

 

SOCIAL JUSTICE & OTHER NEWS

Immigration in reverse  Washington Post  ...The anti-illegal immigrant rancor and outright nativism afoot in the Republican primary field give rise to the impression that illegal immigration has soared to unprecedented levels and that the border is no more than a line in the sand, scarcely monitored and easily crossed. The truth diverges wildly from that rhetoric, as a pair of recent studies demonstrate...

How The Flint Water Crisis Is Impacting Undocumented Immigrants  Think Progress  ...Undocumented immigrants facing the water contamination crisis in Flint, Michigan may be too scared to go to the water distribution centers because they may not be able to produce proper identification, according to a local ABC affiliate. Lucia, an undocumented immigrant from Mexico who came to the country 23 years ago, has lived in Flint for over a decade... 

Monster Blizzard Dumps Record Snow Across US East Coast  Common Dreams  ...Major cities, suburbs, and rural communities up and down the East Coast of the United States are digging out Sunday morning after a "monstrous" blizzard dumped multiple feet of snow across a region where tens of millions of people live. At least 19 people, mostly in traffic- and shoveling-related accidents, were reportedly killed across numerous states during the storm, officially named Winter Storm Jonas. As is always the case, the poor and homeless were hit especially hard...

#OscarsSoWhite: Black Filmmakers Call Out Hollywood Racism, Exclusion as Calls for Boycott Grow  Democracy Now  ...A growing number of actors and filmmakers are pushing for a boycott of the Oscars after no actors of color were nominated for a second year in a row. The largely white male Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences responded by pledging to overhaul its voting requirements and to double membership of women and people of color by 2020...

 

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