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Strike Wave Wins Raises for Mexican Factory Workers

February 27, 2019 / Paolo Marinaro and Dan DiMaggio<?
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?>Mexican maquiladora workers in 70 factories have won big wage increases and bonuses in a strike wave that began in January.
The strikes in the industrial city of Matamoros, Tamaulipas, on the border with Brownsville, Texas, have primarily hit auto parts factories, where tens of thousands of workers make goods for General Motors and other car manufacturers.
The first of the strikes began on January 12 at eight factories. Workers were demanding a 20 percent wage increase and an annual bonus of 32,000 pesos ($1,600)—a demand now popularized as “20/32.”

In the past six months, over 50 workers, students, and labor activists in China have been arrested or disappeared by the government. Their crime? Supporting workers at the Jasic welding equipment factory in their legal efforts to form a union.

Though I've lived in Detroit for 44 years, my heart is still in West Virginia, where I was born and raised. When West Virginia teachers and school workers went on a winning wildcat a year ago, and touched off a wave of teacher strikes across the country, I bragged about them all over, as if it had anything to do with me.

Casual dockworkers in the Port of Valparaíso, one of the largest ports in Chile, in December ended a 36-day strike.
The majority of Chile’s fruit exports pass through this port. The strike came at the beginning of summer in the southern hemisphere—the height of the season for fruit, one of the biggest export industries in the country.

West Virginia Strikes Again, Defeating Privatization Bill in a Single Day

February 20, 2019 / Barbara Madeloni<?
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?>“Don’t start those buses tomorrow,” said Joe White, executive director of the West Virginia School Service Personnel Association.
He was announcing the second statewide education strike in West Virginia in a year, alongside the leaders of the state’s two teacher unions.
The next morning, February 19, buses throughout the state sat idle in garages.
And by the middle of the day, strikers declared victory with the defeat of an anti-union, pro-privatization education bill in the state House.

‘People Are Starting to See That Winning Is Possible’: Denver Teachers Win, Oakland Next

February 19, 2019 / Samantha Winslow<?
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?>The teacher strike wave keeps gathering steam. After three days out, February 11-13, Denver teachers won a settlement that achieved their main goal—to dramatically reduce the effects of the district’s chaotic merit pay system.
Oakland teachers, meanwhile, have announced they will strike February 21.
The new contract in Denver will put more money into base pay and into steps and lanes, which reward teachers for their years of experience and level of higher education.

A Green New Deal for American Labor?

February 15, 2019 / Saurav Sarkar<?
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?>The simple yellow protest signs were stenciled “Green Jobs for All.” Speaker after speaker stepped into the middle of the office floor, marked with a U.S. House of Representatives seal. Representative-Elect Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, fresh off her election win, gave the protesters high fives.
That was the scene in November when the youth climate justice organization Sunrise Movement held a sit-in at the office of Rep. Nancy Pelosi, who was soon to be the Speaker of the House.
Most Americans had never heard of the “Green New Deal” at the time.

They did it to public workers. Next they want to do it to railroad and airline workers.
A right-wing policy think tank filed a Janus-style lawsuit against the Machinists on January 8, claiming that non-members shouldn’t be required to pay fees for union representation.
The plaintiffs are customer service agents at United Airlines. They’re covered by the Railway Labor Act, which governs unionization and collective bargaining for hundreds of thousands of union members who work for railways or airlines—from flight attendants to freight train engineers.

Thirteen thousand nurses may be on strike in March at three of the largest employers in New York City.
For several months, hospitals in the Montefiore, Mount Sinai, and New York Presbyterian systems have been bargaining jointly with the New York State Nurses Association.