First, New York. Then, Chicago and St. Louis. And on May 10, Detroit. Fast food workers nationwide, poor, upset and disgusted by the huge contrast between fast food CEOs’ pay and their minimum-wage, no-benefit jobs, are walking out of their restaurants by the scores.
After Republicans filibustered through the night and past dawn, the Senate passed landmark legislation Wednesday extending collective bargaining rights to 9,000 family child-care providers and 12,000 home health-care workers.
Fed up with wages so low that they often face eviction, and lack of power to fight for a decent living standard, thousands of New York City fast food workers staged a second 1-day walkout from their jobs, on April 4. The workers, led by the Fast Food Forward, a community-based organizing group, demanded living wages of $15 an hour – barely enough to survive on in New York – and the right to organize without employer interference. It was their second walkout. The first was last November.
The number of union members nationwide declined by 398,000 from 2011 to 2012, the Bureau of Labor Statistics said. But there are many qualifications and caveats, the BLS economist who analyzes the data adds.
The Teamsters, after a long organizing campaign and extended bargaining, have won and ratified a first contract for a notable group of West Coast workers, 65 port drivers for the Toll Group at the Port of Los Angeles.
Four groups of Wal-Mart workers, fed up with bad working conditions, company high-handedness and refusal to listen and its low pay, defied the giant retailer and staged separate strikes in mid-September and early October.
Check out the Workday coverage of the recent Minnesota AFL-CIO convention:
Union members roll up their sleeves to defend worker rights
Young workers showing new ways to lead
Governor says it’s time to go on the offense
Opposition to amendments takes center stage
Co-president of newly merged entertainment union brings message of unity