Workday Minnesota is a project of the Labor Education Service at the University of Minnesota, published with the support of labor organizations. Its focus is news and resources on issues important to working people.
A group of 250 Physical Plant Operators (PPOs), Senior Custodians, and Custodians in the Minneapolis Public Schools voted this week to join SEIU Local 284. The workers clean and maintain all 67 of the Minneapolis public schools, ensuring safe buildings and facilities for the tens of thousands of students in the district.
On Saturday night, wealthy patrons will enjoy fine dining at Wayne Kostroski's "Taste of NFL." Meanwhile, employees of his publicly funded business Franklin Street Bakery face exploitation and labor strife. Conditions are so severe that on January 11th workers survived carbon monoxide exposure and poisoning.
Changes to the city brought on by the Super Bowl have gone on with limited transparency and oversite in the name of security. The ominous presence of the Department of Homeland Security and ICE casts a shadow of concern for immigrant communities. Furthermore, county services for the most vulnerable populations will be impacted acutely. The lasting impacts of the unprecedented preparations for the Super Bowl will be hard to gauge for those not profiting from it or choosing to resist it.
In Bloomington, Minnesota the bombing of the Dar Al Farooq Islamic Center transformed from a moment of terror to an opportunity to rebuild community through the volunteer rebuild of the office of the imam. The efforts were led and coordinated by the North Central States Regional Council of Carpenters.
For the last eight months, Teamsters Local 320 has been negotiating with the University of Minnesota over their latest contract. On Tuesday, January 23rd Teamster representatives announced that members had ratified the contract proposal, averting a possible strike during the Super Bowl.
PCA workers like Patsy Gibson have made substantial gains in the last several years. While she enjoys her first Dr. Martin Luther King Jr 1.5x holiday pay, hard-won benefits remain under attack by national anti-union groups.
Growing up in a working-class Mexican community in eastern Los Angeles Filiberto was observant of the grind his parents and community members went through to fulfill their daily needs and fight to live with dignity. These insights led to an extensive breadth of union experience having worked with UNITE HERE Local 11, UAW 2865 and SEIU 284.
Workers are organizing through unions and other organizations to improve their lives. Union representation provides a voice on the job and the opportunity to improve wages, benefits and working conditions.