On the picket line

first_imgAPWU counters Trump plan to privatize U.S. Postal ServiceThe U.S. Postal Service is once again under attack. In August, the White House Office of Management and Budget proposed totally privatizing the public postal service. The American Postal Workers Union moved quickly at its national convention Aug. 20-23 to counter this attack, which would seize $70 billion in USPS public revenue for private profit. This would eliminate services and kill thousands of well-paid union jobs, many of which are filled by African Americans and women.This is not the first time an attack has been launched on the USPS. A move to cut jobs by shifting postal services to Staples was started in 2013, but the struggle by postal unions stopped it.”Anti-worker Trump has called USPS’ current business plan “unsustainable,” pointing to debt caused by $5.6 billion yearly prepayment of future retirees’ health care costs imposed by Congress in 2006. Without that mandate, unique to USPS, the Postal Service runs in the black. The APWU stresses that the system does not receive taxpayer funds, employs more than 500,000 workers, plays a critical role in the growing ecommerce industry and enjoys high favorability ratings. In addition to eliminating the prepayment mandate, one solution APWU and two other postal workers’ unions offer is to have the USPS resume postal banking, available during World War II.APWU President Mark Dimondstein noted that “privatization threats are not new. But we have never faced outright plans to sell the entire Post Office. … Postal privatization is about the profits of a few at the expense of the many — period!”FLOC beats back racist N.C. lawA North Carolina federal court ruled Sept. 8 that a 2017 law Gov. Roy Cooper signed, which stripped the Farm Labor Organizing Committee of the right to automatically collect dues from farmworkers’ paychecks, was illegal.FLOC, in unity with the Southern Poverty Law Center, the American Civil Liberties Union, as well as two individual farmworkers charged that the North Carolina Farm Act of 2017 discriminated racially since it targeted Latinx workers, who make up 90 percent of North Carolina farmworkers. (Payday Report, Sept. 20)This is a paramount victory. Because North Carolina is a “right-to-work” (for less!) state, only individual workers can choose to have dues deducted. Because many FLOC members are guest workers who lack access to bank accounts, credit cards and other means of paying union dues regularly, they rely on dues transfer arrangements.“We’re happy that the federal court saw clearly that this racist law was an effort to stop farmworkers from having the resources to fund their own institution and fight for a more fair workplace,” said FLOC President Baldemar Velásquez. (ACLU of NC, Sept. 20)‘They work us like dogs when it’s busy and then kick us to the curb in the winter.’Chicago hotel workers’ strike wins year-round health care coverageAfter nearly a month on strike, hotel workers at 17 out of 26 hotels in Chicago had ratified contracts by late September. In addition to higher wages and healthy working conditions, the primary issue, which galvanized more than 6,000 service workers represented by UNITE HERE Local 1, was having year-round health care coverage. It’s lifesaving during winter months when the tourist season is slow and workers are often laid off. As one worker told ThinkProgress: “One of the reasons the strike is so broad is because access to health care is an issue everyone can rally behind.” (Oct. 3)This hotel strike is the first in decades in Chicago’s history and the first to hit all hotels with unionized workers in all service jobs — cooks, dishwashers, housekeepers and door attendants — at the same time. The workers held a number of joint actions during the strike, with hundreds marching down Michigan Avenue’s “Magnificent Mile” on Sept. 13 and rallying at the Hyatt Regency Chicago on Oct. 1.Local 1 has repeatedly pointed out that Chicago hotels have been doing well financially, with a record number of visitors and $2.3 billion in revenue last year. As of Oct. 8, workers at only two hotels still have not ratified contracts. (chicago.curbed.com)FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare thisFacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare thislast_img read more

Odds & Ends: Jeremy Jordan, Annaleigh Ashford & Lily Tomlin!

first_img Ryan Silverman Broadway Alums Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin to Reunite for New Netflix Series  They worked 9 to 5 together and now Oscar winner and Broadway alum Jane Fonda and Tony and Emmy winner Lily Tomlin are to star with each other once more in the new Netflix series Grace and Frankie. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the comedy, written by Friends creator Marta Kauffman and Howard J. Morris, will follow nemeses Grace (Fonda) and Frankie (Tomlin), who suddenly have to deal with the fact that their husbands have fallen in love with each other. Star Files Four-time Tony Nominee ​Victor Garber Boards Starz Series Power Victor Garber will play a recurring role in Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson’s upcoming Starz drama Power. According to The Wrap.com, Garber will appear as Simon Stern, a well-known club owner and events expert. Masters of Sex, Starring Annaleigh Ashford, to Come Early Suffering Annaleigh Ashford withdrawal after she departed Kinky Boots to become a series regular on Masters of Sex? Well ,you won’t have to wait too much longer to see the Broadway.com Audience Choice Award winner again on the small screen. According to TVLine.com, Showtime has moved the Masters of Sex season two premiere date up from fall to this summer. The series’ first episode will air July 13. First Date’s Sara Chase Joins New Tina Fey Series First Date’s Sara Chase has boarded Tina Fey’s new NBC comedy series Tooken. Deadline reports that she will play doomsday cult member Cyndee, whose best friend Kimmy escapes. Annaleigh Ashford Santino Fontana Here’s a quick roundup of stories you may have missed today. Rebecca Luker Jeremy Jordan Jeremy Jordan, Santino Fontana and More to Team Up for CSC Broadway favorites Jeremy Jordan, Santino Fontana, Judy Kuhn, Rebecca Luker, Alexandra Silber, Ryan Silverman, Howard McGillin and Brooke Shields are joining forces for Classic Stage Company’s 2014 Annual Gala, Musical Masterworks. They will perform the works of Rodgers & Hammerstein, Jerome Kern, Stephen Sondheim and Lorenz Hart on May 12 at the Hudson Theatre at the Millennium Broadway Hotel. View Comments View All (5)last_img read more

Govt ignoring democracy on paid parental leave bill

first_imgNZ Herald 17 June 2016Family First Comment: Not the first time that the National govt has ignored democracy. Remember 2009? Smacking Referendum? 87%? #selectivedemocracyFinance Minister Bill English is accused of “ignoring democracy” after he vetoed eight more weeks of paid parental leave despite broad Parliamentary and public support.Labour MP Sue Moroney’s bill, which would raise paid leave from 18 weeks to 26 weeks, has a majority of votes in Parliament and was set to pass into law later this month.Mr English has maintained that the law change is unaffordable. As promised, he invoked his powers to veto legislation which had an impact on the Government’s books – the first time he has used the veto to sink a bill.“The Government’s got to weigh up a whole lot of other needs,” Mr English said.“There’s a case for paid parental leave, there’s a case for more money for melanoma drugs, there’s a case for more intervention for people who are homeless, and we have just got to weigh all those up.”It brings to an end a four-year fight by Ms Moroney to extend paid leave.READ MORE: http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11657987last_img read more

Fernando Alonso to become 1st F1 champion to compete in Dakar Rally

first_imgMadrid: Spain’s Fernando Alonso is set to become the first Formula 1 champion to compete in the Dakar Rally, which starts on Sunday in Saudi Arabia.“The biggest challenge of my career,” the 38-year-old Alonso said, referring to the world’s most grueling race, reports Efe news.Alonso, who won the F1 championship in 2005 and 2006, entered the Dakar Rally, whose 2020 edition leaves behind South America for Saudi Arabia, as part of his quest to become a more complete and versatile driver.About 20 F1 drivers have competed in the Dakar Rally over the years, but Alonso is the first world champion to do so.Belgium’s Jacky Ickx became the first former F1 driver to win the Dakar Rally, finishing first in 1983 and second in 1986 and 1989.The expectations for Alonso are comparable to those raised by French driver Sebastien Loeb, a nine-time rally world champion who competed in the Dakar Rally from 2016 to 2019, winning 13 stages but never finishing first overall.“If Loeb still hasn’t won the Dakar, imagine me, who is coming from asphalt. I think the goal is more to approach the rally as an enriching experience for us,” Alonso told RTVE last Friday before leaving for Saudi Arabia.The 45-year-old Loeb was unable to take home the bronze Touareg Trophy despite being the best driver in rally history and having skills that fit the Dakar Rally better than Formula 1.Even though Loeb did not have to make huge adjustments, he still came up short in his bid to win the Dakar, whose inaugural edition was held in 1979.Alonso, who has always driven alone, will have veteran Marc Coma, a five-time rally champ in the motorcycle category, helping him navigate the route.The Spanish driver has the triple crown of motor racing within reach.In Saudi Arabia, a route covering nearly 8,000 kilometers (4,970 miles), with more than 5,000 kilometers (3,106 miles) timed, awaits racers, who will start in Jeddah and finish in Qiddiyah, near Riyadh. The Dakar Rally starts on January 5 and ends on January 17. (IANS)Also Read: Fernando Alonso to Race in Dakar Rally 2020 in Saudi ArabiaAlso Watch: Anti-CAA protest: Bhakat Vaishnavites of Pithakhuwa Bor Namghar held procession in West Tezpurlast_img read more