Railroad struggle reminds us, interfering in the right to strike is never okay / by Carl Wood

Joe Shearer/The Daily Nonpareil/AP Yes, a strike of railroad workers could bring the national economy to a halt, including stopping the flow of millions of dollars a day in profits to the railroad companies. But let’s keep in mind that it’s big business —not workers—that has crashed the nation’s economy at least three times in recent memory.Continue reading “Railroad struggle reminds us, interfering in the right to strike is never okay / by Carl Wood”

To protect fragile economy, report argues Maine must do more for workers / by Evan Popp

A recent report found that although Maine bounced back quickly from the pandemic-induced downturn, that recovery has masked “continued underlying weaknesses in the economy.”  Challenges identified in the Maine Center for Economic Policy’s annual “State of Working Maine” report include that many jobs continue to lack basic labor protections — even as workers increasingly assert their powerContinue reading “To protect fragile economy, report argues Maine must do more for workers / by Evan Popp”

Maine workers celebrate Labor Day amid wave of union organizing / by Dan Neumann

A recent rally in support of Chipotle workers in Augusta | Maine Service Employees Association, SEIU Local 1989 via Facebook Originally published in the Beacon on September 5, 2022 At rallies, barbecues and breakfasts across the state this Labor Day weekend, workers celebrated a year that has seen a significant uptick in Maine and acrossContinue reading “Maine workers celebrate Labor Day amid wave of union organizing / by Dan Neumann”

Opinion: A long history of collective struggle in Maine’s restaurant industry / by Andy O’Brien

Photo: Corey Templeton | Creative Commons via Flickr Originally published in the Beacon: https://mainebeacon.com/ High staff turnover rates in restaurants also make it difficult to maintain worker power to establish organizing committees and maintain it through the long drawn out process of getting workers to sign union cards, winning the secret ballot election and negotiating a contract, asContinue reading “Opinion: A long history of collective struggle in Maine’s restaurant industry / by Andy O’Brien”

Work, Work, Work—So a Few Can Be Rich / by Michael Yates

Photo by Marcel Strauß “Bud is examining airplane windshields destined for the F111 fighter jet. It is the late 1960s, and he has been working for nearly thirty years at the Pittsburgh Plate Glass Company in a small town forty miles north of the city. The glass will sit in the plane’s cockpit at a veryContinue reading “Work, Work, Work—So a Few Can Be Rich / by Michael Yates”

Opinion: If Democrats want votes, they should rain fury on union-busting corporations / by Hamilton Nolan

Starbucks employees and supporters reacting as votes are read during a union election in December in Buffalo, New York. Photograph: Joshua Bessex/AP Originally published in the Guardian, 8/8/22 We supposedly have the most pro-union US president of our lifetimes. Let’s see him act like it In June, workers at a Chipotle restaurant in Augusta, Maine, becameContinue reading “Opinion: If Democrats want votes, they should rain fury on union-busting corporations / by Hamilton Nolan”

Maine News: Chipotle shuts down Augusta restaurant amid unionization campaign / by Evan Popp

Photo: Workers at the Augusta Chipotle | Courtesy Maine AFL-CIO Originally published in the Beacon on July 19, 2022 Workers at a Maine-based Chipotle argue the corporate fast-food chain is engaging in union-busting after the company announced Tuesday it is closing the Augusta restaurant where employees filed to form a collective bargaining unit.  On Tuesday,Continue reading “Maine News: Chipotle shuts down Augusta restaurant amid unionization campaign / by Evan Popp”

Sunset of the AFL-CIO? / by Chris Townsend

AFL-CIO Headquarters, Washington, DC, 3014. Matt Popovich | Flickr The 29th Constitutional Convention of the American Federation of Labor – Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO) opened in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on June 12, 2022 delayed by one year owing to pandemic conditions. There was little fanfare, and little advance publicity apparently. Even ordinarily sympathetic observers of AFL-CIO Conventions haveContinue reading “Sunset of the AFL-CIO? / by Chris Townsend”

Inflation, wages, and profits / by David Ruccio

CEOs Get Huge Raises While Workers Suffer (Photo: Jobsanger) On one side of the debate are mainstream economists and lobbyists for big business, the people Lydia DePillis refers to as having a simple mantra: “Supply and demand, Economics 101.” In their view, inflation is caused by supply and demand in the labor market, which is allowing workers’Continue reading “Inflation, wages, and profits / by David Ruccio”

The (American) Exception to the Rule? / by Richard Rhames

Photograph by Nathaniel St. Clair I pruned some tomatoes. I reviewed some stuff from a local planning board meeting last night (where nearly 200 manufactured houses were proposed for planting in farm fields across town). I checked the weather forecast. Then, as I sometimes do, I checked the UK Guardian newspaper on-line. I’ve seldom found big USContinue reading “The (American) Exception to the Rule? / by Richard Rhames”