Sunday, September 10, 2017

Elite Universities refusing to begin contract negotiations, filing challenges to the elections

Are elite universities 'safe spaces'? Not if you're starting a union | Thomas Frank

Universities are ultra-liberal institutions, famous for the kind of politically correct antics that keep the pundit class busy. And yet here they are, basically counting on a right-wing administration in Washington to come and save them from their own workers.

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Nyack librarians beat back anti union law firm

Library workers in Nyack have voted to organize and affiliate with NYSUT.
Nyack library workers fought off a vicious anti-labor campaign waged by the Nyack Library Board of Directors, which hired Jackson Lewis, the notorious union-busting law firm, to try and defeat the organizing effort.
Using deception and fear, Jackson Lewis besieged library workers with anti-union missives "warning" of the "risks" of unionizing.
With support from concerned community members, staff was able to beat back the firm's relentless attack. Pivotal to the librarians' victory was a midsummer board meeting in which library workers and residents appeared in force to demand Jackson Lewis' firing.
"My co-workers and I have decided to form a union, which is our right," said Myra Starr, a longtime South Nyack resident and a bookkeeper at the library. "It's just appalling, especially in a place like Nyack, that my employer thinks it's acceptable to use my own tax money to fight us."
On July 24, workers voted overwhelmingly to unionize, and in August, the unit received certification from the National Labor Relations Board. The Nyack Staff Library Association will have some 50 members. Since the vote to unionize, neither the library nor Jackson Lewis has taken any action to challenge the outcome.
The union will now elect a bargaining team and prepare for its first negotiations.

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Niles Township High School Union Contract Ushers In New Era

The Niles Township High School Dist. 219 Board of Education on Aug. 15 approved a new contract for the Niles Township Federation of Teachers and Support Staff, who earlier the same day voted to accept the July 1, 2017-effective agreement.
Teachers and unionized support staff would see an increase of 3.5 percent in the first year and annual increases in years two and three of the contract tied to the Consumer Price Index for American cities, plus 1.25 percent, with a floor of 2.75 percent and a ceiling of 3.5 percent.
Under the new agreement, 37 staff support positions currently performed by outsourced contract workers will become direct district employee positions. The contract also covers 369.5 full-time teachers and 205 support staff. Maintenance, clerical and librarian jobs that were contracted would become district union employee positions.

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Union Leader-Librarian-Prevails in suit against Retirement System

Former National Education Association – Shawnee Mission president Nancy Fritz has prevailed in her effort to get the Kansas Public Employee Retirement System (KPERS) to give her service credit for the time she spent leading the teachers union.
Nancy Fritz served as the head of the Shawnee Mission chapter of the National Education Association until 2015.

Nancy Fritz, a librarian who had worked for the district for 27 years when she took the NEA president position, filed suit against KPERS last fall after the retirement system informed her that it would not be counting the five years she spent as head of the union toward her retirement account. During that time, KPERS claimed, Fritz was no longer an employee of the district, but of the union. 

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

The Racist Origins of Right to Work

No one was more important in placing right-to-work on the conservative political agenda than Vance Muse of the Christian American Association, a larger-than-life Texan whose own grandson described him as “a white supremacist, an anti-Semite, and a Communist-baiter, a man who beat on labor unions not on behalf of working people, as he said, but because he was paid to do so.”
The idea for right-to-work laws came from Dallas Morning News editorial writer William Ruggles, who on Labor Day 1941 called for a constitutional amendment prohibiting the closed or union shop. Muse visited Ruggles soon thereafter and secured the writer’s blessing for the Christian American Association’s campaign to outlaw contracts that required employees to belong to unions. Ruggles even suggested to Muse the name for such legislation—right-to-work.
Muse had long made a lucrative living lobbying throughout the South on behalf of conservative and corporate interests or, in the words of one of his critics, “playing rich industrialists as suckers.”
Over the course of his career, he fought women’s suffrage, worked to defeat the constitutional amendment prohibiting child labor, lobbied for high tariffs, and sought to repeal the eight-hour-day law for railroaders.


Wednesday, August 9, 2017

2016 Union Review- See Esp. LUI Lockout Covered.

 2016 Union Review online at Progressive Librarian #45.

Just a few from the year past...

  • January 5, 2016 Library Workers Picket in Beverly, Massachusetts 
  • January 13, 2016 New Contract for Peterborough Library Workers, Ontario
  • Februrary 24, 2016 New Contract for Woburn Public Library Workers, Massachusetts
  • March 13, 2016 Toronto Public Library Workers Vote for Strike Action, Ontario
  • September 9, 2016 LIU librarian writes about lockout, New York Locked out! And not backing down by Emily Drabinski

Saturday, August 5, 2017

Oregon State University Workers Talk Strike

Classified employees at Oregon State University — the secretaries, food service workers, physical plant operators and other support staff — say they’re getting left behind economically and could go on strike if they don’t get a better contract....

article by Bennett Hall