A hearing is set to begin today between Connecticut’s largest tribal casino and the United Autoworkers. Jesse Russell reports:
The National Labor Relations Board will begin hearing a case that will determine the validity of a union election at the Foxwood’s Resort Casino in Connecticut. The casino is owned by the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation which has challenged the results of an election that found a majority of workers seeking representation by the United Autoworkers. The board has thrown out two of the Pequots 10 objections including one that contested that the casino, being on tribal land, doesn’t fall under the jurisdiction of the NLRB. The remaining objectives concern how UAW members went about encouraging workers to vote suggesting some workers were harassed into voting for the union. If the board does agree that there was misconduct during the election then a new election will be held. Only one other tribal casino has workers represented by a union and Foxwoods would be the first in the state of Connecticut. The hearing is expected to close on Thursday and decisions usually take one or two weeks.
By Jesse Russell
Citigroup workers are holding their breaths today as they anticipate an announcement that could include up to 20,000 lay offs. According to CNBC the company is expected to announce huge losses today in its fourth quarter earnings. As a result economists are speculating the company will seek to writedown $24 billion dollars and lay off a massive slate of workers in order to cut costs.
By Doug Cunningham
The Nevada Education Association says its lawsuit against the state Democratic Party over special at-large precincts in casino resorts is not a proxy war between the Obama and Clinton camps. The NEA has not endorsed any candidate. The suit alleges that setting up special at-large precincts in Vegas casino resorts breaks Nevada state law and the federal equal protection clause by giving workers there an unfair advantage over other workers in the upcoming Democratic presidential caucus. The Culinary Workers Union represents hotel casino workers and it’s supporting Barack Obama. The Secretary Treasurer of the Culinary workers says it’s an effort to disenfranchise people of color. But Terry Hickman, Executive Director of the Nevada Education Association, says that’s not true.
In 1968, Martin Luther King Jr. told striking sanitation workers that we all are “tied together in a single garment of destiny.”
“If one black person suffers, if one black person is down, we’re all down. It is a crime for people to live in this rich nation and receive slave wages.”
With studies showing that a shocking 45 percent of African Americans who were born in the late 1960s into middle-class families have fallen into the bottom 20 percent of income, more than 600 union and civil rights activists are gathering in Memphis this week to reaffirm their commitment to making King’s dream a reality.
Health care is set to be a crucial issue in this year’s presidential election. We’ve just launched a new survey to find out about your experiences with the health care system—and we plan to blog some of the stories coming in as part of the survey. (You can vote on stories you think make the most impact here.)
Today, NPR’s “Morning Edition” ran a spot that looks at health care and the presidential election from another angle: Are the candidates and their staff covered, and how?
Many of the candidates themselves are currently serving in Congress, so they’re covered by the Federal Employee Health Benefits Plan. Former Sen. John Edwards (D-N.C.) receives health coverage through his campaign. But interestingly, most Republican candidates wouldn’t discuss the issue.
This Wednesday, thousands of members of the United Steelworkers (USW) and their families will take part in a National Day of Action on Toxic Trade. In 100 cities across the country, participants will rally to demand that Congress act immediately to protect Americans from the
Other groups joining the USW for the National Day of Action include the AFL-CIO and dozens of allied community, environmental and health organizations from across the country.
USW President Leo Gerard says we are paying a high price for cheap, imported goods:
The massive toy recalls this holiday season drew attention to the much larger problem of the countless dangerous imports—tires, toothpaste, fake drugs, pet food—making their way on to U.S. store shelves. People are starting to realize that we’re paying the price for cheap, imported goods so corporations can make bigger profits. It’s time for our policymakers to fix this broken trade system, repair our regulatory agencies and protect our jobs and families.
The IUPAT sent a special ballot to its 160,000 active and retired members last fall to determine their preferences in the 2008 presidential election. Most members—83 percent—chose a Democratic candidate, led by Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (N.Y.), winning Clinton the union’s Democratic endorsement. Huckabee was the leading choice among the 17 percent who picked a Republican candidate.
Even though the value of the dollar is declining, which means our trade deficit is dropping with most countries, the deficit with China once again hit a record. The U.S. Census Bureau reported that in the first 11 months of last year, the United States racked up a staggering $237 billion trade deficit in goods with China—11 percent higher than in the same period last year.
AFL-CIO Secretary-Treasurer Richard Trumka is calling for strong action to rein in the deficit with China: China continues to violate the rules of the global trading system—manipulating currency, violating workers’ human rights and providing illegal subsidies to businesses.
President Bush refuses to take action, fiddling away while the U.S. economy burns. With a do-nothing President, these figures reiterate the need for strong action by Congress.
Here are Bargaining Digest highlights from Jan. 7–11. The AFL-CIO Collective Bargaining Department delivers daily bargaining-related news and research resources to more than 900 subscribers. Union leaders can register for this service through our website, Bargaining@Work.
CWA, AT&T: Some 600 AT&T customer service representatives in Dover, N.H., have voted to join the Communications Workers of America (CWA) Local 1298, becoming the largest union local to organize in New Hampshire since 1966, when 950 workers organized at the Granite Rubber Co. with the Pulp and Sulphate Union.