Working In These Times

Tuesday, Dec 3, 2019, 3:59 pm  ·  By Heidi Shierholz and David Cooper

Trump’s Labor Dept. Has Declared War on Tipped Workers

A new rule under Trump’s Dept. of Labor could cost tipped workers more than $700 million. (Shutterstock)  

In October, the Trump administration published a proposed rule regarding tips which, if finalized, will cost workers more than $700 million annually. It is yet another example of the Trump administration using the fine print of a proposal to attempt to push through a change that will transfer large amounts of money from workers to their employers. We also find that as employers ask tipped workers to do more nontipped work as a result of this rule, employment in nontipped food service occupations will decline by 5.3% and employment in tipped occupations will increase by 12.2%, resulting in 243,000 jobs shifting from being nontipped to being tipped. Given that back-of-the-house, nontipped jobs in restaurants are more likely to be held by people of color while tipped occupations are more likely to be held by white workers, this could reduce job opportunities for people of color.


Tuesday, Dec 3, 2019, 7:30 am  ·  By Alice Herman

In Wisconsin, the Teamsters Faced a Revolt from Below

Sonci Stone, who ran on the Rebuild 695 slate, says she wants her union to fight harder for its members during contract negotiations. (Photo: Alice Herman)  

Every day, Nikki Sampson drives from her home in Portage to Madison, where she works as a dispatcher for the city’s bus service. To get there, she drives along a 40-mile stretch of highway, which crosses the Wisconsin River twice and then slices south through farms and municipalities. That road lies at the heart of the region represented by Sampson’s 4,256-strong union—Teamsters Local 695.


Monday, Dec 2, 2019, 10:00 am  ·  By Elizabeth King

How Supporters of the Green New Deal Are Showing Up for Workers

Members of the United Auto Workers (UAW) who are employed at the General Motors Co. Flint Assembly plant in Flint, Michigan, hold signs as they go on strike early on September 16, 2019. (JEFF KOWALSKY/AFP via Getty Images)  

Calls for a “just transition” have become central to a robust and revitalized environmental movement in the United States aimed at preventing climate catastrophe. The idea behind a just transition is that, as our economy shifts away from dependence on fossil fuels, the workers in the fossil fuel and related industries should be treated with dignity and respect, and guaranteed good union jobs.


Tuesday, Nov 26, 2019, 6:08 pm  ·  By Jackson Potter

What Other Unions Can Learn from the Historic Gains We Won in the Chicago Teachers Strike

Chicago teachers went on strike in 2019 and won. (Xinhua/ via Getty Images)  

As a Chicago Public Schools (CPS) student from first grade through high school, and in my 17 years of teaching in the system, none of my schools ever had a full-time social worker or nurse every day of the week.


Tuesday, Nov 19, 2019, 1:34 pm  ·  By Jeff Schuhrke

Why 15,000 Indiana Teachers Just Walked Off the Job

Tuesday’s statewide walkout of teachers in Indiana could lead to an illegal strike. (Photo via Facebook / Central Indiana DSA)  

After making waves in West Virginia, Oklahoma, Arizona, Kentucky, North Carolina and beyond, the Red for Ed movement has now spread to Indiana. Fed up with disinvestment in public schools and disrespect for their profession, teachers from across the Hoosier State are converging in Indianapolis today to hold lawmakers accountable and demand change.


Friday, Nov 15, 2019, 1:50 pm  ·  By Eli Day

The Strike at McDonald’s Is About More Than Fighting Abuse—It’s About Workplace Democracy

Striking McDonald’s workers in Detroit are fighting for more “power in the workplace,” says Rashida Tlaib. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)  

On Tuesday, over 1,000 people gathered for a strike action at a McDonald's location on Detroit’s East Side. The workers, who were fighting for basic workplace dignity, a fair wage and a union, showed that they’re ready to raise hell in the face of injustice by standing together.  


Friday, Nov 15, 2019, 1:06 pm  ·  By Gin Armstrong and Derek Seidman

Arkansas Teachers Went On Strike. Here Are the Corporate School Privatizers They’re Up Against.

Alice, Jim and Rob Walton in 2011. Their Walton Family Foundation is a top driver of the school privatization agenda in Arkansas (Image: Walmart Flickr)  

Teachers of Little Rock, Arkansas went on strike Thursday over the state’s decision to strip their collective bargaining rights and curtail local control of the school district. It was the teachers’ first strike since 1987, and only their second strike ever. 


Wednesday, Nov 13, 2019, 3:40 pm  ·  By Audrey Winn

Uber CEO Forgives Saudi Arabia for a Brutal Murder, But Punishes Drivers for Small Errors

Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi speaks during the TechCrunch Disrupt SF 2018 on September 6, 2018 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)  

In an Axios interview that aired on HBO last Sunday, Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi made a troubling analogy. Discussing Uber’s ties to Saudi Arabia—whose sovereign fund is one of Uber's largest shareholders—Khosrowshahi described the assassination of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi as a “mistake” comparable to the company's own “mistakes” in reckless automation. This “mistake” was brushed off casually, with no mention of its place in the context of other Saudi “mistakes,” including an ongoing violent war against Yemen and a long history of brutally silencing domestic critics.


Friday, Nov 8, 2019, 12:29 pm  ·  By Katie Rose Quandt

Cheerios Picket Line Averted: After Strike Threat, General Mills Workers Win Tentative Agreement

The plant in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, makes Cheerios, Lucky Charms and other General Mills products. (Photo Illustration by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)  

On Friday, over 500 workers narrowly avoided a strike at General Mills’ production facility in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.


Tuesday, Nov 5, 2019, 11:51 am  ·  By Sydney Ghazarian

The Climate Strikers Walked Out of School. Next, Let’s Walk Off the Job.

Thousands of Irish schools students participate today in the Global School Strike for Climate Action march on Friday, March 15, 2019, in Dublin, Ireland. (Photo by Artur Widak/NurPhoto via Getty Images)  

This September, the world erupted when over 7 million people — young and old—poured into the streets for the Global Climate Strike. The mass action, which made a Green New Deal a top demand, was sparked in the lead-up to Sweden’s 2018 general election, when teen activist Greta Thunberg began ditching school to protest Sweden’s inaction on climate change. Greta, who was already inspiring more student strikes through social media, catalyzed the Fridays for Future movement when she decided to continue striking on Fridays after the general election. Over the past year, young leaders—particularly youth of color—have been on the forefront of building Friday Climate Strikes into a worldwide student civil disobedience movement, taking aim at the political failure to address the climate emergency.