Weekly Round-Up: Big Week for the Streets

Jennifer Braudaway

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It was a big week for educators and transport workers, as activists and workers took to the streets all over the country. As we reported earlier, students and teachers held a massive day of action while Alabama bus drivers stood up for better wages. Also, in Florida, New York and California, NASA workers and TWU members fought for their jobs, while San Francisco bricklayers called for justice.

Transport workers tell MTA to stop robbing MUNI

Hundreds of San Francisco Municipal Railway (MUNI) workers and Transport Workers Union (TWU) members marched through downtown San Francisco on Monday to protest the Municipal Transportation Agency’s (MTA) proposed budget cuts and possible layoffs. The MTA has called for cuts in services, fare hikes and the layoffs of 176 TWU operators. MUNI serves over 700,000 riders a day. On Friday, 15,000 city workers of all stripes received layoff notices. Read more about the protest at Indy​Bay​.org. (See video above)

Students and TWU members unite against MTA plans in New York

Over 3,000 TWU members and student activists demonstrated outside of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s public hearing in New York, N.Y., on Thursday, to protest the MTA’s planned fare hikes, service cuts, and elimination of student MetroCards. On March 1, more than 1,000 workers received a letter from the MTA saying there would be a reduction in work force.” Read more here.

NASA workers and community fight for jobs

Almost 2,000 people, including community activists, small business owners and the TWU, rallied for jobs last Saturday in Titusville, Fla. AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka and Executive Vice President Arlene Holt-Baker spoke at the rally. The protest was in response to the Obama administration’s proposed budget cuts for NASA’s Constellation program, which are expected to cause 7,000 job losses at NASA and up to 23,000 more in central Florida. Read more here.

In-home health service workers protest pay cuts

Around 100 in-home health support service workers rallied outside the County Board of Supervisors’ chambers in Fresno, Calif., on Tuesday to protest proposed pay cuts. The proposed cuts would slash IHSS workers pay from $10.25 an hour to $9.25 an hour. The workers are represented by the Service Employees Union International United Health Workers. Read more about it here.

Hodcarriers and bricklayers demand labor justice

Rank and file members of LIUNA Local 166 protested and handed out leaflets outside of the U.S. Department of Labor in San Francisco on Monday, demanding that laws be enforced to protect labor rights. The union says the department has failed to act over illegal union-busting and the theft of union resources. There have been no prosecutions under Section 610 of the statute that prohibits retaliation against members for union activities for five years. (See video above, and watch more here)

Giving Tuesday: Support Progressive Journalism

Today is the single biggest day of the year for giving to nonprofits—last year, individual donors collectively gave more than $2.5 billion to nonprofit organizations in the U.S. alone on Giving Tuesday.

For In These Times, today also marks the kick-off of one of our most important fundraising drives ever.

Giving Tuesday began nearly a decade ago as a way to harness the power of collective giving and highlight the important work of nonprofit organizations. For In These Times, being a nonprofit is more than just a financial model. It is central to our very mission.

The traditional, for-profit news model was built on a foundation of corporate ad dollars. From the beginning, this has been a devil’s bargain that limits what can be published by corporate media outlets and inevitably warps what they do print. In These Times is not beholden to any corporate interest.

Who are we beholden to? You—our community of readers. Support from readers allows In These Times to maintain our independence and speak truth to power. It is how we are able to continue publishing the stories readers—like you—want to read, and the voices that need to be heard in this political moment.

This Giving Tuesday, support independent, progressive journalism by making a tax-deductible donation to In These Times.

Jennifer Braudaway is a Winter 2010 Web intern.
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