Today's AFL-CIO press clips

LABOR AND ECONOMY

A Look at How Unions Lift Workers

The American Prospect

By Steven Greenhouse

November 22, 2021

More than 14 million workers across the United States—carpenters, steelworkers, nurses, teachers, truck drivers, and many others—are union members, but rarely does one read how unions have improved workers’ jobs and lives.


JOINING  TOGETHER

Here's why Gen Z is unionizing

CNN

By Ramishah Maruf

November 21, 2021

Across multiple industries, however — particularly the media and service sectors — interest in the labor movement is gaining traction among the economy's newest and youngest workers. Gen Z, born between 1996 and the mid-2000s, came of age through Black Lives Matter, the coronavirus pandemic and the Trump presidency. The oldest among them remember the 2008 global financial crisis and the Great Recession, and see echoes of that era's economic instability today. "They've seen opportunities for their generation disappear and are afraid they are going to be worse off than their parents," said Kate Bronfenbrenner, director of Labor Education Research and a senior lecturer at Cornell University's School of Industrial and Labor Relations. "They look around and see who is doing something, and they see the labor movement."


The Comic Book Industry’s Next Page-Turner: Union Organizing

The  Hollywood Reporter

By Graeme Mcmillan

November 22, 2021

“Labor organizing is something the staff at Image Comics have been discussing for a few years,” the Image staffers tell The Hollywood Reporter via email. (The group responded to questions as a collective.) “Many of us have backgrounds in or adjacent to unions, including several of the founders, whose work being successfully adapted for the big and small screen has meant working with or, in some cases, actually being represented by unions.”


Negotiations between Kellogg’s and striking union resume on Monday

WTVB

By Jim Measel

November 22, 2021

Negotiations between Kellogg’s and the union representing nearly 1,400 workers who have been on strike since October 5 were scheduled to resume on Monday. Talks broke off earlier this month after an offer from the company was rejected by the Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers International Union. The company said at the time they provided their “last best and final offer”. But the union says it did not achieve “a pathway to fully vetted workers without takeaways”. The union has been on strike at four different Kellogg locations, including Battle Creek.


Phoenix Airport Restaurant, Coffee Shop Workers Go on Strike

U.S. News & World Report

By Associated Press

November 22, 2021

A union representing the largest group of food service workers at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport went on strike Monday to amplify concerns over wages, health insurance and retirement contributions during one of the busiest travel weeks of the year. HMS Host is the single largest concessionaire at the airport in Phoenix that served more than 45 million passengers annually before the coronavirus pandemic. Workers with UNITE HERE Local 11 voted overwhelmingly last week to go on strike.


Wyndham Philadelphia staff go on strike, walk out in protest of working conditions

The Philadelphia Tribune

By Ericka Conant

November 22, 2021

Hospitality workers at the Wyndham Historic District hotel in Philadelphia went on strike Sunday morning. Union officials said they want to secure livable wages and better conditions for their workforce, who are majority Black, Latino, and/or immigrants. The workers are part of UNITE HERE Local 274, which represents about 4,000 hospitality staff at hotels, airports, and foodservice across the Philadelphia region. Wyndham workers are participating in a wave that has become known as “Striketober,” as labor unions nationwide threaten job actions or walk off the job to protest conditions.

 

IN THE STATES

Gov. Lee announces campaign to amend state constitution with right-to-work

News Channel 5

By Emily West and Kyle Horan

But not everyone is on board with the initiative, with AFL-CIO Labor Council working on a campaign against the amendment. They said the desire for the new amendment in the state constitution could trail back to the days Volkswagen debated on becoming a unionized automaker. "Look — it’s no doubt that the business community wants to enshrine it in the state constitution," AFL-CIO Labor Council president Billy Dycus said. "For the governor and Gov. Haslam, it’s in their best interests to see it happen. What’s surprising is what are they really afraid of? That’s what ironic about all this when less than 10 percent is unionized and this has been a law since 1947. That’s the part that is surprising and they are so consumed with right to work."


FEDERAL RESERVE

Biden Sticks With Powell as Fed Chair, Resisting Political Pressure

The New York Times

By Jeanna Smialek and Jim Tankersley

November 22, 2021

President Biden said Monday that he would renominate Jerome H. Powell, the Federal Reserve chair, to another four-year term, opting for policy continuity at a moment of rapid inflation and economic uncertainty and betting that the Fed will do more to help workers reap the gains of the pandemic recovery. The much-awaited decision was a return to tradition in which the central bank’s top official is reappointed regardless of partisan identity — a norm bucked by former President Donald J. Trump, who appointed Mr. Powell instead of renominating Janet L. Yellen. While some progressive Democrats criticized Mr. Powell’s reappointment, the move was primarily greeted with bipartisan praise that suggested an easy path to confirmation.

UNION BUSTING

Art Institute employees say management trying to block their unionization efforts

Chicago Sun-Times

By Jason Beeferman 

November 22, 2021

Staff from the institute’s museum and school filed paperwork earlier this month to hold a federally run election that will decide if they can form a union. But management has intimidated workers and held meetings to obstruct unionization, workers charged at a rally Monday on the institute’s famous front steps on Michigan Avenue. Many employees, organizing as the Art Institute of Chicago Workers United, are pushing to affiliate with the council. “We’ve seen very typical corporate anti-union talking points and tactics being disseminated by the leadership of the museum and the school,” said Anders Lindall, spokesman for the Council 31 of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees.