Sonia Singh

Marches by immigrant workers are not an everyday sight in Nashville, Tennessee. But 50 hotel workers and supporters took to the streets June 20 to make visible the conditions facing low-wage workers in this city.

With the support of the worker center Workers’ Dignity, they marched through downtown and led delegations to management at six prominent hotels, handing in petitions calling on the hotels to adopt a Cleaning Workers’ Bill of Rights.

Eli Porras Carmona had been coming to work planting and harvesting sweet potatoes in North Carolina for eight years when he got a call from Mexico. His wife needed emergency surgery and he had to return home.

Carmona works under the H-2A program, where thousands of guestworkers are granted temporary permits to work on farms in the U.S. for up to 10 months per year.

Many return year after year—and since guestworkers are tied to one employer, it’s risky to speak out on the job. The employer can easily send you home, or not call you back the next season.

When we think of the biggest issues at work, wages and benefits usually top the list. But in many industries, sexual harassment and assault are huge concerns—even if nobody’s talking about it.

Workers who experience harassment on the job can file charges with the federal Equal Employment Opportunities Commission, but they face many hurdles to get even a hearing. Deadlines are short. Only employers with 15 or more employees are covered.

Arkansas poultry workers, Brooklyn warehouse workers and house cleaners, Twin Cities roofers, and thousands of students in places like Grand Rapids, Michigan, and Charlotte, North Carolina. They were all among the tens of thousands who stayed home from work or school across the country during Thursday, February 16’s “Day without Immigrants.”

As the reality of a Donald Trump presidency sets in, unions and workers centers are gearing up for a massive fight to defend immigrant members, building on lessons from the past decade.

Undocumented workers are at risk both from the government and from their employers. Sometimes employers are under government pressure themselves. Other times they’re using the threat of immigration enforcement to discourage organizing or keep workplace standards low.

Besides workplace or home raids, over the past decade workers have faced:

Warehouses and factories dot Chicago and its suburbs, concentrating hundreds of thousands of workers in a major hub for transporting goods. If these workers were united enough to strike, they would have huge leverage. But can they overcome a slew of obstacles to organize?

After three years of tireless organizing, 500 farmworkers at Sakuma Brothers Farms in Washington state have finally won union recognition.

The berry pickers, mainly indigenous migrants from Mexico, began their fight with a work stoppage in 2013 and never let up.

The high turnover in retail makes organizing a huge challenge. But a thousand workers at eight Zara stores in Manhattan beat the odds and unionized.

It’s a first for Zara workers in the U.S. The Spanish-owned fashion outlet had agreed to recognize the union after a majority of workers signed cards, a milestone they reached in July. They’ll be members of Retail Workers (RWDSU) Local 1102.

Their win relied on international solidarity, in the form of an agreement between the retailer’s parent company and a global union.

After staving off a lockout threat last month, 50,000 Canadian postal workers are turning up the heat with public demonstrations and creative actions at work.

Canada Post has been playing hardball in this year’s contract showdown. The company set the stage for a lockout by warning customers of potential disruptions to services. Mail volumes dropped.

“They intended on locking us out, or us walking out, from the get-go,” said Dave Bleakney, a national officer of the Canadian Union of Postal Workers (CUPW).

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