Labor Notes #390, September 2011

The struggle in Wisconsin last winter was the awakening that labor movement activists had long hoped for. But the recall elections of six Republican senators turned out to be a squandered opportunity for education.

From the first day of the Wisconsin uprising, chants of “Recall! Recall!” sprang from the crowds. After petitioners collected tens of thousands of signatures, on August 9 the voters had their say, but defeated only two of the six Republican senators up for recall.

Hundreds of West Coast longshore workers blocked a train in July and more than a hundred have been arrested in a remarkable campaign of civil disobedience. They seek to prevent an anti-union company from moving grain through a Columbia River port.

Locked-out sugar beet workers, their families, and supporters turned out in big numbers August 11 to say they want to work—but not on the terms offered by American Crystal Sugar.

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