Jane Slaughter

A Personal Request to Support West Virginia Strikers

Though I've lived in Detroit for 44 years, my heart is still in West Virginia, where I was born and raised. When West Virginia teachers and school workers went on a winning wildcat a year ago, and touched off a wave of teacher strikes across the country, I bragged about them all over, as if it had anything to do with me.

Multiracial group of activists standing next to each other and laughing.

Everyone knows organized labor is on the decline. And yet bright spots keep flaring up.

Verizon workers in 2016 walked out on the biggest strike in years, proving that corporate giants can still be beaten with old-fashioned solidarity.

Chicago teachers struck in 2012, touching off a wave of teacher militancy that’s still washing over the U.S. Now all eyes are on Los Angeles.

West Virginia Teachers Learned from 1970s Miners

As rank-and-file teachers waged their audacious strike in my home state, lots of people cited West Virginia’s stirring labor heritage: the epic mine wars in the 1920s, including the Battle of Blair Mountain, when planes dropped bombs on striking miners, fighting to unionize and end the dictatorship of the coal barons. Teachers proudly wore the miners’ red bandanas as a nod to that history.

An electrical workers local in San Francisco found itself in a mortifying situation: one of its members was outed as an active white supremacist. Wireman John Ramondetta had traveled to Charlottesville this August to march alongside Nazis and the KKK.

“For the membership as a whole there is disappointment, embarrassment, and disgust,” said Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 6 Business Manager John Doherty. “The overriding theme is 'We're being tied to this guy!' He doesn't reflect our values.”

Sexual harassment doesn't happen just to glamorous women in glamorous industries. Since sexual harassment is about power, not sex, it’s not surprising that low-wage women in lousy jobs get a lot of it.

Argentina: Workers Occupy Printing Plant

January 23, 2017 /

Printing plant workers in Buenos Aires showed up for their 6 a.m. shift as usual last Monday, only to find locked doors, police, and private security blocking their way. Grupo Clarín, the biggest media group in Argentina, had locked them out. The 380 workers were fired, with management planning to replace well-paid union workers with cheaper, non-union replacements.

Argentina: Workers Occupy Printing Plant

January 23, 2017 /

Printing plant workers in Buenos Aires showed up for their 6 a.m. shift as usual last Monday, only to find locked doors, police, and private security blocking their way. Grupo Clarín, the biggest media group in Argentina, had locked them out. The 380 workers were fired, with management planning to replace well-paid union workers with cheaper, non-union replacements.

Argentina: Trabajadores ocupan imprenta

January 23, 2017 /

27 de enero

Los trabajadores de una imprenta en Buenos Aires se presentaron el lunes 16 de enero para su turno de 6:00 a.m. como de costumbre, sólo para encontrar las puertas cerradas, y la policía y seguridad privada bloqueando su camino. Grupo Clarín, el mayor grupo de medios de comunicación en Argentina, les había dejado fuera. Los 380 trabajadores fueron despedidos con planes para sustituir a los trabajadores sindicalizados bien pagados con reemplazos más baratos, no sindicalizados.

Pages