labor unions

A few dozen janitors and supporters of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) demonstrated outside of Sherwin-Williams headquarters in Cleveland Thursday after they were notified the paint company is switching to a non-union contractor.

“Cleaning Sherwin-Williams is my main source of income that helps me provide for my 12-year-old daughter and my mother,” said employee Tiffany Gallego. “Janitors like me feel highly disappointed that after a combined decades of work cleaning, we are being let go.”

House Democrats and organized labor have thrown their support behind an updated trade agreement among the U.S., Mexico and Canada. The announcement came on the same day Democrats unveiled articles of impeachment against President Trump.

"This is a day we've all been working to," declared House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. "There is no question, of course, that this trade agreement is much better than NAFTA. But in terms of our work here, it is infinitely better than what was initially proposed by the administration."

Updated 4:55 p.m. ET

Members of the United Auto Workers executive board Thursday approved Rory Gamble as president of the union through June 2022.

He was elevated from his acting role and will serve the rest of the term vacated by former president Gary Jones, who resigned last month after being implicated in a years-long federal investigation looking into embezzlement and bribery at the union.

The president of the United Autoworkers Union, Gary Jones, abruptly resigned Wednesday just as union leaders announced they would expel him and another top UAW official in an unfolding corruption scandal.

In a related development, General Motors (GM) filed suit against rival Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) alleging that the company bribed UAW officials in order to get favorable labor contracts and disadvantage GM.

Michigan Radio's Sarah Cwiek reported that the UAW's International Executive Board unanimously voted to expel Jones.

School bus.
Pixabay

A Cincinnati-area bus driver is getting her union dues back after a settlement prompted by last year’s "Janus v. AFSCME" decision from the U.S. Supreme Court.

Workers at the General Motors Lordstown assembly plant have built cars and a community for more than 50 years. Earlier this year, GM shuttered the plant, but hope had remained that it would not close permanently. GM’s new contract with union workers, approved Friday, dashed those hopes. 

WKSU joined workers on the picket line at the assembly plant last week for a final farewell to Lordstown.

Tony Vacca stands in solidarity with GM workers currently on strike outside of the Parma plant on Tuesday, Sep. 17, 2019.
Carter Adams / WKSU

Nearly four weeks into the United Auto Workers' strike against General Motors, employees are starting to feel the pinch of going without their regular paychecks.

With the UAW strike against General Motors in its fourth week, the automaker is losing millions of dollars. So are the businesses that supply GM. Many of their workers have also been out of work for four weeks, but unlike the striking UAW workers, their plight is much less visible.

Lansing, Mich., has nine regional GM suppliers. These are companies that do everything from producing ads to making parts for GM's cars and trucks. Altogether, that's more than 6,000 jobs. Supplier jobs in Lansing outnumber GM jobs.

Labor Movements In The U.S.

Oct 3, 2019
A striking member of the UAW Local 1005 in front of the GM factory in Parma on Tuesday, Sept. 17, 2019.
Carter Adams / WKSU

Labor union membership in the U.S. hit a record low in 2018, when just over one in 10 American workers were card-carrying members.

The drop off is the result of economic, legislative and judicial trends, including the U.S. Supreme Court decision last year that banned mandatory union dues for non-member, public-sector employees.

As tens of thousands of General Motors workers wrap up a third week of their nationwide strike, an historian, a labor leader and a prominent film documentarian of the labor movement consider the past and the future of American labor.

  

Tony Vacca stands in solidarity with GM workers currently on strike outside of the Parma plant on Tuesday, Sep. 17, 2019.
Carter Adams / WKSU

Nearly every driver who passes the 24-hour picket line on Chevrolet Boulevard blares their horn, a sign of solidarity between the community and the striking workers. 

UAW members at the Lordstown picketed in solidarity last year with other autoworkers on strike around the country.
M.L. SCHULTZE / WKSU

Negotiations between General Motors and striking auto workers revolve in part around a plant that has shut down. Six months ago, the last Chevy Cruze rolled off the assembly line in Lordstown, Ohio.

Production at General Motors facilities nationwide halted just before midnight Sept. 15, including at the GM Metal Center in Parma.

GM filed for bankruptcy in 2009. Ten years later, that UAW-GM contract has expired.

The United Auto Workers Union (UAW) and GM failed to come to a new contract agreement over the weekend.

Updated at 5:10 p.m. ET Monday

Talks between General Motors and union officials representing tens of thousands of striking autoworkers restarted Monday in hopes of driving both sides to an agreement on issues including workers' wages, health care and profit-sharing.

After several hours, union officials representing nearly 50,000 workers acknowledge negotiations remain in neutral.

General Motors workers made big concessions to help pull the automaker out of its 2009 bankruptcy. Now, the company is making record profits.

But, the Warren Transmission plant in Michigan shut its doors at the tail end of June, and most of the workers have been placed at other plants. It's a ghost factory.

People gather at the Supreme Court awaiting a decision in an Illinois union dues case, Janus vs. AFSCME, in Washington.
J. Scott Applewhite / Associated Press

Five state employees have filed a lawsuit in federal court, claiming their rights have been violated by being required to pay union dues.

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