Workers Issues in the US

Pittsburgh Boilermakers Union official admits theft of funds

By Shannon Jones, 16 September 2017

In yet another case of corruption by union officials, a former business manager of the Boilermakers Union pled guilty in federal court to stealing at least $1.5 million in members’ dues money.

Charges dropped against Amtrak engineer in Philadelphia derailment

By Jeff Lusanne, 15 September 2017

The charges follow a typical pattern in which prosecutors seek to offload the blame for disasters onto railroad workers, ignoring the role of management and government policy.

Teachers strike in Burlington, Vermont over health care cuts, working conditions

By Jerry White, 15 September 2017

More than 400 teachers walked out on strike in Burlington Thursday, after efforts by a mediator, the city’s Democratic mayor and the Burlington Education Association failed to prevent the strike.

Canadian auto union moves to ram through concessions deal on GM CAMI workers

By Carl Bronski, 15 September 2017

With contempt for workers, Unifor officials have called a “ratification/strike” meeting for Sunday without releasing any information about what workers are supposed to vote on.

Chicago area auto mechanics reject dealers’ “last, best and final offer”

By Jerry White, 13 September 2017

Chicago area car mechanics, now in the seventh week of their strike, voted down the concessions-laden contract brought back by the International Association of Machinists.

Worker exposes deadly conditions at Detroit area US Steel mill

By Shannon Jones, 12 September 2017

A steelworker describes on Facebook the callous response of both management and the United Steelworkers to the exposure of a group of crane operators to a deadly gas.

Riverside, California county workers stage two-day strike

Workers Struggles: The Americas

12 September 2017

Rather than mobilize the power of the working class, the Service Employees International Union used the walkout as a photo op for various Democratic Party candidates.

IAM pushes sellout deal on striking Chicago car mechanics

By Jessica Goldstein, 11 September 2017

Mechanics are not paid for the hours worked on the clock, but by the number of hours the automobile manufacturers assign to the parts they work on.

“If the Internet shuts down, we wouldn’t know anything. The union isn’t going to tell us”

Autoworkers in Detroit support campaign against Google Internet censorship

By a WSWS reporting team, 9 September 2017

SEP campaign teams in the Detroit area collected scores of signatures last weekend for the petition opposing Google’s Internet censorship.

Worker killed at Kansas oil refinery as OSHA conceals data on workplace deaths

By Jessica Goldstein, 8 September 2017

US workplaces have been getting deadlier and deadlier as the stock markets soar and the wealth of society is concentrated into the hands of a shrinking number of oligarchs.

“We don’t know what kind of deal they’ve struck with the breakaway dealerships”

IAM isolates striking Chicago car mechanics, seeks separate agreements

By Jessica Goldstein, 5 September 2017

Striking Chicago-area auto mechanics remain militant during their fifth week of struggle while the union tries to shut down the strike by making deals with independent dealerships.

It's like an “early 1900s factory”

Walgreens pharmacy workers in Michigan speak out against harsh working conditions

By George Kirby, 29 August 2017

The WSWS spoke to workers at Walgreens’ Specialty Pharmacies, who face similar working conditions to Amazon warehouse workers.

Striking Toronto baggage handlers reject offer, continue job action

Workers Struggles: The Americas

29 August 2017

The workers voted down a proposed contract offer very similar to one they had previously rejected.

Ford workers speak out against sexual harassment, UAW corruption

By our reporters, 28 August 2017

Autoworkers in Michigan and Chicago reacted with disgust and anger to reports of widespread sexual abuse at Ford coming alongside indictments of UAW and Fiat Chrysler officials for corruption.

CSX worker in Tennessee seriously injured due to cutbacks

Railroads push cost-cutting and contract concessions

By Jeff Lusanne, 25 August 2017

Railroads continue to push for concessions three years after contracts for 145,000 workers expired, while implementing cost-cutting changes to please Wall Street.

“If you don’t stand up, nothing happens”

Union isolates Chicago-area auto mechanics strike in its fourth week

By Jessica Goldstein and George Marlowe, 22 August 2017

Rank-and-file mechanics of in the Chicago area spoke out against poverty wages and unfair labor practices, as the union attempts to shut down the strike.

More charges in Fiat Chrysler corruption scandal

UAW executives accepted bribes “to take company-friendly positions”

By Joseph Kishore, 21 August 2017

The multimillion-dollar bribery scheme exposes the UAW as a corrupt agent of corporate management, which has worked to impose massive concessions contracts at FCA, General Motors and Ford.

Protests against Amazon’s bid to seize land from historic African-American community in Virginia

By Nick Barrickman and Alex González, 21 August 2017

As if returning to feudal times, Amazon, with billionaire CEO Jeff Bezos at its helm, is upending communities with historic ties to the great democratic gains from the American Civil War.

CSX railroad closes and downgrades major facilities

By Jeff Lusanne, 10 August 2017

Workers at yards across the CSX system have been pushed aggressively to speed up work, risking injury, under the threat of yards being downgraded or closed.

Spectrum strike in New York-New Jersey enters fifth month

By Mark Witkowski, 9 August 2017

The unions have left Spectrum workers to battle the giant telecom company on their own.

“We work harder for pennies”

Striking Chicago-area mechanics denounce auto dealerships’ contract offer

By Jessica Goldstein, 7 August 2017

Striking mechanics told the WSWS that after years of concessions they are determined to obtain a real wage increase and better contract terms.

“I’ve read about revolutions. If you ignore the lower class long enough they’ll rise up”

Amazon Jobs Day applicants speak out

By our reporters, 3 August 2017

Reporters from the World Socialist Web Site and International Amazon Workers Voice spoke to applicants in Illinois, Wisconsin, New Jersey, New York and Ohio.

As worker anger over UAW corruption scandal grows, union president defends sellout contracts

By Jerry White, 3 August 2017

With the corruption scandal threatening to ensnare wider layers of the UAW bureaucracy, union president Dennis Williams is trying to contain the growing anger of autoworkers.

“This only verifies what so many of us thought was happening before and after our so-called contract negotiations”

Indiana Fiat Chrysler workers react to UAW bribery indictment

By Jerry White, 31 July 2017

Workers at the Kokomo casting plant spoke out on the charges that company officials handed more than $1 million to the United Auto Workers’ top negotiator between 2009 and 2014.

Foxconn gets $3 billion in tax subsidies to build plant in Wisconsin

By George Marlowe, 31 July 2017

The Taiwanese electronics manufacturer Foxconn has worked a deal to get up to $3 billion in tax subsidies for a promise of creating 3,000 jobs.

Amazon CEO Bezos makes $1.4 billion Thursday morning, briefly becoming world’s richest person

By Evan Blake, 28 July 2017

Bezos’s ascension to the heights of society rests on the exploitation of Amazon’s hundreds of thousands of workers worldwide.

Federal indictment charges Fiat Chrysler paid top UAW negotiator $1.2 million in bribes

By Jerry White, 27 July 2017

A federal indictment filed in US District Court in Detroit Wednesday charges that a former vice president of Fiat Chrysler funneled more than a million dollars in bribes to United Auto Workers Vice President General Holiefield between 2009 and 2014.

“We don’t blame Mexico, we blame the company”

Workers denounce layoffs at Indianapolis Carrier plant

By Shelley Connor and Jerry White, 25 July 2017

Sacked workers at the United Technology Corporation's Carrier plant have responded with outrage and hostility, not only towards UTC, but to Trump and the United Steelworkers union.

Government gives Amazon millions in free money for Romulus, Michigan warehouse

By Robert Verdine, 25 July 2017

The multi-billion corporation is pocketing millions in investments and tax breaks from Detroit area suburbs for the building of new fulfillment and warehouse facilities.

Teachers’ unions attract few at “March for Public Education” in Washington, D.C.

By our reporters, 24 July 2017

The small turnout shows popular alienation from the unions, which have colluded in the attacks on teachers and public education.

Harley Davidson to cut 180 jobs at Milwaukee and Kansas City plants

By Benjamin Mateus, 24 July 2017

Neither the International Association of Machinists nor the United Steelworkers have made even a pretense of fighting the threatened layoffs.

Connecticut Democrats, unions impose $1.5 billion in givebacks on state workers

By John Marion, 24 July 2017

Governor Dannel Malloy and union executives browbeat the 40,000 state workers into accepting the deal with the threat of mass layoffs and potential bankruptcy of the City of Hartford.

Study reveals gutting of health care and pensions for US workers

By Isaac Finn, 21 July 2017

Global risk management firm Willis Towers Watson revealed the impact of the corporate-government assault on workers’ retirement and medical benefits.

Tufts Medical Center lockout to end with no gains for nurses

By John Marion, 17 July 2017

The Massachusetts Nurses Association (MNA) and Democratic Party politicians are using stunts to pressure management into negotiations while nurses go without pay.

SEIU cuts short three-day strike of New York airport workers

By Isaac Finn, 13 July 2017

Following a walkout on July 11 of roughly 700 workers at Newark Liberty International Airport, SEIU 32BJ ended a threatened three-day strike against PrimeFlight Inc., after the company agreed to negotiate.

AT&T West workers reject deal pushed by Communications Workers of America

By Jake Dean, 11 July 2017

After AT&T workers in California and Nevada rejected the sellout deal, the CWA immediately agreed to federal mediation, a blackout on information and a no-strike pledge.

“They said that to protect the company”

Coworkers denounce false report of suicide after Detroit electrician falls to his death

By Tim Rivers, 7 July 2017

Medical examiner’s report repudiates claims by police and the media that veteran electrician Michael Morrison, who plummeted 75 feet at the Little Caesars sports arena, took his own life.

Many questions in Detroit GM plant explosion

By Shannon Jones, 6 July 2017

A Wednesday morning explosion at the GM Detroit-Hamtramck plant has left three workers injured and one hospitalized.

The way forward for West Coast port truck drivers

By Dan Conway and Jerry White, 4 July 2017

The Teamsters union shut down the strike, the 15th such walkout over the last four years, without resolving any of the critical issues demanded by the drivers.

Two US coal miners killed in June

By Naomi Spencer, 1 July 2017

The deaths of two coal miners last month put 2017 on track to reach fatality figures not seen since the relative boom period of 2011-13.

California Amazon worker speaks out:

“Amazon fired me because I complained about age discrimination”

By Evan Blake, 20 June 2017

The former Amazon employee described a climate of favoritism and abuse against older workers at the multinational behemoth's warehouses.

Los Angeles and Long Beach port truckers strike over misclassification

Workers Struggles: The Americas

20 June 2017

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Trump administration rolls back “joint-employer” labor provision in favor of big business

By E.P. Milligan, 13 June 2017

The decision will serve to further empower the major corporations while reducing their accountability and restricting the rights of workers.

Trump, the coal miners and the environment

By Jerry White, 6 June 2017

Stripped of the demagogy and lies, the line of the Trump administration amounts to the proposition that miners must place their full trust and confidence in the benevolence of the coal bosses.

In move to compete with Amazon, Walmart asks workers to make deliveries during commute

By Evan Blake, 6 June 2017

The two companies are competing with one another to cut costs and boost profits by increasing the exploitation of their workforces.

Settlement at AT&T West, DirecTV, while Spectrum telecom strike continues

Workers Struggles: the Americas

6 June 2017

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GM announces more layoffs as US auto sales decline

By Shannon Jones, 3 June 2017

General Motors announced 300 job cuts at its Warren, Michigan transmission plant amid continuing signs of a slowdown in US auto sales after a seven-year boom.

Three Wisconsin workers die in corn mill explosion, several more seriously injured

By Gary Joad, 3 June 2017

Federal agencies have cited the company for multiple safety and environmental violations as far back as the early 2000s.

Amazon ordered employee to work despite heatstroke risk, sought to cover up incident

By Eric London, 30 May 2017

The young Virginia worker told the International Amazon Workers Voice that she has still not received medical attention despite suffering long-term health effects.

Rampant safety hazards, wage theft on Nashville construction sites

By Warren Duzak, 26 May 2017

In a survey of 1,435 construction workers in six major southern US cities, Nashville ranked number one in the frequency of injuries.

Caterpillar, Butterball to close factories in Montgomery, Illinois, laying off 1,400 workers

By Marcus Day and George Marlowe, 24 May 2017

The dual factory closures in the far western suburbs of Chicago take place in an area already hard hit by decades of deindustrialization.

Wall Street engineers ouster of top Ford executives

By Jerry White, 23 May 2017

The management reshuffling at the number two US automaker, described in industry circles as a “coup,” underscores the complete domination of the banks and financial speculators.

San Diego, California school district pushes forward with layoffs and cuts

By Norisa Diaz and Toby Reese, 23 May 2017

Some 1,500 educators and support staff in the San Diego Unified School District have been finishing the school year with apprehension that they may not have a job next fall.

Strikes in Colombia underscore worsening conditions in schools and among workers

Workers Struggles: The Americas

23 May 2017

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“It is time we all stood up”

AT&T workers call for broader fight as CWA ends weekend strike

By our reporting teams, 22 May 2017

AT&T workers are determined to recoup past concessions, handed to the world’s largest company by the Communications Workers of America.

West Virginia coal miner killed at pit run by environmental fund

By Naomi Spencer, 22 May 2017

A West Virginia coal miner was killed May 18, bringing to seven the number of fatal coal mine accidents in the US this year.

Union conceals district’s takeaway demands from Detroit teachers

By Phyllis Steele, 22 May 2017

So egregious were the school board’s demands that the Detroit Federation of Teachers executive board could not bring it back to rank-and-file educators.

CWA begins three-day strike at AT&T as US telecom workers press for real fight

By Mark Witkowski and Shannon Jones, 20 May 2017

While continuing the isolation of workers at Spectrum, the CWA has organized a token, three-day, strike against AT&T West and AT&T Mobility.

CWA threatens weekend strike at AT&T as US telecom workers press for real fight

By Mark Witkowski and Shannon Jones, 19 May 2017

While continuing the isolation of workers at Spectrum, the CWA has called for a token, three-day strike against AT&T West and AT&T Mobility.

US autoworkers discuss Ford job cuts, Washington political crisis

By Shannon Jones, 18 May 2017

The cutbacks are a further indication that the boom in auto sales is coming to an end.

University of Puerto Rico students protest austerity measures

By Rafael Azul, 16 May 2017

Striking students occupying the main campus of the University of Puerto Rico in Río Piedras are defying a court order to end their protest.

Wildcat strike at Mexican auto parts plant

Workers Struggles: The Americas

16 May 2017

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US auto profits soar as sales slowdown threatens more layoffs

By Shannon Jones, 11 May 2017

Higher auto profits are being accompanied by job cuts as management intensifies its assault on autoworkers.

New evidence of UAW vote-rigging in 2015 Ford contract

Part Two

By Eric London, 11 May 2017

Documents provided to the World Socialist Web Site show a UAW conspiracy to silence autoworkers with access to evidence that the union committed election fraud to pass the 2015 contract with Ford.

New evidence of UAW vote-rigging in 2015 Ford contract

Part One

By Eric London, 9 May 2017

Information provided to the World Socialist Web Site shows a UAW conspiracy to silence autoworkers with evidence that the UAW committed election fraud to pass the 2015 Ford contract.

Each day 150 workers die in the US due to hazardous work conditions

By Matthew Taylor, 1 May 2017

A new report from the AFL-CIO details the perilous state of the US workplace

Trump pushes reactionary “Buy American, Hire American” plan

By Jerry White, 19 April 2017

Trump signed an executive order on Tuesday restricting visas for skilled immigrant workers and mandating the use of domestic products in federal projects.

Latest cuts plan at ThyssenKrupp Steel Europe threatens 4,000 jobs

By Elisabeth Zimmermann, 18 April 2017

ThyssenKrupp Steel Europe has adopted a new program of jobs and cost cutting aimed at slashing €500 million over the next three years.

Workers Struggles: The Americas

Strikes hit mines in Peru and Mexico as retired US coal miners face health care cutoff

18 April 2017

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Two more US coal miners killed

By Naomi Spencer, 13 April 2017

Two accidents in West Virginia and eastern Kentucky coal mines bring to five the total number of US coal miners killed this year.

Chicago Teachers Union calls off one-day strike vote

By Kristina Betinis, 11 April 2017

Just hours before a scheduled vote on a one-day walkout union head Karen Lewis announced, “No, we’re not striking.”

No to San Diego school layoffs! Defend the right to high quality public education!

By the WSWS Teacher Newsletter, 11 April 2017

There is widespread opposition to the layoffs of 1,500 teachers and staff, but to fight, school workers must build a political movement against the squandering of resources on war and the interests of the super-rich.

Workers Struggles: The Americas

Mexican autoworkers strike, protests against IMF-dictated price hikes hit Suriname

11 April 2017

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Southern Illinois meatpacking workers enter third week of strike

By George Gallanis and Benjamin Mateus, 5 April 2017

Holten Meat packing workers near East St. Louis, Illinois are striking over work conditions and seniority rights.

Three dead, four injured in boiler explosion at St. Louis factory

By George Marlowe, 4 April 2017

Among those killed in the explosion were two newly hired workers filling out paperwork a block away at Faultless Healthcare Linens.

Workers Struggles: The Americas

Anti-austerity protests hit Argentina, Brazil and Puerto Rico

4 April 2017

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Days after UAW claims contract ratification

Caterpillar confirms plans to close Aurora, Illinois plant, lay off 800

By Marcus Day, 3 April 2017

There are reports of angry confrontations between workers and local UAW officials following the announcement.

Organizers win lawsuit against United Farm Workers for nearly $1 million in stolen wages

By Matthew Taylor, 3 April 2017

A California judge ordered the United Farmworkers of America to pay its organizers back wages after exploiting them and cheating them out of their pay.

Allegations of vote fraud mount

The UAW betrayal at Caterpillar and the case for rank-and-file committees

By Jerry White, 31 March 2017

The alleged ratification of the UAW-backed deal has provoked widespread charges of vote rigging and fraud.

Caterpillar workers react with anger, suspicion to UAW contract ratification

By Marcus Day, 29 March 2017

While the UAW has claimed that a new six-year contract with Caterpillar was approved by workers at ratification meetings Sunday, it has yet to release company-wide vote totals.

As Trump postures as friend of miners, retirees and widows face April 30 health care cutoff

By Samuel Davidson, 29 March 2017

On March 1, the United Mine Workers of America Health and Retirement Funds sent a letter to 22,600 retirees and widows informing them their retiree benefits would be cut off.

Workers Struggles: The Americas

Class struggle heats up in Latin America

28 March 2017

The World Socialist Web Site invites workers and other readers to contribute to this regular feature by contacting the WSWS.

“The way I look at it is, the UAW is Caterpillar”

Caterpillar workers in Peoria, Illinois denounce UAW sellout deal

By our reporters, 27 March 2017

Caterpillar workers voting in central Illinois Sunday spoke with the WSWS about the years of reversals they have suffered due to the treachery of the United Auto Workers union.

UAW-Caterpillar contract “highlights” reveal new attacks on jobs and wages

By Marcus Day, 24 March 2017

What little the UAW has revealed about its deal with Caterpillar points to an escalation of the union-backed corporate assault on workers.

Telecom union calls bogus “strike” at AT&T in California and Nevada

By Alan Gilman, 24 March 2017

After less than 24 hours, the Communications Workers of America (CWA) sent 17,000 AT&T workers back to their jobs after the walkout, which was aimed at defusing workers’ anger and frustration.

“Don’t believe what they’re going to tell you”

As Caterpillar-UAW contract vote nears, Deere workers warn of union betrayal

By Marcus Day and George Gallanis, 22 March 2017

With just four days left before voting, workers at agricultural equipment giant Deere & Co. spoke on the lessons of their 2015 contract struggle.

“I think it’s a set-up with the union and Caterpillar”

Caterpillar-UAW deal: Workers denounce information blackout

By Marcus Day and George Marlowe, 21 March 2017

Less than a week before they are set to vote on a six-year contract proposal, workers have still not received any details on the content of the deal.

Workers Struggles: The Americas

21 March 2017

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Coal miner killed at mine owned by West Virginia governor

By Clement Daly, 18 March 2017

Jason Kenneth Matthews was killed at the Bishop Preparation Plant, owned by Jim Justice, West Virginia’s governor and richest man.

Los Angeles school district sends layoff notices to 1,600 administrators

By Dan Conway, 18 March 2017

The layoffs are part of an ongoing attempt to gut public education in the nation’s second largest school district.

Workers have the right to study the full contract!

Caterpillar-UAW deal: An anti-worker conspiracy

By Marcus Day, 18 March 2017

In an attempt to overcome worker opposition to further concessions, the UAW and Caterpillar are coordinating an information blackout over details of a proposed six-year contract announced Wednesday.

Rockford, Illinois public school employees go on strike

By George Gallanis, 16 March 2017

While school workers have demonstrated their determination to fight, behind the scenes AFSCME officials are seeking to cut a deal that will accept the bulk of management’s demands.

Workers Struggles: The Americas

14 March 2017

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As backdoor UAW-Caterpillar negotiations and tax fraud investigation continue

Former Caterpillar worker speaks on 2012 Joliet, Illinois strike betrayal

By Marcus Day, 13 March 2017

Caterpillar is in the midst of a worldwide restructuring, laying off tens of thousands and closing multiple plants.

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

11 March 2017

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Boston mass transit privatization scheme proceeds through bullying and tricks

By John Marion, 9 March 2017

The crisis of the MBTA caused by years of deferred maintenance and a massive February 2015 snow storm is being used to implement a prolonged assault on workers.

Rockford, Illinois public school employees set to strike next week

By George Gallanis, 8 March 2017

The AFSCME union is limiting the action to a three-day walkout to blow off steam and curtail the growing combativeness of workers.

“The corporations are our enemies, not immigrant workers”

General Motors announces 1,100 job cuts at Lansing, Michigan plant

By Shannon Jones and Jerry White, 7 March 2017

Just three days after laying off 1,300 workers at its Detroit assembly plant, GM announced it was cutting another 1,100 workers at a factory near the Michigan state capital.

Sanders covers for UAW at Mississippi Nissan rally

By Ed Hightower and Jerry White, 7 March 2017

Sanders was the keynote speaker at Saturday’s rally in Canton, Mississippi where the United Auto Workers is campaigning to win recognition at the Nissan auto factory.

Workers Struggles: The Americas

7 March 2017

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