Walmart heirs. An oil tycoon. An Texas-based Enron trader. Venture Capitalists. It’s not surprising that this motley group is using their millions to try to influence our elections. What is surprising to some is where they’re putting their avalanche of campaign cash this fall. They’re pouring millions into the State Superintendent of Public Instruction race.
Just six days to go. We’ve heard a lot about the low-turnout projections. But in this final week, labor unions are out in force doing what we do best: talking to workers face to face and on the phone about the importance of exercising our fundamental right to vote. Voting gives a voice. It gives us a seat at the table. It’s the great equalizer to money and power.
At Sacramento-based company Sunoptics, employees craft products that are ahead of their time – high-tech skylights that can help replace most electric lighting with natural sunlight for offices and homes.
Companies from Coca-Cola and Siemens to local school districts and police departments are using the systems to cut energy bills, slash carbon emissions and reduce pollution.
But while Sunoptics is making huge strides toward a greener future, many of its policies regarding its workforce have been stuck in the past.
The editorial board of the San Francisco Chronicle thinks a Silicon Valley Congressman should speak for the billionaires who have a voice and want an even louder one.
Perhaps thanks are due the board for making the choice between Mike Honda and Ro Khanna so clear. If we want a Congress member, it argues,who will be a voice for “those high-tech titans (Eric Schmidt of Google, Sheryl Sandberg of Facebook, Marissa Mayer of Yahoo among them)” we should follow its recommendation and dump Mike Honda, and install Ro Khanna.
believes it’s time to bring spirituality into social justice work. To that end, his book Living Peace
provokes dialogue for the sharing and integration of spirituality among those working for
peace and justice.
Renowned union organizer and activist Fred Ross Sr was posthumously inducted into the California Hall of Fame on October 1. The Hall of Fame honors “legendary people who embody California’s innovative spirit and have made their mark on history.” Ross was just one of the many notable Californians inducted that evening, along with Kareem Abdul-Jabar, Charlotta Bass, Francis Ford Coppola, Joan Didion, Jimmy Iovine, Stephen Schneider, Mimi Silbert and Andre “Dr. Dre” Young.
by Niyaz Pirani
Orange County’s public employees are the backbone of County government. They keep streets safe and clean, and provide vital services the community needs. Unfortunately, politicians and their corporate backers have not let up on their attacks on workers, eroding the middle class our grandparents’ generation built brick by brick. And they’re doing it for their own political gain.
Mass incarceration isn’t a topic most of us are comfortable discussing. But it’s a problem that affects every Californian on many levels. When non-violent, low-level offenses are treated as felonies resulting in extensive prison time, it wastes taxpayer money that could be going to schools and services. It fuels the cycle of poverty and imprisonment. It siphons resources from fighting dangerous crime. It’s an affront to justice.
The annual season of governor’s signatures and vetoes has come to an end. And this year, as every year, worker power won legislative change. Many of the most significant bills that were signed by Governor Brown each engaged an active lobbying and advocacy effort by workers and their organizations.
(LOHP) and Worksafe
are hosting a one-day conference at Berkeley City College entitled “Taking Action for Safe, Just and Healthy Workplaces.” (Online registration is available here.
) This event will be an exciting opportunity for workers and advocates to come together to discuss efforts to improve health and safety on the job, successful worker empowerment strategies, and how to effectively use worker rights under Cal/OSHA.