The giant tractor parked in front of Senator Tom Berryhill’s Fresno office said it all.
That’s where the statewide Stand up for California tour stopped on Thursday, where local farmers, a yoga studio owner, a financial analyst and small business owners asked the Senator to get California working again by supporting a fair and balanced state budget that includes maintaing existing revenues.
Local farmer Emin Dhaliwal called on Berryhill to break through political lines. “Valley farmers know that the prosperity of our business is closely tied to the prosperity of our community, our ability to fund police for safe communities, and our investment in our children’s education,” Dhaliwal said. “That’s why it is imperative that California straighten out its current budget mess and protect core functions like education and public safety.”
500 Rite Aid workers at the company’s massive Southwest Distribution Center in Lancaster declared victory on Sunday, May 1 in their five-year effort to form a union and improve working conditions. Workers signed a 3-year tentative agreement with management – subject to a May 12 ratification vote – that will improve conditions at the million-square-foot facility in California’s high desert.
“We’re excited about winning this victory, even if it took longer than it should have,” said Carlos “Chico” Rubio, a 10-year warehouse worker who helped negotiate the union contract with eight of his co-workers. Employees decided to form their union in March of 2006 after contacting the ILWU. Within months, Local 26 President Luisa Gratz was helping workers address problems with indoor heat and production standards. Unfortunately, Rite Aid began aggressively interfering with the workers’ freedom to organize.
in San Diego refuses to negotiate a fair contract with employees for the fifth year. They have actively engaged in union-busting campaigns and employee intimation.
The San Diego & Imperial Counties Labor Council and the California Labor Federation have held an advertising and consumer boycott of KGTV Channel 10 News for several years. Despite their drop in ratings and millions in lost ad revenue, KGTV has launched further attacks against the workers, represented by NABET-CWA Local 54. While the boycott has been extremely successful, it is time to advance the campaign and take it to the next level.