Keep Your Burgers, Keep Your Fries. We Want Our Wages Supersized!

Rebecca Band

Most every day around noon, the McDonalds on Jackson St in downtown Oakland is filled with customers. Yesterday at noon, it was jam-packed as usual, but it wasn’t the usual crowd. Nearly 200 striking fast food workers and their supporters flooded into the restaurant with a simple demand: “Keep your burgers, keep your fries… we want our wages SUPERSIZED!”

Fast-food is one of the most profitable industries in our country, and yet the vast majority of fast-food workers earn poverty wages, and more than half are forced to enroll their families in public assistance programs just to afford basics like food and housing. Fast-food corporations are some of the biggest contributors to our nation’s growing income inequality, which is why thousands of fast-food workers went on strike in more than 100 cities yesterday.

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More Than 100 Fast-Food Worker Strikes Set for Thursday

Maria Trisler

It’s on – this Thursday, fast-food workers like me are going on strike across the country. And it’s going to be bigger than ever before, with community members joining us at protests and rallies in hundreds of cities across the country!

Find out if there’s a rally near you and sign-up to show up on Thursday. Together, we’ll send the fast-food giants a loud and clear message.

I’m going on strike because I can’t make ends meet for me and my 12-year old boy on the $8.35 I make at McDonald’s – it’s just 10 cents more than minimum wage here in Peoria, Illinois.

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Professional Dancer Union Member Credits AFA-CWA Member Mom

Darren Shiroma

When Dana Wilson was a teenager, she was offered a job at a local supermarket where union members were on strike. She asked her mother, Denver-based United Airlines Association of Flight Attendants-CWA (AFA-CWA) member Stefani Wilson, what the employer meant when he said she would have to cross the picket line.

Stefani told her daughter the story of honoring the picket line when United Pilots were on strike in 1985 for 29 days, before Dana was born. She impressed upon her daughter that unions are vital to our industry and that, if she took the supermarket job while workers were on strike, she would be harming those workers.

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Working People Standing Together Give New Meaning to “Black Friday”

Rebecca Band

Black Friday is known as one of the biggest shopping days of the year, a day when giant corporations boost their bottom lines in a frenzy of shopping deals and “doorbusters.” Problem is, mega-corporations like Walmart aren’t sharing those huge profits with workers. They’re paying poverty wages to the very workers who make these huge companies successful. But thanks to the bravery and dedication of the Walmart workers and supporters who came out to protests in their communities, Black Friday is no longer just a day for corporations like Walmart. It’s a day for the people.

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Skip the Shopping Line; Spend Black Friday on the Picket Line

Rebecca Band

Despite raking in $17 billion in profits this year, Walmart (one on the richest employers in the world) still insists on paying its workers poverty wages. The average Walmart employee earns just $8.81 an hour, which amounts to $17,000 a year for those who are lucky enough to have full-time work. Most Walmart employees earn so little that they quality for public assistance programs, and we the taxpayers effectively provide massive subsidies to the company through food stamps and other programs. 

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UC Health Care Workers Strike, Charging Harassment and Intimidation

Mike Hall

Today, some 22,000 surgical and X-ray technicians, custodians, servers, cooks and other workers at nine University of California campuses and all of U.C.’s medical centers are on a one-day unfair labor practice strike over what they say is intimidation and harassment of workers who took part in an earlier strike over patient safety in May.

“Our members have both the legal right and moral responsibility to stand up for the safety of the students and patients we serve,” AFSCME Local 3299 President Kathryn Lybarger said. “By attempting to silence workers, UC hasn’t just repeatedly broken the law—it has willfully endangered all who come to UC to learn, to heal and to build a better life for their families.”

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Truck Drivers Who Haul for Walmart Strike at the Port of LA

The latest wave of low-wage worker strikes is upon us, and it begins today with Teamster-supported port drivers who haul goods for Walmart at the Port of Los Angeles. At 5 a.m., port drivers took up “Stop this unlawful war on workers signs” and hit the picket lines in a surprise short strike. Teamsters are marching in solidarity with the drivers.

Local television, print and radio crews came out to cover the job action (check out news coverage here). The advisory informs us port truck drivers at three companies are walking off the job for 36 hours to protest Unfair Labor Practices, including harassment, intimidation, and other violations of Federal labor laws.

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TTSI’s Port Drivers Demand to Be Treated as Employees


Jessica Durrum

Twenty-seven port truck drivers walked into the Rancho Dominguez offices of Total Transportation Services, Inc. (TTSI) Thursday and presented their employer with a petition. Their demand was simple: to be properly recognized as employees.

TTSI is one of the largest port trucking companies in the twin ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach. TTSI’s business model – like the vast majority of port trucking companies in the country – relies on misclassifying its drivers as independent contractors.

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Workers Standing Together to Demand Respect at Taylor Farms

Doug Bloch

The ability for workers to stand together to improve working conditions and bargain for fair wages is essential to the American Dream. But at Taylor Farms in Tracy, the bosses are threatening and intimidating workers as part of a campaign to stop those workers from joining a union.

Today, community leaders and workers rallied outside of a Taylor Farms facility this morning to demand respect, living wages and affordable benefits for immigrant workers. Workers were joined by San Joaquin Supervisor Carlos Villapudua and other community allies, including faith leaders and immigrant rights activists.

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“JumpStart Vallejo” Coalition Makes Big Electoral Gains for Working Families

 joined forces with a coalition rarely seen in any city. Driven by the negative impacts that municipal bankruptcy has had on the City of Vallejo’s ability to attract businesses or provide for adequate public safety and an image of dysfunctional leadership, the Labor Council partnered with the Chamber of Commerce, police, fire, realtors, building trades, teachers, democrats and conservatives to form JumpStart Vallejo. For the first time, all these very distinctive groups had the chance to come together in order to identify, vet and then come to consensus on four candidates we all felt would be the best to move Vallejo forward.

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