Labor & Economic News Blog
Friday, October 27, 2006
Volvo to lay off 600 at Hagerstown plantVolvo to lay off 600 at Hagerstown plant
Swedish company says cuts reflect decline in demand for heavy-duty trucksHeavy truck maker AB Volvo said today it will lay off 600 workers next year at its Hagerstown engine-and-transmission plant.
Mohawk to cut production, jobs because of housing dipMohawk to cut production, jobs because of housing dip
A slump in the housing industry is prompting Calhoun-based Mohawk Industries to cut jobs, not just on the factory floor, but sales and administrative staff as well. It's also ramping down production to control inventory levels — particularly carpet for the residential market — by reducing factory shifts. That's not all.
Ed Ott: The accidental union bossEd Ott: The accidental union boss
AS it was a federal indictment bloated with racketeering charges, not retirement, that precipitated the departure of the suave old boss, perhaps it is understandable that the blunt-spoken new one, Ed Ott, interim executive director of the shellshocked New York City Central Labor Council, is not exactly in his element in the expansive, expensively outfitted office involuntarily bequeathed to him by Brian M. McLaughlin.
Fort Worth transit workers to vote on new labor contractFort Worth transit workers to vote on new labor contract
Bus drivers and other Fort Worth Transportation Authority workers will vote on a new labor contract Sunday night, and T officials are confident that even if the measure is rejected bus service will be normal Monday.
India bank staff in strike actionIndia bank staff in strike action
In South Asia
Nearly a million Indian bank workers strike in protest at reforms which unions believe will lead to job cuts.
Vietnam set for WTO membershipVietnam set for WTO membership
Vietnam's membership of the WTO may widen the gap between rich and poor as the Communist-run state looks to maintain rapid growth.
SAN FRANCISCO / Claims adjusters lose big award on appeal / Workers exempt from overtime pay, Ninth Circuit rulesSAN FRANCISCO / Claims adjusters lose big award on appeal / Workers exempt from overtime pay, Ninth Circuit rules
The claims adjusters who investigate property damage and negotiate settlements with insurance policyholders are not entitled to overtime pay under federal law, a federal appeals court ruled Thursday, overturning a $52.5 million damage award for about 1,700...
Harassment alleged at Eden Praririe trucking companyHarassment alleged at Eden Praririe trucking company
In StarTribune.com Business
Six women filed sexual harassment claims Thursday against their former employer, C.H. Robinson Worldwide Inc., the latest development in a four-year-old sex-discrimination lawsuit against the Eden Prairie trucking company. The filings are related to a 2002 lawsuit in U.S. District Court in Minnesota alleging gender discrimination in pay and promotion, and sexual harassment. The judge certified national class status for the first two categories, and Robinson settled those charges shortly afterward for $15 million. The new cases return to the allegations of sexual harassment, which include lew
Uncle Sam lending auto workers a handUncle Sam lending auto workers a hand
In StarTribune.com Business
Motivated by the mass layoffs facing auto workers across the country, the U.S. Department of Labor on Thursday said that Minnesota and four other states have been selected to participate in an initiative to provide displaced auto workers with as much as $6,000 in federal retraining money over two years. Displaced and current workers here and in Michigan, Georgia, Ohio and Missouri will test the new Career Advancement Accounts, which are meant to provide thousands of Ford Motor Co. and General Motors Corp. workers who will soon leave those firms with money for tuition, books and fees related t
Without fanfare, last Ford Taurus rolls off Atlanta lineWithout fanfare, last Ford Taurus rolls off Atlanta line
In StarTribune.com Business
HAPEVILLE, Ga. Ford's Atlanta Assembly Plant, the production point for some of America's most popular pickups and sedans for several generations, closed Friday after assembling the company's last Taurus. The plant was 59 years old. It closed as part of a reorganization plan announced 10 months ago by Ford Motor Co. to boost profits for the nation's second-biggest automaker. It is survived by 1,950 employees some of whom are taking jobs at Ford plants in other states. Among the makes that rolled off the plant's assembly line since it opened in 1947 were the F100, Galaxy, Falcon, Fair
Machinists tried to buy Boeing's commercial unitMachinists tried to buy Boeing's commercial unit
By email@example.com on Business & Technology
Boeing was at a low point in fall 2003 when leaders of the national Machinists union teamed up with one of the country's most powerful private...
Chaotic but brief UMass strikeChaotic but brief UMass strike
Source: Boston Globe
Nurses at UMass Memorial Medical Center stunned hospital officials early yesterday by calling a brief but chaotic strike hours after a verbal contract agreement was reached.
Data processor adding 1,000 jobs in Augusta GeorgiaData processor adding 1,000 jobs in Augusta
A global provider of personnel services is expanding its presence in Georgia with a $30 million Augusta facility that will employ 1,000 workers. Automatic Data Processing, which handles payroll, administers benefits and conducts background checks for companies, will begin operations at a temporary facility by March, with about a quarter of the work force. Construction will start on the 150,000-square-foot business solutions center in late 2007. The plant will have a variety of positions that will pay between $25,000 and $65,000 a year. Hiring and training for those jobs will begin early next year. ADP began its search for a location earlier this year and zeroed in on Augusta because of its "community spirit and quality of life," company officials said at the announcement in Augusta this morning.
Law Firms Are Starting to Adopt OutsourcingLaw Firms Are Starting to Adopt Outsourcing
By JULIE CRESWELL
More law firms are looking to move clerical functions out of high-cost cities and into lower-cost regions like India.
Miami airport workers got paid for bogus shiftsPolice: Workers got paid for bogus shifts
Playing hooky from work landed nearly a dozen Miami International Airport employees in jail Thursday -- and underscored a troubling security gap at one of the nation's busiest airports, police say.
Ford workers may get education aidFord workers may get education aid
Workers at St. Paul's Ford Ranger plant and suppliers to the auto industry could be part of a test program that gives them up to $6,000 each to get education and retraining, the U.S. Labor Department said Thursday.
Thursday, October 26, 2006
Storm Continues to Affect Nursing ShortageStorm Continues to Affect Nursing Shortage
Hurricane Katrina has contributed to the nursing shortage issues in New Orleans. Many hospitals in the area are now looking to recruit foreign born nurses from such places as...
Houston janitors' strike spreads, gains supportHouston janitors' strike spreads, gains support
Striking Houston janitors got some high-powered support today from the president of their union and local politicians. Service Employees International Union Executive President Andrew Stern, who has seen his union's membership grow by 800,000 in 10 years, rallied janitors from the back of a pickup at 1100 Louisiana downtown.
Demand strong for divers in oil and gas industryDemand strong for divers in oil and gas industry
It used to be a novelty for Mike Oden to stick a thumbtack into the map on his office wall. Each tack meant the recruiter at Houston's Ocean Corp., one of the nation's biggest commercial diving schools, had landed another student from outside the U.S.
Workplace debate: Should FBI have an eye on your employment records?Workplace debate: Should FBI have an eye on your employment records?
In StarTribune.com Business
Do you think the FBI should get access to your employment records to keep track of sex offenders? A recent report by the federal Government Accountability Office (GAO) is suggesting that U.S. employers and law enforcement test the sharing of two databases: one with everyone's W-4 tax forms from work and one with the country's registered sex offenders. It would take an act of Congress to make that legal, but those investigating the possibility said the goal is improved public safety. One employer group is concerned about possible liability if employee information is misused. And privacy gro
Qwest retirees denounce benefit reductionsQwest retirees denounce benefit reductions
In StarTribune.com Business
Some Minnesota Qwest retirees said Wednesday they felt betrayed by the company's announcement this week that it will cut retirement benefits, which they said could be devastating for some former colleagues. "It's a terrible double-cross," said Arnie Albrecht of Roseville, who retired in 1994 as head of the company's regulatory operations in Minnesota. "To retain people, they promised them retirement benefits while they were employed. Then, after the people retired and didn't have any power, they jerked it out from under them." Qwest Communications said this week that in response to "market c
After years of decline, data centers are backAfter years of decline, data centers are back
Over the past six years, Internap Network Services has survived hundreds of layoffs, a tumbling share price and a delisting threat from Nasdaq. Until this year, it had never been profitable. Still, it was fortunate to be in a business, renting data center space, in which many of its competitors had gone under.
UMass, nurses press toward strike deadlineUMass, nurses press toward strike deadline
By Christopher Rowland, Globe Staff
Hospital and union negotiators were working last night to avert a strike by 830 nurses scheduled to begin today at UMass Memorial Medical Center in Worcester.
AT WORK: HR gatekeepers keeping the skilled locked outAT WORK: HR gatekeepers keeping the skilled locked out
I spent an afternoon last week with some unemployed job hunters. They were about a dozen high-level professionals — out of work for longer than you’d think possible for men of their education and experience.
Minnesota Manufacturers SummitENGLER: FACTORY SECTOR CAN BE REVIVED
While the number of manufacturing jobs hasn't rebounded as expected since the last recession, business leaders who gathered Wednesday for a statewide conference didn't hear only tales of gloom.
Mesaba talks go past deadlineMesaba talks go past deadline
Mesaba Airlines has delayed imposing cuts on 1,100 pilots, flight attendants and mechanics as it continued to negotiate with its unions past Wednesday's midnight deadline.
Jobless claims rose in latest week (Reuters)Jobless claims rose in latest week (Reuters)
Reuters - The number of U.S. workers applying for jobless benefits rose by 8,000 last week to 308,000, in line with expectations and still pointing to a relatively healthy job market, a government report on Thursday showed.
Wednesday, October 25, 2006
Los Angeles city union threatens to strike without warningLos Angeles city union threatens to strike without warning
The Los Angeles County Federation of Labor agreed earlier this month to support a strike by the Engineers and Architects Association, and that clears the way for other municipal unions to join the job action.
Mesaba: Pilots might stage sympathy strikesMesaba: Pilots might stage sympathy strikes
In StarTribune.com Business
The head of the Air Line Pilots Association International said Tuesday that his group not only will appeal the ruling that bars a strike at Mesaba Airlines, but will extend the labor conflict to other carriers if the appeal is successful. "We are confident in the end that the court system will not permit this to stand," ALPA President Duane Woerth told the Star Tribune. Woerth wouldn't specify which other pilot groups might be asked to back Mesaba workers through sympathy strikes in the event a walkout eventually is allowed. But the logical targets are Northwest Airlines, which provides all
Qwest plans to cut benefits for retirees
Businesses Urge Schools to Impart Basic Work SkillsBusinesses Urge Schools to Impart Basic Work Skills
Businesses in Chicago are lobbying the city's public schools to do a better job of training students in skills they will need for entry-level jobs. Manufacturers around the region say they must do their own training to bring workers up to speed. The school district is considering new vocational training. From Chicago Public Radio, Jay Field reports.
Qwest to cut retiree outlaysQwest to cut retiree outlays
Despite posting two straight quarterly profits and initiating a stock buyback of up to $2 billion, Qwest Communications plans to cut health care and life insurance benefits for thousands of retirees.
Mesaba unions plan protest rally ThursdayMesaba unions plan protest rally Thursday
Mesaba Airlines' employees can't strike if the regional carrier imposes cuts on Thursday, but they plan to hold protest rallies that day in Minneapolis, Detroit and Memphis, Tenn.
Chicago: Unilever laying off, transferring Rolling Meadows employeesUnilever laying off, transferring Rolling Meadows employees
More than 150 researchers and workers at the Unilever U.S. research facility in Rolling Meadows are to be transferred or terminated under a restructuring announced today.
U.S. firms join hiring bias that is rampant in MexicoU.S. firms join hiring bias that is rampant in Mexico
When Michigan-based automotive supplier Lear Corp. needed a secretary for its office in the central state of Guanajuato, it placed a classified ad seeking a "female ... aged 20 to 28 ... preferably single ... with excellent presentation." And to make sure it got the right candidate, Lear asked applicants to include a recent photo with their résumés.
Houston janitors ask other workers to join strikeHouston janitors ask other workers to join strike
The janitors union, which has been focusing its efforts on downtown buildings, is taking its fight to other parts of the city and enlisting the support of community leaders to get what it wants.
UMass nurses set to strikeUMass nurses set to strike
By Christopher Rowland, Globe Staff
About 850 nurses are preparing to strike tomorrow at UMass Memorial Medical Center in Worcester, raising the prospect of the first strike at a Massachusetts hospital since nurses waged a 103-day walk out in 2001 at Brockton Hospital .
'The Office' as Management Training Tool'The Office' as Management Training Tool
The dysfunctional workplace portrayed in the TV show The Office rings true to many viewers. It also provides a roadmap of how not to manage a workplace.
Vietnam's Roaring Economy Is Set for World StageVietnam's Roaring Economy Is Set for World Stage
By KEITH BRADSHER
Since Vietnam has gone from communism to a form of capitalism, it has begun surpassing many of its neighbors.
Britain to Restrict Workers From Bulgaria and RomaniaBritain to Restrict Workers From Bulgaria and Romania
By SARAH LYALL
The new policy represents an enormous change for Britain, which has been one of Europes main champions of expansion and openness.
Economix: When Jobs Are Bountiful and Pay Isn'tEconomix: When Jobs Are Bountiful and Pay Isn't
By DAVID LEONHARDT
Though the U.S. economy is creating lots of jobs, many don't pay a decent living, and polls suggest that voters want to increase the minimum wage.
Countrywide to Cut JobsCountrywide to Cut Jobs
By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
CALABASAS, Calif., Oct. 24 (AP) Countrywide Financial, the nation's largest mortgage lender, said on Tuesday that it would cut its work force by more than 2,500, or about 5 percent, even as growth in its loan servicing portfolio pushed its third-quarter profit up 2 percent.
Students resort to private loans, staggering debtStudents resort to private loans, staggering debt
By Carrie Sturrock
Ethan Winsby considers himself in financial ruin at age 27 -- but not because he lost at gambling or risked everything on a startup that went bust. Like a growing number of young adults, he had to take out private loans to attend college. He...
Drug, human smugglers spread border corruption / As security tightens, problem of payoffs worsens, from local to federal agenciesDrug, human smugglers spread border corruption / As security tightens, problem of payoffs worsens, from local to federal agencies
By Ralph Vartabedian, Richard A. Serrano, Richard Marosi
Bribery of federal and local officials by Mexican smugglers is rising sharply, and with it the fear that a culture of corruption is taking hold along the 2,000-mile border from Brownsville, Texas, to San Diego. At least 200 public employees have been...
Tuesday, October 24, 2006
Judge blocks threatened strike at Mesaba AviationJudge blocks threatened strike at Mesaba Aviation
A bankruptcy judge on Monday blocked a strike by unions at Mesaba Aviation Inc., clearing the way for the feeder for Northwest Airlines Corp. to impose pay cuts later this week.
Houston janitors strike, demand return to talksHouston janitors strike, demand return to talks
Houston janitors started striking Monday, with the union targeting a limited number of buildings initially and saying an increasing number of workers will join the effort until the city's five major commercial cleaning companies return to the bargaining table.
Logistic experts' goal: Make Indy the 'rail deal' for job growthLogistic experts' goal: Make Indy the 'rail deal' for job growth
Buy a winter coat made in China, and chances are good it was shipped on a freighter to Los Angeles, loaded on a train for Chicago, then trucked to Indianapolis.
Lilly Belgium employees end strikeLilly Belgium employees end strike
Employees at Eli Lilly and Co.'s drug research facility in Mont-Saint-Guibert, Belgium, returned to work today after a four-day strike.
Higher dues proposed for SAG members; Board urges rare increaseHigher dues proposed for SAG members; Board urges rare increase
Source: LA Daily News
The Screen Actors Guild will ask its members to pay higher dues for only the second time in nearly two decades as it gears up for what are widely expected to be contentious contract talks in 2008. The national board voted Sunday by a 98 percent margin to seek member approval for the first SAG dues increase since 1999 and only the second in 19 years.
People in the streets and on general strike Monday and Tuesday to challenge free trade agreement with United StatesPeople in the streets and on general strike Monday and Tuesday to challenge free trade agreement with United States
Source: Prensa Latina
The Costa Rican people are in the streets and on a general strike Monday and Tuesday to challenge the free trade agreement with the United States, which President Oscar Arias has approved to accelerate.
Strike possible for 900 Bay Area trash haulersStrike possible for 900 Bay Area trash haulers
Source: SF Chronicle
Some 900 Bay Area garbage workers could go on strike as early as Friday if Alameda County landfill workers don't reach a new contract with Waste Management Inc., representatives from both sides said today.
Teamsters get ok to put union vote to Frontier flight attendantsTeamsters get ok to put union vote to Frontier flight attendants
Source: Rocky Mountain News
Frontier Airlines flight attendants will vote next month on whether to join the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, marking the workers’ fifth recent opportunity to unionize.
Former Coke Workers in Venezuela on ProtestFormer Coke Workers in Venezuela on Protest
More than 10,000 former workers of Coca-Cola's subsidiary in Venezuela are blockading bottling plants in the country. They say a Mexican-based Coke subsidiary owes them a large amount of money in unpaid social benefits.
On the Road: At U.S. Borders, Laptops Have No Right to PrivacyOn the Road: At U.S. Borders, Laptops Have No Right to Privacy
By JOE SHARKEY
Employers have a new worry that business travelers laptops will be seized at United States customs and immigration checkpoints.
Europe Warns China on Trade PracticesEurope Warns China on Trade Practices
By JAMES KANTER
The European Union authorities warned China today to open up a "two-way street" for global commerce or face action at the World Trade Organization.
UMW Demands Safer Coal MinesUMW Demands Safer Coal Mines
By By VICKI SMITH, Associated Press Writer
Dozens of West Virginia and Pennsylvania coal miners protested at a federal mine safety office Tuesday, demanding stronger safety measures and better enforcement in the nation's coal mines. A day earlier, a Pennsylvania miner was killed in an...
Monday, October 23, 2006
Ex-workers block access to Coca-Cola plants in VenezuelaEx-workers block access to Coca-Cola plants in Venezuela
CARACAS, Venezuela — Former contractors blocked delivery trucks from entering and leaving Coca-Cola bottling and distribution plants throughout Venezuela today to protest unpaid severance benefits. It's the latest challenge to U-S-owned companies by allies of President Hugo Chavez. Pro-Chavez congresswoman Iris Varela says protesters were staging demonstrations outside bottling plants nationwide. She pledged that the protests would continue until the company settles pending debts with former workers.
Ninth Circuit Tightens Requirements For Use Of Across The Board Qualification Standards Under The ADANinth Circuit Tightens Requirements For Use Of Across The Board Qualification Standards Under The ADA
By Sheppard Mullin on Americans With Disabilities Act ("ADA")
Employers who use across the board qualification standards, such as hearing and vision tests, to reduce safety risks that potentially screen out disabled employees may need to reevaluate these standards. In Bates v. UPS, the Ninth Circuit tightened the already...
Money flows into teacher bonus program (AP)Money flows into teacher bonus program (AP)
AP - In the closing weeks of the fall campaign, the Bush administration is handing out money for teachers who raise student test scores, the first federal effort to reward classroom performance with bonuses.
Meth's hidden cost at the workplaceMeth's hidden cost at the workplace
In StarTribune.com Business
Through the mire of their addiction, while they still had jobs left to lose, Fred Johnson and his wife, Jessica Hauge-Johnson, did a final check on one another every morning. "How do my eyes look?" he'd ask. "How do mine look?" she'd ask back. If their pupils still looked dark and dilated from a night of methamphetamine, they knew better than to go to work. And they missed a lot of work in about eight years of office and factory jobs. They lied to employers to excuse their absences. When Hauge-Johnson's weight dropped to 103 pounds, she feigned an eating disorder. And when they did
Meth in the workplaceMeth in the workplace
In StarTribune.com Business
76 percent of illicit drug users have jobs. Meth positives in job-related tests decreased from 2004 to 2005, reversing at least a five-year climb. Still, among all drugs, meth was 10.1 percent of the positive tests in 2005, up from 5.5 percent in 2001. Drugs or alcohol are involved in one in six workplace deaths and one in four injuries. Small businesses, least likely to have drug policies, are most vulnerable; 44 percent of illicit drug users work for companies with one to 24 employees. Reported job problems -- including absenteeism, injuries, mistakes
Inside track: Another union leader fallsInside track: Another union leader falls
In StarTribune.com Business
Airline union leaders have been subjected to a political bloodbath this year, the latest casualty being Duane Woerth. A Northwest Airlines 747 captain, Woerth narrowly lost his bid last week for a third term as president of the Air Line Pilots Association International. The winner was Continental pilot John Prater, who said, "After five years of concessionary bargaining, lost pensions, and battered work rules, our pilots are primed to take offensive action." Woerth, president of ALPA for eight years, was a key player in getting legislation passed this year that allowed Northwest to save its
Florida: Attempt at union fizzles at UniversalAttempt at union fizzles at Universal
Source: Orlando Sentinel
The latest labor union drive at Universal Orlando has ended just as the first six did over the past 16 years: with no union. The Central Florida Labor Council, a coalition of four international labor unions, announced Friday it has suspended efforts to organize Universal workers into a union.
AFL-CIO files complaint with ILO over Kentucky River casesAFL-CIO files complaint with ILO over Kentucky River cases
WASHINGTON Organized labor is filing an international protest about a federal decision redefining which workers are supervisors exempt from legal protection to join unions. The AFL-CIO, a federation of about 50 labor unions with 9 million members, said it would file a complaint Monday with the International Labor Organization of the United Nations about a decision this month by the National Labor Relations Board
Baseball players, owners reach labor dealBaseball players, owners reach labor deal
Source: Washington Post
Against a backdrop of a World Series featuring two mid-market teams, at the end of a season in which the sport reached new plateaus for revenue and attendance, Major League Baseball and the players' union appeared ready to announce in the next few days a new labor agreement that would extend a period of unprecedented labor peace for the sport.
A Bumper Shrimp Crop in Broken Cameron ParishA Bumper Shrimp Crop in Broken Cameron Parish
A year after Hurricane Rita, Louisiana's rural Cameron Parish has barely begun to recover. The bright spot in the local economy is the shrimping industry's bumper crop. Yet there aren't enough boats or shrimpers to take advantage.
L.A. Environmentalists Target Corporate PollutionL.A. Environmentalists Target Corporate Pollution
Activists join with labor unions and entrepreneurs to clean up their communities and create jobs. Robin Urevich reports from Los Angeles on the "green technology" movement.
Biomedicine good for the bottom line / Industry said to add $18 billion in wages to state's economyBiomedicine good for the bottom line / Industry said to add $18 billion in wages to state's economy
By Bernadette Tansey
California's biomedical industry contributed nearly 260,000 jobs and $18 billion in wages to the state's high-tech economy in 2005, according to the latest in a biennial series of reports by the trade association that represents the sector. That makes...
Walnut Creek Andronico's set to close Dec. 22 / Closing expected after Danville store was shuttered; affects 91 employeesWalnut Creek Andronico's set to close Dec. 22 / Closing expected after Danville store was shuttered; affects 91 employees
By Pia Sarkar
Andronico's said Friday that it will shutter its supermarket in Walnut Creek, confirming suspicions that the location would be the next to go after the recent closure of its Danville store. Unlike the Danville store, however, which was bought by...
Mercury News plans to eliminate 101 jobs / Contra Costa Times says it also has plan to reduce expensesMercury News plans to eliminate 101 jobs / Contra Costa Times says it also has plan to reduce expenses
By Carolyn Said
Two major Bay Area daily newspapers that recently got a new owner are making aggressive moves to slash costs. The San Jose Mercury News plans to reduce its workforce by 101 positions, or 8.5 percent, by Dec. 19 because of declines in revenue, the...
Altering California's workers' comp system / Reforms cut costs 60% in just 2 years but a loophole may be delaying necessary treatments for patientsAltering the workers' comp system / Reforms cut costs 60% in just 2 years but a loophole may be delaying necessary treatments for patients
By Tom Abate
Has workers' compensation reform gone too far? This state-mandated workplace insurance program once gave doctors a free hand to provide injured workers any treatment at any price. The result: waste, fraud and abuse. In 2003 and 2004, a series of...
Texas jobless rate declines againTexas jobless rate declines againAUSTIN - The state's unemployment rate fell slightly in September, dropping for the second straight month, the Texas Workforce Commission reported Friday. The unemployment rate fell three-tenths of a percentage point to 4.8 percent, the commission said.
Union files labor law complaints to help janitors' cause in HoustonUnion files labor law complaints to help janitors' cause
The union representing Houston janitors marched downtown and filed 22 labor law complaints Friday as part of its drive to pressure cleaning companies to agree to a contract offering better pay and benefits. About 100 janitors and union organizers marched through downtown at 5 p.m., stopping in front of buildings owned by commercial landlord Hines Interests.
Dress codes may need updateDress codes may need update
Colleen Harris doesn't fit the stereotype of the buttoned-up librarian. Her arms are covered with a pirate queen motif and black scrolling tattoos, which extend down the side of her body to her ankle. A black rose and the words "Dangerous Magic" adorn the back of her left hand, and the words "Anam Cara" (old Gaelic for "soul friend") letter her knuckles.
Memories of Hapeville Ford plant span nearly 60 yearsMemories of Hapeville Ford plant span nearly 60 years
It looked every bit a family reunion, carnival-style. Multiple generations, hugging and handshaking, mingled on a recent Saturday amid bites of burgers, ice cream and cotton candy. Recorded music blared. Costumed grown-ups entertained tykes, whose older siblings clutched stuffed animals earned at skills-testing booths. This was a family, of sorts — the Hapeville automaking family, united not by common blood but by the perspiration its members expelled for nearly 60 years, churning out vehicles stamped with the familiar blue oval emblem, inscribed with the cursive F-o-r-d. "Open house" is how co-hosts Ford Motor Co. and UAW Local 882 billed this event at the south metro plant for employees, past and present, and their loved ones. "Closed house" is how the chairman of the union's retirees wing, a dose of bitter mixed with sweet, labeled it.
Bombardier, union reach agreementBombardier, union reach agreement
WICHITA Bombardier Aerospace and its striking machinists reached a tentative agreement Friday and will put a proposed new contract before workers for a vote on Monday.
Letter backing Boston Globe union spurs ethics questionsLetter backing Globe union spurs ethics questions
By Robert Gavin, Globe Staff
The union that represents reporters, photographers, and editors of The Boston Globe took an ethically questionable step by seeking the support of political leaders in the union's contract dispute with the newspaper, according to several media specialists.
By one measure, inflation's higher than we thinkBy one measure, inflation's higher than we think
By Scott Burns
An unassuming research economist at the Dallas Federal Reserve Bank may influence decisions that will affect all of us in the next few months. A better measure of inflation that he has created indicates inflation is closer to 3 percent than the 2 percent rate sought by our central bank.
Maryland added 9,500 jobs in Sept.Md. added 9,500 jobs in Sept.
Jobless rate dips to 4%; 12-month gain just 24,000Maryland employers added 9,500 jobs last month, a gain that appeared to reflect the return of seasonal school staff to work rather than rapid job creation.
Teachers agree to end their bitter strike in Oaxaca / But a key leader of broader protest says fight continuesTeachers agree to end their bitter strike in Oaxaca / But a key leader of broader protest says fight continues
By Sam Enriquez
Striking teachers in Oaxaca have agreed to return to classes as early as next week in what federal officials hope is a first step in restoring order to the state's historic capital after five months of civil unrest. But a key protest leader said Friday...
One for the books -- tutoring gets outsourcedOne for the books -- tutoring gets outsourced
By Vanessa Hua
Fifth-grader Kevin Chen studies math in his living room in Alameda every week with his tutor, Syeda Nikath Sumaiya -- who works from her home in Seoul. In the latest incarnation of outsourcing, overseas tutors are teaching U.S. students math, science,...
Friday, October 20, 2006
Salary numbers bog down deal for Miami-Dade teachersSalary numbers bog down deal for Miami-Dade teachers
The stalemate between Miami-Dade's teachers union and school district continued Thursday, with the two parties appearing no closer to a contract after a two-hour bargaining session.
Judge Says Jury Must Hear Age Bias Case Against AllstateJudge Says Jury Must Hear Age Bias Case Against Allstate
By JOSEPH B. TREASTER
A judge said that the government had presented strong evidence of discrimination that Allstate violated anti-discrimination laws.
Dream jobs temporary at ChryslerDream jobs temporary at Chrysler
A group of newly hired-and-fired workers at DaimlerChrysler's assembly plant in Belvidere, Ill., have gotten a hard lesson in the realities of a leaner global auto industry.
Median weekly pay up, but women still lag menMedian weekly pay up, but women still lag men
The median weekly earnings of the nation’s 108.2 million full-time wage and salary workers were $675 in the third quarter 2006, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics said Thursday.
California snags biotech billionsCalifornia snags biotech billions
California remained biotechnology’s favorite place of business last year as other states unsuccessfully tried to attract the budding industry, according to a report issued Thursday by an industry booster.
Massachusetts businesses added 3,400 jobs in SeptemberMass. businesses added 3,400 jobs in September
Massachusetts employers added 3,400 jobs in September, led by growth in technology-related sectors. The unemployment rate rose to 5.1 percent from 4.9 percent in August. September's gains were more evidence that the state's economic recovery is gaining strength. The state has added 33,000 jobs over the past year and 61,000 since the labor market hit bottom in December ...
State: California added 17,300 payroll jobs in SeptemberState: California added 17,300 payroll jobs in September
By By ALEX VEIGA, AP Business Writer
California employers added 17,300 payroll jobs in September, with the education and health services sector posting the largest increases over the month, the state Employment Development Department said Friday. The employment gains followed a revised...
Black & Decker lays off 70 in TowsonBlack & Decker lays off 70 in Towson
Manufacturing chief among those let goIn a shake-up at its biggest division, Black & Decker Corp. has dismissed the head of manufacturing for its power tools business and laid off about 70 salaried employees, mostly at its Towson headquarters.
Honolulu's Sheraton employees OK contract with 99% voteSheraton employees OK contract with 99% vote
Source: Honolulu Star-Bulletin
Unionized hotel workers at Sheraton's four Waikiki hotels have voted nearly unanimously -- by 99 percent -- to ratify a new four-year labor contract. Members of Unite Here Local 5 and the Sheraton hotels agreed on a new economic package, which includes wage increases, additional health benefits and lighter workloads for housekeepers. The vote was tallied late Wednesday night.
Los Angeles County workers get raise with new contractCounty workers get raise with new contract
Source: LA Daily News
The Board of Supervisors and Los Angeles County's largest union have reached a contract deal that will give nearly 50,000 workers their largest salary and merit increases in decades, officials said Thursday. The tentative three-year contract, which must be approved by the supervisors and ratified by members of Service
Union files labor law complaints to help janitors' causeUnion files labor law complaints to help janitors' cause
Source: Houston Chronicle
The union representing Houston janitors marched downtown and filed 22 labor law complaints Friday as part of its drive to pressure cleaning companies to agree to a contract offering better pay and benefits.
Bus company changes its tune on gay ads; Union pressure forces contractor to enforce toleranceBus company changes its tune on gay ads; Union pressure forces contractor to enforce tolerance
Source: Minneapolis Star-Tribune
Metro Transit issued a statement Friday expressing regret for its decision to accommodate a Minneapolis bus driver who had asked to drive buses free of gay advertising.
Jobs picture better in Kansas, Missouri from a year agoJobs picture better in Kansas, Missouri from a year ago
On a year to year basis, the employment picture in both Missouri and Kansas has improved. But Missouri experienced one of the largest month-to-month percentage declines in payroll employment from August to September, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics said today.
Thursday, October 19, 2006
Indiana's Guide Corp closing will cost 1,325 jobs.Guide's closing to cost 1,325 jobs
Indiana's largest mass shutdown in years will hit Anderson when auto-parts supplier Guide Corp. closes its last factory, idling 1,325 in a city already trying to recast a worn industrial economy by luring new investment from overseas.
Illiinois State jobless rate tumblesState jobless rate tumbles
Illiinois' unemployment rate fell to 4.4 percent in September, the state's lowest level in nearly six years, the Illinois Department of Employment Security reported today.
Are UPS layoffs a price of being public?Are UPS layoffs a price of being public?
UPS endured many years of steep financial losses in international operations throughout the late 1980s and much of the '90s — but the then-private company didn't lay off workers. International growth was the cornerstone of the company's expansion plan at the time, and UPS leaders were determined to go forward regardless of red ink. Today, however, the company appears less patient.
Georgia jobless rate steady in SeptemberGa. jobless rate steady in September
The state's jobless rate was unchanged in September, holding even at 4.6 percent, according to the Georgia Labor Department. That puts the state a tad above the national average of 4.4 percent, the third of the past four months that Georgia has ticked above the country's figure, the department said. The Georgia data is not adjusted to reflect seasonal changes, however.
Delta's judge approves retiree health care cutbacksDelta's judge approves retiree health care cutbacks
Delta Air Lines' bankruptcy judge approved an overhaul of the carrier's retiree medical benefits following a hearing Thursday in New York, a spokesman for the Atlanta airline said. The Atlanta airline, which reached deals earlier this month with two court-appointed committees representing retirees, said the changes will save the company $50 million a year. Most retirees will see steeper premiums as a result, and most retirees over 65 will be removed from Delta's self-insured plan. The airline and representatives from the retirees groups said those retirees will be offered an outside plan and will receive monthly subsidies of $50 to $80.
At Work: Backing for a living wageAT WORK: Backing for a living wage
Earnestine Kennedy can’t imagine thinking that anyone should be expected to work for $5.15 an hour.
It’s all about employees, this CEO saysIt’s all about employees, this CEO says
While many area software engineers have moved to West Coast companies, the challenge of leading a struggling startup kept Scott Coons in Shawnee.
Working families bear brunt of rising health insurance premiumsWorking families bear brunt of rising health insurance premiums
Group health insurance premiums in Missouri and Kansas rose several times the rate of wage growth over the past six years, a consumer advocacy group reported Wednesday.
Boston Globe union rejects contract that tied raises to revenueGlobe union rejects contract that tied raises to revenue
By Globe Staff
The Boston Newspaper Guild , which represents The Boston Globe newsroom and other workers, yesterday said its members rejected by a 307-223 vote a four-year contract that would have tied raises to revenue increases at the newspaper.
Philly Fed says factory activity falls again in Oct (Reuters)Philly Fed says factory activity falls again in Oct (Reuters)
Reuters - Factory activity in the U.S. Mid-Atlantic region fell for the second straight month in October after contracting in September for the first time in more than three years, according to a survey released on Thursday.
Weekly jobless claims drop by 10,000 (AP)Weekly jobless claims drop by 10,000 (AP)
AP - The number of laid off workers filing claims for unemployment benefits dropped sharply last week to the lowest level in nearly three months.
Retired pilot group fights cuts at DeltaRetired pilot group fights cuts at Delta
A group of Delta Air Lines' retired pilots headed by a former union chairman is objecting to health care cost cuts that the airline says will save it about $50 million annually. U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Adlai Hardin is set to hear Delta's case today in New York for the planned overhaul of retirees' health benefits, which would result in steeper premiums and other changes for roughly 42,000 retirees.
NBC to Cut 700 Jobs in OverhaulNBC to Cut 700 Jobs in Overhaul
By By DAVID BAUDER, AP Television Writer
NBC Universal said Thursday it would cut 700 jobs and streamline its news operations as part an overhaul aimed at exploiting new forms of electronic distribution. NBC, a unit of General Electric Co., said it expects the revamp to save $750 million in...
Wednesday, October 18, 2006
Employers still adding jobs, but at a slower rate in Washington StateEmployers still adding jobs, but at a slower rate
Officials said Seattle is experiencing a job-growth slowdown, while unemployment here and statewide increased during September.
Paid for not taking the car to workPaid for not taking the car to work
One day, bus passes and free ferry rides may become expected workplace benefits. A coalition has named 249 Puget Sound-area employers that are leading the way.
Pay Helps Keep Workers at Western Burger ChainPay Helps Keep Workers at Western Burger Chain
The In-N-Out burger chain stands out among fast-food companies by offering starting wages of $9.50 an hour. Those relatively high wages haven't hurt the company, which has loyal customers in three western states.
Airbus to lay off 1,000 in restructuringAirbus to lay off 1,000 in restructuring
By Associated Press
Airbus said yesterday it will cut 1,000 temporary staff and reduce working hours at its German operations, the first timid steps in a major restructuring process triggered by delays in its A380 superjumbo project.
Survey raises concerns on African-Americans' retirement plansSurvey raises concerns on African-Americans' retirement plans
By Michelle Singletary
WASHINGTON -- For nearly a decade, Ariel Capital Management and Charles Schwab Corp. have studied the investing habits of African-Americans who earn more than $50,000 a year.
Massachusetts EMC to cut 1,250 jobs in wake of acquisition bingeEMC to cut 1,250 jobs in wake of acquisition binge
By Hiawatha Bray, Globe Staff
Massachusetts' top digital technology company, EMC Corp. of Hopkinton, plans to cut 1,250 jobs worldwide, even as it posted record-high third quarter revenues.
Mesaba strike, cost cuts on holdMesaba strike, cost cuts on hold
Bankrupt Mesaba Airlines and three of its unions gained more time Tuesday to reach concessionary agreements that could save the airline and their jobs.
Mesaba wants walkout blockedMesaba wants walkout blocked
Mesaba Aviation Inc. asked a bankruptcy judge on Tuesday to block a threatened strike that could begin early today if the Northwest Airlines feeder fails to make a deal with its unions.
Ford presents buyout offers to Saint Paul's Ford Ranger plantFord presents buyout offers
Six-figure buyout programs were offered Tuesday to the 1,730 hourly workers at St. Paul's Ford Ranger plant to persuade them to leave by Jan. 1, or more than a year before the plant is scheduled to close in 2008.
Minnesota job loss: 12,700 in SeptemberMinnesota job loss: 12,700 in September
Minnesota lost 12,700 jobs last month, the third-largest monthly drop in absolute jobs since the state started keeping records in 1950.
Economix: A Lesson From Europe on Health CareEconomix: A Lesson From Europe on Health Care
By DAVID LEONHARDT
Strangely, we talk about medical spending as if it were nothing more than a drag on the economy, rather than an investment in the most important thing of all.
Delta seeking OK for retiree health cutsDelta seeking OK for retiree health cuts
Delta Air Lines plans to present its case Thursday in bankruptcy court for an overhaul of retirees' health benefits that would save the company $50 million a year but result in steeper premiums for many retirees. The changes would take effect Jan. 1 if Delta's bankruptcy judge approves them following a hearing in New York. A group of retired pilots headed by a former union chairman, William Buergey, has objected to the changes. In a court filing last week, the group said the proposed benefit reductions, coming on top of Delta's planned terminations of the pilots' pension plan, is "unduly harsh' and unfairly targets retired pilots.
Boston Globe union votes on proposal linking wages, revenueBoston Globe union votes on proposal linking wages, revenue
Members of The Boston Globe's largest union rejected a proposed four-year contract on Wednesday that if approved would have been the first at a newspaper to tie union wage increases to revenue gains.
Pilots' union votes for new president promising return to aggressive bargaining tacticsPilots' union votes for new president promising return to aggressive bargaining tactics
The largest pilots' union voted today for a new president who promised a return to aggressive bargaining tactics. John Prater, a Continental Airlines 767 captain, narrowly defeated Duane Woerth, a Northwest Airlines 747 captain who was seeking a third four-year term as president of the Air Line Pilots Association. Continental is based in Houston.
Union federation files NAFTA labor complaint against North CarolinaUnion federation files NAFTA labor complaint against North Carolina
A Mexican union federation said Tuesday it will file a complaint under the North American Free Trade Agreement against the state of North Carolina's ban on collective bargaining for public employees.
Union fights for jobs at Dole Fresh Flower FarmUnion fights for jobs at Dole Fresh Flower Farm
When workers at Colombia's largest flower grower organized themselves into a union a few years ago, they won protections against overly long hours, potentially dangerous exposure to pesticides and other abuses. But in an increasingly globalized economy, the effort may also have cost the employees of Dole Food Co.'s flower division their jobs.
Asia trade strains port / New U.S. maritime chief pays a visit to Oakland, where bustling traffic points to need for expansionAsia trade strains port / New U.S. maritime chief pays a visit to Oakland, where bustling traffic points to need for expansion
By David Armstrong
Driven by surging trade with Asia that is approaching double-digit growth this year, the Port of Oakland -- one of the country's prime gateways for ocean shipping to and from Asia -- is feeling a new sense of urgency about development projects that it hopes...
John Muir warns contract dispute may affect patientsJohn Muir warns contract dispute may affect patients
By Victoria Colliver
John Muir Health, with medical centers in Walnut Creek and Concord, has notified 30,000 East Bay patients that their access to care may be affected if it fails to renew a contract with Blue Cross of California by Friday. If the two sides don't reach an...
AOL Laying Off 1,300 in N.M., Ariz.AOL Laying Off 1,300 in N.M., Ariz.
By By TIM KORTE, Associated Press Writer
AOL announced Wednesday it will lay off 1,300 employees by closing call centers in New Mexico and Arizona as part of a previously announced restructuring plan. AOL, the Time Warner Inc. online unit formerly known as America Online, also plans to sell...
Tuesday, October 17, 2006
Lafayette Indiana plant seeks 1,000 workersLafayette plant seeks 1,000 workers
Toyota assembly line will need 1,000 people to make Camrys. Application process begins Oct. 30.
Indiana: Republicans to focus on jobs, healthRepublicans to focus on jobs, health
Republican candidates for the Indiana House will make their latest in a series of campaign pledges this morning, this time focusing on jobs and health care.
Spinach scare will shut Indiana plantSpinach scare will shut Indiana plant
About 200 workers to lose jobs when salad-processing operation closes in Plymouth.
Grassley: Pensions face hedge fund risksGrassley: Pensions face hedge fund risks
By Bloomberg News
Senate Finance Committee chairman Charles Grassley told Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson that hedge funds pose too much risk to the US pension system, and asked him to find ways to boost transparency in the funds.
WORK SPACE: Parental intrusion in the workplaceWORK SPACE: Parental intrusion in the workplace
Teachers and school principals won’t be surprised to hear this, but the development is stunning some human resource officers:
Leveling the playing fieldLeveling the playing field
While colleges are graduating more women than men, there are fields that continue to be dominated by men.
LABOR SCENE: F-150 workers back in actionLABOR SCENE: F-150 workers back in action
After two straight weeks of downtime, about 2,400 Ford Motor Co. employees at the Claycomo plant returned to work this week to build F-150 pickups.
Mesaba cleared to cut wagesMesaba cleared to cut wages
Mesaba Airlines has won a victory against its unions, but it's unclear whether it will be enough to save the regional carrier. U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Gregory Kishel on Monday allowed Mesaba Airlines to impose steep wage, benefit and other cuts starting Wednesday on about 1,100 employees, a step the airline says is necessary for its survival.
Union organizers starting new push at DeltaUnion organizers starting new push at Delta
Brian Vaughn, a ramp worker at Delta Air Lines, acknowledges that efforts to bring his colleagues into a union haven't gone well in the past. In 2000, only 18 percent of Delta's ramp employees voted to join a union. But after years of deep job, pay and benefit cuts under Delta's restructuring in Chapter 11, Vaughn thinks this time may be different. He and other organizers think Delta's 6,000 ramp workers will feel safer with a labor contract if the airline merges with another carrier, as well as with retirement benefits from the union's pension plan.
Rubbermaid building new HQ, adding 350 jobsRubbermaid building new HQ, adding 350 jobs
Atlanta-based Newell Rubbermaid Tuesday said it will build a new mid-rise headquarters building in Sandy Springs to house its existing 300 employees here and 350 new ones. "It is our intention that we will be expanding the employee base in the Atlanta market," said Esther Lippman, spokeswoman for the consumer brands company. "Our long-term plans will come to fruition as we assess our needs." The new jobs could be "everything from finance, human resources to information technology and any of the other needs we have at the corporate level and, potentially, individual brands," Lippman said.
High Crime Stifles Latin EconomiesHigh Crime Stifles Latin Economies
By JENS ERIK GOULD
Rampant crime is robbing Latin America of up to 8 percent from national economic growth, economists and World Bank officials say.
Florida Wal-Mart Workers Stage ProtestFlorida Wal-Mart Workers Stage Protest
By STEVEN GREENHOUSE
In a rare demonstration, more than 100 Wal-Mart employees rallied at a store in Hialeah Gardens, Fla., a Miami suburb.
Nation's top 10 small employers announcedNation's top 10 small employers announced
(Inc.com) - Amid a tightening labor market, taking good care of workers pays off, according to a new report from the Principal Financial Group. In its annual picks of the nation's best small businesses for employee financial security, which were announced on Monday, the Des Moines, Iowa-based financial firm identified fast-growing companies from a range of industries that use innovative benefits packages -- from wellness programs to an auto-pilot retirement savings plan -- to maintain "exceptionally low turnover rates."
Women working more -- and parenting moreWomen working more -- and parenting more
By Robert Pear
Despite the surge of women into the workforce, mothers are spending at least as much time with their children as they did 40 years ago, and the amount of child care and housework performed by fathers has sharply increased, researchers say in a new study.
Gay Congressman's Spouse Denied BenefitsGay Congressman's Spouse Denied Benefits
By By STEVE LeBLANC, Associated Press Writer
Former Rep. Gerry Studds, the first openly gay member of Congress, was married to another man in Massachusetts at the time of his death, but the federal government has refused to pay death benefits to his spouse. Studds married Dean Hara in 2004 after...
Monday, October 16, 2006
Welfare work participation on the rise in IndianaWelfare work participation on the rise
The work participation rate for recipients of welfare cash assistance has increased by 25 percent from a year ago, according to Indiana Family and Social Services Administration Secretary Mitch Roob.
Farm Workers at a Premium in California's Central ValleyFarm Workers at a Premium in California's Central Valley
California's Central Valley faces a labor shortage exacerbated by efforts to control immigration. As Sasha Khokha of member station KQED reports, some farmers have responded by improving pay and benefits for seasonal labor. Others are investing in labor-saving devices.
Ford Auto Workers Weigh Buyout OffersFord Auto Workers Weigh Buyout Offers
On Monday, Ford's 75,000 American factory workers can get paid to walk away from their jobs. Farai Chideya talks about the potential for buyouts with Sarah Webster, automotive reporter for the Detroit Free Press.
Auto union draws line in the sandAuto union draws line in the sand
For an industry mired in red ink, factory closings and thousands of job cuts, the relationship between the United Auto Workers union and the domestic automakers has looked surprisingly amicable--until this week, that is.
Machinists union making a run at DeltaMachinists union making a run at Delta
Delta Air Lines is being targeted by a union that hopes to organize more than 6,000 ramp workers in the wake of deep job and pay cut at the company as it undergoes a Chapter 11 restructuring. The International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers announced Monday that it has begun a nationwide campaign at the largely non-union airline. "Delta's ramp workers are turning to the Machinists for our hard won experience at other airlines in crisis," Robert Roach, Jr., IAM General Vice President of Transportation, said in a press release Monday.
Leader has new view for unionsLeader has new view for unions
Andy Stern wants to end employer-based health care and increase worker ownership. Andy Stern is a union leader who talks like a management strategist.
Job hunt replacing retirement dreamJob hunt replacing retirement dream
Lag in savings makes many seek more workWhen some people hit age 52 they start contemplating retirement. But all Ron Kohn is thinking about is finding another job.
Whatever you call it, job loss can lingerWhatever you call it, job loss can linger
Euphemisms for losing a job abound. We get axed, canned, laid off or pink-slipped. In corporate-speak, we get terminated, separated or--my current favorite--surplused, like so much excess baggage.
Union rejects Harley-Davidson's proposed pay cuts, expansion planUnion rejects Harley-Davidson's proposed pay cuts, expansion plan
A union has rejected Harley-Davidson Inc.'s request for lower wages for new hires and reduced benefits in exchange for expanding facilities in the company's home state of Wisconsin.
Corporate America's Pay PalBusiness" href="http://www.nytimes.com/2006/10/15/business/yourmoney/15pay.html?ex=1318564800&en=72fc5d3dacd47948&ei=5088&partner=rssnyt&emc=rss" target=_blank>Corporate America's Pay Pal
By GRETCHEN MORGENSON
Concerns about shareholder value, corporate governance and the economic impact of soaring C.E.O. pay has led to mounting criticism of compensation practices.
Economic View: After Years of Growth, What About Workers' Share?Business" href="http://www.nytimes.com/2006/10/15/business/yourmoney/15view.html?ex=1318564800&en=948065a6fdbb6bdc&ei=5088&partner=rssnyt&emc=rss" target=_blank>Economic View: After Years of Growth, What About Workers' Share?
By EDUARDO PORTER
The real wages of many Americans fell 10 percent over 30 years.
Massachusetts tech sector spurs state's economic recoveryTech sector spurs state's economic recovery
By Robert Gavin, Globe Staff
Massachusetts' economic recovery has gathered momentum in recent months, and there's a good reason: The technology sector is back.
Employers audit health plans for ineligible dependentsEmployers audit health plans for ineligible dependents
Eileen Ambrose -- Personal FinanceSign up family members for your employer's health insurance during open enrollment, and you might hear this from the company: "Prove it."
Executive pay soars despite attempted restraintsExecutive pay soars despite attempted restraints
Average CEO makes 369 times more than average worker, professor estimatesIn 1993, activist investor Ralph Whitworth shuttered United Shareholders Association, a group that was trying to tackle the contentious issue of executive pay. It looked as if his work was done.
A living wage for Wal-Mart workersA living wage for Wal-Mart workers
Source: Salt Lake City Tribune
It's a core American value that if someone works hard, he or she deserves to live in dignity, and yet the $7.50 hourly wage that Wal-Mart CEO Lee Scott pays thousands of his workers doesn't meet that basic standard. These workers often must choose between paying the rent or bringing their child to the doctor. To force workers to make such choices does not reflect good family values on Wal-Mart's part.
Friday, October 13, 2006
Official union says all Wal-Marts are organized in ChinaOfficial union says all Wal-Marts are organized
Workers have set up unions at all 66 Wal-Mart outlets in China, beginning what a Chinese union official described Thursday as a wider campaign aimed at other foreign companies.
UMass nurses union sets an Oct. 26 strike deadlineUMass nurses union sets an Oct. 26 strike deadline
THE REGION The Massachusetts Nurses Union set an Oct. 26 strike deadline at UMass Memorial Medical Center in Worcester. The union said management's latest contract proposal shows it's unwilling to negotiate. Nurses, without a contract since April, voted Sept. 27 to give union leaders power to call a strike. They say the hospital wants to decrease pension benefits, holidays and ...
Youths see promise as support jobs stay localYouths see promise as support jobs stay local
By Robert Weisman, Globe Staff
QUINCY -- It is mid-morning at the State Street Corp. call center, and the phones are ringing. Young workers with headsets, stationed at a bank of cubicles by the window, speak in soothing tones to im-patient State Street employees dialing in from Europe or Asia or the West Coast.
COMMENTARY: The GOP’s war on workersCOMMENTARY: The GOP’s war on workers
If you want to see how the war against wages is being fought and what it’s doing to working Americans and their families, consider the latest news from Wal-Mart.
Aid lets low-wage workers get on road to better livesAid lets low-wage workers get on road to better lives
Emma “Matty” Yturralde was the exact opposite of a bank’s dream borrower: A newly divorced single mother with a $13-an-hour job.
Jury Weighs Award in Wal-Mart Labor CaseJury Weighs Award in Wal-Mart Labor Case
By By MARYCLAIRE DALE, Associated Press Writer
State court jurors are being asked to assess damages of at least $62 million against Wal-Mart after finding the nation's biggest retailer broke Pennsylvania labor laws by forcing employees to work off the clock and through rest breaks. The jury...
China drafting law to protect workers, regulate sweatshops / Foreign firms hint they'll build fewer factories if it passesChina drafting law to protect workers, regulate sweatshops / Foreign firms hint they'll build fewer factories if it passes
By David Barboza
China is planning to adopt a new law that seeks to crack down on sweatshops and protect workers' rights by giving labor unions real power for the first time since Beijing introduced market forces in the late 1970s. The move, which underscores the...
Yunus, Grameen Bank Win Peace PrizeYunus, Grameen Bank Win Peace Prize
By By DOUG MELLGREN, Associated Press Writer
Bangladeshi economist Muhammad Yunus and the Grameen Bank he founded won the Nobel Peace Prize on Friday for their pioneering use of tiny, seemingly insignificant loans _ microcredit _ to lift millions out of poverty. Through Yunus's efforts and those...
Holidays start early at job fairHolidays start early at job fair
By Pia Sarkar
James Powell turned up at the Goodwill job fair Thursday in San Francisco in a blue suit with a cream-colored handkerchief tucked neatly into the breast pocket and a camel-colored coat draped over his arm. He had come looking for work during the...
Thursday, October 12, 2006
Wal-Mart loses workers' suit over missed breaksWal-Mart loses workers' suit over missed breaks
Wal-Mart Stores Inc., the world's largest retailer, violated Pennsylvania labor laws by forcing hourly employees to work through rest periods and after their shifts had ended, a state court jury found.
Georgia jobless claims fall in Sept.Ga. jobless claims fall in Sept.
The number of newly laid-off workers who filed for unemployment fell in September, the Georgia Department of Labor said Thursday. Statewide, 30,685 people filed initial claims, a 10 percent drop from August, the department said. Initial claims were down 22.9 percent from the same period a year ago. The state's report is not adjusted to account for seasonal variations.
Mesaba, unions await rulingMesaba, unions await ruling
A bankruptcy court judge is expected to decide today whether Mesaba Airlines can scrap its labor contracts with about 1,500 union employees and impose pay and benefit cuts it says it needs to survive.
Wage share of national income at lowWage share of national income at low
The share of national income that went to wages and salaries in the first half of 2006 was at its lowest since such records began being kept in 1929.
AT WORK: Privacy rights: A terminal caseAT WORK: Privacy rights: A terminal case
Congress has been de-Foley-ated because of some captured e-mails and instant messages, but a related hairy situation remains in the workplace.
Jobless claims rise slightly (AP)Jobless claims rise slightly (AP)
AP - The number of newly laid off workers who filed claims for unemployment benefits rose by 4,000 last week, the Labor Department reported.
Labor group in China targets Kodak, Dell for union organizingLabor group targets Kodak, Dell for union organizing
China's state-sanctioned labor body is targeting Kodak and Dell in a campaign to organize unions at foreign-owned companies after its success at unionizing Wal-Mart's 62 Chinese outlets, an official of the body said Thursday.
Airbus under pressure to minimize cuts as Germany mulls stakeAirbus under pressure to minimize cuts as Germany mulls stake
In Business & Technology
France and Germany urged Airbus on Thursday to keep job losses to a minimum as it restructures.
Seattle: Big Fish Games cuts staffBig Fish Games cuts staff
Big Fish Games, a fast-growing Seattle distributor of computer games, cuts staff after hiring more than 120 people in the past 16 months.
Wednesday, October 11, 2006
Asking the right questions is key to finding the right job candidatesAsking the right questions is key to finding the right job candidates
To find top employees and hire the right job candidates, you need to use smart interviewing tactics to uncover a candidate's true skills, strengths and weaknesses. This means going beyond standard questions such as "What are your strengths and weaknesses?"...
On a quest to make historyOn a quest to make history
The woman who is president of a New York Teamsters local is in an uphill race for secretary-treasurer of the national unionSay a mean-looking, burly guy starts giving Sandy Pope a tough time at a Teamsters union meeting.
UPS loses discrimination appealUPS loses discrimination appeal
SAN FRANCISCO A federal appeals court on Tuesday upheld a lower court ruling that UPS Inc. violated anti-discrimination laws by automatically barring the deaf and hearing-impaired from driving parcel delivery trucks.
Ban on child labor has its criticsBan on child labor has its critics
NEW DELHI A ban on child labor took effect Tuesday in India. But at roadside food stalls across New Delhi, many of the boys and girls who serve glasses of piping hot tea, wash dishes, mop floors and take out trash were not celebrating.
Hershey plans to phase out pensions but boost 401(k)sHershey plans to phase out pensions but boost 401(k)s
By Associated Press
Hershey, the nation's largest candy maker, said yesterday it is closing its traditional pension plan to new nonunion hires and reducing its future pension benefit for thousands of employees in order to cut costs.
Nobel winners call for minimum wage hikeNobel winners call for minimum wage hike
By Associated Press
More than 650 economists, including five winners of the Nobel Prize for economics, yesterday called for an increase in the minimum wage, saying the value of the last increase, in 1997, has been ``fully eroded."
China economy expected to grow 10.5 pct. (AP)China economy expected to grow 10.5 pct. (AP)
AP - China's economy is likely to grow by 10.5 percent this year and slow only slightly in 2007, state-run newspapers said Wednesday, citing a government think tank that called for stronger action to cool an investment boom.
EU lowers euro-area growth forecast (AP)EU lowers euro-area growth forecast (AP)
AP - The European Union on Wednesday lowered its growth forecast for the 12 nations that use the euro currency, predicting that the economy would see a "more moderate" expansion over the next three quarters.
InfoSpace to cut 250 jobsInfoSpace to cut 250 jobs
InfoSpace Inc. plans to cut 250 positions -- about 40 percent of its work force -- in a restructuring prompted by the earlier loss of a key corporate customer.
Alaska Air cites costs of job cuts, getting rid of jetsAlaska Air cites costs of job cuts, getting rid of jets
Alaska Airlines Inc. said Tuesday that it spent as much as $90 million in the third quarter to pay employee severance costs and to prepare to drop five leased aircraft to reduce spending.
Auto-Job Cuts Spread Pain to Suburban DetroitAuto-Job Cuts Spread Pain to Suburban Detroit
Detroit's suburbs have long been islands of affluence for many auto-company employees. Now, recent job cuts at GM and looming ones at Ford are taking a toll in some of the more exclusive neighborhoods.
Tuesday, October 10, 2006
LABOR SCENE: Private sector likely to see a pay increaseLABOR SCENE: Private sector likely to see a pay increase
Wage increases for private-sector employees should pick up through the end of the year and early 2007, according the data research firm BNA Inc.
Unions shrink, but role still keyUnions shrink, but role still key
The typical American has a different set of workplace concerns than the previous generation, including labor union members. But the traditional voice of organized labor gradually is fading.
‘Retired’ and starting over‘Retired’ and starting over
Punch a clock for 20 years and you think your career plans are pretty much set. But when upheaval hits your workplace, all bets are off.
Northwest Air reaches accord with striking mechanics unionNorthwest Air reaches accord with striking mechanics union
By Bloomberg News
Northwest Airlines Corp. reached a tentative agreement with its mechanics union to end a 14-month dispute triggered when the workers went on strike and then were replaced.
Massachusetts Workers do more, but wages fall shortWorkers do more, but wages fall short
By Robert Gavin, Globe Staff
Massachusetts workers are producing more than ever, and doing it more efficiently, but their earnings have barely budged since the end of the Dukakis administration, a Northeastern University study concludes.
There's a reason organized labor is suddenly showing signs of life. His name is Andy Stern. He's like no union boss you've ever seenThere's a reason organized labor is suddenly showing signs of life. His name is Andy Stern. He's like no union boss you've ever seen
In a sunlit office overlooking Dupont Circle in Washington, D.C., union leader Andrew Stern, 55, is sipping coffee and holding a midmorning meeting with a few top aides. The subject is a study on the future of government - a topic of deep interest since roughly half the 1.8 million members of his Service Employees International Union (SEIU) work in the public sector. It's solid leader-as-visionary stuff but fairly predictable until, as things wind to a close, Stern suddenly kicks it up. Way up.
Cummins to rev up auto site, 600 jobs in IndianaCummins to rev up auto site, 600 jobs
Written off not long ago as an industrial has-been, Indiana will get yet another major automotive plant -- a 600-employee diesel assembly line that Cummins will put in an underused Columbus factory.
Seattle becoming hub of microfinance movementSeattle becoming hub of microfinance movement
To a poor mother in the developing world, a little bit of money goes a long way. Seattle-based non-profits are helping to lead the way on microlending, which creates entrepreneurs with loans ranging from $50 to $300.
Monday, October 09, 2006
Stay stable on irregular payStay stable on irregular pay
Like traditional pensions and full health-care benefits, a steady paycheck is disappearing for many American workers.
Worker health bill expected to rise 8%Worker health bill expected to rise 8%
Higher premiums, costs, more optionsU.S. workers, who have already seen their medical expenses double in the past five years, will see their insurance costs rise again next year, both in payroll contributions and out-of-pocket spending.
Check work policies before taking leave for new babyCheck work policies before taking leave for new baby
A friend recently had her first baby--a beautiful 8 1/2 pound boy. No doubt, it was an exciting moment. But leading up to the birth, this new mom was less than thrilled to learn about her employer's maternity policy: She could take time off, but without pay.
Pension loss jolts some ex-Delta pilotsPension loss jolts some ex-Delta pilots
Jim Cochran expected bad news when he got the big white envelope from Delta Air Lines. What he found inside was worse. The retired Boeing 767 captain said he expected his $2,460-a-month pension to shrink by about 70 percent after Delta last summer won bankruptcy court approval to terminate its pilot pension plan. His benefit had already dropped by more than $3,000 when Delta cut part of the program after flying into Chapter 11 a little more than a year ago.