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Rotterdam Dockers Strike-A Test Case For Europe?

Current News - Sat, 01/16/2016 - 13:34

Rotterdam Dockers Strike-A Test Case For Europe?
http://www.equaltimes.org/rotterdam-dockers-strike-a-test#.Vpq24xF7m-S
11 January 2016
ROTTERDAM DOCKERS STRIKE – A TEST CASE FOR EUROPE?
by Chris Burns

Hundreds of dockworkers who blocked and paralysed part of Rotterdam’s container port for 24 hours last week could soon strike again unless an agreement is reached with employers over job cuts.

Dockworkers are strangely absent as a robotised truck moves a container in Rotterdam. Europe’s largest container port has over-expanded and workers are fighting planned job cuts.

(AP/Peter Dejong)
Union leaders say the battle in Europe’s biggest and highly-automated container port is being closely watched as it could set an important precedent.

“It’s a real crucial test,” Livia Spera, political secretary for Dockers and Fisheries at the European Transport Workers’ Federation (ETF), tells Equal Times. “The current situation is due to bad, blind business choices.”

The port’s expansion in recent years, combined with the economic crisis, has resulted in overcapacity. Plans have been announced to cut as many as 700 jobs from the current workforce of about 3,600 employees. Meanwhile, Rotterdam is competing with the ports of Antwerp, Hamburg and Le Havre, Spera explains.

“That’s why other unions joined in,” she says. “It’s not just a battle for the Dutch union but for all the unions that are involved. What happens in port of Rotterdam has implications for other ports.”
Joining with the Dutch dockers’ union FNV Havens in the 24-hour walkout from 7 to 8 January 2016 were the ETF as well as the International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF), the BTB from Belgium, Ver.di from Germany and the CGT from France.

From the picket line, Niek Stam, national secretary for FNV Havens, told Equal Times that the strike participation was “close to 100 per cent. All the big terminals are closed. There are fences, piles of tyres.”

The port reacted by inviting the unions and operators to meetings aimed at restarting negotiations, he said. “If there are no negotiations in the coming days or weeks, we will start new strike action again, but we’re giving no information ahead.”

At a news conference, Stam told reporters that hundreds of jobs were being put at risk “because there just isn’t the industry growth in Rotterdam to sustain these new terminals as well as the existing ones; employers are trying to play musical chairs with our jobs!”

ITF Vice Chair Torben Seebold said that: “after months of fruitless negotiation and on an issue this important, dockers here have been left with little choice. They have the support of transport workers around the world.”

Port of Rotterdam spokesperson Tie Schellikens tells Equal Timesthat “a few kilometres” of the 40-kilometers of waterfront at the port were affected by the strike.

“Only the container terminals were involved, seven ships. Every day there are 100.”
But the strike’s impact is serious, he says. “It’s all about the reliability of the port. It’s the first strike in 13 years. We don’t like that. We are working on an agreement. We were very, very close. We hope, we believe, there will not be another strike.”

Spera says Rotterdam “didn’t consider the social consequences” when it decided to expand. “There are other cases in Europe where automated terminals were built, but in full consultation with the union. The consequences of this automation process were more balanced, accompanied by shift of working models, of pension schemes.”
That’s why in Rotterdam, “the unions are asking for compensation from the port authorities,” she says.

Another issue in Rotterdam, Spera adds, is the lack of collective bargaining. “Talks are at company level; there is no employers’ association, no framework agreement.”

“Unions are ready to hold additional strikes in the coming weeks,” she says. “It depends a bit on how they the employers and the port, will react to this strike.”

Tags: Dutch dockers’ union FNV HavensRotterdam Strike
Categories: Labor News

SF Black Cyclist Gig Worker Says He Was Stopped And Beaten By SFPD While Delivering A Burrito for Postmates order

Current News - Sat, 01/16/2016 - 07:52

SF Black Cyclist Gig Worker Says He Was Stopped And Beaten By SFPD While Delivering A Burrito for Postmates order
http://sfist.com/2016/01/14/black_bicyclist_says_he_was_stopped.php
BY CALEB PERSHAN IN NEWS ON JAN 14, 2016 1:45 PM
A bicycle delivery worker was fulfilling a Postmates order for a burrito in SoMa when he tells CBS SF he was stopped by SFPD officers who went on to brutally beat and mace him, landing him in the hospital.
Donovan Reid, a 22-year-old black man, says police stopped him for using his phone. He maintains he was navigating rather than texting or calling. Asked for his ID in a snippet of video he recorded, Reid cannot produce any. As an article lifted from Bicycling magazine explains, in certain situations cyclists do need to present identification if it's requested by police or else risk being taken into custody.
Reid records this conversation and the aggressive tone of officers, but then his phone is off, and there's a break in the timeline of footage.
Bystanders pick up minutes later, recording disturbing footage of Reid screaming in agony. He says officers told him to "stop resisting" and hit his legs in particular, sending him to the hospital. He also received two citations.
On a GoFundMe page from which Reid hopes to gather funds for legal counsel and medical expenses, the cyclist elaborates on his experience.
I was riding my bike in sf doing deliveries for a company called Postmates when an officer pulled his cruiser in front of me and told me to pull over. I complied. He then stated that he is pulling me over for being on my phone texting while biking. I said I'm being safe and I'm only using navigation, not texting.
The officer told me to drop my phone (I started recording after he told me to pull over) and then grabbed my shirt collar and started punching me in my stomach. I noted that this was excessive force and the officer continued to punch me in my stomach. He reached for his mace and impaired my vision and then began grabbing me by my neck and slamming me to the ground, placing his knee on my back.

Later, more officers came and began holding my legs in the air and beating my legs, while telling me to stop resisting and keep my legs on the ground. I told him I couldn't do that because someone is beating my legs and holding my legs in the air.
Afterwards I went to the hospital and got two citations and my courier gear (1 bicycle) is in police holding.
Currently raising money so I can afford legal representation. This is a stressful and painful life event that no one should have to ever go through, I'm very happy to be still alive. I will use the donations accordingly to pay for counseling sessions and court fees.
The SFPD's Internal Affairs Division is reportedly investigating the incident, with the Office of Citizen Complaints notified.
Reid, who says he feared for his life and thought he might be shot, says of the officers that “They should be terminated." There was, “No need for that to happen. Not to me. Not to anybody,” says

Categories: Labor News

Lawsuit filed against XPO for misclassification of port drivers in CT

Current News - Fri, 01/15/2016 - 20:29

Lawsuit filed against XPO for misclassification of port drivers in CT
http://www.landlinemag.com/Story.aspx?StoryID=30435#.VpnGBhF7m-Q
1/14/2016
Lawsuit filed against XPO for misclassification of port drivers
By Tyson Fisher, Land Line staff writer
XPO Logistics, the Connecticut-based corporation that bought Con-way last year, is facing a class action lawsuit claiming three of its trucking subsidiaries misclassified drivers as independent contractors, according to Los Angeles Superior Court documents. At least one other trucking company – Intermodal Container Services Inc. – is also part of the lawsuit.

The court documents reveal the defendants to be Harbor Rail Transport, Pacer Cartage Inc., PDS Transportation Inc. and Intermodal Container Services Inc. One plaintiff is named on behalf of himself and all others similarly situated.

The suit claims the companies did not pay minimum wage, provide meal/rest breaks, reimburse business expenses, pay overtime/double time wages and committed other labor law violations. In total, the lawsuit claims violations of 10 separate labor laws.

This past November, Land Line reported that port drivers conducted a five-day strike and picket at XPO Logistics. The strike was over misclassification of drivers. At the time of the report, approximately $60 million for 550 claims against various companies were pending.

Last September, XPO announced it would acquire Con-way for $3 billion, sending shockwaves across Wall Street. XPO Logistics began in 1989 as Express-1 Expedited Solutions and was purchased by Segmentz in 2004. XPO completed its first acquisition in 2008 with Concert Group Logistics for $9 million in cash and the issuance of 4.8 million shares of XPO stock. Since then, XPO has acquired nearly 20 companies, with six of those in 2013 alone.

Neither XPO nor the attorney for the plaintiff could be reached for comment.

- See more at: http://www.landlinemag.com/Story.aspx?StoryID=30435#.VpnGBhF7m-Q

Categories: Labor News

U.S. Treasury hears pension concerns from Teamsters

Current News - Fri, 01/15/2016 - 14:43

U.S. Treasury hears pension concerns from Teamsters
By TANYA KOONCE • 9 HOURS AGO
http://peoriapublicradio.org/post/us-treasury-hears-pension-concerns-tea...

Teamsters gathering Thursday evening before the US Treasury's public session at the Gateway Building in Peoria.. The sessions are happening in some of the 13 states covered by the Central States Pension Plan. The plan is asking permission to reduce pension payments promised to its retirees under the Kline Miller Act.
CREDIT BERNIE ANDERSON

About 200 Teamsters turned out in Peoria to tell U-S Treasury Officials to rule against Central States Pension Plan’s request to reduce their benefit payments.

Central States is the first to make the request under the controversial Kline-Miller Multiemployer Pension Reform Act of 2014. The law reportedly passed by adding it to an omnibus bill. The Central States Pension Plan represents about 400,000 current and future retirees, mostly teamsters in 13 states.

Thomas Pelot is with Local 525. He retired last June after 43 years, serving the last 25 as the local’s business agent. He says Central States application has not satisfied at least four conditions of the Kline-Miller Law, including not being equitable to all members and failure to prove the reduction would ensure the plan’s solvency.

“Even though these cuts are implemented the fund claims it has little chance of remaining solvent. According to Central States Pension Fund, application funds are available to pay current obligations for at least 10 years. This allows time to come up with a plan that is fair and equitable,” Pelot says. “All parties should immediately begin to find a workable solution.”

Some of Central State’s younger retirees could see 50 to 70 percent reductions in monthly pension payments if the benefit reduction request is approved.

Central States Pension Plan representatives were reportedly invited to the public session but were not represented at the event.

Ken Feinberg is responsible for the US Treasury’s implementation of the Kline-Miller law. He says he’s holding townhalls to hear from the people that would be impacted by the benefit reduction. “I can assure everybody in this room: Whatever we decide to do under the law it will only be done after we hear from the retirees.”

Feinberg and treasury officials have additional public sessions next week in Indianapolis and Minneapolis. Events are also planned for St. Louis and Detroit next month. Feinberg is also hold conference calls on Mondays. Some of those calls are said to have 300 people participating. The call-in number and access code is on the Treasury’s website devoted to the Kline-Miller Act. People can also make written statements online.

Tags: teamstersPensionsCentral Fund
Categories: Labor News

U.S. Treasury hears pension concerns from Teamsters

Current News - Fri, 01/15/2016 - 14:43

U.S. Treasury hears pension concerns from Teamsters
By TANYA KOONCE • 9 HOURS AGO
http://peoriapublicradio.org/post/us-treasury-hears-pension-concerns-tea...

Teamsters gathering Thursday evening before the US Treasury's public session at the Gateway Building in Peoria.. The sessions are happening in some of the 13 states covered by the Central States Pension Plan. The plan is asking permission to reduce pension payments promised to its retirees under the Kline Miller Act.
CREDIT BERNIE ANDERSON

About 200 Teamsters turned out in Peoria to tell U-S Treasury Officials to rule against Central States Pension Plan’s request to reduce their benefit payments.

Central States is the first to make the request under the controversial Kline-Miller Multiemployer Pension Reform Act of 2014. The law reportedly passed by adding it to an omnibus bill. The Central States Pension Plan represents about 400,000 current and future retirees, mostly teamsters in 13 states.

Thomas Pelot is with Local 525. He retired last June after 43 years, serving the last 25 as the local’s business agent. He says Central States application has not satisfied at least four conditions of the Kline-Miller Law, including not being equitable to all members and failure to prove the reduction would ensure the plan’s solvency.

“Even though these cuts are implemented the fund claims it has little chance of remaining solvent. According to Central States Pension Fund, application funds are available to pay current obligations for at least 10 years. This allows time to come up with a plan that is fair and equitable,” Pelot says. “All parties should immediately begin to find a workable solution.”

Some of Central State’s younger retirees could see 50 to 70 percent reductions in monthly pension payments if the benefit reduction request is approved.

Central States Pension Plan representatives were reportedly invited to the public session but were not represented at the event.

Ken Feinberg is responsible for the US Treasury’s implementation of the Kline-Miller law. He says he’s holding townhalls to hear from the people that would be impacted by the benefit reduction. “I can assure everybody in this room: Whatever we decide to do under the law it will only be done after we hear from the retirees.”

Feinberg and treasury officials have additional public sessions next week in Indianapolis and Minneapolis. Events are also planned for St. Louis and Detroit next month. Feinberg is also hold conference calls on Mondays. Some of those calls are said to have 300 people participating. The call-in number and access code is on the Treasury’s website devoted to the Kline-Miller Act. People can also make written statements online.

Tags: teamstersPensionsCentral Fund
Categories: Labor News

Japan Railway Workers Union Doro-Chiba Condemns Japan-ROK Agreement on “Comfort Women”

Current News - Thu, 01/14/2016 - 09:31

Japan Railway Workers Union Doro-Chiba Condemns Japan-ROK Agreement on “Comfort Women”

We Strongly Condemn Japan-ROK Agreement on “Comfort Women”

International Labor Solidarity Committee of Doro-Chiba
www.doro-chiba
January 8, 2016

On December 28, 2015, Japan and South Korea have abruptly reached the agreement to settle the issue of “comfort women” in foreign ministerial talks held at Seoul.

The major objective of their agreement is to “resolve finally and irreversibly” the issue of “comfort women” known as “halmonis” (“grandma” in Korean) who were forcibly drafted for sex slavery for Japanese soldiers during World War II. The agreement states that the South Korean government establishes a foundation for the purpose of providing support for the former “comfort women” and the Japanese government pays 1 billion yen ($8.3 million) contribution to a fund. As a condition for this, worse still, the Japanese government demands the removal of the statue of a girl symbolizing the victims that has been erected in front of the Japanese Embassy in Seoul. The South Korean government expressed its virtual admission of accepting such demand of the Japanese government, saying, “(We) will strive to solve this issue in an appropriate manner through taking measures such as consulting with related organizations”.

It is utterly an outrageous agreement that intends to completely put to an end to all issues on “comfort women” and, what is more, to remove the statue of a girl.

This agreement is meant to suppress the struggle of halmonis who have long kept condemning the war crime of Japanese imperialism by a thin veneer of Abe’s “apology” and 1 billion yen, a ridiculously small sum of money. It is to wipe off the history of the past Japanese colonial rule and deny the existence of halmonis. The history of the war crime of Japanese imperialism can never be erased with such a mean agreement.

Of course the intention of this agreement would not be just the “settlement” of the issue of “comfort women”. It is to suppress every struggle against numerous acts of barbarism of Japanese imperialism conducted throughout the Asia Pacific region such as Korea, China, Indonesia, the Philippines and others. It is done with vicious intension to wipe out the history of all war crimes.

The meeting between the foreign ministers was held at the end of last year. At this very moment Korean Confederation of Trade Unions (KCTU) had been resolutely preparing for the general strike against the revision of the labor relations law by Park Guen-hye administration. The Japanese and South Korean foreign ministers worked out an outrageous compromise on the issue of “comfort women” in quite a blunt way at this very moment in order to destroy the struggle of KCTU.

The mass media of South Korea and Japan, and all Japanese political parties including the Opposition have made almost unanimously favorable response. Though, South Korean workers and people immediately issued a statement against the agreement, and rose up to thorough denouncement.

Through this agreement, the Japanese, South Korean and US governments clearly proclaimed their commitment in “advancing trilateral security cooperation”.

They intend to settle quickly the conflicts between South Korea and Japan such as the issue of Japanese military “comfort women” and others, and grant an indulgence on this issue to the Japanese government so that they can swiftly proceed to forge Japan-South Korea military alliance and accomplish the system to conduct coordinated military operations between Japan, South Korea and the US.

Based on this agreement, Abe administration is scheming to dispatch the Self-Defense Forces to the Korean Peninsula, and go ahead with the maneuver to wage a war ferociously in East Asia again.

KCTU has started the struggle in 2016 by the publication of the following statement on January 4.

“Park Geun-hye government intends to erase the memory of the past history of the colonial era which became an obstruction of a fresh military alliance with Japan, but the Park Geun-hye’s humiliating diplomatic negotiation itself must be erased from the history. KCTU never forget halmonis’ suffering, and will stand by the side of the statue of a girl for its defense together with the youth, students and citizens.”

We strongly uphold this statement. We will smash the all-out nationalist campaign of Japanese imperialism to praise the Japan-South Korea agreement on December 28. We will resolutely struggle together with KCTU.

We will create militant labor movement in every workplace with national railway struggle as its pivotal position, and fight against outsourcing, casualization and the revision of the labor relations law.

We will stop the revision of the Constitution and block the attempt of establishing national general mobilization system for war.

And we declare our firm determination to overthrow the Abe administration which intends to liquidate the history of the aggressive war and rush to fresh aggression war in the Korean Peninsula.

Tags: Comfort WomenDoro-Chiba
Categories: Labor News

Uber may pay $7.6 million fine to California, pending vote

Current News - Thu, 01/14/2016 - 09:00

Uber may pay $7.6 million fine to California, pending vote
http://www.sfexaminer.com/uber-may-pay-7-6-million-fine-california-pendi...

(Eric Risberg/AP)
By Joe Fitzgerald Rodriguez on January 13, 2016 9:01 pm

Tech transportation company Uber may be fined $7.6 million, a penalty now sought by a California administrative law judge.

The judge also decided Uber’s license to operate in California would be suspended 30 days after the decision, if fines are not paid.

Uber told the San Francisco Examiner it will pay the fine immediately, pending the vote.

The fine will be voted on Thursday at the California Public Utilities Commission, which regulates Uber, Lyft, and other so-called “ride-share” companies.

Uber was found “in contempt for failing to comply fully with reporting requirements,” CPUC Administrative Law Judge Robert Mason wrote in his decision.

That decision was made public Wednesday evening.

According to the judge, Uber failed to report vast amounts of data about specific riders’ trips to regulators, the CPUC law judge alleged. Rides accepted, rides denied, zip codes of rides, miles traveled and the amount paid were to be presented in a spreadsheet by Uber to regulators.

Uber eventually complied with some requirements, but not all.

CPUC requested the information to analyze whether Uber provided trips to underserved neighborhoods or discriminated in providing rides, CPUC staff said last year.

The CPUC also requested the number and percentage of customers who requested “accessible vehicles,” in attempt to assess if Uber provided rides to wheelchair users and others in the disability community — which many allege it has not.

In 2013 the CPUC created a new category of transportation providers in California called Transportation Network Companies, which encompass “ride-share” startups such as Uber and Lyft.

As part of those new regulations, companies were tasked with providing annual data to regulators. The fine reflects the CPUC judge’s allegation that Uber has failed to provide this data.

In arguing why it should not produce that data, Uber used overly broad arguments about what was or was not a “trade secret,” and inaccurately said asking for such data was unconstitutional, Mason wrote in his decision.

Mason wrote, “[Uber] seeks to protect both the algorithm it has developed to guide its drivers to particular locations … as well as the dates, times, and locations where ride matches are made.”

Both Uber and Lyft have voiced in legal filings that they oppose requirements to share some data about their business practices.

As the Examiner has reported, to report data, these companies navigate tricky legal ground — each worrying how much information to share with the government, without giving one another a competitive edge.

Uber may be valued by investors by as much as $60 billion, according to Bloomberg News.

Tags: Uberregulation
Categories: Labor News

Europe: Unions, civil society welcome steps towards a Financial Transaction Tax

Labourstart.org News - Wed, 01/13/2016 - 16:00
LabourStart headline - Source: Equal Times
Categories: Labor News

China: HRW says Beijing should engage with worker activists; not jail them

Labourstart.org News - Wed, 01/13/2016 - 16:00
LabourStart headline - Source: Human Rights Watch
Categories: Labor News

Europe: Private messages at work can be read by employers, says court

Labourstart.org News - Tue, 01/12/2016 - 16:00
LabourStart headline - Source: BBC
Categories: Labor News

Asia: Trans-Pacific Partnership: Serious Labor and Human Rights Concerns

Labourstart.org News - Tue, 01/12/2016 - 16:00
LabourStart headline - Source: Human Rights Watch
Categories: Labor News

Australia: 'Guerilla raid' Security guards force Australian crew off Alcoa ship MV Portland

Labourstart.org News - Tue, 01/12/2016 - 16:00
LabourStart headline - Source: Fairfax Media
Categories: Labor News

China: Letter to People’s Daily on China Labour Bulletin’s work with labour activists

Labourstart.org News - Tue, 01/12/2016 - 16:00
LabourStart headline - Source: China Labour Bulletin
Categories: Labor News

Pill Cost Pennies-Drugs Cost Lives! Protest Of Gilead & JP Morgan Profiteering Meeting

Current News - Tue, 01/12/2016 - 10:31

Pill Cost Pennies-Drugs Cost Lives! Protest Of Gilead & JP Morgan Profiteering Meeting
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j8i7pCEMScw
Drug maker Gilead and JP Morgan run by Jaime Diamond which also owns Chase bank had an investment conference in San Francisco on Monday January 11th, 2016 to further monetize the profits from the drug industry.
Community and labor protesters demanded that the price for the pill for Hepatitis-C which drug maker Gilead produces be dropped so the 3 million people who have the disease are able to afford it. The company charges $100 a pill while in some countries like Egypt they pay only $10 a pill. As a result of the charges for the pills cost for a treatment runs over $100,000.
Mumia Abu-Jamal an honorary member of CWA-NABET and a world journalist who is imprisoned in Pennsylvania may die from the disease since the prison refuses to provide the drug to him and other prisoners with similar diseases. Demonstrators also demanded that the healthcare industry be made public so all people can afford drugs and treatment.
For further information
http://www.counterpunch.org/2016/01/08/in-americas-prisons-mumia-and-the...
Protest sponsored by
Labor Action Committee To Free Mumia Abu-Jamal
http://www.laboractionmumia.org
Production of Labor Video Project
www.laborvideo.org

Tags: DrugsilwuLabor Action Committee To Free Mumia Abu-Jamal
Categories: Labor News

Striking Phoenix ATU Local 1433 Phoenix bus drivers lose health-care coverage

Current News - Mon, 01/11/2016 - 23:15

Striking Phoenix ATU Local 1433 bus drivers lose health-care coverage
http://www.azcentral.com/story/news/local/phoenix/2016/01/11/striking-ph...
<1402346264000-gardiner-dustin.png> Dustin Gardiner, The Republic | azcentral.com 9:38 p.m. MST January 11, 2016

Striking Phoenix bus drivers lose health-care coverage

(Photo: Patrick Breen/The Republic)
Tensions between striking Phoenix bus drivers and Transdev, the contractor that operates many of the city's bus routes, escalated Monday as drivers blasted the company for suspending their medical insurance as they picket while waiting for a new contract.

With the strike entering its fourth day, union members held an emotional rally outside the city's bus yard in south Phoenix. Union President Bob Bean said drivers and their family members had been denied medication and treatment since Transdev stopped their benefits Friday. That included one driver who was set to undergo surgery, he said.

“This company has stooped to a low that I have never seen in … 37 years in transportation and union work," Bean said. "That is as low as it comes."

Hundreds of drivers with Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1433 have been on strike since Friday, after they rejected Transdev's latest "best and final" contract offer. The strike has left nearly 80,000-weekday transit riders with reduced or canceled service on 34 bus routes that Transdev operates for the city.

AZCENTRAL
Phoenix bus strike: What are the issues between union and Transdev?

Troy Corder, a spokesman for Transdev, said striking employees do not receive pay or benefits because they are not working. However, he said, they can elect to continue health coverage under COBRA, a federal law that allows employees to continue to receive employer-provided coverage, often at their own expense.

Corder said Transdev employees and the union were notified about the health-care suspension and the option to enroll in COBRA before they made the decision to strike. The union said its members rejected the transit company's contract offer by 91 percent last week.

<29901534001_4692447847001_4692363208001-vs.jpg>
Kenneth Westbrook, chairman of the transit division for Transdev, spoke Friday morning about running an efficient bus system and ending the strike. Michael Cornelius, lead negotiator for Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1433 spoke at the gathering as

"They had a very good offer on the table, including retroactive pay increases to last July, but the ATU Local #1433 chose to strike instead," Corder said in an email. "We hope the strike ends soon and our drivers can get back to receiving the good pay and benefits they are entitled to receive if working.”

<635880586549214108-uscpcent02-6nxvzuw7utw1le3s2600-original.jpg>
AZCENTRAL
No accord in Phoenix bus strike

Gilbert Balderas, a bus driver diagnosed with a form of blood cancer in 2011, said he realized the company had cut off his health insurance on Saturday, when he went to the pharmacy to pick-up his chemotherapy maintenance drugs. He said he paid out of pocket and got a discount card to help pay for some of his drugs. If a deal isn't reached by Friday, Balderas said, he will have to cancel a scheduled treatment.

"I'm just going to have to put it off," he said, standing near the picket line. "There's nothing I can do."

But an end to the strike didn't appear in sight Monday evening as negotiators from the union and Transdev finished another day of talks — even as fans flocking to the College Football Playoff National Championship in Glendale faced reduced bus service.

“It’s been another day of nothing, and it’s very frustrating," said the Rev. Jarrett Maupin, a civil-rights activist working with the union. Both sides were expected to return to the negotiating table on Tuesday morning.

A handful of Transdev's busiest Phoenix routes were operating at lower, Saturday-service levels on Monday, but 27 routes remained canceled. Transdev could soon face fines from Phoenix if overall service is not increased, according to the city.

Union leaders contend Transdev's contract offer doesn't address a range of concerns, including bathroom access, a two-tiered system for pay and benefits, communication policies, language nuances and arbitration, among others. The levels of pay and medical benefits are not an issue. Transdev has said its offer is generous and includes the union's proposed health-insurance plan and a 3 percent annual wage increase.

A primary sticking point has been the union's demand to move all employees to the same tiered system for pay and benefits. Employees hired before March 15, 2012, reach the top hourly rate on a five-year scale. Employees hired after 2012 take six years to reach that point. The union rejects that system and wants all drivers on the same pay ladder.

Reduced service will continue Tuesday. The city urged riders to check the Valley Metro website to see which routes will be active and which will not. Transdev's 34 routes are some of the city's most heavily used, according to the transit agency.

Valley Metro suggested riders whose routes may be affected use taxi services, the light rail and carpools.

Transdev runs the following routes:

0-Central Avenue; 1-Washington/Jefferson; 7-Seventh Street; 8-Seventh Avenue; 10-Roosevelt/32nd Street; 12-12th Street; 15-15th Avenue; 16-16th Street; 19-19th Avenue; 27-27th Avenue; 28-Lower Buckeye; 35-35th Avenue; 39-40th Street north Phoenix; 44-44th Street/Tatum; 50-Camelback; 52-Roeser; 60-Bethany Home; 70-Glendale/24th Street; 80-Northern/Shea; 90-Dunlap/Cave Creek; 106-Peoria; 122-Cactus; 138-Thunderbird; 154-Greenway; 170-Bell; 186-Union Hills/Mayo; the SMART (Sunnyslope) and DASH (downtown) circulators; and all RAPID commuter routes: Central South Mountain East, Central South Mountain West, Interstate 10 East, I-10 West, I-17 and State Route 51.

Tags: ATU Local 1433strike Phoenix
Categories: Labor News

PSR Fleet Memo for January 9 2016

IBU - Mon, 01/11/2016 - 10:10
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Categories: Unions

Derailed: Once again, California lawmakers have killed a proposal to ban BART workers from striking.

Current News - Sat, 01/09/2016 - 22:47

Derailed: Once again, California lawmakers have killed a proposal to ban BART workers from striking.
http://www.sfchronicle.com/bayarea/matier-ross/article/S-F-s-top-prosecu...

The latest bill, by Assemblywoman Catharine Baker, R-San Ramon, failed to get out of the Assembly Public Employees, Retirement and Social Security Committee on a 5-1 party-line vote.

“It pretty much went as expected,” Baker said after last week’s vote, noting that the Democratic leadership had sent the measure to a committee loaded with labor-friendly lawmakers.

Baker ran in 2014 on a platform of putting BART workers in the same no-strike category as Muni drivers and many other public-transit employees. Voters in her East Bay district, still fuming over two BART strikes in 2013, installed her as the only Bay Area Republican in the Legislature.

Her constituents’ angst, however, has not reached the Capitol — even with the current BART contract expiring in 2017.

“It’s a reminder that we are only 18 months away from another possible strike,” Baker said.

State Sen. Steve Glazer, an Orinda Democrat who was also elected on a no-strike platform, said the fight is not over.

Glazer has a card up his sleeve — a threat to campaign against a big rebuild bond that BART wants to put on the November ballot unless there’s significant progress toward a new contract.

“Show us some fiscal responsibility,” Glazer said. “Then we can talk about new money.”

Tags: BARTright to strike
Categories: Labor News

China: Strikes and protests by China’s workers soar to record heights in 2015

Labourstart.org News - Fri, 01/08/2016 - 16:00
LabourStart headline - Source: China Labour Bulletin
Categories: Labor News

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