Things are heating up in Missouri. Kansas City became the first city in the state to increase its minimum wage. Beginning August 24, 2015 minimum wage will increase to $8.50 an hour, up from $7.65, with the goal being to reach $13 by 2020. Enforcement will prove to be the most difficult part as many business owners question the legality of the decision. Nonetheless, expect St. Louis to make a similar move in the near future as SEIU has been focusing a lot of their resources in the area – more specifically, $2.3 million in the last two years. In Massachusetts, home health care workers won a starting wage increase to $15 an hour, up from $13.38.
Unfortunately, emotion rather than reason drives voter responses to issues like this. Economic studies, such as the one conducted by California’s nonpartisan Legislative Analyst Office, found that raising the minimum
Continue reading Alt-Labor
As usual, Big Labor is trying to make the most of what turned out to be mostly a non-event: the much ballyhooed April 15 strike connected with the Fight for 15 movement. Even with NBC rallying to their side and doing their best to inflate the effort, the smoke cleared quickly. In fact, one prominent union, the UFCW, is even backing away from the movement.
This may be because it is becoming more widely known that the Fight for 15 movement, along with similar efforts promoted by worker centers and supposedly “grassroots efforts,” are actually thinly veiled union PR stunts. It is also possibly because the unions are distorting “fast food data” to attempt to paint a picture that just doesn’t exist. For
Continue reading Full of Sound and Fury
“A newly published National Bureau of Economics Research paper confirms what most of us already know: minimum wage increases harm the earnings and job mobility of low-skill workers.”
By looking at the effects of the 2007 to 2009 change in the minimum wage from $5.15 to $7.25, University of California economics professors Jeffrey Clemens and Michael Wither found that a $15 minimum wage would not only hurt the individuals it proposes to help, but would substantially reduce the national employment rate. Factual knowledge such as this does little to stop the United Food and Commercial Workers or the Service Employees from pushing onward in their jaded attempts to increase their dwindling membership numbers.
The AFL-CIO reported “an estimated 1,600 actions and strikes at Walmart locations around the country” during the Black Friday protests.
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Will we see a rise in civil disobedience – tactics such as blocking business entrances and staging sit-ins to prevent stores from transacting business? In Goldsboro, NC, a labor gathering celebrated recent “successes” of such tactics as a part of the Moral Monday demonstrations. Nearly 1000 protesters have been arrested since the demonstrations began in April 2013.
A recent fast food workers convention in Cleveland included classes on civil disobedience.
United Food and Commercial Workers Local 1208 President Keith Ludlum provided some insight into this “Charge of the Light Brigade” labor strategy:
“You guys are probably in the generation that is on the precipice of a change in the labor movement… Us old guys and some of us who have been around awhile, we can advise you on things, but don’t be
Continue reading Alt-Labor – August 2014
In this issue:
A Hearty UFCW “Welcome” to New England Grocer Unions At Odds With Market Competition Big Labor Pulls a Statue of Liberty Play Democracy UAW Style SEIU Watch, Sticky Fingers, Scoreboard, Insight and more…
The bottom of each story contains a link to the individual post on our site.
Labor Relations Insight by Phil Wilson
How to Win an Ambush Election
Today’s article has one simple purpose. I want you to download (and read) our latest White Paper How to Win (And Prevent) an Ambush Election. We just released it today. If you want to save some time you can skip reading this article and download the
Continue reading Labor Relations Ink June 2014
Mrs. Green’s Natural Market is an all-natural grocer with 18 stores in a New England tri-state area. They are planning their newest location in New York’s West Village, and the United Food and Commercial Workers Local 1500 is already doing its best to make sure that doesn’t happen. Why does the union not want to bring new jobs to the area? You guessed it – none of the 18 stores are unionized.
UFCW plans to picket the store as soon as it opens, and organize what pressure it can gather from politically progressive clientele in the area to force the store to unionize.
A spokesman for the grocer released the following statement:
Mrs. Green’s Natural Market is proud of its workers and continues to invest in them – employing more full-time workers than its
Continue reading A Hearty UFCW “Welcome” to New England Grocer
Congratulations! In recognition of your outstanding work, we are going to give you a raise!
Whoops – sorry – your union (the UFCW) just took us to court and forced us to rescind the raise for you and a couple of other dozen high-performing employees. The UFCW apparently has your “best interest” in mind and doesn’t think over-and-above effort should be rewarded, so I guess mediocre will do. Since it doesn’t seem to make a difference, you should probably just punch your time clock each day and head for the house. Thanks anyway.