There’s May Day , and there’s May Day.  This one on May 1st , 2017 isn’t about flowers and flagpoles.  It’s a march on International Workers’ Day to commemorate the Haymarket Square Affair in Chicago on May 1, 1886 when 40,000 workers in newly-formed trade and labor unions  and another  300,000 workers nation-wide went on strike demanding an eight-hour work day.  Violence ensued during the next three days, and several policemen and  union workers were killed in the “Haymarket Massacre.”

Labor groups persevered and finally in 1916 railroad workers won the the right to an eight hour work day.  Most Americans didn’t obtain that shorter work day until the 1950s.

In more than 66 countries, May First  is celebrated as a national  public holiday as a tribute to the struggles and successes of the labor movement.  Ironically,the U.S. does not recognize May Day as an official holiday.

But we will be marching on May Day to honor all workers,past and present, and to celebrate the heritage of Lynn. Let’s Rise, Resist, and  Organize!

 

After Andrew Puzder withdrew his nomination on February 15, Trump immediately announced his choice of  Acosta for the cabinet position. R. Alexander Acosta is the Dean of Florida International University’s Law School; he was also a former assistant attorney general  and a member of the National Labor Relations Board from 2002 to 2003 under President George W. Bush. Following that appointment, he later served as Assistant Attorney General for the civil rights division of the Department of Justice.

Richard Trumpka said that Acosta’s nomination “deserves serious consideration.” If confirmed, Dean Acosta will be the first Hispanic to serve in Trump’s cabinet.

Presumably, his hearings have been delayed due to Trump’s preoccupation with current investigations and other matters.

 

 

Union members make the best lobbyists!  Each year the North Shore state delegation joins labor leaders and members to discuss important issues and upcoming bills for the legislative session. Our Breakfast on March 31st promises to provide an opportunity for dialogue with elected officials about the challenges local unions and community organizations face as we work to improve the lives of workers and families . We continue to strengthen the labor movement in Massachusetts by bringing legislators and labor together.

Andrew Puzder, the CEO of CKE Restaurants, which includes Hardee’s and Carl’s Jr., well-known fast food chains,
withdrew his nomination after scrutiny about his labor practices and record of poor treatment of low wage workers. His personal life came under fire due to his business practices, employment of undocumented workers, and allegations of domestic abuse. He withdrew his nomination after discussions with his family.

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Boston Globe Delivery Workers Rally for Justice on the Job
Boston Globe Delivery Workers Rally for Justice on the Job

 

If you live anywhere near the Boston area, you’ve probably heard or read something about the Boston Globe’s recent delivery debacle. Since the newspaper contracted with a new delivery company starting December 28, the entire delivery system collapsed, and subscribers have been puzzled and furious that their daily newspaper has vanished with little explanation and little hope for restoration any time soon. Though it isn’t being reported as such, this is a labor issue.

The new Boston Globe delivery company, ACI Media Group of Long Beach California, has significantly worsened the already difficult, demanding and exploitative working situation of the workers who make newspapers appear on doorsteps across the Commonwealth everyday.

In Lynn, Massachusetts, workers found significant labor and community support for their demands as members of the Lynn Worker Center, the North Shore Labor Council, the New Lynn Coalition, IUE-CWA Local 201, the Lynn City Council and the Lynn School Committee vowed to support their struggle.