07/2010 Labor's Edge Blog Articles
Court Ruling Diminishes Unions’ Free Speech Rights
by Lincoln Smith
When I was a Business Agent it was mandatory that we become familiar with the Pruneyard decision, which allows for informational picketing on private property. So the First Amendment of the Constitution finally went beyond the private property line. When the owners of the business we were picketing called the law, we had copies of the decision to give the cops.
Now all that will change and our rights as citizens once again are limited to publicly owned property.
What was the Pruneyard Decision? Ever since 1975, California law establishes tough standards for courts to issue injunctions against demonstrators in labor disputes. The Supreme Court upheld that law in 1980.
More posts by Lincoln Smith
Rants & Raves for the Week of July 19th
* State appellate court rolls back workers' rights during labor disputes * Whitman flip-flops on immigration to appeal to Latino voters * Whitman wants to eliminate union organizing rights for state workers *
* President Obama signs unemployment extenssion bill * Bill to give pay equilty to farmworkers reaches Governor's desk * Sacramento City Council passes resolution to oppose Schwarzenegger's minimum-wage order *
Tax Cuts Do Not Pay For Themselves
by Sara Flocks
A core part of Meg Whitman’s purported job creation plan is what she calls “targeted” tax cuts. And by targeted, Whitman actually means “for the rich.” She’s proposing to eliminate the state capital gains tax, which would mean that Whitman herself, and her billionaire buddies, would pay next to nothing in state taxes. The state, however, would lose billions of dollars in revenue.
The nonpartisan California Budget Project just released a new brief entitled “No Free Lunch: Tax Cuts Widen Budget Gaps” that analyzes the impact of tax cuts on the California economy. The CBP brief clearly explains how claims that tax cuts fuel economic growth are tenuous at best, and those cuts can do even worse damage to the economy by reducing state spending
More posts by Sara Flocks
Hundreds of L.A. Union Members to Travel to Phoenix to Protest Arizona’s Immigration Law
by Caroline O'Connor
More than 550 union members from 32 different unions in the Los Angeles along with several leaders from L.A.’s community and faith organizations will travel to Phoenix on July 29. We will travel “without papers” or identification the day SB 1070, Arizona’s anti-immigrant law, is scheduled to go into effect.
L.A. Labor’s goal is not only to oppose SB 1070, but to participate in activities in Phoenix where we will pledge to support efforts to register and turn out Arizona’s Latino vote. We will also kick off a new campaign joining Los Angeles and Arizona working families around issues of workers’ rights, good jobs and sensible solutions for national immigration reform.
More posts by Caroline O’Connor
Rants & Raves for the Week of July 12th
* New green chemistry regulations favor chemical companies over workers * EPI study reveals negative consequences of Congress' failure to extend UI *
*Congress passes landmark Wall Street reform bill * Mine workers demand improved health and safety protections * Court rules against Governor's minimum-wage order * Nurses fight back against Whitman's attacks *
By Opposing High-Speed Rail, Whitman Shows True Colors on Jobs
by Steve Smith
Billionaire CEO Meg Whitman continued her hypocrisy on jobs yesterday, coming out in opposition to high-speed rail and the hundreds of thousands of jobs it would create. Whitman spokeswoman Sarah Pompei told the Sacramento Bee that Whitman opposes the project because the state can’t “afford” high-speed rail.
So let’s get this straight… the state can’t afford to create hundreds of thousands of good jobs with a project that’s already received significant federal funding and voter approval? This appears to be another example – a particularly egregious one – of Whitman showing her true colors on job creation.
More posts by Steve Smith
Realizing the Promise of the National Labor Relations Act
by U.S. Deptartment of Labor Secretary Hilda Solis
Monday marked the 75th anniversary of the National Labor Relations Act - also known as the Wagner Act - one of the lesser known, but key components of President Franklin Roosevelt's New Deal. In addition to Social Security, Unemployment Insurance, a Federal minimum wage and laws regulating child labor - all controversial concepts at the time that we now take for granted as basic elements of fairness - the New Deal included the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) which protected workers' rights to join or form unions and engage in collective bargaining.
More posts by Hilda Solis
Same Old Story: Rich Republican Tycoon Against Pro-Worker Public Servant
by Bob Balgenorth
A wealthy tycoon is trying to buy her way into a statewide office against a veteran public servant with a terrific record on the issues that matter to most to working people. Would that be Meg Whitman, running against former Governor Jerry Brown? Well, yes, she fits the description.
But it’s the same story in the race for U.S. Senator from California, where rich tycoon Carly Fiorina won the Republican primary by pouring her immense personal wealth into her campaign, and who now hopes that her wealth will buy her the seat currently held by a great friend of working men and women, Senator Barbara Boxer.
More posts by Bob Balgenorth
Rite Aid Workers Rally for Good Contract at Lancaster Distribution Center
by Rand Wilson
Over 75 Rite Aid workers from the Southwest Distribution Center in Lancaster, CA marched off the job during their lunch break to join supporters from dozens of other unions demanding that Rite Aid management negotiate a good contract.
The workers began organizing with the International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) over four years ago. Since then, ther workers have met with management more than 100 times in an attempt to peacefully reach a first contract that would put their conditions of work in a legally binding union agreement.
More posts by Rand Wilson