Friday, September 6, 2013
NOT IN OUR STATE
► In today’s Seattle Times — Gov. Walker tells of how GOP can ‘reclaim our country’ — Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker brought his fiery brand of Republican politics to Seattle on Thursday night, describing at a think-tank fundraiser how he believes conservatives can “reclaim our country.” With some 300 demonstrators outside the downtown Sheraton Seattle Hotel protesting his appearance, the controversial and high-profile governor joked to the dinner’s 2,000 attendees that he felt “quite at home.”
ALSO TODAY at The Stand — Seattle to Scott Walker: Not in OUR state!
► At Teamsters117.org — Teamsters hold ‘just practicing’ picket at Darigold — Teamster production workers and lab technicians who work at Darigold participated in “just practicing” picketing actions on Thursday at the company’s facilities in Issaquah and Seattle. Workers were protesting the company’s refusal to bargain in good faith.
► In today’s Columbian — No charges for union worker accused of sabotage — The Clark County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office won’t file charges against a longshore worker accused of sabotaging operations at United Grain Corp. during a labor dispute in December. The company locked out 44 union workers Feb. 27 based on its private investigator’s conclusion that union worker Todd Walker had purposely damaged the company’s machinery. “Mitsui-UGC” — a reference to United Grain’s Tokyo-based parent Mitsui & Co. — “used this false allegation as an excuse to lock out dozens of local workers, and the whole community has suffered for it,” said the ILWU in a statement. “The union would like to reach a fair agreement and get local union members back to work where they belong.”
► At Slog — SeaTac $15 minimum wage initiative mired in Kafkaesque court battle — King County Elections and the SeaTac city clerk have already validated that the measure has enough signatures to qualify for the ballot, but a special review board consisting of SeaTac’s mayor, police chief, and city administrator threw out an additional 201 signatures, sometimes for violations as simple as not having a date next to an otherwise valid signature. But that still left the initiative with enough signatures to qualify for the ballot. So Alaska Airlines and the Washington Restaurant Association went to court, where King County Superior Court Judge Andrea Darvas rejected an additional 61 signatures of registered voters who had signed the petitions more than once, leaving the petitions 18 signatures short of qualifying for the ballot. King County Elections had already rejected the duplicate signatures; now, contrary to established elections procedures throughout the state, Judge Darvas has rejected these voters’ original signatures as well… King County Elections has told the courts that they need a decision by 4:30 p.m. Friday.
► In the Federal Way Mirror — Need for transportation infrastructure won’t go away (by Sen. Tracey Eide and Rep. Roger Freeman) — Roads are not Democratic or Republican, everyone drives on our highways. We all need safe, reliable and efficient transportation. We will continue to work with the businesses, chambers, labor and environmental groups, transit organizations and cities who supported this proposal and see that it passes for the good of Washington.
ALSO TODAY at The Stand — Coalition urges special session to fix transportation problems
► In today’s Seattle Times — Kreidler approves Coordinated Care plans for health exchange — The decision increases to 46 the number of individual health plans that will be sold through Healthplanfinder when enrollment opens on Oct. 1.
ALSO at The Stand — Kreidler, insurers reach deal; Exchange options to expand
► In today’s Oregonian — Kitzhaber tells labor he’ll fight Oregon measure aimed at public employee unions — Oregon Gov. John Kitzhaber, who has had his differences with public employee unions on pensions, on Monday ripped into a proposed ballot measure that would allow government workers to opt out of paying union dues.
► At AFL-CIO Now — Not at the AFL-CIO Convention? Join the conversation online — We’ve been talking with you for months about how we build a robust movement for working people, and now these ideas are coming together to be discussed at the 2013 AFL-CIO Quadrennial Convention Sept. 8–11 in Los Angeles. To follow updates from the convention online, visit the AFL-CIO Now blog and participate in live discussions each day 8:30 a.m. PDT through 6 p.m. PDT (11:30 a.m. EDT through 9 p.m. EDT).
► At Politico — Obama cancels AFL-CIO appearance to lobby Congress on Syria
► At AFL-CIO Now — Across the nation, Walmart workers demand justice, living wage — In 15 cities on Thursday, Walmart workers and their supporters staged their biggest day of action since the groundbreaking “Black Friday” strike in November. They are demanding that Walmart reinstate 20 workers they say were fired for taking part in a June strike, and they are calling on Walmart to end its poverty-level wage scale and pay a living wage.
► At Huffington Poat — Walmart protesters arrested in NYC, LA
► At AFL-CIO Now — Walker’s Wisconsin: Singing deemed illegal in People’s Rotunda — “It’s like getting punched in the gut. It’s like you’re not even in America.” The middle-aged man was just an onlooker, on his lunch hour in the Wisconsin Capitol rotunda. He’d been watching a crowd of 100 people singing when two police officers held up a powerful “long-range acoustic device” and the recorded voice of Capitol Police Chief David Erwin — Gov. Scott Walker’s (R) former bodyguard — echoed through the dome: “I have determined that your group does not have the required permit.” Then the arrests commence.
► In today’s NY Times — VW, Auto Workers explore union at Tennessee plant — Volkswagen is working with the United Automobile Workers at its Chattanooga, Tenn., assembly plant on how to unionize the plant and create a German-style works council there, the president of the labor union said Friday.
► From AP — United recalls almost 600 pilots from furlough — United Airlines said it will call back almost 600 pilots who were furloughed during a time when fuel prices spiked and the Great Recession forced the airline to shrink.
► In today’s NY Times — Selling health care reform (editorial) — After years of Republican obstruction and obfuscation, supporters of the law are fighting back to raise enrollment.
► Cablevision employees in Brooklyn have been negotiating for 18 months for a contact agreement. They have endured illegal terminations, threats, illegal surveillance, bad-faith bargaining, and lower wages than other technicians at Cablevision. As this awesome video — produced by Cablevision employees and their union, the Communications Workers of America — demonstrates, they refuse to give up. This song was performed live on stage at the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington.
Click here to ask Cablevision CEO James Dolan: “Where the Papers At?”
The Stand posts links to Washington state and national news of interest every weekday morning by 10 a.m.