Tuesday, November 29, 2016
► In today’s Olympian — Saint Martin’s faculty plan walkout over college’s union opposition — Some faculty members and students at Saint Martin’s University in Lacey plan to walkout of their classes Tuesday afternoon “to protest the university’s decision to block their faculty union,” according to release from SEIU Local 925. The walkout is to begin at 1 p.m. and will include pickets and teach-in action at the university’s grand staircase near Old Main, according to the union. Members of the private Catholic university’s adjunct and contingent faculty voted to form a union and join Seattle-based SEIU 925 last June. The university’s administration has refused to recognize the union and filed a request for review by the National Labor Relations Board.
ALSO at The Stand — St. Martin’s, Seattle U faculty to walk out today
PREVIOUSLY at The Stand — Seattle U’s union avoidance contrary to Catholic teachings (May 2, 2014) — The U.S. Conference of Bishops has written, “Workers, owners, employers, and unions should work together to create decent jobs, build a more just economy, and advance the common good” and “no one may deny the right to organize without attacking human dignity itself.”
► In today’s Washington Post — Airport workers at major U.S. hubs to join Fight for $15 protests Tuesday — Cabin cleaners, baggage handlers and wheelchair attendants at major U.S. hubs will join thousands of other low-wage airport workers in a national day of protest Tuesday to demand better wages. Authorities say the demonstrations, planned for airports in New York, Los Angeles, Washington and elsewhere will have minimal impacts on operations, but workers are hoping they will draw the attention of travelers returning from the long Thanksgiving holiday weekend. Workers at Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport are taking more serious steps and planning to strike.
ALSO at The Stand — SeaTac, fast-food workers to join ‘day of disruption’ Tuesday — All are invited to join SEIU Local 6 for a rally for SeaTac workers at 1 p.m. on Tuesday at the Flag Pavilion, Sea-Tac Airport entrance on International Blvd. These workers have struggled for years to secure fair pay, safe working conditions, respect, and the right to form a union free from employer retaliation. See the Facebook event page for details.
► In today’s Tri-City Herald — Teamsters union may dissolve after 15 months at Goodwill — Fifteen months after narrowly voting to unionize, two dozen truck driver, and warehouse workers at Goodwill Industries of the Columbia are about to vote on whether to decertify Teamsters Local 839. The union has accused Goodwill of violating labor laws by hiring the brother-in-law of Goodwill’s now-former executive director and of supporting his efforts to get fellow bargaining unit members to sign the petition to decertify the union. Russell Shierven, principal officer for the local, urged members to stay strong. After a year of negotiations, he said it was close to having a contract to present for a vote. “Stay strong. We’re at the bargaining table,” he said.
► In today’s Tri-City Herald — Hanford vapor lawsuit may be delayed again — The state of Washington and other plaintiffs in a lawsuit filed over Hanford chemical vapor protection have asked that the trial be delayed five months. Under the proposal from Attorney General Bob Ferguson, Hanford Challenge and union Local 598 the trial date would be moved from September 2017 to Feb. 19, 2018.
► In today’s News Tribune — TCC trustees examine faculty complaints against school president — Tacoma Community College’s trustees met for more than an hour Monday to discuss faculty complaints against college President Sheila Ruhland, but took no official action.
► In today’s Spokesman-Review — Supersonic jet startup Spike Aerospace eyeing Spokane for manufacturing — A Boston-based aerospace startup is eyeing Spokane as a location to manufacture a supersonic jet now in the early stages of development. It’s a move that could create hundreds of high-paying jobs. At an aerospace conference last month in Lynnwood, Spike Aerospace’s chief executive officer said the company is considering several locations in Washington, including Spokane, Moses Lake and Everett. The company has considered several other states, but CEO Vik Kachoria has called Washington “one of the top contenders.”
► From the PSBJ — Boeing declares victory in WTO ruling against state subsidies — Boeing is looking on the bright side after the WTO ruled that it illegally benefitted from state subsidies related to the production of the 777X. Boeing said the decision was a victory in that the WTO rejected all but one of the claims from the European Union.
► In today’s Seattle Times — Time for Washington state to lead on climate change (by Mike Stevens Brenna Davis) — Working together, we can build a future that ensures the health and prosperity of our state, community and our families. Through bold and effective policy, we can reduce carbon emissions while building a more diverse and resilient economy that works for all of our state and protect people and natural resources. We can support energy efficiency, burn cleaner fuels, build renewable-energy generation, invent new energy technology and create jobs.
► From KUOW — Jail conditions and who’s locked up have some Washington lawmakers concerned — Washington jails are old, crowded and holding people who are disabled, mentally ill and often haven’t yet been convicted of a crime. County jails are often the first stop for people who enter the criminal justice system. Some bail out fairly quickly. Many others remain locked up. Next week, a panel of state lawmakers will hear from experts on ways to improve jail conditions and reduce the jail population.
► From PubliCola — Podlodowski may challenge Ravens for state Democratic Party Chair — Podlodowski says, “I’m seriously considering it.”
► In The Guardian — The TPP wasn’t killed by Donald Trump — our protests worked (by Evan Greer, Tom Morello and Evangeline Lilly) — If you read the obituaries, most news outlets seem to agree that the cause of the TPP’s death was simple: the election of Donald Trump, who railed against the deal during his campaign. But the pundits have the story wrong. The real story is that an unprecedented, international uprising of people from across the political spectrum took on some of the most powerful institutions in the world, and won. If not for the constant pressure from activists and civil society groups, the TPP would have become law long before the recent U.S. election. But thanks to intense, creative and strategic organizing from the day the text was finalized in 2015, there was never a majority of support for the pact in Congress. That’s why it was never implemented.
► From Think Progress — Trump abandons campaign promise to penalize outsourcing, offers tax breaks instead — In order for Carrier to keep jobs in the U.S., the Trump administration has discussed relaxing business regulations and backing away from campaign pledges to impose tariffs on companies that move jobs abroad. The other concession under discussion is indulging the company’s desire for favorable changes to the tax code.
► From The American Prospect — Trump’s Labor Secretary could be the Fight for 15’s worst nightmare — Andy Puzder, the millionaire CEO of CKE Restaurants, has championed every aspect of right-wing trickle-down economics. Rolling back taxation and regulation for the rich and corporations will lift the economy, he’s argued, as will getting rid of all those minimum-wage hikes. Puzder is reportedly on a labor secretary shortlist that also includes Victoria Lipnic, a former assistant labor secretary under George W. Bush, who represents a more traditional pick. Many on the right, however, think Puzder’s experience steering a troubled fast-food company back to profitability would bring a much-needed business perspective to the department.
► From Huffington Post — Trump’s pick for HHS signals he is dead serious about repealing Obamacare — Rep. Tom Price (R-Ga.), a founding member of the Tea Party Caucus, has been consistently hostile to government interference with the practice of medicine. He is one of Washington’s most vocal and persistent critics of the Affordable Care Act.
► From TPM — Trump HHS pick said Medicare phaseout would pass next summer — Price is a top supporter of Speaker Paul Ryan’s plan to phase out Medicare and replace it with private insurance and vouchers. Asked about his timeline for moving Medicare phaseout legislation in the next Congress, he said he expected it would come mid-year.
► From The Hill — House Dems brace for Wednesday’s secret ballot — Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), facing a challenge from Rep. Tim Ryan (D-Ohio), is seen as the heavy favorite in elections on Wednesday to keep her top leadership spot, where she’s been perched for the past 14 years.
► From the Washington Post — Donald Trump’s political mandate is historically small — the current tabulation suggests that 53.5 percent of Americans cast ballots for someone not named Donald Trump. As of now, Trump’s deficit in the popular vote — 1.7 points — is the third-largest on record for an election winner and the second-biggest for an electoral college winner.
► From The Daily Beast — The people chose Hillary Clinton. Now we need to stop Donald Trump from trashing our democracy. — Three simple points. Donald Trump was not the choice of the people; he prevailed with the help of a foreign power, a power to which he will clearly be indebted; and he tells us straight up that he will do as he pleases with his business and that he is above the law. The Democrats ought to be able to stand up and oppose that — not in the name of party, but in the name of country. The press ought to, too — not in the name of “liberalism,” but in the name of the values we purport to defend. We are in a crisis. The next few weeks will show us who’s up to recognizing and acting on it.
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