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Pickets pay off ● NAFTA deal ● The Trump economy

Thursday, August 16, 2018


THE QUEEN OF SOUL (1942-2018)





► From KNKX — Hundreds of Seattle teachers rally for a raise as contract bargaining continues —  Teachers’ unions across the state are pushing for salary increases after lawmakers approved another $1 billion for public education earlier this year. In Seattle, hundreds of educators rallied outside school district headquarters Wednesday. Teachers held signs saying “Fair Contract Now.” One held a sign that said “I just want to live where I teach.” That was a message a lot of teachers brought up.

► In today’s (Everett) Herald — Pickets, protests pay off as Mukilteo teachers get hefty hikes — There were pickets, protests and constant pressure. And on Wednesday, public school teachers in Mukilteo secured what they had been pursuing for months — a sizable pay raise for the district’s roughly 1,000 certified classroom instructors. Teachers in Mukilteo School District will see their salaries climb around 13 percent under a tentative agreement announced Wednesday afternoon. Under the proposal, the annual salary for a first-year teacher with a bachelor’s degree would climb from the current $51,856 to $58,481. At the other end of the scale, a teacher with 12 or more years experience and a master’s degree, would be paid $112,396, up from $99,016. The deal needs to be ratified by the teachers union and be approved by the school board.

► In today’s (Longview) Daily News — Millennium water quality permit denial upheld — In another setback to the proposed Longview coal project, a state board Wednesday upheld the denial of a key water quality permit for the Millennium Bulk Terminals project. Millennium plans to appeal the decision.




► From Teamsters 117 — Teamsters win strong contract at Supervalu — Teamsters who work in SuperValu’s grocery warehouse in Tacoma voted overwhelmingly to ratify a new three-year contract. The contract provides annual wage increases, excellent health and welfare coverage, and retirement security for over 200 members of Local 117 and their families.

► In today’s (Longview) Daily News — Millennium water quality permit denial upheld — In another setback to the proposed Longview coal project, a state board Wednesday upheld the denial of a key water quality permit for the Millennium Bulk Terminals project. Millennium plans to appeal the decision.




► In today’s Seattle Times — Just how big is this blue wave? For state Democrats, maybe the biggest in decades (by Melissa Santos) — The midterm energy in 2018 seems to be bolstering state-level Democrats even more than normal, as candidates and party leaders alike frame the election as a rebuke on Trump and his party… The prospect of Democrats gaining anywhere between 13 and 18 state House seats in November is not entirely outside the realm of possibility. Most likely, Democrats will also turn at least two state Senate seats blue.

PREVIOUSLY at The Stand — A fantastic day for labor candidates, causes (Aug. 8)

► In today’s Seattle Times — Shake up the system to boost voter turnout (editorial) — To build on their progress making voting more accessible, legislators should consider a broad update of the state election calendar.




► From Politico — Mexico, U.S. may be heading toward NAFTA deal amid Trump’s global trade war — U.S. and Mexican officials now say they could be on the verge of announcing a preliminary agreement on everything from complicated automotive rules to environmental regulations by the end of August. The apparent turnaround after months of stalemate is a surprise outcome of discussions reaching their year anniversary on Thursday. The two sides have yet to bring Canada, the third partner in NAFTA.

PREVIOUSLY at The Stand — Trump’s tariffs are not really the point (by Stan Sorscher) — China isn’t “cheating” on trade. They are playing a different game: advancing the interests of their nation, rather than global corporations. America’s new trade policies should advance the interests of our people.

► From HuffPost — Kavanaugh sided with a union-busting employer after it violated workers’ rights — When a New York manufacturer created a new, spinoff company to avoid bargaining with unionized workers, federal regulators and a panel of appellate judges said the manufacturer broke the law and violated its employees’ rights. There was, however, one judge who dissented in the appeals decision and sided with the employer: Brett Kavanaugh, Trump’s nominee to replace Justice Anthony Kennedy on the Supreme Court.

► In today’s Washington Post — Elizabeth Warren takes on corporate giants as she lays 2020 marker — The senator has unveiled a proposal aimed at fundamentally recalibrating the mission of the biggest corporations, pushing them away from maximizing immediate returns for shareholders and executives and toward investing in longer-term value and sharing gains with workers.




► In the USA Today — UPS, mechanics union reach deal for 31% raise over 5 years — Leaders of the UPS aircraft mechanics union are declaring victory in securing a tentative new contract they say will deliver the country’s best pay and benefits. If ratified as expected, the 1,300 members of the Louisville-based Teamsters Local 2727 would receive raises of about 16 percent now with 3-percent annual pay hikes.

EDITOR’S NOTE — Union members earn higher wages, with median weekly earnings of $1,041 compared to $829 for nonunion. Do you and your co-workers want to get paid what you’re worth? Contact a union organizer today!

► In the Mercury News — H-1B use skyrocketed among Bay Area tech giants — Even as the White House began cracking down on U.S. work visas, major Silicon Valley technology firms last year dramatically ramped up hiring of workers under the controversial H-1B visa program, according to newly released data.

► In today’s Chicago Sun-Times — Chicago hotel workers vote ‘overwhelmingly’ to authorize strike — Workers at dozens of the city’s top hotels voted Wednesday to authorize a strike later this month as they fight for a new collective bargaining agreement. The employees will hit the picket lines if a new deal is not struck by Aug. 31, after Unite Here Local 1 members voted “overwhelmingly” — more than 90 percent — in favor of a potential strike.




► From the Center for American Progress — The Trump Economy in one chart


The Stand posts links to Washington state and national news of interest every weekday morning by 10 a.m.

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FIND OUT HOW TO JOIN TOGETHER with your co-workers to negotiate for better wages, benefits, and a voice at work. Or go ahead and contact a union organizer today!