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UW town hall tonight ● Doug’ll keep dining ● ALEC takes aim

Thursday, December 6, 2018




► From Public News Service — Laid-off UW laundry workers to hold town hall meeting tonight — University of Washington laundry service workers who will be laid off next year are holding a town hall meeting on campus Thursday starting at 6 p.m. at Savery Hall. UW Medicine Consolidated Laundry employees are frustrated with the school’s decision to close their facility in March, which will leave 100 without work. Nearly all are people of color and women.

► In today’s Columbian — Ed Barnes named 2019 First Citizen — Ed Barnes isn’t big on personal recognition. As a longtime leader of organized labor, he feels much more comfortable passing accolades along to the collective. So the 85-year-old Vancouver pillar was shocked when he was chosen as the 2019 Clark County First Citizen. It was a good kind of shocked, though. “It was a surprise. There’s a bunch of good people in Clark County, there’s not just one person — there’s several people that are deserving of the award,” he said, speaking to The Columbian a few minutes after hearing the news. “I’m very happy and very proud that the folks down there thought enough of me.”

► In today’s Seattle Times — Washington factory trawler idled for violating the Jones Act gets a waiver signed by Trump — The waiver was granted to the 264-foot America’s Finest — a nearly completed factory trawler built at Dakota Creek Industries of Anacortes to fish off Alaska. The vessel’s owner contracted with DCI, but the construction shipyard ran afoul of the federal Jones Act because its hull steel was cut and bent in Holland.

► From Teamsters 117 — Hertz workers at SeaTac get $32,000 in back pay — This week, Hertz is paying back upwards of $34,000 in retroactive pay to its workers. Wage increases will also take place in 2019 and 2020.

► From Civic Skunk Works — Negative minimum-wage studies are ‘about three times more likely to be published’ than neutral or positive findings — A new paper finds that if you’re in the business of studying the minimum wage, it pays to find a negative impact on business.




► In today’s Bellingham Herald — Ericksen, Van Werven hang on to legislative seats after hand recount — but just barely — State Sen. Doug Ericksen (R-Waterstreet Cafe) won his third Senate term, defeating Democratic challenger Pinky Vargas, a Bellingham City Council member, by 45 votes —49.9% to 49.8% — out of 72,779 votes cast. State Rep. Luanne Van Werven (R-Lynden) won her third House term, defeating Democratic opponent Justin Boneau of Bellingham by 50% to 49.9%, or 81 votes.

► In today’s Spokesman-Review — State regulators shut down $5.3 billion Avista sale to Ontario’s Hydro One — The sale of Avista Corp. to a Canadian utility doesn’t serve the best interests of the Spokane company or its customers, Washington regulators said Wednesday, citing meddling by the province of Ontario in Hydro One Ltd.’s management. The decision appears to have killed Avista’s $5.3 billion sale to Hydro One, which can’t proceed without approval from the Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission.




► From Governing — ALEC outlines 2019 agenda to erode union power — The conservative group of lawmakers recently convened in Washington, D.C., to strategize ways to capitalize on the Supreme Court’s ruling this year that limited unions’ ability to collect fees.

ALSO at The Stand — Opt-out group’s wish list: Pension cuts, layoffs, less benefits

► From the New Republic — The biggest threat in the postal report is to rural Americans, not Amazon — The task force did not recommend selling off the Postal Service, as some feared it would. But it did suggest a radical change that would separate the Postal Service from its core mission: to provide unfettered access to communication and commerce to all citizens, regardless of who they are or where they live. Such a change would be an attack on the individual freedom of all Americans, but especially those in poor, rural communities.

TODAY at The Stand — Postal union leaders decry report calling for service cuts

► From The Hill — GOP senators introduce bill to give Trump $25 billion for border wall

► From HuffPpost — Trump reportedly shrugged off looming debt crisis because ‘I won’t be here’

► From the Hill — Time is money: Let’s open Social Security field offices, not close them — Thanks to determined, effective resistance by the American people, opponents of Social Security have failed so far to cut our earned benefits. But those opponents have succeeded in forcing neighborhood field offices to close, making those earned benefits more difficult to access. Fortunately, Rep. Gwen Moore (D-Wis.) has introduced legislation to reverse that death by a thousand cuts.

EDITOR’S NOTE — That legislation, H.R. 7146, was just introduced a couple weeks ago. Feel free to contact your U.S. representative and urge him/her to sign on as co-sponsor of this important measure.




► From The Hill — GOP lame-duck power grab disrespects Wisconsin voters (by Wisconsin AFL-CIO President Stephanie Bloomingdale) — It is the duty of Republicans in the legislature to ensure that the menu of their lame-duck session includes more than just sour grapes. Wisconsinites chose Tony Evers to be our governor. He deserves a fair chance to help us build a stronger Wisconsin.

► In the Milwaukee J-S — Wisconsin lawmakers reject bill to protect pre-existing conditions, scale back Democrats’ power

► In the Kansas City Star — After rejection by Missouri voters, Republican resurfaces right-to-work legislation

► From TPM — Michigan’s GOP legislature guts citizen-initiated minimum wage, paid sick leave laws

► In the Detroit News — Unions: Michigan GOP recertification bill ‘a nightmare’ for workplace

► From The Onion — Wisconsin legislature weakens incoming Democratic governor by restricting his access to food, water, shelter — “We must rein in the governor’s unchecked power to feed, clothe, and house himself without first obtaining legislative approval,” said Republican State Assembly Speaker Robin Vos of the lame-duck legislature’s recent flurry of bills.




► In today’s Boston Globe — Progressive Marriott union contract could have ripple effects — A series of settlements hammered out over the past few weeks between Marriott and its striking workers in Boston and seven other cities are ushering in groundbreaking benefits that could set a precedent not just for the service industry but for workers nationwide. The Boston agreement, reached after workers spent more than six weeks on the picket lines, marching and chanting in the wind and rain and snow, includes a roughly 20 percent increase in wages over 4½ years, a 37 percent increase in pension contributions, and six weeks of paid maternity leave, plus two weeks for spouses.

EDITOR’S NOTE — Ride the ripple effect! Get raises, retirement security, better benefits, and some respect at work. Contact a union organizer today!




► In today’s Washington Post — ‘We are in trouble.’ Global carbon emissions reached a record high in 2018. — Global emissions of carbon dioxide are reaching the highest levels on record, scientists projected Wednesday, in the latest evidence of the chasm between international goals for combating climate change and what countries are doing.

► From Politico — Poll: Majority of voters worried about climate change


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!