Labor Rights

Category archives for Labor Rights

Occupational Health News Roundup

An in-depth look at how lobbyists squashed an Illinois bill to prevent discriminatory hiring practices in the temp industry; thousands of coal miners in Kentucky rally to save their health benefits and pensions; Chicago gets closer to a sick leave ordinance; and two workers lose their lives in the Bakken oil fields in the span of a few days.

The road toward eliminating the threat of asbestos has been long, slow-moving, incredibly frustrating and littered with significant hurdles. Thankfully, advocates like Linda Reinstein, who lost her husband to asbestos-related disease in 2003, refuse to get discouraged.

Coal miner, newly retired, but not as miners’ safety rep

Flip Wilson retired months ago after 40 years as a coal miner. Co-workers designated him as their safety representative. He drives 70 miles roundtrip to accompany mine inspectors and ensure the company is following the law.

Reveal investigates the toll of nuclear testing on the country’s “atomic vets”; federal labor officials propose new mining safety rules; D.C. officials vote in support of a $15 minimum wage; and an Amazon employee writes a first-person account from inside one of the company’s warehouses.

A ‘hidden’ workforce of foreign workers at a Tesla plant in California; Illinois legislators pass a domestic workers bill of rights; Congress uses a spending bill to weaken safety rules for truckers; and lawsuits over workplace leave policies spike way up.

Last summer, 25-year-old Roendy Granillo died of heat stroke while he installed flooring in a house in Melissa, Texas, just north of Dallas. His tragic and entirely preventable death marked a turning point in advocacy efforts to pass a rest break ordinance for local construction workers.

Hardly a day goes by lately without another story on companies like Uber and their model of classifying workers as independent contractors while treating them more like traditional employees and sidestepping traditional employer responsibilities. It’s a model that has serious implications for workers’ rights and wages. However, there’s another form of employment that may be even more damaging to hard-fought labor standards: subcontracting.

“Holding it”: Tyson, Perdue workers denied bathroom breaks

Imagine if employees are your local grocery store or restaurant weren’t given access to the bathroom when they needed to use it. Employees soiled themselves while stocking shelves or working at the check-out counter. That’s what is happening where we can’t see: behind the walls of poultry processing plants.

Workers inside Donald Trump’s Las Vegas hotel speak up about wages and conditions; New York’s governor sides with farmworkers in right to organize; reporters investigate the lack of women coaches in college sports; and Uber agrees to a workers guild with very limited power.

Worker Memorial Day 2016: Names, Faces, Places, Data

If you attended any Worker Memorial Day events this week, The Pump Handle invites you to share with readers some highlights from it.