PSLabor News

PSLabor News

Another industrial wasteland along the Harlem River waterfront in the Bronx is on its way to a face-lift. Read Story
McDonald's Corp was accused on Tuesday in 25 new lawsuits and regulatory ch... Read Story
All you need to know on why the UK’s second-largest steelmaker faces going bust... Read Story
Four aviation unions- National Union of Air Transport Employees (NUATE), Air Transport Services Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (ATSSSAN),... Read Story
Fiat Chrysler can move forward with plans to build a new, $1.6 billion assembly plant in Detroit and invest $900 million to retool and modernize another.... Read Story
The cost to the UK economy of allowing British Steel to collapse would be far greater than the 4,500 jobs directly lost and the many thousands more at risk in the supply chain... Read Story
Staff could take strike action over the extra workload of the new Caledonian Sleeper trains, with staff expected to be balloted for strike…... Read Story
News industry : The end of an international arrangement aimed at ensuring the wellbeing of Bangladeshi garment workers is likely to undermine safety by making factory owners responsible for maintaining standards. Read Story
New Haven Unified School District officials said only about 20 percent of students attended the district's schools Monday on the first day of a strike called for by the teachers' union. Read Story
As president of the AFL-CIO, Richard Trumka is America’s most prominent representative of the interests of the working class. The following document explains exactly how he is to be chauffeured around by staffers who are told they should be “proud” to act as his driver. Read Story
A BAM employee says the union for administrative workers and cinema staff has been in the works for a year and a half, after workers “noticed a lack of transparency and discrepancies in codes of standards of conduct that BAM was holding for itself.”... Read Story
NLRB Office of General Counsel issues advice memorandum regarding classification of Uber drivers. Read Story
We must pass USMCA now, and we call on Democrats in the House to work with Republicans in a bipartisan way to get this done for America. Read Story
It was 1:00 a.m. and RJ Reyes was driving down a Los Angeles freeway when he realized he’d had enough. Read Story
The U.S. Supreme Court declined to wade into a high-stakes jurisdictional battle over labor issues at tribal-owned businesses like casinos and hotels. Read Story
U.S. hedge fund Elliott Management is opposing a new plan by Brazilian airline A... Read Story
Nurses at Twin Cities hospitals in Minnesota will hold informational pickets May 22, 23 and 29 amid contract negotiations, the union that represents them announced. Read Story
Cyber-cabbies bag more dosh from fares by gaming demand versus supply... Read Story
American Airlines Group Inc has filed a lawsuit against two unions representing its mechanics, asking the court to halt what it called an illegal slowdown that it said on Monday threatened to disrupt... Read Story
The allegation came as city leaders discussed Cincinnati's tax abatement policy. Read Story
Teachers in Union City and parts of Hayward went on strike Monday morning, hoping they will have the same successful outcome Oakland educators had with their negotiations. Read Story
Britain's GMB union demanded British Steel worked with the government to sa... Read Story
U.K.union leaders are set to lay out their concerns to the government amid reports that British Steel is facing bankruptcy within days…... Read Story
National Education Union passes motion in support of just transition and climate strikes. Read Story
Australian voters returned the pro-coal government in a stunning upset, prompting soul-searching among Australia’s left wing parties. Read Story
UK’s second largest steel producer needs emergency loan of £30m from government... Read Story
In newly filed complaints, McDonald’s employees described repeated sexual harassment and then punishment for speaking out. Read Story
The ship was previously prevented by protestors from being loaded in a French port. Read Story
Teachers in primary and secondary schools across the country are on strike over salaries. The strike started on Monday, according to the secretary general of the Uganda National Teacher’s Union [UNATU], Filbert Baguma. The teachers gave the government a 14-day ultimatum to address their issue of salary enhancement before the schools open for second term threatening to down their tools. Baguma says that the government has not yet responded to their demands. The undersecretary at ministry of education had earlier asked teachers to be patient until the budget is read in June. “I have never seen any letter from the teachers Union notifying us about their intention to strike because if I did, maybe we would have responded,” Patrick Muyinda, Spokesperson Ministry of Education told NTV. According to opposition Forum for Democratic Change [FDC], President Museveni is spending billions on these tours yet critical sectors of the economy such as health and education remain under-funded. “It is the reason teachers want to go on strike and we support them,” FDC said in a statement on Monday. Read Story
Italy's struggling airline Alitalia has canceled over 300 flights because of a 24-hour strike called to protest deteriorating conditions in the sector, including the government's failure to relaunch the carrier. Read Story
Lyft is facing a lawsuit by investors who claim the ridesharing firm's IPO filing was misleading. Read Story
Days after Uber began selling stock, the National Labor Relations Board’s top lawyer gave the company a huge gift. In an advice memo, the general counsel’s office determined that Uber’s drivers are independent contractors, not employees. Read Story
American Airlines Group Inc said on Monday it has filed a lawsuit against two un... Read Story
The budget airline said it flew 142 million customers across Europe in the year to March 31, up 9 per cent on the previous year. However, profits dropped by a third. Read Story
SIX airports will close for one day this week as a result of a strike by air traffic controllers involved in a pay dispute. Read Story
Healthcare workers will rally through June 12 at 33 California hospitals owned by Kaiser Permanente in support of issues they care about, the union representing them announced. Read Story
Xcel Energy said Monday the Minneapolis-based utility plans to retire its two remaining coal plants in the Upper Midwest by 2030, a decade earlier than scheduled, bringing praise from environmental…... Read Story
Many healthcare workers say the physical and verbal abuse come primarily from patients, some of whom are disoriented because of illness or from medication. Read Story
Wisconsin is losing people in their prime working years. Are more foreign workers the answer? Milwaukee Journal Sentinel Published 7:11 AM EDT May 20, 2019 Dzenana Hadziosmanovic inspects a transmission case for a Ford pickup truck Wednesday at Nemak, an automobile industry supplier that manufactures die-cast aluminum parts in Sheboygan. The company, like many, has been struggling to find and retain enough workers with unemployment at its lowest level in decades. Mark Hoffman / Milwaukee Journal Sentinel Unemployment is low, jobs are being created and businesses are having trouble finding workers. These are all signs that the economy in Wisconsin — and the nation — remains strong. But behind those statistics is a problem that could put the brakes on growth: The number of people in their prime working years is declining. Wisconsin has 150,000 fewer people between the ages of 25 and 54 than it did in 2007, which could create a host of problems for communities as fewer homes are built, the tax base shrinks and entrepreneurs say no thanks to starting a business.  JOIN: Our Facebook group to discuss solutions for Wisconsin “It’s a major concern when 50% of counties overall in Wisconsin are losing population outright but nearly every county is losing prime working age population,” said John Lettieri, author of a recent study by the Economic Innovation Group. EIG, a bipartisan think tank based in Washington, D.C., recommends a new visa program to allow more skilled foreign workers into the United States.  RELATED: Trump immigration plan sidesteps immigrants here illegally, draws wide criticism from both sides "It's a real problem, and I don't think enough people are talking about it," said Kelly Fortier, a lawyer who heads the immigration practice for Michael Best & Friedrich in Milwaukee. "We're going to have a huge workforce problem that will exacerbate the Social Security problem, and immigration, in my opinion, is one part of the solution." EIG’s “heartland visa” would require foreign workers to remain employed in a specific place for a specific period of time. Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis., proposed something similar in 2017, a "state-based" visa bill that would have allowed up to 500,000 new visas for workers nationwide and given states wide berth to manage the program. The senator is expected to introduce a new version of the bill this session. Businesses generally like the idea but say it’s only one solution of many that are needed as communities from Sheboygan to Tomahawk compete in a global economy. But some critics question why Wisconsin needs to import labor when people are still looking for work and say the focus should be on developing homegrown talent. And others don't like restricting the movement of workers; they argue for a comprehensive approach that would address the millions of undocumented workers already here. Why is Wisconsin losing people in their prime working years? We’re getting older. Wisconsin’s 65-plus age group will grow by a third between 2020 and 2030, according to the state Department of Administration. We’re also having fewer children and some people are leaving the labor force. And we're losing some of our young people to other states. For the first time in a century, the U.S. is facing both low population growth and low growth in prime working age population at the same time, EIG’s report found. Over the last decade, states in the Midwest and New England had the biggest losses of people in their prime working years as growth was concentrated in a smaller number of regions. Eighty-six percent of counties are now growing more slowly than the nation as a whole. In Wisconsin, 70 of 72 counties showed declines from 2007 to 2017. Northern counties are shrinking the most, but there were also big losses in the state’s industrial heartland. “The challenge is already here,” said Dane Checolinski, director of the Sheboygan County Economic Development Corp. “It’s here, and it’s been here since 2014 or 2015 when we started to hear from the business community that workforce was becoming a more serious issue.” Just up I-43, Manitowoc County was hit by the closing of major employers Manitowoc Co. in 2017 and the Kewaunee Power Station in nearby Kewaunee County in 2013. The county has 15% fewer people of prime working age than it did a decade ago. “It’s he who finishes with the most people who wins in economic development,” said Peter Wills, executive director of Progress Lakeshore, the local economic development organization. “I’ll attract one or two or three companies a year but if I could instead bring in 3,000 to 6,000 people, I could have a lot more growth.” Why does it matter? EIG's report says that when the number of people in their prime working years declines: The housing market suffers. If there are fewer young families, there will be less demand for homes, and often, falling home prices — in the worst case, even vacant homes. There is also less work for construction companies. As home prices fall, a reverse “wealth effect” takes hold and homeowners tend to spend less, with cascading effects on their communities. Entrepreneurs, who often tap the equity in their home to fund a business, have less money to tap. Local governments take a hit. When population declines, state and local governments collect fewer taxes. Some government costs go down, but others go up — to deal with blighted neighborhoods or to assist an aging population, for example — and fixed costs never go away. Pensions have to be paid. Roads, sewers and utilities have to be maintained. Fewer people start businesses. New business formation is an important catalyst for job growth and innovation, but shrinking places have fewer new businesses. The rate of new business starts is closely related to population growth, according to an analysis by Moody’s Analytics; in recent years, as population growth has stagnated, the rate of new business formation has stagnated, too. What is a place-based visa? It would allow foreign workers to come to the U.S. if they agree to work in a specific place for a certain amount of time. Existing immigration policy tends to favor prosperous areas of the country, Lettieri says, and not struggling communities. In 2013, a quarter of all H-1B visa applications came from companies based in only three metropolitan areas, the report notes. (The H-1B program allows companies to bring in college-educated people to work in specialized fields). A well-designed new program could fix that, Lettieri argues. “What about the other places where there is tons of excess capacity?” Lettieri said. “In places like that, we can get a different kind of benefit and a very important one.” Said Fortier: "The general idea of using immigration to fill population gaps or to meet labor demands is a good one."  How would the visa work in places like Wisconsin? EIG recommends: The program should target regions facing population declines and underserved by existing immigration programs. It should be voluntary. It should tie workers to a place, not a company. It should be in addition to current immigration quotas. It should provide a path to permanent residency. Additional federal and state funding should be provided to help visa holders find work and assimilate. The cap on green cards should be increased. Visa holders would have to find and maintain a job or start a business within a reasonable period of time. Johnson introduced a bill in 2017 that would have: Allowed a state or a group of states to create a state-based program with federal oversight. The visa would have been for three years with an opportunity for renewal. Visa recipients would have been eligible to apply for permanent legal residency. Visa holders would not have been entitled to federal benefits and would have had to pay taxes. The bill envisioned 500,000 visas across the U.S. — 5,000 per state with the rest distributed based on population. Workers would have been required to remain in the state that sponsored them throughout the program, but they would have been able to move from company to company. States could have required visa holders to pay a bond to ensure compliance with the rules. The idea raises a number of questions, many of which Johnson would leave to the states. Among them: How would visa recipients be chosen? Would certain degrees or specialties be emphasized? Would the program target “skilled workers”? How would “skilled” be defined? What sort of protections would be in place to prevent abuse? Does a bond requirement discriminate against people from poorer countries? "There must be protections for U.S. workers and for the foreign nationals coming in," Fortier said. "But I think those are things that can be worked through." How would this help struggling Wisconsin communities? More skilled immigrants could help shore up local economies and give them an entrepreneurial boost, Lettieri contends. The report cites numerous studies to make that point, including one in 2017 from the Center for American Entrepreneurship, which found that 43% of the Fortune 500 that year had a first- or second-generation immigrant among its founders, about triple the percentage of foreign-born people living in the U.S. In a 2017 talk at the free-market Cato Institute, Johnson sold his state-based visa bill as one solution to the labor crunch. Cato has been a strong supporter of the idea. “We need to make sure we have enough labor in this country if we want to grow our economy,” Johnson said at the time. “We can’t starve our business community of the necessary labor.” Lettieri and co-author Adam Ozimek of Moody’s Analytics say skilled immigrants could help communities in other ways. “The effects of skilled people on local economies is so much bigger than just finding a lathe operator or something like that,” Ozimek said. “Skilled immigrants are entrepreneurs, and there’s a dynamic process of job creation that is much more unplanned than simply identifying an employer that can’t find a worker today.” What do critics say? Stephanie Bloomingdale, president of the Wisconsin State AFL-CIO, would rather see a focus on existing workers. Among Bloomingdale's concerns: a new visa program could drive down wages. “Any recommendation from the Cato Institute, which is funded by the Koch Brothers, is suspicious to people who actually wake up every day and work for a living,” she said. “The easy solution is to raise wages, provide better working conditions and better benefits, and have a free and fair way to come together and unionize.” While she believes that all workers, including those from foreign nations, deserve good wages and working conditions, she is focused on the workers already here. "There was a time when companies had to fill the jobs they had with a local workforce," Bloomingdale said. "Investing in that workforce not only made the company stronger but also made the community stronger. We'd like to see a return to that idea." Christine Neumann-Ortiz, executive director of the immigrant rights group Voces de la Frontera, believes Johnson's approach, which would allow states to require workers to post a bond and restrict where they could work, could be abused.  “Guest worker programs have been notorious for creating modern-day indentured servitude where people end up being indebted to labor contractors, who often control workers’ housing and food and do things like withhold travel documents or even physically assault workers who can’t pay debts," she said. "Adding state fees or bonds would likely increase these debts." Johnson's proposal "would further complicate things by creating state-based enforcement mechanisms," Neumann-Ortiz said. Johnson's 2017 bill also caught flak from a group that wants to cut legal immigration. In a commentary posted in May of that year, Grant Newman of NumbersUSA wrote that the bill would provide "amnesty" and "cannot be taken seriously." Where else has this been tried? Did it work? Canada’s Provincial Nominee Program brought about 250,000 immigrants to the country in the five years ending in 2015. An analysis by the government in 2017 found that 83% of those admitted to the country through the program from 2002-2014 were still in the province that “nominated” them. And the program has helped spread immigrants around the country. In 1995, the government report notes, 87% of economic immigrants settled in just three provinces — Ontario, British Columbia and Quebec. But from 2010-2015, 76% of those admitted under the nominee program put down roots elsewhere. The Canadian program offers a path to permanent residency. Australia has a similar program.  What else are Wisconsin communities doing? Dr. Joseph Sheehan, superintendent of the Sheboygan Area School District cuts through a metal "ribbon" using a plasma cutter at the Red Raider Manufacturing Kohler/Johnsonville Advanced Technology Centers Tuesday October 18, 2016 at Sheboygan South. Gary C. Klein/USA TODAY NETWORK- The long-term demographic problem facing Wisconsin is compounded by a strong economy that has left businesses of all kinds short of workers. As a result, there is an emphasis on developing local talent — and then trying to hang onto it. Sheboygan County, an area heavily dependent on manufacturing, lost 12% of its prime working age population in the past decade, according to statistics compiled by EIG. That’s nearly 6,000 fewer people in their most productive working years. But led by its largest employers, several initiatives are underway to attract and keep workers: • Inspire Sheboygan County is a 6-year-old online hub where students can explore careers, learn about companies offering job shadows or internships or pair up with a career coach. Dozens of companies are involved, said Checolinski, of Sheboygan County EDC.  • Red Raider Manufacturing — a state-of-the-art manufacturing and engineering training lab in Sheboygan's North and South high schools — is in its third year. More than 45 companies, organizations and individuals in the region, including Kohler Co. and Johnsonville Sausage, invested in Red Raider. “It really helps students understand what today’s manufacturing — and robotics and machine-based manufacturing — is as opposed to what it may have been in the past,” said Seth Harvatine, superintendent of the Sheboygan Area School District. • Sheboygan schools are rolling out a new program this fall — College Here & Now — that will allow students to earn an associate degree in information technology, web and software development at no cost from Lakeshore Technical College at the same time they graduate from high school. After that, they could receive a bachelor’s degree in computer science in as few as two years from Lakeland University, Harvatine said. • Businesses and economic development officials realized the county had a housing shortage, particularly apartments. Hundreds of new apartments have been built in the last few years. What are the chances Congress will take up this idea? Immigration remains one of the nation's most politically divisive issues, as illustrated by President Donald Trump's new immigration proposal and the reaction to it last week. It drew fire from both the left and right sides of the political divide. If the past is any guide, it is hard to imagine much serious progress as we enter an election year. Johnson's 2017 bill did not advance out of committee. David D. Haynes is editor of the Ideas Lab. He reports on innovation in business and government and on government transparency. Email: david.haynes@jrn.com. Follow him on Twitter at @DavidDHaynes or Facebook. Why I did this story — and how A study published last month by the Economic Innovation Group, a Washington, D.C.-based bipartisan think tank, outlined a troubling problem: Population growth has fallen to 80-year lows nationally — and the number of people in their prime working years (25-54) is falling in many places, including in much of Wisconsin. That’s a severe demographic challenge that will mean fewer workers down the road supporting far more aging residents. I started my reporting by reading the 48-page report and checking key findings with sources at the University of Wisconsin and elsewhere. I spoke with two of the authors, Adam Ozimek of Moody’s Analytics and John Lettieri of EIG. I corresponded by email with Sen. Ron Johnson’s staff as the senator worked on a new version of his 2017 bill. I watched a 2017 presentation by Johnson at the Cato Institute. To get a look at the problem on the ground, I went to Manitowoc and Sheboygan. I interviewed Seth Havartine, superintendent of Sheboygan Area Schools; Joe Sheehan, executive director, Sheboygan Economic Development Corp.; Dane Checolinski, director of the Sheboygan County EDC; Peter Wills, executive director, Progress Lakeshore, an economic development group in Manitowoc; and Zachary Salata, human resources manager at The Vollrath Co. To hear other perspectives, I interviewed Stephanie Bloomingdale, president of the Wisconsin State AFL-CIO; Christine Neumann-Ortiz, executive director of Voces de la Frontera, an immigrants rights group; and Kelly Fortier, a lawyer at Michael Best & Friedrich in Milwaukee who specializes in immigration law. I also read a commentary from NumbersUSA on Johnson’s 2017 bill. NumbersUSA wants to decrease legal immigration. — David D. Haynes Published 7:11 AM EDT May 20, 2019 Read Story
About 600 teachers and counselors from the New Haven Unified School District went on strike this morning as they fight for better pay. Read Story
Primary school teachers in Oyo State on Monday commenced an indefinite strike due to delay in payment of salaries of public primary school teachers... Read Story
The AFL-CIO, the largest federation of labor unions in the United States, has stirred controversy by tweeting a Marxist video and declaring: "We all need to seize the means of production."... Read Story
Police launch major probe into accident; construction sites to stop work for half a day Thursday to hold seminars on safety... Read Story
It wasn't all good news from the U.S. Supreme Court as the Pauma Band of Luiseño Indians was turned away in a closely-watched labor sovereignty case. Read Story
The pension funding gap is so large that it is a problem for everyone, even those without affected pensions.Worse, almost all public pension funds assume inves... Read Story
PITTSBURGH, May 20, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- The United Steelworkers today reacted to an announcement by Arconic that its board of directors have authorized an additional $500 million in share...| May 20, 2019... Read Story