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Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
3:23pm
Fri Oct 3, 2014

Rep. Schakowsky, Commissioner Garcia Support Striking Golan's Workers (VIDEO)

Striking workers at Golan's Moving and Storage in Skokie saw support Friday afternoon from U.S. Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-IL,9) and Cook County Commissioner Jesus "Chuy" Garcia (7th).

About 90 unionized workers at Golan's have been on strike since July 28 due to sluggish contract talks with their employer. Workers at the Skokie moving company, located at 3600 Jarvis Ave., have been waiting for their first labor contract since winning union representation by Teamsters Local 705 in December.

Schakowsky and Garcia hit the picket lines with the workers Friday, the same day union and company officials met for a contract negotiation session with a federal mediator. The elected officials urged the company to bargain in good faith with the workers.

Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
4:26pm
Wed Oct 1, 2014

Report: U.S. Temp Work At Record High, More Protections Needed For Workers

The U.S. economy currently has a record number of "temporary help jobs," but many of them fall short in terms of safety and pay for workers, according to a new report on the growth of the staffing industry by the National Employment Law Project (NELP) and the National Staffing Workers Alliance (NSWA).

“The shift towards temp work is creating an economy in which working people who move and produce products for some of our nation’s largest and most profitable corporations are treated like any other input, to be acquired at the cheapest cost,” said the report's co-author Rebecca Smith, NELP's deputy director. “Staffing agencies not only fail to provide livable wages, benefits or job security for their workers, but their influence in an industry can lower standards for all workers in that industry.”

Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
6:04pm
Thu Sep 11, 2014

Report: Right-To-Work Laws Strain Public Budgets & Would 'Weaken' Illinois' Economy

Workers in collective-bargaining states "are subsidizing the low-wage model of employment" in states with so-called right-to-work laws that limit union power.

That's one of the key takeaways from a new report by researchers at the Illinois Economic Policy Institute and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign's School of Labor and Employment Relations.

“Our study found that right-to-work laws weaken state economies and strain public budgets,” said the report's co-author Bob Bruno, a labor professor at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. “Right-to-work laws not only sap government revenue in the form of reduced tax receipts, but they also increase government spending in outlays for food stamps and the Earned Income Tax Credit.”

Quick Hit
by Aaron Cynic
11:34am
Mon Aug 18, 2014

Golan's Workers Continue To Strike, See Support From Religious Leaders

Religious leaders joined more than 100 workers and their supporters on a picket line Saturday in front of the Golan's Moving and Storage Company in Skokie to hold a vigil and show solidarity with the company's employees. The workers have been striking for two weeks.

Last month, some 60 workers walked off the job after contract negotiations with the moving company stalled. In addition to charging the company with unfair labor practices, the striking workers, who in December won representation from the Teamster’s Local 705, are also fighting for health insurance, wage increases and more.

“There can be no peace without justice,” Cantor Michael Davis of the Lakeside Congregation for Reform Judaism in Highland Park told the crowd. “We remember that we all came from somewhere else. That we were all slaves once in Egypt, and we stand with everybody who is struggling. We call for justice for the workers of Golan's.”

Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
3:19pm
Mon Jul 28, 2014

Union Workers At Skokie Moving Company Strike Over Sluggish Contract Talks (VIDEO)

More than 60 workers at a moving and storage company in Skokie walked off the job Monday as part of an open-ended strike in protest of the firm's slow contract talks with their union.

Workers at Golan's Moving and Storage have been waiting for their first labor contract since winning union representation by Teamsters Local 705 in December. The union represents a core group of about 70 workers at Golan's, plus many temporary employees on 90-day work visas, said Teamsters Local 705 union representative Richard DeVries.

PI Original
by Ellyn Fortino
3:20pm
Thu Jul 10, 2014

Report: Give Tipped Workers The Regular Minimum Wage

Millions of tipped workers in the United States who face high poverty rates and other challenges would fare better if they earned the same government-mandated hourly minimum wage as non-tipped employees, according to a new Economic Policy Institute report. Progress Illinois takes a look at the report's findings and recommendations.

Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
12:52pm
Wed Jul 9, 2014

WaterSaver Workers Picket For 'Fair' Contract, Protest Over Bathroom Break Policy (VIDEO)

About 25 union-represented employees at WaterSaver Faucet Co. picketed outside of the company's Chicago headquarters and main manufacturing facility before work Wednesday morning to call for a "fair contract." 

Teamsters Local 743 represents a total of 140 workers between WaterSaver's plant, 701 W. Erie St., and another facility operated by the laboratory faucet manufacturer's sister company, Guardian Equipment, located at 1140 N. North Branch St. in Chicago.

Unionized workers at WaterSaver have been working under an extension of their old labor contract, which expired last month. Contract negotiations between the union and the company have been underway for about a month and a half, said Nicholas Kreitman, Teamsters Local 743 senior union representative and staff attorney. 

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