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.
“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.”
It could reportedly cost the city of Chicago $65 million for retroactive pay increases for police officers. Nonetheless, the city will not use long-term borrowing to cover the salary payments, Chicago Budget Director Alex Holt said Tuesday.
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.”