OAKLAND, Calif. - A new chapter opened Feb. 7 in the long saga of efforts to redevelop the former Oakland Army Base, as the City Council approved guiding principles to assure Oakland residents priority for construction jobs and for the warehouse and goods movement jobs that are to follow.
The base is especially important to the city's economic life because it is next to the Port of Oakland, the nation's fifth busiest port, in a working-class area where unemployment is high.
Agreement on the provisions came after years of discussion, and a nine-month process that brought together labor, community members, environmentalists and the business community, with Councilmember Jane Brunner playing a major role. Participating in the discussions was the 30-organization Revive Oakland! coalition of clergy, workers, youth, and neighbors from West and East Oakland.
Besides construction jobs, the project is expected to create some 2,500 to 3,000 permanent jobs.
Workers nationwide are losing millions of dollars each week to wage theft as their employers, some unscrupulous, others scrambling to keep their businesses afloat, fail to pay the mandated minimum wage or overtime wages, or, in some cases, don’t pay their employees at all.
Wage theft is far more common than was known just a few years ago, according to a new report from the Research Institute on Social and Economic Policy at Florida International University.
“Employers are under a tight squeeze and looking for different ways to save money. Some are using wage theft as a business model to cut costs,” said Cynthia Hernandez, co-author of the report.
The research institute’s study comes just as Florida is debating how to handle wage theft allegations. The state hasn’t had a labor department since former Gov. Jeb Bush dismantled the department a decade ago.
BOOK PARTY / FORUM
Playbook for Progressives: 16 Qualities of the Successful Organizer Eric Mann
Tuesday October 11th 6-8:30pm
at 518 Valencia Street
Hosted by POWER
OAKLAND Thursday October 13th 6-8:30pm
(Rescheduled - Date To Be Determined)
Hosted by Causa Justa::Just Cause
“Eric Mann has written an essential field guide for community organizers. His voice is crisp and clear, and his footsteps on the pavement are sharp. A pragmatic primer for all radicals.”?—Vijay Prashad, author of The Darker Nations: A People’s History of the Third World
An organizing manifesto for the twenty-first century, Playbook for Progressives is a must-have for the activist’s tool kit. This comprehensive guide articulates pragmatically what is required in the often mystifying and rarely explained on-the-ground practice of organizing. Here, Eric Mann distills lessons he learned from over forty years as an organizer, as well as from other organizers within the civil rights, labor, LGBT, economic justice, and environmental movements.
Come hear the author first hand and get your own copy of this exciting new book!!
Read more about the Playbook for Progressives here.
Eric Mann is a veteran organizer with the Congress of Racial Equality, Students for a Democratic Society, and the United Auto Workers Union. He is presently the director of the Labor/Community Strategy Center in Los Angeles and a member of its Bus Riders Union and Community Rights Campaign.
As part of Forum's "Our Changing Communities" series on the results of the 2010 census, we take a close look at Oakland.
California Labor Federation
When was the last time you saw a labor advocate, a government representative and a corporate CEO still down and hash out ways they can work together towards a common goal of renewing our workforce and reviving our economy? If you’re thinking, “that would never happen,” you’ve obviously never been to the California Labor Federation’s “Building Workforce Partnerships” conference.
Sponsored by the Workforce and Economic Development (WED) Program, this unique and groundbreaking conference has exploded in popularity in recent years, drawing the best and brightest economists, labor activists, environmentalists, workforce experts, business leaders, government representatives and others from all across the state and country. Even though the participants came from a wide variety of backgrounds, they all share a common goal – to build a new, sustainable economy fueled by advanced manufacturing and renewable energy jobs.
For Immediate Release: April 12, 2011
Stacy Malkan, email@example.com, 202-321-6963
Sian Wu, firstname.lastname@example.org, 206-701-4734
Alexandra Gorman Scranton, email@example.com, 406-396-1639
Beauty Salon Workers in Danger: Toxic Brazilian Blowout
OSHA Issues Warning; National Academy of Sciences Confirms Formaldehyde-Cancer Link; California Attorney General Issues Injunction against Brazilian Blowout
WASHINGTON— The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), under the U.S. Department of Labor, issued a hazard alert Monday, warning that popular hair straightening products such as “Brazilian Blowout” can cause serious health problems, including increased risk of cancer.
California's first-ever citizens redistricting commission came alive today with the random drawing of eight initial members who were finalists from a pool of nearly 31,000 applicants.
The independent commission is charged with a once-a-decade task that lies at the heart of political power, determining boundary lines for legislative, congressional, and Board of Equalization districts.
SAN FRANCISCO, CA -- October 20, 2010 -- Next year, San Francisco public dollars will create 9,400 blue-collar and green-collar jobs as the city embarks on an ambitious ten-year, $27 billion capital investment plan. A city-funded study by L. Luster & Associates released Monday also shows that San Francisco’s performance in meeting its longstanding goal of employing 50% local residents on public works is at an all-time low, while city unemployment has peaked: from July 2009 to July 2010, only 20% of city-funded construction hours were performed by local residents, down from 24.1% over the past seven years.
Sunnyvale Horizon 2035 Committee Public Outreach Meeting
Help shape the future of Sunnyvale by attending the Horizon 2035 Committee's Public Outreach meeting on the Climate Action Plan. Help plan for Sunnyvale's future Transportation, Land Use, and Climate policies that will affect everything from the location of businesses to what kind of light bulbs will go in streetlamps!
The meeting will be held at 7:00 PM on Wednesday, September 29, 2010 at the City Council Chambers in Sunnyvale (456 W. Olive Avenue). For updates on Horizon 2035, visit www.Horizon2035.inSunnyvale.com
Please see flyer for more information. We hope to see you on the 29th!
Standing Up with the Aboriginal Blackmen United: The rabble-rousers of the ABU have helped to achieve local hiring goals.
In San Francisco, a battle starts every morning on a street corner in the Bayview, where a crowd of people gathers around a white pickup. On a Thursday in June, there are about 15 people there, mostly black men, with a handful of women and Latinos. They're waiting for James Richards to give them the morning pep talk. He calls it "the breakfast of champions."
Richards is a big man in his 60s, eyes inscrutable, though seldom seen behind his sunglasses. There's a marijuana bud on his gold front tooth. In conversation, Richards' voice can be soft, his responses vague. But when it's time to make a speech, he can preach social justice with the fire of a Civil Rights–era crusader, railing against chickenshit unions and lying politicians."What I hear," Richards begins, slowly, "is you all were acting like real warriors."
Richards is the leader of the Aboriginal Blackmen United, a group that's part direct-action organization, part job placement agency, and all business when its members think employers are abusing their right to work. Its only headquarters is this street corner in front of the Double Rock Baptist Church. Nearly everyone here, including Richards himself, is jobless — not surprising in a neighborhood where the unemployment rate during the Great Recession is thought to be 50 percent higher than that of the rest of the city, and an estimated one in every 3.5 African-Americans is out of work.