Today’s News & Commentary — August 6, 2018

Published August 6th, 2018 -  - 08.06.184


New York City police officers rallied at city hall last week to protest the full year that they have been working without a labor contract (the prior labor agreement expired on July 31, 2017).  Patrolman’s Benevolent Association (PBA), a union that represents 24,000 police officers, organized the protest. New York City and PBA are currently in the midst of arbitration proceedings over a new labor agreement.

The Wall Street Journal details how public-sector unions in Illinois, New York, and Pennsylvania are beginning to feel the effects of the Janus decision.  In New York alone, unions could “lose $112 million in agency fees from 200,000 state and local workers,” per research from the Empire Center, an Albany-based conservative think tank.

Last week, The New York Times recounted the remarkable life of labor-rights leader Clara Lemlich Shavelson as part of its “Overlooked” series, which tells the stories of extraordinary people who were left out of its previously white-male-dominated obituary section.  Ms. Lemlich Shavelson emigrated with her family from Ukraine to the United States in 1903.  Six years later, at the age of 23, Ms. Lemlich Shavelson helped lead the Uprising of 20,000, a strike that resulted in shorter days and better working conditions for women in the New York shirtwaist industry.  The Uprising of 20,000 remains the largest strike of women in American history.  Ms. Lemlich Shavelson passed away in July of 1982 at the age of 96.

Brent Kendall, legal affairs reporter for The Wall Street Journal, explores Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh’s history of deciding labor and employment cases against workers and in favor of employers.  OnLabor ‘s extensive coverage of Judge Kavanaugh’s nomination–and what it could mean for the labor movement–can be found here.

Associated Press reporter Josh Boak explains that while the “United States is on pace to add about 2.6 million jobs this year under President Donald Trump’s watch . . . . the bulk of the hiring has occurred in bastions of Democratic voters rather than in the Republican counties that put Trump in the White House.”

Yesterday marked the 85th anniversary of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s establishment of the National Labor Board.  The National Labor Board was replaced by the National Labor Relations Board in 1935.

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