Today’s News & Commentary — December 20, 2016

Published December 20th, 2016 -  - 12.20.161


Uber drivers and other gig economy workers in Seattle may soon be able to unionize, as the city is close to finalizing rules to implement an ordinance passed last year which survived a court challenge.  According to the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, “the city’s Finance and Administrative Services department held a public hearing to take comments on the draft rules.”  More than 20 people signed up to testify.  The proposed rules can be found here.  Seattle’s target date for implementation is January 17, 2017, and collective bargaining negotiations could begin as soon as next summer.

The race for chairman of the Democratic National Committee features two front-runners with strong pro-labor backgrounds, and unions appear divided.  NBC News reports that “the International Association of Firefighters, the main union representing American firefighters, has placed itself on a collision course with the AFL-CIO in the race for the next chairman of the Democratic National Committee, deciding to back Labor Secretary Tom Perez over Minnesota Rep. Keith Ellison.”  Perez has also garnered the support of the UFW and the UFCW.  Per Bloomberg BNA, both candidates have strong records supporting organized labor.

Logging continues to be the most dangerous job in America, according to new data released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.  Forbes notes that “last year loggers suffered 67 fatalities while on the job, with a fatality rate of 132.7,” while the “occupation which suffered the most fatalities overall was that of driver/sales workers and truck drivers.”

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