Today’s News & Commentary — November 9, 2017
Labor groups from around the world met at the Ford Foundation in New York to launch an effort to help workers worldwide. Groups like the Florida-based Coalition of Immokalee Workers and the Minneapolis-based Centro de Trabajadores Unidos en Lucha attended the meeting. Labor activists from Bangladesh discussed the benefits of union-corporate agreements that have improved safety after the fires and building collapses there. The collective effort is known as the Worker-Driven Social Responsibility Network, and it hopes to: (1) have workers playing a central role in developing workplace standards; (2) have workers select the workplace monitors; and (3) impose consequences for companies who violate these codes of conduct.
According to the New York Times, 2,000 workers at a Fuyao Glass plant in Ohio are voting on whether or not to unionize. Fuyao Glass is a Chinese company run by Mr. Cao Dewang. Workers allege that supervisors have treated workers arbitrarily and have maintained a strict attendance policy even if employees have valid excuses. Unlike many foreign companies that opened in Southern states with laws less favorable to unionizing, Fuyao took relatively few precautions.
The Service Employees International Union (SEIU), the second largest labor union in the United States, has fired one senior employee and accepted the resignation of another after they were both accused of harassment towards women in the workplace. The investigations began after allegations that former SEIU Executive Vice President Scott Courtney was dating his subordinates. Mr. Courtney resigned last week amid these allegations.