New York bus drivers strike The biggest labor news in the states this week is the bus drivers strike in New York City. The union and the city disagree about how new contracts are being drafted with bus companies. According to the union, the contracts h …

Walton Pantland

New York bus drivers strike

The biggest labor news in the states this week is the bus drivers strike in New York City. The union and the city disagree about how new contracts are being drafted with bus companies. According to the union, the contracts have included Employee Protection Provisions since as early as 1969 but the city is refusing to include them in the new agreements. Without EPPs in the contracts thousands of drivers could lose their job overnight when the existing contracts expire in June. The city argues that they cannot legally provide the protections due to competitive bidding laws; the union disagrees.

The strike has caused a huge hassle for parents across the city. About 152,000 children (about 14%) take the bus, and, unfortunately, about 54,000 of those kids have disabilities and have a difficult time getting to school each day. This makes it especially easy for the union to be painted in a bad light. Many people called the union selfish and greedy for striking, but they overlook how important job security is to these workers. In an ideal world, school children would never be affected by a teachers strike or a bus drivers work stoppage, but labor strikes naturally have unintended consequences. Hopefully the dispute will be resolved quickly and in favor of the bus drivers.

Michigan unions protest Governor Snyder

Hundreds of protesters gathered in Lansing, Michigan, to protest Governor Rick Snyder’s annual State of the State address.  Union members, native Indians, and environmentalists joined together in the cold to rise against Snyder’s republican-controlled government.  Snyder has taken several steps to destroy unions in the last two months, the main one being the passage of Right To Work legislation which severely limits union funding.  Unions have promised that Snyder will not see a day of peace until he leaves office.  They continued to protest Wednesday to show that they’re “still here.”

LAPD union backs Greuel as mayoral candidate

On the other side of the nation, the Los Angeles Police Department union president issued a statement in support of mayoral candidate Wendy Greuel. Greuel is a former city councilwoman and currently serves as the city controller.  The union emphasized her commitment to putting public safety at the forefront of issues as well as generally cleaning up the city and government structure.  Greuel faces competition from three other main candidates.


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Walton Pantland

South African trade unionist living in Glasgow. Loves whisky, wine, running and the great outdoors. Walton did an MA in Industrial Relations at Ruskin, Oxford, and is interested in how trade unions use new technology to organise.

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