Workers Struggles

Jefferson County, Kentucky teachers continue sickouts in defiance of unions

By our reporter, 8 March 2019

As sickouts by teachers in Kentucky’s largest school district continued into the second day, the unions were desperately working with state and local officials to shut down the protest.

Germany: Opposition growing among teachers, public sector workers to Verdi’s sell-out agreement

By Ulrich Rippert, 8 March 2019

The continuation of low-wage jobs in many parts of the public sector, including the care professions, education and childcare, will further exacerbate staff shortages and intensify workloads.

1,700 workers battle two-tier wages at Erie, Pennsylvania locomotive plant

By Samuel Davidson, 6 March 2019

Workers at the giant locomotive plant in Erie, Pennsylvania have entered their second week on the picket line against demands for a two-tier wage system and other concessions.

Students and teachers outraged as

Oakland, California school board passes devastating budget cut following union sellout

By Evan Blake and Gabriel Black, 5 March 2019

The betrayal of the seven-day teacher strike by the Oakland Education Association has opened the door to deep cuts and school closings.

Police attack Buenos Aires Coca Cola workers; Spokane nurses protest attack on benefits

Workers Struggles: The Americas

5 March 2019

Police assaulted a protest march by Coca Cola workers in Buenos Aires and their supporters Thursday called to oppose layoffs.

Mass demonstration by public-sector workers in Berlin

By our reporters, 4 March 2019

Thousands of teachers and social workers in Berlin held a two-day warning strike last week.

“The union abandoned us and allowed for management to blacklist us”

US, Canadian and Mexican workers denounce mass firings of Matamoros strikers

By our reporters, 2 March 2019

Mexican auto parts and other “maquiladora” corporations are firing workers in retaliation for launching a wave of wildcat strikes that brought the Mexican border town of Matamoros to a standstill.

Strike wave shakes North Africa

By Kumaran Ira, 2 March 2019

After the “Arab Spring” in 2011, a new wave of strikes and demonstrations is shaking Algeria, Tunisia and Morocco.

Vote “no” on sell-out agreement

Union pushes contract in effort to shut down Oakland teachers’ strike

By Joseph Santolan, 2 March 2019

The deal leaves $30 million of district budget cuts and school closures intact, while allowing school closures, giving teachers raises below inflation, and addressing none of their other pressing demands.

British retail sector continues shedding thousands of jobs

By Simon Whelan, 2 March 2019

Some 19,000 high street jobs have been lost or put at risk in the two months since Christmas.

Boston: Unanimous opposition to MBTA fare hike at public hearing

By John Marion and Kate Randall, 2 March 2019

The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority is planning to impose fare increases averaging 6.3 percent on its bus, subway and commuter rail riders effective July 1.

France’s New Anti-capitalist Party sabotages fight against Ford Blanquefort plant closure

By Will Morrow, 2 March 2019

Leading NPA member Philip Poutou, a Ford employee and union official at Blanquefort, is seeking to prevent any fight by workers against the closure.

India: Pricol autoparts workers continue strike in Tamil Nadu; Chinese food delivery workers protest pay cuts; 3,000 New Zealand doctors hold two-day strike

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

2 March 2019

The World Socialist Web Site invites workers and other readers to contribute to this regular feature.

Hundreds laid off at Activision Blizzard and other video game companies

By Zachary Thorton, 1 March 2019

For all of the grueling hours that workers are subjected to, and the impact this has on their health and social lives, none of it guarantees their job security.

Workers Struggles: Europe, Middle East & Africa

1 March 2019

Public sector workers across Germany began a two-day strike on Tuesday as a walkout by workers at the Sibanye gold mine threatens to spread to a consortium of 15 other companies.

Mexico: Metalworkers, universities join strike wave as 90,000 Walmart workers threaten to walk out

By Andrea Lobo, 28 February 2019

As the strike movement builds, the trade unions are scrambling to co-opt, isolate and shut down each rank-and-file struggle.

Locomotive builders strike Wabtec in Erie, Pennsylvania

By Shannon Jones, 28 February 2019

The strike by 1,700 workers at the former GE Transportation facility is in response to the new management’s attempt to impose concessions.

The global struggle of teachers

By Jerry White, 26 February 2019

Throughout the world, teachers have come to the forefront of the struggle against decades of austerity and levels of social inequality not seen since the 1920s.

German aviation security workers reject union contract

By Dietmar Gaisenkersting, 25 February 2019

The 23,000 airport security workers have rejected the contract negotiated by the United Services Workers’ Union (Verdi).

GM to keep Detroit-Hamtramck plant open until January 2020

By Shannon Jones, 25 February 2019

The surprise announcement that production will continue, at least temporarily, is bound up with plans by GM and the United Auto Workers to push through deep concessions in contract talks this summer.

“Everyone in the mine is very mad and concerned”

Miner warns of safety danger at United States’ largest underground coal mine

By Samuel Davidson, 25 February 2019

Despite record levels of production at Consol Energy’s Pennsylvania Mining Complex the company has not rehired miners assigned to rock dust crews who were recently laid off.

Oakland, California teachers press for expansion of strike as union seeks to contain struggle

By Evan Blake, 23 February 2019

Despite its rhetoric, the OEA is working to isolate teachers from their class allies and prevent a broader struggle in defense of public education.

“Everybody needs to go on strike”

Charleston, West Virginia residents support teachers fighting to defend public education

By our reporters, 23 February 2019

The unions called off the West Virginia teachers strike amid a growing national strike wave and broad support in the working class.

Vote “No” on sell-out contract!

As voting takes place, Denver teachers angry over tentative agreement

By Nancy Hanover and George Marlowe, 23 February 2019

The WSWS Teachers Newsletter urges teachers to reject the deal, which does not resolve any of the issues concerning poverty wages for teachers or the broader attack on public education.

Students speak out against closure of Oregon College of Art and Craft

By our reporters, 23 February 2019

After years of deceit and backroom talks, the administration and Board of Trustees announced that they will close and sell-off OCAC by the end of the semester.

For a unified struggle of Oakland students and teachers to defend public education!

By the International Youth and Students for Social Equality - Berkeley, 23 February 2019

The IYSSE supports and applauds the tens of thousands of teenage students in Oakland who have protested in solidarity with their striking teachers.

Indian telecommunication workers strike; Bangladesh teachers and education workers protest pay cuts; New Zealand anaesthetic technicians strike

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

23 February 2019

The World Socialist Web Site invites workers and other readers to contribute to this regular feature.

State and corporate attacks escalate against workers in Matamoros, Mexico

By Andrea Lobo, 22 February 2019

The World Socialist Web Site has received new reports of assaults against workers in Mexico who are voicing opposition to the right-wing offensive of the government and companies against social and democratic rights.

Workers Struggles: Europe, Middle East & Africa

South African gold miners’ strike at Sibanye in third month, Kenyan striking nurses defy back to work order

22 February 2019

As the strike by workers at Sibanye gold mine continues, the company announced the closure of two mines costing 7,000 jobs. Meanwhile Kenyan nurses are defying a back to work order by President Uhuru Kenyatta.

Oakland, California teachers walk out as unions sabotage West Virginia strike

By Jerry White, 21 February 2019

Teachers in Oakland, California have walked out of schools in the latest of a series of strikes by educators in the US and internationally against austerity and social inequality.

“There’s been a blackout from the union”

Teamsters locals use anti-democratic loopholes and deceit to impose sellout agreements

By Erik Schreiber, 21 February 2019

Adding insult to injury following the imposition of the national UPS contract last year, the Teamsters union is using anti-democratic procedures to ram through local supplemental agreements by overriding the express will of the membership.

Flooding of mines in Zimbabwe leaves 24 dead, dozens more missing

By Eddie Haywood, 21 February 2019

The mining tragedy comes amid an immense social and economic crisis wracking Zimbabwe, with skyrocketing inflation and mass unemployment.

Irish nurses’ union seeks to impose settlement after calling off strike

By Dermot Byrne, 20 February 2019

The INMO nurses’ union is betraying the struggle for a decent pay rise and better working conditions.

Striking midwives rally outside New Zealand parliament

By Tom Peters, 20 February 2019

Midwives, doctors and other health workers face a common fight but their strikes are being divided and isolated by the union bureaucracy.

Colombian teachers in 24-hour national strike over attacks on public education

Workers Struggles: The Americas

19 February 2019

The World Socialist Web Site invites workers and other readers to contribute to this regular feature.

Signs of rising levels of workers’ struggles in China

By Peter Symonds, 18 February 2019

China Labour Bulletin last year recorded more than 1,700 protests and strikes, up by 36 percent from 1,250 in 2017—a small fraction of the actual number of struggles.

Germany: Public transport strike paralyzes Berlin

By our reporters, 16 February 2019

For much of Friday, all subways and trams in the capital stood still and most buses remained in their depots.

Nationwide public sector strike hits Portugal

By Will Morrow, 16 February 2019

Leading union officials have issued warnings to the government that its actions could trigger “uncontrollable” struggles by workers that they cannot prevent.

Union thugs assault striking Matamoros workers

By Andrea Lobo, 16 February 2019

Threats by management, police and the unions are increasingly frequent across the city.

Bangladesh steel workers demand wage rise; Australian coal haulage workers continue strike action; New Zealand bus drivers hold wildcat strikes

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

16 February 2019

The World Socialist Web Site invites workers and other readers to contribute to this regular feature.

OSHA fines XPO $10,347 for the deaths of two workers

By Steve Filips, 15 February 2019

OSHA reached a settlement with XPO Logistics imposing wrist-slap fines for the company’s negligence relating to the deaths of two workers in June 2018.

UK rail strike at South Western Railway, Sibanye gold and platinum miners’ strike continues

Workers Struggles: Europe, Middle East & Africa

15 February 2019

Rail workers at South Western Railway voted by a near 90 percent majority to continue strikes in opposition to the extension of the use of driver only operated trains.

Tens of thousands strike in Berlin against poor working conditions

By our reporters, 14 February 2019

Tens of thousands of public sector workers took part in a one-day strike in Berlin on Wednesday. More than 10,000 people marched to the Brandenburg Gate.

One-day national strike paralyzes Belgium

By Will Morrow, 14 February 2019

Large parts of Belgium were brought to a standstill yesterday, as tens of thousands of workers took part in a national 24-hour strike to demand wage increases.

Union federation stages national strike in South Africa

By Eddie Haywood, 14 February 2019

Tens of thousands of workers participated in the walkout, bringing economic activity to a near standstill across the country.

Union rushing to end Denver teachers strike

By Nancy Hanover, 14 February 2019

Denver teachers should take a warning from the experience of Los Angeles teachers and resist any attempt to rush through a deal that abandons critical demands for substantial increases in pay and school funding and a reduction in class sizes.

Flight attendant paralyzed after Delta ordered flight through tropical storm

The workers’ compensation nightmare at Delta Airlines: Part three

By Tom Hall, 14 February 2019

Jane’s condition has been made significantly worse by lengthy delays in treatment caused by Delta’s workers’ compensation administrator, Sedgwick.

Sri Lanka: SEP and Abbotsleigh workers’ committee organise picket to oppose witch hunt in plantations

By our reporters, 14 February 2019

The fight against the witch hunt in the plantations is bound up with the defence of the democratic rights of the working class from the onslaught of the capitalist class.

Autoworkers must prepare fight as UAW plans new givebacks in 2019 contracts

By Shannon Jones, 14 February 2019

An op-ed piece in the Detroit Free Press by United Auto Workers President Gary Jones makes it clear that the union plans to use the threat to jobs to blackmail workers into accepting a new round of concessions in the 2019 contracts.

National 24-hour strike goes forward in Belgium

By Will Morrow, 13 February 2019

As strikes and protests grow across Europe, anger is mounting among Belgian workers at low wages enforced by state-run talks between business and the unions.

Democrats capitulate to Trump, agree to wall funding

By Eric London, 12 February 2019

As Trump was delivering another fascistic rant in the border city of El Paso, Texas, Democrats were agreeing to advance his anti-immigrant crackdown.

The international upsurge of working class struggle in 2019

By Niles Niemuth, 12 February 2019

This year is witnessing a resurgence of class struggle that expresses the objective unity of workers in every part of the world.

Series of regional strikes hit Argentina

Workers Struggles: The Americas

12 February 2019

The World Socialist Web Site invites workers and other readers to contribute to this regular feature.

Strike action in the US hits a 32-year high

By Patrick Martin, 9 February 2019

In 2018, the number of workers involved in large strikes, walkouts involving 1,000 or more workers, was the highest since 1986.

The CGT’s “national strike”: French unions seek to strangle the “yellow vest” protests

By our reporters, 9 February 2019

For the unions, the day of action was an opportunity for its base of officials and bureaucrats to meet with “yellow vest” protesters and seek to gain control of their movement.

Cascade of plant closings in New York state

Social costs mount

By Steve Filips, 9 February 2019

In recent months there have been a spate of plant closings throughout Upstate New York, including the Rochester and Buffalo areas.

Wright State University administration issues call for scabs in bid to intimidate striking faculty

By Alexander Fangmann, 9 February 2019

As the strike by full-time faculty at Wright State heads toward a fourth week, the university administration is attempting to threaten striking faculty with the specter of being replaced by “long-term” adjuncts.

“People are tired of not being able to pay their bills while the rich eat filet mignon”

As global jobs massacre continues, workers around the world voice support for fight against plant closures

By our reporter, 9 February 2019

Workers and students are continuing to write in to the World Socialist Web Site expressing strong support for the demonstration Saturday at General Motors headquarters in Detroit.

German workers support rally against mass layoffs in Detroit

By our reporters, 9 February 2019

The WSWS received these messages of support for the February 9 demonstration from bus drivers, auto workers, and a tram mechanic.

Committee for Public Education (Australia): Support the fight against GM layoffs!

By the Committee for Public Education (CFPE), 9 February 2019

The February 9 demonstration, organised independently of the unions, provides a lead for all workers internationally, including teachers.

Over 200,000 Uttar Pradesh government employees strike; Bangladesh garment workers occupy factory; New Caledonia miners still on strike

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

9 February 2019

The World Socialist Web Site invites workers and other readers to contribute to this regular feature.

Opposition mounts to GM plant closings

By our reporter, 8 February 2019

The World Socialist Web Site has received many statements of support from autoworkers across North America for the February 9 demonstration against the planned closure of five plants by GM and the elimination of 14,000 jobs.

Over 7,000 Bangladesh garment workers sacked after wage protests

By Wimal Perera, 8 February 2019

While the garment trade unions publicly bewail the mass sackings and arrests, these organisations have created the political conditions for the crackdown.

New York City school-bus workers’ union ignores strike vote, accepts sellout deal

By Steve Light, 8 February 2019

New York City School-bus workers voted to strike, but ATU Local 1181 signed tentative contract that continues poverty pay and precarious employment.

Australia: Tigerair pilots locked in dispute over wages and conditions

By John Harris, 8 February 2019

Tigerair is seeking to set a new benchmark in the assault on the wages and conditions of pilots, a highly-skilled cohort of professionals with immense responsibilities.

UK Arriva North rail sell-out deal, Scottish lecturers’ strike, Sibanye miners’ stoppage continues in South Africa

Workers Struggles: Europe, Middle East & Africa

8 February 2019

Strikes by rail guards working for Arriva North in northern England, who are opposing the introduction of driver only operated trains, have been called off by the Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union.

Wave of walkouts in Matamoros, Mexico builds toward general strike

By Alex González, 7 February 2019

An additional 15,000 workers have gone on strike across multiple industries, threatening to bring the city to a standstill.

The reality of capitalism: GM makes $11.8 billion in profits while closing plants, eliminating 14,000 jobs

By Jerry White, 7 February 2019

The huge profits, side-by-side with the destruction of entire communities, expose the real character of the capitalist system and why the working class must abolish it.

Lordstown GM plant closing: Another blow to northeastern Ohio

By Samuel Davidson, 7 February 2019

The impending closure of General Motors Lordstown assembly plant will be another blow to communities in the northeast region of Ohio that have been devastated by more than three decades of steel mill and factory closings.

Sri Lankan tea plantation workers committee supports call for February 9 demonstration in Detroit

By our reporters, 7 February 2019

“We consider the actions taken by the steering committee as a blow not only for the defense of the fundamental rights of the US auto workers but also on behalf of the international working class as a whole.”

Teachers at four Chicago charter school campuses walk out

By Kristina Betinis, 6 February 2019

In the second-ever strike to hit charter schools, 175 teachers and staff at four Chicago International Charter School campuses walked out Tuesday over pay and conditions.

Oakland, California teachers overwhelmingly vote to strike

By Jonathan Burleigh, 6 February 2019

Oakland teachers have voted by 95 percent to authorize a strike, showing the determination of educators to fight in defense of public education.

Mexican auto parts workers support February 9 demonstration in Detroit

By Andrea Lobo and Eric London, 6 February 2019

“I support the call for a general strike in Canada, the US and Mexico. We must be united. There are no borders. We stand firm here.”

GM to lay off 4,250 salaried workers in North America starting Monday

By Shannon Jones, 2 February 2019

As anger mounts over the GM’s plans to cut 15,000 jobs in the US and Canada, the United Auto Workers and Unifor are ramping up their anti-Mexican campaign to split autoworkers along national lines and block united action to fight the layoffs.

Matamoros strike grows as Mexican ruling class warns of national strike wave

By Eric London and Andrea Lobo, 2 February 2019

The leading financial paper wrote: “As easy as one two three, the labor stability which we have maintained for decades, with hundreds of thousands of successful contract negotiations, is broken. And it won’t stop there.”

The economics of the North American auto industry

How global auto parts corporations profit by exploiting Mexican workers

By Shannon Jones, 2 February 2019

With 345 Tier 1 auto parts suppliers operating in Mexico, the country is an enormous source of enrichment for transnational corporations.

“We are just another package that can be replaced”

FedEx, UPS workers outraged after Illinois truck driver dies on the job in extreme cold weather

By George Marlowe, 2 February 2019

William L. Murphy, a 69-year-old FedEx truck driver, is one of at least 23 people in the Midwest who have been killed by record cold temperatures this week.

Lawsuit alleges Amazon caused worker’s death

By Jeff Lusanne, 2 February 2019

The wife of a worker who died at a Joliet, Illinois Amazon warehouse in 2017 has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Amazon for the extreme delay of medical treatment that led to his death.

Portugal’s strike wave intensifies

By Paul Mitchell, 2 February 2019

As the strike movement develops, the unions have sought to dissipate united opposition into regional and sectoral strikes directed at pleading with various ministers, parliament and the president to change course.

United Steelworkers announces concessions contract agreement with Shell Oil

By Jessica Goldstein, 2 February 2019

The deal, which includes paltry wage increases that barely keep pace with inflation, was announced after months of backroom negotiations and just prior to the contract expiration deadline.

Bangladesh garment workers demonstrate for unpaid wages; New Caledonia nickel miners’ strike enters second month

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

2 February 2019

The World Socialist Web Site invites workers and other readers to contribute to this regular feature.

Worker in Mexico fired, beaten, censored, and falsely charged for protesting corporate abuses

By Andrea Lobo and Alex González, 1 February 2019

Inspired by the courageous stand taken by Matamoros workers, Luis Daniel decided to share his story with the WSWS to encourage workers internationally.

India: Unions betray Tamil Nadu teachers’ and government workers’ strike

By Arun Kumar, 1 February 2019

The unions have cynically claimed that the shutdown of all industrial action is “temporary.”

Housekeeper trapped in billionaire’s New York townhouse elevator for days

By Erik Schreiber, 1 February 2019

This incident encapsulates the relationship between the thin layer of the super-rich—many of whom have second, third, and fourth homes—and the working class.

Sibanye gold miners’ strike joined by platinum miners; Public worker strikes spread in Kosovo

Workers Struggles: Europe, Middle East & Africa

1 February 2019

The World Socialist Web Site invites workers and other readers to contribute to this regular feature.

Sacramento school district threatens bankruptcy to extort concessions from teachers

By Dan Conway, 31 January 2019

School district officials in California’s capital city announced they had to cut $16 million from spending by November 2019 to avoid state receivership, with another $16 million in cuts needed for next year.

Matamoros, Mexico maquiladora workers threatened with mass plant closures

By Alex González, 31 January 2019

The strike of auto parts and electrical workers in Matamoros, Mexico has powerfully demonstrated the international character of the class struggle.

City Colleges of Chicago averts staff and faculty strike

By Alexander Fangmann, 31 January 2019

Just days after the setting of a February 4 strike date, the Cook County College Teachers Union and Mayor Rahm Emanuel announced that a tentative agreement had been reached.

Students and youth must join the fight to oppose GM job cuts!

By International Youth and Students for Social Equality US, 31 January 2019

The International Youth and Students for Social Equality (IYSSE) calls on young people to support autoworkers in their fight against General Motors’ plans to close five plants in the US and Canada.

As Friday contract deadline approaches, USW keeps 30,000 oil workers in the dark

By Jessica Goldstein, 31 January 2019

On the eve of contract deadlines for 30,000 oil and chemical workers in the US, the United Steelworkers union is colluding with oil corporations behind closed doors to prepare a sellout contract.

Indian state government fires hundreds of teachers as Tamil Nadu strike faces a crossroads

By Arun Kumar, 30 January 2019

By isolating striking teachers and government workers, the JACTTO-GEO, which has hundreds of thousands of members, has allowed the state government to intensify its anti-democratic attacks.

After sellout of Los Angeles teachers strike, new attacks on public schools coming

By Alan Gilman, 30 January 2019

The agreement failed to meet any of the teachers’ most critical demands to reduce class size, increase wages, stop the expansion of charter schools, and address chronically underfunded budgets.

Mexican government prepares “legal” pretext for end of Matamoros strike

By Alex González, 29 January 2019

Threats of a federal operation mean the government is preparing to both bully workers into protracted legal negotiations—which will inevitably end in a result beneficial to the companies—and carry out a violent police repression of the strike.

Brazil service workers on strike, Ford workers end job action

Workers Struggles: the Americas

29 January 2019

The World Socialist Web Site invites workers and other readers to contribute to this regular feature.

Matamoros strike at a crossroads as Mexican government orders crackdown

By Andrea Lobo, 28 January 2019

The López Obrador administration sent orders Saturday through Morena Senator Ricardo Monreal Àvila demanding the Tamaulipas state police attack workers and re-open the gates of the factories.

Strikes by Hungarian Audi workers, Mexican auto parts workers

The global struggle of autoworkers

By Jerry White, 28 January 2019

Autoworkers are striving to unite their struggles against the attack on jobs and living standards by GM, Ford, VW and other global corporations.

As strike expands in the maquiladoras

Mexican auto parts workers explain how they formed strike committees

By Andrea Lobo, 26 January 2019

”I think that, indeed, the independent committees are much more useful than the union because we asked ourselves ‘this is the proposal, what do we do?’—something that the union never did.”

Unifor launches anti-Mexican boycott as diversion from fight over Oshawa closure

By Carl Bronski, 26 January 2019

Unifor President Dias has announced an anti-Mexican consumer boycott over the Oshawa closure as workers in Matamoros, Mexico, expand their struggle against sweatshop conditions.

The political questions facing US oil workers in the 2019 contract negotiations

By Jessica Goldstein, 26 January 2019

In preparing for the 2019 contract struggle, oil workers should draw the lessons of the miserable betrayal imposed by the United Steelworkers in 2015.

Oppose French unions’ attempts to strangle the “yellow vest” protests!

By Anthony Torres and Alex Lantier, 26 January 2019

The Pabloite New Anticapitalist Party’s calls for the unions to take over the “yellow vest” protests amounts to an attempt to strangle growing opposition among workers.