On Tuesday, workers at the Philadelphia airport rallied ahead of a possible strike next week. The workers are trying to draw attention to their low wages—last year, they won $12 an hour and are now fighting to get to $15. And next week is a good time to get attention for their struggle, with the Democratic National Convention being held in Philadelphia.
On Tuesday, workers and supporters reiterated their intention to strike next week, promising to cause “as much disruption as possible.” The union has authorized – by an overwhelming vote of 95 percent – a strike during the convention in Philadelphia.
As much as it’s a chance for workers to shine a light on their struggle, it’s a chance for DNC delegates and speakers to show their support for these workers. It’s a moment to say that the workers’ fight is part of the Democratic Party’s fight to improve wage and working conditions.
In this environment, anything that unions can do alone, with dwindling power, will be insufficient. The challenge for labor, at a moment of historic weakness, is to figure out how unions can support and be involved in movements and campaigns that expand, rather than narrow, the scope and scale of what we are organizing and bargaining for. It may seem counterintuitive, but it is thinking bigger and broadening our vision, goals, and demands—even at a moment of weakness—that offers a path to resurgent unions and a more equal and just country and world.
? Most workers for Amazon’s Mechanical Turk are young, college-educated, and making less than $5 an hour.
? Donald Trump was fined thousands for retaliating against workers … the day he accepted the Republican presidential nomination. It’s kind of perfect, actually.
? The Republican platform on education: ABPS (anything but public schools).
? A New York City contractor is fighting its punishment, even though it’s a lenient one, for a worker’s death on the job.
This blog originally appeared at DailyKos.com on July 23, 2016. Reprinted with permission.
Laura Clawson has been a Daily Kos contributing editor since December 2006. Labor editor since 2011