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Friday, February 12, 2016

Monday, February 08, 2016

Friday, February 05, 2016

Today in Labor History

February 05  --  Union Communications Services, Inc.

First daily labor newspaper, N.Y. Daily Sentinel, begins publication - 1830
(Making the News: A Guide for Nonprofits and Activists: Tired of the union being ignored by your local media? Fed up with the way your employer’s side of the story always gets told...while the union side gets barely a passing mention, usually negative? Want to start your own labor-side publication?! You’ll want this book. Making the News explains the basics of how to talk to reporters, how to do a news release, ways to “create” a news event, how to get invited to—and sound good during—radio and TV interviews... it’s a true A to Z of media smarts.)

The movie Modern Times premieres. The tale of the tramp (Charlie Chaplin) and his paramour (Paulette Goddard) mixed slapstick comedy and social satire, as the couple struggled to overcome the difficulties of the machine age including unemployment and nerve-wracking factory work, and get along in modern times - 1937

President Bill Clinton signs the Family and Medical Leave Act.  The law requires most employers of 50 or more workers to grant up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave for a family or medical emergency - 1993

In what turns out to be a bad business decision, Circuit City fires 3,900 experienced sales people because they're making too much in commissions. Sales plummet. Six years later it declares bankruptcy - 2003

Friday Morning in the Blogosphere




Dead links plague journalists - Poynter

Sheldon Adelson tightens grip on Review-Journal - Politico

New York Times Eyes Ambitious Overhaul - Huffington Post

Patch Rebounds After Split From AOL - The Wall Street Journal

Why California gasoline is so expensive - San Diego Union-Tribune

Tribune Media Plans To Sell Broad Street Building - Hartford Courant

Globe and Mail CEO on the ‘courageous step’ into data - Editors Weblog

Tribune Publishing's top shareholder is now Michael Ferro - Chicago Tribune

Chicago entrepreneur buys a large stake in L.A. Times' owner - Los Angeles Times

Pranksters handed out thousands of copies of a bogus edition of NYT - Village Voice



Thursday, February 04, 2016

LAT editors: Cruz does nation a favor in beating Trump

LAT editors: Cruz does nation a favor in beating Trump: Trump's first test with actual voters falls short. Not a great result for Hillary Clinton either.

Today in Labor History

February 04  --  Union Communications Services, Inc.

The Ohio legislature authorizes construction of the 249-mile Miami and Erie Canal, to connect Toledo to Cincinnati.  Local historians say "Irish immigrants, convicts and local farmers used picks, shovels and wheelbarrows," at 30 cents per day, to construct the 249-mile-long waterway - 1825
 
"Big Bill" Haywood born in Salt Lake City, Utah: Leader of Western Federation of Miners, Wobblies (IWW) founder - 1869
 
Rosa Parks, whose refusal to give up her bus seat to a White man launched the 1955 Montgomery, Ala., bus boycott and the birth of the civil rights movement, is born in Tuskeege, Ala. - 1913
 
Unemployment demonstrations take place in major U.S. cities - 1932
 
Thirty-seven thousand maritime workers on the West Coast strike for wage increases - 1937
 
President Barack Obama imposes $500,000 caps on senior executive pay for the most distressed financial institutions receiving federal bailout money, saying Americans are upset with "executives being rewarded for failure" - 2009

February 03
The U.S. Supreme Court rules the United Hatters Union violated the Sherman Antitrust Act by organizing a nationwide boycott of Danbury Hatters of Connecticut - 1908

U.S. Supreme Court upholds the Wages and Hours (later Fair Labor Standards) Act banning child labor and establishing the 40-hour work week - 1941
An explosion at a Thiokol chemical plant near Woodbine, Georgia kills 29 workers, seriously injures 50.  An investigation found that contributing factors to the explosion were mislabeled chemicals, poor storage procedures and insufficient fire protection - 1971




February 02
Three hundred newsboys organize to protest a cut in pay by the Minneapolis Tribune - 1917
 
Legal secretary Iris Rivera fired for refusing to make coffee; secretaries across Chicago protest - 1977
 
The 170-day lockout (although management called it a strike) of 22,000 steelworkers by USX Corp. ends with a pay cut but greater job security.  It was the longest work stoppage in the history of the U.S. steel industry - 1987


February 01
Led by 23-year-old Kate Mullaney, the Collar Laundry Union forms in Troy, N.Y., and raises earnings for female laundry workers from $2 to $14 a week - 1864

Bricklayers begin working 8-hour days - 1867

Some 25,000 Paterson, N.J., silk workers strike for 8-hour work day and improved working conditions. Eighteen hundred were arrested over the course of the six-month walkout, led by the Wobblies. They returned to work on their employers’ terms - 1913
(In this expanded edition of Strike! you can read about labor-management conflicts that have occurred over the past 140 years. Here you’ll learn much about workers’ struggle to win a degree of justice, from the workers’ point of view. The author also examines the ever-shifting roles and configurations of unions, from the Knights of Labor of the 1800s to the AFL-CIO of the 1990s. A new chapter, “Beyond One-Sided Class War,” looks at how modern protest movements, such as the Battle of Seattle and Occupy Wall Street, were ignited and considers the similarities between these challenges to authority and those of labor’s past.)


The federal minimum wage increases to $1.60 per hour - 1968

Int’l Brotherhood of Firemen & Oilers merges with Service Employees Int’l Union - 1995

Tribune Publishing Company Stock Tumbling




Tribune Publishing Company Announces $44.4 Million Private Placement Transaction



Michael W. Ferro, Jr. Appointed Non-Executive Chairman Of Tribune Publishing Board Of Directors

Highlights:

            Investment to support Tribune Publishing’s ongoing strategic plan, including        acquisitions and digital initiatives

Board of Directors appoints Michael W. Ferro, Jr. as Director and Non-Executive Chairman of the Board of Directors

Eddy W. Hartenstein, former Non-Executive Chairman, remains on the Tribune Publishing Board of Directors

Company provides financial updates

Preliminary 2015 Company Revenues expected to be in a range of $1.66 billion to $1.67 billion

Full-year preliminary 2015 Adjusted EBITDA expected to be $154 million to $157 million

Company ended fiscal year 2015 with $41 million of cash

         Board of Directors suspends quarterly cash dividend

CHICAGO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--
Tribune Publishing Company (TPUB) today announced it has completed a $44.4 million private placement transaction with Merrick Media, LLC that will enhance the Company’s position for pursuing strategic acquisitions and digital initiatives. Michael W. Ferro, Jr., Chairman and CEO of Merrick Media, joins the Tribune Publishing Board of Directors as Non-Executive Chairman.
Eddy W. Hartenstein, who has served as Non-Executive Chairman of Tribune Publishing since its spin-off from Tribune Media Company in August 2014, remains on the Tribune Publishing Board of Directors.
Commenting on the $44.4 million private placement transaction, Tribune Publishing Chief Executive Officer Jack Griffin said, “This transaction supports key elements of our ongoing strategic plan and provides our Company with additional capital to accelerate our growth strategies. We continue to evaluate growth opportunities where we can achieve measurable, value-enhancing synergies that drive financial contribution and maximize shareholder value.”
Eddy Hartenstein commented, “We are pleased to have Michael Ferro join our Board. He is a proven value creator, and his strong entrepreneurial business acumen enhances our ability to execute our strategic plan and grow the Company.”
Michael Ferro said, “I am excited to be working with the Company’s award-winning brands. I see tremendous upside to create value and put Tribune Publishing at the forefront of technology and content to benefit journalists and shareholders.”
Entire article

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Today in Labor History

New York City maids organize to improve working conditions - 1734
 
Mine explosion in Mount Pleasant, Pa., leaves more than 100 dead - 1891
 
First meeting of the Int’l Labor Organization (ILO) - 1920
 
Kansas miners strike against compulsory arbitration - 1920
 
A 3¢ postage stamp is issued, honoring AFL founder Samuel Gompers - 1950

(There is Power in a Union: The Epic Story of Labor in America is the sympathetic, thoughtful and highly readable history of the American labor movement traces unionism from the textile mills of Lowell, Massachusetts in the 1820s to organized labor’s decline in the 1980s and struggle for survival and growth today.)

A group of Detroit African-American auto workers known as the Eldon Avenue Axle Plant Revolutionary Union Movement leads a wildcat strike against racism and bad working conditions.  They are critical of both automakers and the UAW, condemning the seniority system and grievance procedures as racist – 1969
Pete Seeger dies in New York at age 94. A musician and activist, he was a revered figure on the American left, persecuted during the McCarthy era for his support of  progressive, labor and civil rights causes. A prolific songwriter, he is generally credited with popularizing the civil rights anthem “We Shall Overcome.” He actively participated in demonstrations until shortly before his death – 2014
Members of the Northwestern University football team announce they are seeking union recognition. A majority signed cards, later delivered to the National Labor Relations Board office in Chicago, asking for representation by the College Athletes Players Association - 2014
January 26
In what could be considered the first workers’ compensation agreement in America, pirate Henry Morgan pledges his underlings 600 pieces of eight or six slaves to compensate for a lost arm or leg. Also part of the pirate’s code, reports Roger Newell: shares of the booty were equal regardless of race or sex, and shipboard decisions were made collectively - 1695
 
Samuel Gompers, first AFL president, born in London, England. He emigrated to the U.S. as a youth - 1850
 
The Amalgamated Meat Cutters and Butcher Workmen of North America is chartered by the American Federation of Labor to organize "every wage earner from the man who takes the bullock at the house until it goes into the hands of the consumer." - 1897
 
Workers win a two-day sit-down strike at the Brooklyn electric plant that powers the city's entire subway system - 1937
 
A handful of American companies announce nearly 60,000 layoffs today, as the recession that began during the George W. Bush presidency charges full-tilt toward what became known as the Great Recession - 2009
(Union Strategies for Hard Times, 2nd Edition: What can unions do as the fallout of the Great Recession continues to ravage workers and their unions and threatens to destroy decades of collective bargaining gains? What must local union leaders do to help their laid off members, protect those still working, and prevent the gutting of their hard-fought contracts—and their very unions themselves?
    Bill Barry, until recently director of labor studies at the Community College of Baltimore County and a 40-year veteran of the movement, calls on his long history of activism and years of "what works, what doesn’t" discussions with other leaders to come up with a plan to survive these terrible times and even use crisis to build a better future.)
January 25
Sojourner Truth addresses first Black Women’s Rights convention - 1851

The Sheet Metal Workers Int'l Association (SMWIA) is founded in Toledo, Ohio, as the Tin, Sheet Iron and Cornice Workers’ Int’l Association - 1888

Two hundred miners are killed in a horrific explosion at the Harwick mine in Cheswick, Pa., Allegheny County. Many of the dead lie entombed in the sealed mine to this day - 1904

(The novel Sixteen Tons carries the reader down into the dark and dangerous coal mines of the early 1900s, as Italian immigrant Antonio Vacca and his sons encounter cave-ins and fires deep below the earth’s surface. Above ground, miners battle gun thugs and corrupt sheriffs at Virden, Matewan and Ludlow in an epic struggle to form a union and make the mines a safer place to work. Historian Kevin Corley’s depiction of miners’ lives is based on his own interviews with mining families.)

The Supreme Court upholds “Yellow Dog” employment contracts, which forbid membership in labor unions. Yellow Dog contracts remained legal until 1932 - 1915

Some 16,000 textile workers strike in Passaic, N.J. – 1926
The federal minimum wage rate rises to 75 cents an hour - 1950

Friday, January 22, 2016

Orange County Homeless Need Emergency Shelter—Now!

El Niño is now upon us–and Orange County officials have failed to act.

Homeless advocates across the OC call on the OC Board of Supervisors (OC BOS) to act quickly and swiftly to provide shelter for the over 400 people living outdoors in the Santa Ana Civic Center, the 440 people living outdoors in the Santa Ana Riverbed and the hundreds of other people living outside in the OC.
In December, the OC BOS approved a $500,000 action plan to provide emergency shelter for people living outdoors subject to the El Niño storms. This funding included a plan to provide 440 beds for the people living in the Santa Ana Riverbed. The action plan did not account for the hundreds of people living in the Santa Ana Civic Center or elsewhere in the county.



Full article at L.A. Progressive

Today in Labor History

January 22  --  Union Communications Services, Inc.

Indian field hands at San Juan Capistrano mission refused to work, engaging in what was probably the first farm worker strike in California - 1826
(Farmworker’s Friend: The story of Cesar Chavez is a thoughtful and moving book about the inspiring life of American hero Cesar Chavez, founder and long-time leader of the United Farm Workers of America. This sympathetic portrayal of Chavez and his life’s work begins with his childhood, starting from the time his family’s store in Arizona failed during the Great Depression and his entire family was forced into the fields to harvest vegetables for a few cents an hour. It traces his growth as a man and as a leader, talking of his pacifism, his courage in the face of great threats and greater odds, his leadership and his view that the union was more than just a union, it was a community—una causa.)

Birth of Terence V. Powderly, leader of the Knights of Labor - 1849

The United Mine Workers of America is founded in Columbus, Ohio, with the merger of the Knights of Labor Trade Assembly No. 135 and the National Progressive Miners Union - 1890

Five hundred New York City tenants battle police to prevent evictions - 1932


January 21
Some 750,000 steel workers walk out in 30 states, largest strike in U.S. history to that time - 1946
 
Postal workers begin four-day strike at the Jersey City, N.J., bulk and foreign mail center, protesting an involuntary shift change.  The wildcat was led by a group of young workers who identified themselves as “The Outlaws”- 1974
 
Six hundred police attack picketing longshoremen in Charleston, S.C. - 2000

January 20
Chicago Crib Disaster—A fire breaks out during construction of a water tunnel for the city of Chicago, burning the wooden dormitory housing the tunnel workers.  While 46 survive the fire by jumping into the frigid lake and climbing onto ice floes, approximately 60 men die, 29 burned beyond recognition and the others drowned - 1909
Hardworking Mickey Mantle signs a new contract with the New York Yankees making him the highest paid player in baseball: $75,000 for the entire 1961 season. It should be noted that because there were no long-term contracts, salaries fluctuated every year. In 1947, for example, Hank Greenberg signed a contract for a record $85,000. The Major League Baseball Players Association was created in 1953 and in 1968 negotiated the first collective bargaining agreement (CBA) with team owners, raising the minimum salary from $6,000 to $10,000 per year - 1961 
Bruce Springsteen's "My Hometown," a eulogy for dying industrial cities, is the country’s most listened-to song. The lyrics, in part: "Now Main Street's whitewashed windows and vacant stores / Seems like there ain't nobody wants to come down here no more / They're closing down the textile mill across the railroad tracks / Foreman says these jobs are going boys and they ain't coming back to your hometown / Your hometown / Your hometown / Your hometown..." - 1986

Friday Afternoon in the Blogosphere

Newspaper circulation continues the downward trend



Retired journalist feels change pain - News-Press

Journalists as Family Feud ‘WINNERS’ - Romenesko

What words should you never say to a reporter? - Medium

The sky is falling on print newspapers faster than you think - Medium

Detroit Newspapers Feeling the Pressure of New Digital World - Josic

GOP Rep. Wants Government To Register Journalists - Huffpost Media

Twenty years ago, The New York Times launched NYTimes.com - Poynter

Five Ways Newspapers Can Deepen Their Relationships with Readers - E and P

Newspapers demand firmer action against Russia over Litvinenko murder - Guardian

Novelist Obliterates The Bundy Militia, and Oregon’s Largest Newspaper - Think Progress

Bookstore closing: Traveler's Bookcase on West 3rd

Bookstore closing: Traveler's Bookcase on West 3rd: The proprietors of Traveler's Bookcase on West 3rd Street announced to customers via email that they are in the process of shutting down. The closing clearance sale begins today and...