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Firing for just cause, not just because

The National Labor Relations Board recently expanded and strengthened the penalties on employers who illegally demote or terminate employees for their union activity. The trick is, of course, in the …

Avoiding death on the job

Labor unions are the main reason that deaths in workplaces have been reduced. They are the reason that safety precautions exist and are enforced at all, though far from universally. Every workplace …

The return of the fighting union

If you are wondering what kind of union you belong to, longtime labor lawyer Joe Burns has some pointers in his new book, “Class Struggle Unionism.”You may be in what he calls a business union if …

Teachers and high-stakes heroism

After trying to wrest a gun and deflecting the bullet trajectory away from her classroom of kids, a kindergarten teacher in Virginia was shot in the chest and nearly killed two weeks ago. Her first …

It’s time to fight management rights

Has management claimed the right to make decisions about staffing and scheduling, what and how to produce, and other issues without input from the union? Did your union tell you it is powerless to …

Among Dems, dividers aplenty

Looking at the two major parties, I wonder if the Republicans’ function is to be so horrible that they make awful Democrats look good. This serves the purpose of America's multi-billionaire class, …

A federal receiver in disguise

A year ago, Louis Molina came to the New York City Department of Correction as the commissioner and friend of the correction unions. In published letters to The Chief, I celebrated Molina’s …

Building Carlos' Law

Remember that historic photo, one of the most popular postcard keepsakes for tourists, of the laborers snacking on a narrow girder suspended high in the air, seemingly above the clouds, during the …

We are working class

Try as you might, it is nearly impossible to hear a politician of either major party talk about the working class. They all seem to prefer the term “middle class.” While Democrats are especially …

Deli man becomes House speaker

After 15 ballots and near fisticuffs on the floor of the House, Deli Man Kevin McCarthy won the Speakership. His “win,” such as it was, didn’t come without cost or consequence for his party or …

Is Adams’ Medicare Advantage ploy ‘a game of chicken?’

About midway through Monday’s City Council hearing on Mayor Eric Adams’s demand that a Medicare Advantage plan become the only no-premium healthcare option for municipal retirees, Council Member …

‘Which side are you on?’

Dear Council Speaker Adrienne Adams,In recent emails with your office I was told that you were looking forward to listening to the debate about whether or not to amend Administrative Code 12-126, …

Pay up!

Which is easier to figure out: the reason that pigeons are incapable of walking without bobbing their heads, or ingenious and devious ways that employers will devise to circumvent and weasel out of …

Bomb cyclone

The New York State legislature, in order to demonstrate to the commonplace citizenry that despite being special, they too are ordinary people equipped with the routine human vices of greed, envy and …

New Year’s wishes for the workers movement

One of the nice things about being born on January 8th, besides sharing the day with David Bowie and Elvis, is that I get to celebrate several holidays at this time of year.

Democratizing our unions

Although my union proudly calls itself a “member led union,” it is extremely undemocratic in several ways.We do not have “one member, one vote” for the leadership. This means a new caucus …

Rikers and criminal justice madness

Almost twice on average each month this year, a Rikers Island detainee has died by suicide or under mysterious circumstances that are sometimes suggestive of official neglect, avoidable accident or …

Let's all work less

During the six years I lived in the Netherlands I learned that every worker, whether working in a service or professional job, had four weeks of paid vacation and a 36-hour workweek. If they worked …

Pickleball on Mars

The MTA will dig deep into the pockets of its customers in order to excavate and rifle the vestiges of the tax base's bank accounts. They will divert and seize our collective non-discretionary …

The crocodile tears of PSC-CUNY’s “Incensed Six”

A recent Chief article, “CUNY professors’ PSC claim dismissed; First Amendment suit followed union’s ‘Palestine’ resolution” (Dec. 9) reports on the dismissal of a lawsuit brought by six …

Liberate the homeless!

The right to die by hypothermia is constitutionally guaranteed and may not be abridged, questioned or sabotaged by intervention, regardless of motive.It is an alienable assertion of personal dignity, …

Workers have disruptive power; let’s use it

The most important thing workers have is power. That power doesn’t come from having a collective bargaining agreement but from being so well organized they can disrupt business as usual to get what …

At last week’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority Board Meeting, it was announced that the agency could face a growing financial deficit. It may reach $3 billion in 2023 and grow even more in …

Mike Pompous v. Randi

First things first.Former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo must be condemned for his revolting and inflammatory slander of AFT President Randi Weingarten, whom he called "the most dangerous person in …

Workers, unions and holidays

Now that Thanksgiving is in the rearview mirror of this year's holiday cycle, and its message of eternal gratitude is stricken as a timely agenda item for the kitchen table and pulpit, our …

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