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Information is power. Our mission at Portside is to seek out and to provide information that empowers you -- that empowers the left. Every day we search hundreds of sources to connect you with the most interesting, striking and useful material. Just once a year we appeal to you to contribute to make it possible to continue this work. Please help.

Archives

For posts before June 2012, please follow these links to our archives.

French Unions Back Revisions of Labor Law

Liz Alderman The New York Times
PARIS — French labor unions and business leaders struck a deal to overhaul labor laws. The changes include more flexibility for employers to reduce hours to prevent lay offs in times of "economic distress." Employers will pay a higher tax for using temporary labor. In exchange for flexibility, unions secured improvements to unemployment benefits and health insurance, as well as seats on the board of large companies.

Big Win for Labor in Chicago

Josh Eidelson Salon
City council passes "wage theft" law that threatens license of violating companies. Will other cities follow?

New York School Bus Driver Strike Looms, Union Blasts Bloomberg

Joy Resmovits and Dave Jamieson Huffington Post
As New York City school bus drivers head toward a strike, slated for Wednesday morning, the national president of the drivers' union accused Mayor Michael Bloomberg of trying to gut standards for workers in public services, comparing the mayor to Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R), who controversially rolled back collective bargaining rights for public employees in that state.

Teacher Fight Backs and Contractors Threaten ULPs Against NYC School Bus Drivers

Teachers unions and other educational service workers across the country - in New York, Seattle, and Hawaii - are fighting against further cuts in school budgets, for better quality education for their students. In New York, school bus drivers prepare to strike for job security for trained professional drivers; in Seattle, teachers vote to refuse to give standardized tests; in Hawaii teachers campaign for a penny tax increase dedicated to education.

Foes Of Kaiser (And SEIU) Unite In California

Steve Early Huffington Post
Healthcare unions united in California. The California Nurses Association (CNA) and the National Union of Healthcare Workers (NUHW) unveil their formal affiliation this past week. Major target is Kaiser Permanente, the giant California health care chain that made $6 billion in profits since 2009 but still wants union job cuts and contract givebacks.

Foes Of Kaiser (And SEIU) Unite In California (labor, no image)

Steve Early Huffington Post
Healthcare unions united in California. The California Nurses Association (CNA) and the National Union of Healthcare Workers (NUHW) unveil their formal affiliation this past week. Major target is Kaiser Permanente, the giant California health care chain that made $6 billion in profits since 2009 but still wants union job cuts and contract givebacks.

Coercive Wellness Programs Create New Headaches

Jane Slaughter Labor Notes
Employer-created wellness programs are about what workers should do on their own time, not what the employer could do to stop making them sick at work...Wellness programs are growing fast. In firms with more than 200 workers, 94 percent had such programs in 2012

Ways to Juice Up the Labor Movement; Labor Once Again Becomes Part of the National Conversation

Sarah Jaffe; Amy Dean AlterNet and The Century Foundation
The passage of a so-called "right-to-work" law in Michigan recently left the labor movement feeling gut-punched. AlterNet talks with Stephen Lerner, Jonathan Westin, Ruth Milkman, Bill Fletcher Jr., Jane McAlevey, Eric Robertson & Ben Speight for their suggestions on how labor can go on the offensive in the next year. Amy Dean, former president of the South Bay (CA) AFL-CIO Labor Council looks at best & worst developments of 2012 in the labor and social movements.

The Hero Teachers of Newtown; Teachers Are First Responders

Diane Ravitch and Deborah Dunton Diane Ravitch's Blog and Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
This much is clear: the teachers and staff at the Sandy Hook Elementary School reacted with astonishing courage to the unthinkable, the terrifying intrusion of a man intent on murdering them and their students. With no thought of their own safety, they defended their children. Everyone of them is a hero, those who died and those who survived....we were reminded that the first first responders at schools displayed courage. They did their jobs.