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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.

Sam Pizzigati: “A New Labor Activism Is Surging”

Mohsen Abdelmoumen American Herald Tribune
Outside of traditional labor structures, a new labor activism is surging, often supported by traditional unions. This new activism ranges from the “Fight for $15” movement to the statewide teacher strikes that broke out last spring.

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For Low-Wage Workers Fight For 15 Movement Has Been a Boon

Sarah Jones New York Magazine
Since Fight for 15 launched in 2012, the idea of a $15 minimum wage has become a popular cause for progressive activists, and an increasingly popular talking point for Democrats occupying or seeking elected office.

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Class Consciousness Comes to America

Karen Nussbaum The American Prospect
Even in Trump country, pro-union sentiment is rising. But can labor and its allies turn that sentiment into power?

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How The Labor Movement Is Thinking Ahead To a Post-Trump World

Rachel M. Cohen The Intercept
Just over 10 percent of workers are unionized, down from 35 percent in the mid-1950s. Potentially, though, a wave of Democratic victories in 2018 and 2020 could give labor groups a chance to turn things around. With an eye toward that moment, labor’s leading strategists are coming together to build a program that avoids the mistakes of the past.

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Where to Begin? Lessons from the Fight for $15 Beyond North America

Jonathan Rosenblum Interviewed By Yuri Lobunov Socialist Project
Jonathan Rosenblum lives in Seattle, Washington, and is a member of UAW 1981/National Writers Union. He is the author of Beyond $15: Immigrant Workers, Faith Activists, and the Revival of the Labor Movement (Beacon Press, 2017). More about him can be found at jonathanrosenblum.org. The interview was counducted by Yuri Lobunov, editor-in-chief of socialistalternative.ru, where this interview was published in Russian.

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Unions Aren't Obsolete, They're Being Crushed by Right-Wing Politics

Livia Gershon Vice
A new report lays out how effective the assault on organized labor has been. The decline of unions—which now represent just over one in ten US workers, down from one in five from 1983—has been less about their value for workers than the result of a concerted effort to destroy the labor movement.

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Fran Works Six Days a Week in Fast Food, and yet She's Homeless: 'It's Economic Slavery'

Dominic Rushe Financial Times
It’s been almost a decade since the Great Recession, and America has witnessed a record 82 months of month-on-month jobs growth. The national unemployment rate now stands at a 4.3%, a 16-year low. But month after month, it is the low-wage sectors – fast food, retail, healthcare – that have added new jobs. Wage growth has barely kept pace with inflation. The national minimum wage ($7.25) was last raised in 2009.

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Fighting to Raise the Minimum Wage Isn't Cheap, Union Spending Shows

Cora Lewis BuzzFeed
Defenders say the Fight For $15 has built up worker power at a time when traditional unions are losing clout. They credit the effort with increasing local minimum wage laws through executive legislative action (in New York and California, for example) and at the ballot box. A total of 19 states implemented minimum wage raises in 2017.
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