Help a Broke Labor Reporter Afford a Vacation in West Virginia

New River Gorge Bridge in West Virginia (Fred Wolfe)

Recurring Donation

One Time Donation


We have done a lot of amazing work this year. Our work on systemic racism and the Tree of Life Synagogue Massacre was nominated for an Emmy and our work exposing the cover-up of sexual misconduct in my own union was featured in The New York Times.

Just last week, we passed 1,500 strikes tracked since the beginning of the pandemic as the “Retail Worker Rebellion” grows with walkouts happening at retail locations nearly every day. 

Recently, though, I have become sick with complex stomach issues that have lasted for several months, which have been aggravated by stress, particularly financial anxiety. It would be great to take two weeks off and just relax and continue my recovery. It can be incredibly difficult doing this job as well as being super stressful, so trying to find ways to relax is really important for not only my mental health but my physical health too. I have had some people reach out and tell me what they do to calm themselves down which ranges from yoga every morning to using websites like wonderbuds for some recreational relaxing, but right now what I need most is a vacation that I’m not going to be out of pocket for.

If I can raise enough money, I may even go on a little trip to visit some friends in West Virginia. Unfortunately, I get the most anxiety when it comes to vacations because I lose money.

Approximately half of Payday’s $7,000 monthly budget comes from our more than 600 recurring donors and that helps support a staff of two as well as overhead. The other half of it comes from money that we raise online every month. 

So when I take time off to unplug, and stop fundraising, I wind up losing a ton of money and vacation is not very relaxing. 

If you can, donate today so we can jump back into covering the Retail Worker Rebellion. 

Sign up, as well, to become one of our 614 recurring donors to continue on a path of sustainability. 

Thank you for your donations.

Love & Solidarity, 


About the Author

Mike Elk
Mike Elk is an Emmy-nominated labor reporter and alumni of the Guardian. In addition to filing nearly 2,000 stories from 46 states, Elk traveled with Lula from Sáo Bernando do Campos all the way to the Oval Office in the White House. Credited by the Washington Post for being the first reporter to track the strike wave systematically, Elk started Payday Report using his NLRB settlement from being illegally fired for union organizing in 2015. He lives in his hometown of Pittsburgh and works frequently in Rio de Janeiro, where he attended college at PUC-Rio. He speaks both Portuguese and Pittsburghese fluently. His email is [email protected]

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