Help Us Cover Strikers During the Holidays

Iron workers striking at Strayer in Erie (@heyjohnrussell)

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As the holiday season approaches, a series of tough strikes are still going on. Now, it’s more important than ever to pay attention to these struggles as people go through a difficult holiday season, and some families start to feel a financial hit.

At Special Metals in Huntington, West Virginia, workers are entering their second month of striking. Meanwhile, workers at the Erie Strayer industrial plant in Pennsylvania are also going into their second month. And, just last week, we saw a lockout of Major League Baseball players for the first work stoppage since 1994.

With workers still on the picket line, Payday is making travel plans to speak to the beleaguered workers this holiday season. In early December, we went up to Erie and covered ironworkers walking the picket line in tough stories as the community rallied behind them. (See our viral story “As Winter Hits, Ironworkers Escalate Key Erie Labor Fight”)

Since March of 2020, Payday Reporter’s Strike Tracker has documented more than 1,700 strikes. Our work covering these walkouts has had an enormous impact, with NPR to The Economist to The Washington Post citing our reporting. 

Boots Riley, who directed the hit film “Sorry to Bother You,” also extensively praised our work in noting the strike wave when few people did. 

“You could count on one hand the number of outlets, whether they’re mainstream or radical, that pushed this fact,” Riley said of our work tracking more than 1,700 strikes since the beginning of the pandemic. 

Esquire called our work tracking the strike wave “invaluable,” and PBS American Portraits, Vice, and Columbia Journalism Review have all profiled our trailblazing work tracking the strike wave. 

But in order to travel, we need your donations. Your contributions will help pay for gas, lodging, food, and salary.

So, if you can, please donate today as the holiday season approaches. Or, sign up as one of our 641 recurring donors. 

Thanks for all the support. 

Love & Solidarity, 


About the Author

Mike Elk
Mike Elk is an Emmy-nominated labor reporter who covered everything from Lula & the Brazilian labor movement to major league baseball. He spent years covering union organizing in the South for The Guardian and was labeled by the New York Times as an "abrasive gadfly" for exposing within the labor movement. Raised in a UE union family in Pittsburgh, Elk was illegally for union organizing at Politico in 2015 and used his NLRB settlement to start the crowd-funded Payday Report. He lives in his hometown of Pittsburgh and is fluent in both Pittsburghese and Portuguese, which he learned when attending journalism school at PUC-Rio de Janerio. Email: [email protected]

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