Greetings from the Burgh, where it’s been an exhausting week.
Help Us Cover the $600 Cost of Tree of Life Synagogue Massacre Commemoration Ceremony.
ICYMI, take this weekend to check out our multi-media series “On the 5th Commemoration of the Largest US Jewish Massacre, a Divided, but Equally Traumatized Neighborhood.”
This production cost over $700 but was a HUGE hit, with one video of Senator John Fetterman garnering over 4 million views.
Toyota Raises Wages to Match UAW Wins
This week, the UAW won a stunning victory by securing a 25% wage increase over three years at the Big Three automakers: Ford, GM, and Stellantis.
Now, Toyota is raising wages for its non-union workforce by 9%-a-year and increasing its top wage to $ 34.80 an hour for production workers and $ 43.30 an hour for skilled workers. The company also decreased the time to get to the maximum rate from 8 years to only four years.
In a press release, Toyota announced that it was raising wages to compete for workers with the Big Three.
“At Toyota, we take great pride in showing respect for people,” Chris Reynolds, executive vice president of corporate resources at Toyota Motor North America, said in a statement. “We value our employees and their contributions, and we show it by offering robust compensation packages that we continually review to ensure that we remain competitive within the automotive industry.”
Palestinian General Strike in West Bank
As Israel continues its widely condemned attack on Gaza, the Palestine Authority in the West Bank has called for a full general strike.
“The most important thing we demand is to stop injustice and tyranny, to stop killing innocent people, and refrain from arbitrary revenge,” 26-year-old Ramallah resident Fakhri Muhammad Shreiteh told AFP.
A video released by Al-Jazeera shows that most of Ramallah was shut down by the strike.
AFL-CIO Quashes Efforts to Organize for Ceasefire
Over at In These Times Magazine, Jeff Schuhrke has an in-depth look at how labor leaders are working to quash organizing for a ceasefire. From In These Times:
Behind closed doors at an AFL-CIO Executive Council meeting last Monday, American Postal Workers Union (APWU) President Mark Dimondstein reportedly urged the labor federation to demand a cease-fire while also arguing that Israel and Palestine should be combined into a single state (APWU did not respond to a request for comment). According to the New York Times, ”no other labor leader in the meeting offered vocal support for his position,” but the AFT’s Weingarten ”asserted Israel’s right to defend itself.”
The relatively muted response from U.S. union presidents stands in contrast to labor leaders in other countries, particularly the United Kingdom. At a massive Palestine solidarity rally in London last Saturday, the crowd was addressed by Libby Nolan, president of the 1.3-million-member public service union UNISON, and by Mick Lynch, general secretary of the National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers (RMT).
“The Labour Party and the whole workers movement must show it is on the side of the peacemakers, not the warmongers,” Lynch said at the rally. ”End the killing now, call the immediate cease-fire, and let’s create the road to a settlement with peace, social justice, human rights, freedom and dignity for all. Solidarity to Palestine.”
Alright folks, that’s all for today. Keep sending tips, story ideas, comments, and complaints to [email protected]
Love & Solidarity,