This week was a big week for us as my former employer Politico, which illegally fired me for union organizing in 2015, cited Payday’s reporting on sexual assault cover-ups in SEIU.
Our investigation reporting won national attention and I say our reporting because of of the hundreds of readers, who have given to Payday over the past year, made it possible. More than money, y’all given encouragement to push on mornings like today when I wake up and my checking account is in the negative.
This past week, we as a publication funded by readers got an SEIU staffer, who sexually assaulted another staff, fired and banned from the union. We also exposed a system of hiring within SEIU that allowed a staffer, who sexually assaulted a staffer in one local, to simply move to another local.
Over the past year, we have done so much together as a publication.
So this Thanksgiving, I am thankful for our readers. We have covered 130 stories and uncovered stories of labor rights abuse and courageous organizing that the rest of the press neglects
In 2018, we plan to do even more.
So this Black Friday, don’t spend money on gifts, spend it on labor reporting, its a bargain when you consider what a great investment it is.
Check out what we have done recently.
In the past month:
- Following an investigation by Payday Report, SEIU has fired one of their staffers over the sexual assault of another staff member within their organization. Payday Report uncovered that SEIU allowed a staffer who had been forced to leave one Boston-area SEIU local following an internal investigation to then be rehired at two other SEIU locals in California.
- We broke the story of how Trump’s OSHA was not coordinating health and safety training with immigrants rights workers groups, putting hurricane clean-up workers at risk in Texas; our exposé in the Guardian came out the day before a hurricane clean-up worker was killed by a flesh-eating bacteria.
- We were the only national outlet to cover how the Pittsburgh DSA took out two key incumbents and is poised to take out even more incumbents in this May’s Democratic Primary.
- We were the only national outlet to cover the defeat of the Steelworkers union drive at Kumho Tire in Macon, Georgia, by a mere 28 votes. Payday also broke the story of how Kumho fired a union activist in retaliation.
- We were the first national outlet to provide the inside story of how campus workers in Tennessee, despite lacking collective bargaining rights, were able to defeat Republican Gov. Bill Haslam’s plan to outsource thousands of campus jobs.
- Down in Nashville, we continued to hold corporate Democrat Nashville Mayor Megan Barry accountable for her silence on the death of Latino construction workers and her failure to stand up for affordable housing.
And here is a look back at what we did in 2017 so far:
- In Canton, Miss., we filed over 15 dispatches during the historic union election at Nissan. (See them all here.)
- At the Kentucky Derby, we captured the story of how Trump’s crackdown on undocumented workers was upsetting the millionaire horse owners.
- In Nashville, Tenn., we garnered national attention to the electrocution death of a 30-year-old Guatemalan immigrant. We then went back to Nashville in August and covered how Latinos were upset with the mayor’s silence on the death.
- When the Newspaper Guild picketed the Washington Post, we were the only outlet to cover it.
- Again, in North Carolina, we were the only national outlet to cover the state Legislature stripping farm workers of union rights.
- Before national outlets picked up on the story following Hurricane Harvey, Payday was also the only outlet to cover how unnecessary delays by the Obama Administration allowed Trump to roll back vital chemical safety reforms.
- We held Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez accountable when we showed that he had stumbled in his pledge to eliminate unpaid internships.
- In Chattanooga, Tenn., Payday broke the story of how low wages and school bus privatization contributed to the death of five children in Chattanooga. We then cut a syndication deal with the African-American owned Chattanooga News Chronicle to get Payday’s stories on the crash in print to its 30,000 readers.
- Before Randy “Iron Stache” Bryce was a national sensation, Mike Elk crashed on his son’s bed for a week in Racine, Wisc., and broke the story of his now-viral run against House Speaker Paul Ryan.
- Payday traveled to Huntsville, Ala., where we covered the effect that Indivisible activists in the Deep South were having on the fight to save Obamacare (and we plan to go back to Huntsville a lot this year).
- We just so happened to be there in Baltimore when news broke that the city’s Democratic mayor vetoed legislation that would have raised the city’s minimum wage to $15 an hour.
- Through our weekly Payday Report newsletter, we showed how Southern nonprofits receive, on average, only one-tenth of the national average of foundation funding.
- Finally, on Mike Elk’s 31st Birthday, he covered the 90th birthday of an Italian Resistance fighter in New Castle, Del.