Reno Bus Drivers Win 25 Day Strike – 450 WV Steelworkers Fight Scabs – Erie Teachers Vote to Strike

Reno Transit Drivers Strike (Jason Bean/RGC)

Greetings from Long Beach, where Payday is working on an exciting story about Latino members changing the demographics and outlooks of the Teamsters. 

(If you can, please donate to help us continue our reporting here, and to help cover the costs of this trip.)

Judge Rules 30 Port Truck Drivers Were Illegally Fired for Union Organizing 

In a victory for union organizing efforts at the docks here in Long Beach, a federal judge ruled that Universal Logistics Holdings illegally fired 30 drivers for unionizing with the Teamsters and ordered that the workers be reinstated. 

The Teamsters celebrated their ruling as a victory that showed how companies couldn’t get away with abusing workers. 

“Judge Rosas today made clear that the Universal group of companies violated the law at the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach in a blatant effort to trample on employees’ fundamental right to form a union,” Ron Herrera, the Teamsters port division director, said in a statement. “We cannot allow any corporation, no matter how big, to ignore the law, especially as drivers work tirelessly to address the backlog at the ports and supply our community with the goods they need this holiday season.”

For more, check out the LA Times. 

Suburban Charlotte Teachers Go on Strike 

At Union Day School, a charter school in the suburbs of Charlotte, North Carolina, teachers have gone on strike to protest the unjust firing of a beloved principal at the school. 

“I’m devastated,” Liz Spinney, the curriculum coordinator for Union Day School, told WSOC. “This man has done nothing but lead this school through the hardest years in education.” 

The board of Union Day School has so far declined to talk to the press. 

For more, check out WSOC. 

Erie Teachers Vote to Strike 

Back in Western PA, teachers from the 860-member Erie Educators Association have voted to strike against the district. 

A survey released by the union showed only 9% of the union “feel valued” by the administration and that 72% of teachers have considered quitting during the pandemic. 

“After a year-and-a-half of the most difficult adjustments that any of us have seen, both in the classroom and our own families, the lack of appreciation our members feel has added to the mental and physical strain,” according to a memo released by the union. “Coping with challenges in our own lives while also trying to ‘re-orient’ students to in-person learning is contributing to burn-out and breakdowns.”

For more, check out the Erie Times-News. 

Donate to Our Strike Coverage Fund 

With more strikes happening all around us, and often suddenly, Payday is looking to get out on the road to cover them. It’s important we build up our reserves so we can afford to travel quickly to cover them. 

Donate Today to Help Us Travel & Continue to Track Strikes. 

450 West Virginia Workers Fight Back Against Scabs 

One strike that Payday hopes to cover is the strike of 450 steelworkers at Special Metals in nearby Huntington, West Virginia. 

Workers have been on strike for nearly three weeks, and the company has already brought in scabs as they intend to fight the union. 

However, the local community is stepping up by helping organize food drives to keep the workers going as their income takes a hit from staying out on strike. 

“They employ almost 500 and this area is dying. We cannot afford to lose this in the Tri-State area,” Stacy Holley, who started a Facebook group to coordinate assistance for the strikers, told WCHS. “There are people that work here from Sissonville to Grayson and everywhere in between. It doesn’t affect just Huntington. It affects 500 people. We need this in our community.”

For more, check out WCHS. 

Reno Bus Drivers End 25 Day Strike 

Yesterday, in Reno, Nevada, bus drivers celebrated a major victory in a strike against a private bus contractor. 

After first walking off the job in August for ten days against the private bus contractor Keolis, who attempted to cut their long-standing union contract, bus drivers went on strike for another 25 days beginning in early October. 

After 35 total days of striking, Reno bus drivers won a major achievement this week when they reached a tentative agreement on scheduling, time off, and other issues. The Reno bus drivers celebrated the tentative agreement as a victory for the ability of the union to mobilize the public behind it. 

“Working class people need to know: it’s time for us to unite,” said Reno bus driver and shop steward Michael Lansborough in a statement. “Not only unite individually into unions, but unite as a whole to beat down this corporate attitude that they can just walk all over everybody.”

For more, check out the Reno Gazette Journal.

Strikes & News Happening Elsewhere

To see more strikes, make sure to visit our Strike Tracker that recently documented its 1,600th strike since the pandemic began in March of 2020.

Alright folks, that’s all for today. Keep sending tips, story ideas, and comments to [email protected] 

Donate to Help Us Continue to Travel & Track Strikes

If you haven’t already, please consider signing up and joining our 625 recurring donors today. 

Love & Solidarity, 

Melk

About the Author

Mike Elk
A protege of the late Bill Greider, Mike Elk is an Emmy-nominated labor reporter who covered the labor movement & the drug war in Brasil and spent years covering union organizing in the South for The Guardian. In 2016, he used his $70,000 NLRB settlement from being fired in the union drive at Politico to start the crowd-funded Payday Report. The son of United Electrical Workers (UE) Director of Organization Gene Elk, he lives in his hometown of Pittsburgh. Email: [email protected]

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