Fight Back! News

News and Views from the People's Struggle

UniteHere

By Quest Riggs

New Orleans May Day marchers take to the downtown streets.  | Fight Back! News/staff

New Orleans, LA – On May 1, immigrants and workers celebrated International Workers Day with a fiery march on New Orleans City Hall. They were led by the banners of Unión Migrante, an immigrant rights organization that hosts the annual May Day march to uplift the struggle of undocumented workers. They waved signs and beat drums while marching during busy downtown rush-hour traffic, loudly chanting in support of worker power.

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By Corrina Hildreth

Striking Homegrown workers.

Seattle, WA – On Thursday, September 14, over 100 Homegrown workers from six retail locations walked off the job to demand a new contract. The strike took place across the greater Seattle area for three consecutive days. Each day the strike grew, so that by Saturday, workers from all eight of nine Homegrown locations had joined. Homegrown workers are represented by UNITE HERE Local 8 and have been bargaining with the company for over eight months.

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By staff

Customer signs petition in front of St. Claude Starbucks. | Fight Back! News staff

New Orleans, LA – On September 14, volunteers petitioned outside of five non-union Starbucks to rally customers against the company’s union busting.

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By staff

Seattle, WA – Homegrown workers at multiple retail locations in the Seattle area will go on strike Thursday morning, September 14, after many bargaining sessions have failed to produce a contract with affordable healthcare insurance and union security.

On Thursday at 10 a.m., the Queen Anne, Capitol Hill, University Village, Redmond, Mercer Island, and Southcenter Homegrown locations will picket, followed by a large joint picket at 2 p.m. at Mercer Island. Homegrown workers have made good progress with company towards a decent contract, but the company’s latest proposal still leaves healthcare insurance unaffordable for many workers.

Homegrown worker Millie Saucedo said, “I need affordable healthcare for my two kids and my husband, who has heart issues. Right now, I’m uninsured because the cost is too expensive. There’s no way I can afford $800 per month on my pay.”

About a year ago, workers at Homegrown and Catapult NW, Homegrown Group’s wholesale distribution arm, went on strike over workplace issues including heat, smoke, gender pay disparity, COVID sick-day policy, and installation of worker surveillance cameras.

Workers in Homegrown’s cafes and wholesale distribution company Catapult NW filed for union elections with the NLRB in October 2022 after their strikes, company-wide delegations, picketing, and leafleting of customers and clients.

Workers in Homegrown retail cafes are eager to settle a decent contract that will have the wages and benefits to make their jobs and lives in the Seattle area sustainable.

Homegrown catering driver Russell Concha said, “I’ve worked at Homegrown for eight years. Right now, I work two jobs in order to make ends meet. I start work at Homegrown at 4 a.m. and I get off my second job at 11 p.m. I’m fighting for a raise so that I can only work one job, and get to spend more time with my kids and family.”

Queen Anne Homegrown worker Emily highlighted the need for the contract to stay in effect if the company is sold, saying, “I've worked at Homegrown for five years. I'm fighting for a contract that will allow me to stay in the company long term, and I need to know that I can keep this job if the company is sold.”

#SeattleWA #UNITEHERE #UNITEHERELocal8 #Strike

By Hannah Keith

Hotel workers on strike in downtown Los Angeles.

Los Angeles, CA – 14,000 hotel workers in Southern California went on strike at 19 hotels in Long Beach, Santa Monica, downtown Los Angeles and North Hollywood on July 2. The strike was planned to last three days covering the July 4 holiday. Union members say if their demands are not met, more strikes will happen.

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By staff

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Chicago, IL – Thousands of striking hotel housekeepers, servers, cooks, doormen and other workers marched on Chicago’s famed Magnificent Mile, Sept. 13 to press their demands for a decent contract. Workers from 26 hotels are now out on strike.

#ChicagoIL #strike #Strikes #UniteHere #UniteHereLocal1 #ChicagoHotelStrike

By brad

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Minneapolis, MN – With chants of “Si se puede!” (yes we can!) and “Obama, escucha, estamos en la lucha!” (Obama, listen, we’re in the struggle!), 3000 people marched through Minneapolis for immigrant rights on Oct. 5, a national day of action for immigrant dignity and respect. This was the largest march for immigrant rights in Minneapolis in several years. The protest began at Basilica of St. Mary Church then marched through downtown Minneapolis to Hennepin County Government Plaza (also known as People’s Plaza).

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