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Labor & unions

Domestic workers’ call for reform aired in City Hall

Dana Sherne, SF Public Press — May 21 2010 - 9:21am
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Fair treatment of domestic workers rose to the top of the agenda of San Francisco leaders this week, unleashing an emotional response from workers who said their contributions to society were under-valued. “Domestic workers are the backbone of the economy, working to ensure the health of others and freeing others to work in the workforce,” said Supervisor Eric Mar. Read more...

SF schools negotiations go to mediator; shorter school year likely

Dana Sherne, SF Public Press — May 4 2010 - 4:41pm

The San Francisco Unified School District and its teachers union have turned to a mediator for help in resolving a $113 million budget shortfall. Both sides are calling for a shorter school year, but disagree on many of the financial points in the new budget.

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Rival union vows fight after SEIU wins $1.5 million verdict

Christopher D. Cook, SF Public Press — Apr 9 2010 - 7:09pm

In a mixed verdict Friday morning, a nine-member U.S. district court jury awarded $1.5 million to the Service Employees International Union in its ongoing campaign against a rival created by former SEIU staffers. The judgment is unlikely to resolve the unions’ protracted battle over members and worker voice in the labor movement.

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City workers decry layoffs, demand alternatives

Christopher D. Cook, SF Public Press — Mar 15 2010 - 3:48pm

City workers are demanding alternatives to Mayor Gavin Newsom’s hard-nosed fiscal approach as he attempts to close a $522 million projected budget gap through mass layoffs and de-facto furloughs.

As San Francisco grapples with a ballooning deficit for the coming fiscal year, Newsom laid off 17,474 workers two weeks ago, but promised to hire back “most” of them at 37½ hours per week. For the rehired, that represents a 6.25 percent pay cut — which city workers’ unions intend to challenge in court.

Toting 8½-by-11-inch “termination of employment” pink slips, angry city workers lined up at last Wednesday’s Board of Supervisors Budget and Finance Committee hearing to decry the layoffs and urge city leaders to explore other sources of money.

Embattled union seeks to blunt second year of city cuts

Kevin Stark, SF Public Press — Feb 26 2010 - 11:54am

(UPDATE: A reform slate of candidates won victory in the election. For details, see Kevin Stark's blog). wins the election this weekend at Northern California’s largest public-sector union will inherit a troubled labor local beset by internal conflict and controversial negotiations in San Francisco that cost the union hundreds of jobs this past year.

Supervisors: holidays a bad time to lay off city workers

Monica Jensen, The Public Press — Nov 25 2009 - 6:59pm

More than 500 low-wage city workers threatened with job and pay cuts this fall received a holiday-themed reprieve Tuesday, as the Board of Supervisors delayed layoffs in the hopes of finding federal and state funds to prevent cutbacks.

City finds millions to rehire laid-off nurses, clerical workers

Kevin Stark, The Public Press — Nov 4 2009 - 10:14pm

San Francisco city leaders have found an extra pot of $8 million they hope to use as a patch on the summer’s tattered budget, potentially rescuing more than 500 frontline workers already given pink slips or downgraded to lower-paying jobs.

Hellman's new nonprofit newsroom sparks hope

Kevin Stark, The Public Press — Sep 24 2009 - 7:25pm

Warren Hellman, a San Francisco financier, had planned to announce his intention to launch a well funded nonprofit Bay Area news organization — until someone else broke the news.

UC employees cast ‘no-confidence’ vote in Yudof

Christi Morales, The Public Press — Sep 3 2009 - 5:59pm

Union employees at the University of California gave an overwhelming vote of no confidence in the leadership of UC President Mark Yudof, election organizers said Thursday.

Carpenters Union and Chase/WAMU gnaw on each other's nerves

Tim Kingston, The Public Press — Jun 4 2009 - 5:33pm

In anticipation of Wednesday’s Earth Day celebration, Berkeley Farmers’ Market has stepped up to the “green” plate – by becoming the first market in the nation to eliminate all plastic bags and packaging.

“We’ve been anti-plastic for a long time, but we’re also committed to our farmers and didn’t want to negatively impact them through diminished sales or costs,” said Ben Feldman, program manager of The Ecology Center – an environmental non-profit that has run the markets since 1987.

The market launched its “Zero Waste” campaign March 7, demanding all farmers’ market refuse be recyclable or compostable. The new rule includes materials for bagging produce as well as containers and utensils for prepared foods.

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