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Worker Power Update

March 9, 2023

Protecting the Right to Strike

This week, Democratic Pennsylvania Congressman Chris Deluzio and Ohio Senator Sherrod Brown introduced CWA-endorsed legislation that would penalize employers who terminate or change access to healthcare benefits for workers during a strike. The legislation, called the Striking and Locked Out Workers Healthcare Protection Act, would make it an unfair labor practice for employers to cut off or alter the health care insurance of workers involved in a strike or a lock out. Employers violating the law would be subject to monetary penalties.

“Protecting the right to strike means protecting workers from unfair strike-breaking tactics. No company should be able to hold a worker’s health—or the well-being of their family—hostage during a labor dispute,” said Deluzio in an exclusive article in the Pittsburgh Union Progress, which is published by striking CWA members at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. This legislation would put an end to the abuse of power by companies like Block Communications, the owners of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, who made unilateral changes to the healthcare of workers involved in the printing, mailing, and distribution of the paper, and subsequently terminated striking journalists’ healthcare altogether.

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CWAers Mobilize to Secure a Pro-Worker Seat on the Wisconsin Supreme Court

CWA members, along with a coalition of other pro-labor and pro-democracy activists, are continuing to mobilize to build support for Judge Janet Protasiewicz​, a CWA-endorsed candidate for the open Wisconsin Supreme Court seat who won her primary election last month. This is a critical election that will determine how the court will rule on issues like worker protections, voting rights, and even how legislative district maps are drawn. Every vote counts to fight back against the anti-labor groups who are spending millions of dollars on this race. Click here to register for upcoming phone banking opportunities and to help turn out the vote.

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Panel Highlights CWA’s Efforts to Hold Big Tech Companies Accountable to Their Entire Workforce

Holding Tech Companies Accountable

Alphabet Workers Union-CWA Executive Committee member Chris Schmidt spoke on a panel about risks facing tech companies at the spring conference of the Council of Institutional Investors. Schmidt spoke about how Alphabet’s dual-class employment structure and recent layoffs undermine worker morale and loyalty. He pointed to the National Labor Relation Board’s recent decision that Alphabet is a joint employer with Cognizant as a positive development that paves the way towards collective bargaining. The panel highlighted CWA’s groundbreaking agreement with Microsoft as a positive model for tech companies to reduce risk by adopting a policy of neutrality towards worker organizing.