UAW Authorizes Strike!

Here's what you need to know this week:

Last year, over 480,000 workers were involved in major work stoppages. That's the highest number since 1986. Teachers in West Virginia were the first in a wave of strikes that spread to Arizona, Oklahoma, and beyond, and Marriott workers across several states walked out in what became the largest hotel strike in American history.

It isn't stopping, either. Earlier this year, over 30,000 Stop & Shop workers in the northeast went on strike after the company threatened to eliminate holiday pay, stop pay raises, lower pension contributions, and increase healthcare costs. In the case of this strike, and all of the others, workers won. In fact, when the West Virginia legislature tried to legalize charter schools this year, teachers went on strike (and won) for a second time.

Now, we could be on the cusp of another massive one. This week, over 96% of the 158,000 workers at GM, Ford, and Fiat Chrysler voted to authorize a strike if one is needed during upcoming contract negotiations. The UAW says that GM will be the target of bargaining, likely since they are expected to be the toughest of the big three.

This comes at a time when GM has recently announced the closure of four large assembly plants in Michigan and Ohio, which would impact thousands of jobs. With contracts for the workers expiring next weekend, be on the lookout to support our sisters and brothers in whatever fight may come.

Here's what's coming up:

- On Friday (9/6), the Florida Future Labor Leaders (FFLL) statewide meeting will take place at 7PM in the Meyer 1 Meeting Room at the Hilton Orlando Buena Vista Palace (1900 E Buena vista Dr, Lake Buena Vista). FFLL chapters from around Florida will convene to address changes in bylaws, statewide initiatives, and the election of officers. FFLL is the official voice for young workers in the Florida AFL-CIO and our Council, and all workers under the age of 40 are invited to attend. Please note that while this meeting coincides with the 2019 Florida AFL-CIO Biennial Convention, attendees of the FFLL meeting are NOT required to be registered convention delegates.

- Our CLC meeting that was scheduled for Tuesday (9/3) was cancelled and rescheduled due to the projected path of Hurricane Dorian. Our monthly CLC Meeting will now take place on Tuesday (9/10) at 7PM at IBEW 824 (6603 E Chelsea St, Tampa). Come out and join the discussion on everything going on in our council!

- Polk County, mark your calendars! Elections for Lakeland City Commission will take place in November, and we'll be screening candidates on September 24th. The screenings will take place at 6PM at UFCW 1625 (705 E Orange St, Lakeland).

Keep in Mind:

While West Central Florida was fortunate in that we were not majorly impacted by Hurricane Dorian, many on the east coast and the islands were not as lucky. There is also still a chance that the storm could impact Georgia and/or the Carolinas. Please watch out for any relief efforts or ways that we can be of assistance to those of our sisters and brothers affected by the hurricane.

That's all for this week! Follow us on Facebook and Twitter for more updates. If you would like to receive text message alerts from the Florida AFL-CIO (Msg & data rates may apply), text FLUNION to 235246!

In Solidarity,

West Central Florida Labor Council

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