After a yearlong battle with Mayor Rahm Emanuel, whose administration’s choice of a nonunion contractor for janitorial services at O’Hare Airport led to almost 300 layoffs of unionized janitors there, the new nonunion janitors demanded union recognition from their employer this week. I wrote about it yesterday for Working In These Times.
I think I’m still recovering from chasing around Chicago fast food and retail strikers since 4:30 AM on Wednesday. I wrote two pieces about them: one a general piece about the strikes for The Nation that came out the day of the action; read that one here. The other is a kind of post-strike analysis for Dissent–read that one here.
I was on Vocalo‘s Morning AMp today with Brian Babylon and Molly Adams, whose show I’ve listened to for several years. (I didn’t mention this to either of them today, and they likely don’t remember this, but I once called in to discuss Justin Bieber’s “Baby” with Brian a few years back.) I was talking education in Chicago, school closures, and free market ed reform. You can listen to the segment here.
I attended the Labor Campaign for Single Payer Healthcare’s conference in Chicago to cover it for The Nation a few weeks back. The article is up now–read it here. Of particular interest is the successful campaign for single payer in Vermont, and how other states are beginning to take lessons from it.
I’ve got a longish piece in the new issue of Jacobin magazine, which will be out in print any day now and most of which is already online, about the Chicago Teachers Union’s relationship to the Democratic Party, and what the rest of the labor movement could learn from it. If you subscribe to Jacobin (which is, in general, the right and proper thing to do), you can read it in PDF form now; if you don’t, you’ll probably be able to read it soon.