Walmart gives up a little — workers fight for more

first_imgWW photo: G. DunkelWalmart is the largest private employer in the United States, hiring around 1 percent of all U.S. workers.  Its announcement that it will raise what it pays to 500,000 workers to at least $9 an hour in April and $10 an hour next year has had a major impact. And of course, the reaction on Wall Street was immediate: Walmart’s stock price dropped by 3 percent.The way big business media like the Wall Street Journal and the New York Times presented this move emphasized the business reasons why Walmart was investing a billion dollars in its employees.  Its stores are messy, which means it’s harder to find what you want to buy, and customer service is lousy.  Two years ago, it reduced staff to a bare minimum, which means most stores much of the time don’t have enough workers to do everything required.Walmart is in a brick-and-mortar service business, the kind of enterprise not easy to outsource abroad, meaning that it tries to increase profits by increasing the exploitation of its workers. Walmart has been very aggressive in cutting hours, demanding flexibility and lowering benefits.Its workers have pushed back, becoming part of the low-wage workers’ struggle for respect and for $15 an hour, a 40-hour week and a fixed schedule.For the past five years, OUR Walmart, an association of Walmart workers,  has led protests at hundreds of Walmart stores.  OUR Walmart has gotten the support of labor unions and other progressive groups.  From time to time, groups other than OUR Walmart have also organized in support of Walmart workers.Struggle tactics keep pressure on bossesThese protests use all sorts of tactics, from marching and chanting through store aisles, putting up leaflets inside stores, setting up picket lines outside with marching bands, as well as chants and speeches. Occasionally, protesters have blocked the streets outside stores and taken arrests.OUR Walmart’s “Respect-the-Bump” campaign forced the company to change its pregnancy policy in early 2014. The campaign began in 2013 when a pregnant worker, a member of OUR Walmart in Maryland, was forced onto disability after her doctor told her that strenuous work was dangerous for herself and her unborn child. The company would not agree to change her work load.Using the Facebook pages of OUR Walmart, a national campaign involving petitions and letters was organized and in early April 2014, Walmart announced it was changing its policy.In June of 2011, nearly 100 Walmart workers representing thousands of members of OUR Walmart went to the company’s home office and presented a “Declaration of Respect” to Walmart executives.It calls on Walmart to publicly commit to: “Listen to us, the Associates [what Walmart calls its workers]; have respect for the individual; recognize freedom of association and freedom of speech; fix the Open Door policy; pay a minimum of $13/hour and make full-time jobs available for Associates who want them; create dependable, predictable work schedules; provide affordable health care; provide every Associate with a policy manual, ensure equal enforcement of policy and no discrimination, and give every Associate equal opportunity to succeed and advance in his or her career; and provide wages and benefits that ensure that no Associate has to rely on government assistance.”Walmart faces not just “bad employee morale” and a tightening labor market with the unemployment rate falling, as it claims. It confronts an active and organized resistance, which of course it won’t acknowledge. It has tried to bring labor law charges against the United Food and Commercial Workers for the support that that union gives to OUR Walmart.A billion dollars sounds like a lot of money, but the financial consultant Demos estimates that if Walmart stopped buying back its stocks, it could afford to pay its workers a minimum of over $15 an hour.Walmart workers won a victory with the raises the company just announced, but they have much further to go.FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare thisFacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare thislast_img read more

Unprecedented arrest of two Somali soldiers for mistreating journalists

first_img March 26, 2019 Unprecedented arrest of two Somali soldiers for mistreating journalists RSF requests urgent adoption of moratorium on arrests of journalists News Somali soldiers are on patrol at Sanguuni military base, about 450 km south of Mogadishu, Somalia. Crédit : Mohamed ABDIWAHAB / AFP Impunity for crimes of violence against journalists has always been the norm in Somalia until the two soldiers were arrested on 24 March and placed in preventive detention on charges of “torture” and “threats” brought by the armed forces attorney-general in connection with their treatment of two reporters on 18 February.The two journalists, Abdullahi Dahir Abdi and Said Warsame Sabriye, who work for the video news production company Dhanbaal, were on foot in Mogadishu on 18 February, interviewing passers-by about the lockdown in some of its streets, when they were arrested and handcuffed by the two soldiers and then made to lie face down on the sidewalk with their feet tied to the hands.Although the journalists had committed no crime, they were forced to remain in this humiliating and painful position for an hour and a half before the soldiers handed them over to the police, who finally released them.“These unprecedented arrests of the two soldiers, which were decided at the highest state level, set an important precedent for the fight against impunity in Somalia,” said Arnaud Froger, the head of RSF’s Africa desk.“It is essential that the authorities continue to move in this direction so that the prosecution and punishment of those responsible for abuses against journalists become systematic. We urge the authorities to demonstrate the same determination by arresting the police officer who gunned down a journalist in cold blood last July.”Somalia continues to be one of Africa’s deadliest countries for media personnel, with three journalists killed in connection with their work last year. Two were killed by the Islamist militant group Al-Shabaab.The third, Abdirisaq Qasim Iman, a reporter for the privately-owned TV channel SBS, was shot dead by a policeman during an argument at a checkpoint in Mogadishu on 25 July. Although the policeman’s identity is known, he has yet to be arrested.Somali is ranked 168th out of 180 countries in RSF’s 2018 World Press Freedom Index. March 2, 2021 Find out more News RSF_en SomaliaAfrica Protecting journalists ImpunityFreedom of expression Help by sharing this information Organisation Newscenter_img Receive email alerts News to go further February 24, 2021 Find out more Follow the news on Somalia RSF and NUSOJ call for release of a journalist held in Somalia’s Puntland region Radio reporter gunned on city street in central Somalia SomaliaAfrica Protecting journalists ImpunityFreedom of expression Reporters Without Borders (RSF) hails the unprecedented arrest of two Somali soldiers on charges of torturing and threatening two reporters, and urges the authorities to systematically punish all those responsible for crimes of violence against journalists in what is one of Africa’s most dangerous countries for media personnel. January 8, 2021 Find out morelast_img read more

Youth magazine suspended

first_img April 7, 2021 Find out more to go further News Organisation VietnamAsia – Pacific Reporters Without Borders (Reporters sans frontières) today condemned a three-month ban on Sinh Vien Vietnam, a weekly youth magazine whose cover recently featured naked human statuettes and last year had a photo-montage of banknotes with the late President Ho Chi Minh’s head on them floating in a toilet bowl.Calling on culture and information minister Pham Quang Nghi to reverse at once his 15 July suspension of Sinh Vien Vietnam, it said the ban showed how hard it was for the media to deal openly with certain topics in either words or pictures. It also urged the French embassy in Vietnam to lobby the government on behalf of the magazine, which it helps.The culture ministry said the magazine had been suspended under articles 6 and 10 of the press law for printing “offensive” illustrations. Journalists on the magazine, which is published by the Ho Chi Minh Young Communist Association (linked to the ruling Communist Party), were ordered to make public self-criticism. The ban can be extended for a further period by the Party’s culture and ideology commission. The 7 July issue cover showed a photo of two statuettes of a naked man and woman and the 20 May issue last year featured the Ho Chi Minh banknotes. The French news agency Agence France-Presse quoted a government official as saying the magazine had “used sensationalist means to get publicity.” News News News VietnamAsia – Pacific Three more independent reporters arrested in Vietnamcenter_img April 27, 2021 Find out more Vietnam sentences journalist Tran Thi Tuyet Dieu to eight years in prison Help by sharing this information Receive email alerts RSF_en April 22, 2021 Find out more Follow the news on Vietnam RSF laureates support jailed Vietnamese journalist Pham Doan Trang July 17, 2003 – Updated on January 20, 2016 Youth magazine suspendedlast_img read more

Service offers cheap check on ‘lying’ CVs

first_img Previous Article Next Article Service offers cheap check on ‘lying’ CVsOn 18 Jan 2000 in Personnel Today Comments are closed. Firms can access a one-stop shop to check whether job candidates are lyingabout qualifications on their CVs under a new scheme launched today.The Higher Education Statistics Agency has linked up with informationprovider Experian to provide the service.The move is aimed at combating a rising tide of dishonesty by applicants.Half of employers believe lying by recruits is a major problem, a survey of1,500 firms by Experian found last week.But they will have to get the permission of applicants to check theirdetails in order to comply with data protection legislation.The service costs between £5.15 and £20, plus an annual £125 subscriptionfee.More than seven out of 10 said they have experienced lying on CVs, theExperian survey found.The most common CV lie relates to previous experience (37 per cent),followed by educational qualifications, cited by a fifth. Salary and otherqualifications also feature.www.hesa.org.uk Related posts:No related photos.last_img read more