Episode

9/14 The Next Steps For Union Organizing; How Lansing Chipotle Got A Union w/ Jane McAlevey & TJ Kitchen

September 14, 2022

Sam and Emma host Jane McAlevey, Senior Policy Fellow at the University of California, Berkeley’s Labor Center, to discuss her recent video for The Nation “You Voted To Form A Union. Now What?” Then they are joined by T.J. Kitchen, Organizing Director for the Teamsters Joint Council #43, to discuss the recent organizing efforts at a Chipotle franchise in Lansing, Michigan. Sam and Emma begin by running through updates on early Russia-Ukraine negotiations (including Putin rejecting a No-NATO pledge), WV’s new abortion ban, and Starbucks’ firing of organizer Jaz Brisack, also touching on Lindsey Graham launching his bill to finally lead America out of the wacko dark ages of “Bodily Autonomy.” Then Jane McAlevey joins as she, Sam, and Emma get right into contextualizing the growth of the American labor movement over the last two years (since McAlevey’s last appearance on MR), exploring the mass growth in organized labor action in the wake of the heightened tensions of 2020 and the labor exploitation of the COVID-19 pandemic, and how the Biden administration’s NLRB has failed (and occasionally succeeded) in capturing that rage. Following up on that discussion, Jane gets into the next iteration of challenges facing new US unions, looking at how the rise of independent unions (Starbucks Workers United, Amazon Labor Union, etc), fails to capitalize on the preexisting organizing expertise and experience found in national unions (and preferably in the NLRB) or to mobilize for demands on a larger-scale. After they get into the continuing complicity of the Democratic Party in undermining labor power in the US, also covering their response to the recent Freight Rail strike, they wrap up by assessing how the US working class became so overworked and under-compensated while rent and healthcare prices continue to skyrocket, and what we can do to close that gap. TJ Kitchen then joins to dive into the recent organizing at a Lansing Chipotle, discussing how the workers there reached out to the Teamsters Joint Council #43, how they were able to prepare the workers and strategize for the union-busting that would surely come (and did), and how this action can grow moving forwards.

And in the Fun Half: Emma and Sam take a call from Penny on Organizing with UFCW-300, Owen from LA discusses European power policy as the Russian invasion of Ukraine continues, Mitch McConnell sends some warning shots Lindsey Graham’s way, and Routers reveals Putin was offered a No-NATO pledge from Ukraine. Jenna from Freemont discusses fighting for the Trans community, Hannah from Kansas City discusses the “Tucker Carlson Left” and why fighting for healthcare is NOT antithetical to fighting for trans healthcare, and the crew remembers Ken Starr. Chris from Mass explores the role of the White House Press Corp, and Chris Rufo calls teenagers he’s not attracted to “demonic,” plus, your calls and IMs!

Check out Jane’s video at the nation here: https://www.thenation.com/article/activism/video-nation-explains-negotiations-mcalevey/

Get more info on the Lansing Chipotle’s organizing efforts here: https://teamster.org/2022/08/chipotle-workers-in-michigan-vote-to-join-teamsters/?fbclid=IwAR3tnJphLVQAc6Q-L9R-Kv5evf-thbbjIMjnixN8Wn-1S_MquWsi5F9RHzw

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