U.S: An analysis of the 2019 Oakland teachers strike

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MR Online | June 06, 2019

2019 Oakland teachers strike

Could [striking Oakland teachers] have won more? No. The question is how could they have won more?…I congratulate them for what they did pull off…and I hope that … every critic of that strike has been knee-deep, building the structures since the day the strike ended, instead of just complaining about it, because that’s what it takes to win bigger next time. We win in relationship to the power we build.

—Jane McAlevey, author of No Shortcuts: Organizing for Power in the New Gilded Age,
Interview from “The Dig” podcast, March 27, 2019

The important thing is not to stop questioning.

—Albert Einstein, LIFE Magazine, May 2, 1955

The recent seven-day strike by the Oakland Education Association (OEA) was eerily similar in key ways to its 26-day strike in 1996. Both strikes demanded that Oakland Unified School District (OUSD) “chop from the top” of its bloated administration to fund better learning conditions and fair pay. In 1996 the learning-condition demand was smaller class size. In 2019 educators also demanded class size reduction, but also smaller caseloads for counselors, nurses, and other student-support services. Another focus this time was stopping the district’s plan to close 24 schools in Black and Brown communities. Both strikes had very strong picket lines and community support. And both strikes ended with a resounding “What just happened?”Read More »

Strike wave 1919: The radical forerunners of the CPUSA

by David Cavendish

People’s World | May 17, 2019

Strike wave 1919: The radical forerunners of the CPUSA
Striking steel mill workers holding bulletins in Chicago, Illinois, September 22, 1919.

Throughout history, wars have had profound impact on human society. Not only does territory often change hands, but there are often great changes in political structures and systems, social upheaval, and economic dislocation. World War I is a prime example.

Not only did more than 15 million people die, but the cost of the war, by some estimates, reached more than $300 billion (the equivalent of $4.5 trillion today), and four major empires—the German, Austro-Hungarian, Ottoman, and Russian—disappeared from the face of the earth. It’s the fourth, the Russian, that interests us in this story.

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Military junta’s threats fail as civilian strike brings Sudan to a halt

by Pavan Kulkarni

People’s Dispatch | May 29, 2019

Bank employees in Sudan participated massively in today’s strike. Photo: Sudanese Professionals Association

The two-day general strike which began in Sudan on May 28, saw the participation of over 90% of the workforce of the private and public sectors, including many government ministries.  The strike was called for by the Sudanese Professionals Association (SPA) in order to pressurize the military junta to make way for civilian rule. The SPA was one of the driving forces in the protests which ousted former president Omar al-Bashir on April 11.Read More »

50,000 teachers take part in New Zealand’s largest education strike

Peoples Dispatch | May 29, 2019

New Zealand teachers' strike

As many as 50,000 teachers across New Zealand went on strike on May 29 to demand a pay hike and better working conditions. Members of education unions NZEI Te Riu Roa, which represents primary school teachers, and the Post Primary Teachers Association (PPTA), which represents secondary school teachers, voted to jointly call the strike when negotiations with the Ministry of Education reached a deadlock earlier this month. This will be the largest teachers’ strike the country has ever seen.

The teachers are demanding a pay increase of up to 15-16%. Apart from increased wages, they are also seeking reduced workload, and more classroom resources. The teachers are also calling on the government to devise long-term solutions to address increasing underemployment in the teaching sector. The average wage for primary school teachers is about USD 47,980 a year, which equates to about USD 23 an hour (USD 5.30 above the minimum wage).Read More »

U.S: Weingarten: Teachers strikes “successful examples” of community-based action benefiting workers

by Mark Gruenberg

Peoples’ World | March 18, 2019

Weingarten: Teachers strikes “successful examples” of community-based action benefiting workers

The teachers’ strike in West Virginia  last year was a shot heard across the nation with teachers all over the country following suit with strikes and job actions. | John Raby/AP

NEW ORLEANS—The wave of teachers’ walkouts and strikes for almost a year – forced on the workers by penny-pinching and tax-cutting GOP administrations and politicians – represent “successful examples” of community-based action where victories benefit everyone, says Teachers (AFT) President Randi Weingarten.

That’s because those walkouts, in West Virginia, Kentucky, Oklahoma, Arizona, Denver, Los Angeles, among Chicago charter school teachers and now in Indiana and at Summit Academy in Parma, Ohio, centered not around pay and pensions, but around what’s best for schools and kids, she adds.

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Argentina Doctors Strike, Close 600 State Hospitals

teleSUR | March 07, 2019

Medical workers strike against low wages, layoffs in Argentina, March 7, 2019

Medical workers strike against low wages, layoffs in Argentina, March 7, 2019 | Photo: Fesprosa

Coinciding with teacher strikes, medical professionals are on strike for two days across Argentina, forcing the shut down of 600 state hospitals.

At least 600 hospitals across Argentina have been closed for a second day as the Trade Union Federation of Health Professionals of Argentina (Fesprosa) spearheads a 48-hour work strike “against adjustment and dismissals,” according to the union.

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