$15 wage group settles federal lawsuit alleging police surveillance and harassment

We know the government is out to destroy the labor movement. The #99percentmovement will not be deterred.

Advocates of $15-an-hour wages for fast-food workers have settled a lawsuit alleging Memphis and its police department trampled their civil rights with a City Hall blacklist and police surveillance.

Both sides claimed victory after a federal judge on Monday dismissed a lawsuit filed in March by the Mid-South Organizing Committee, a local advocate of the nationwide Fight for $15.

The settlement terms generally say police won’t surveil, photograph or video the group’s protesters unless there’s a legitimate law enforcement reason. That’s similar to provisions of a 1978 court decree that came in response to concerns about political surveillance by police.

The committee claimed its leaders and members were illegally watched, videotaped and followed by police during and after protest events dating to 2014, and that three leaders were wrongly placed on the blacklist.

Republicans are close to killing overtime rules, allowing “employers to cheat workers” of pay

More evidence that America is headed backwards in how the 99 percent are treated:

On Thursday, the House of Representatives passed a bill that allows employers to give their employees paid time off when they put in extra hours, rather than overtime pay. Overtime wages are typically time-and-a-half. The bill was passed along party lines for the most part. Not a single Democratic representative voted in favor of the bill, and only six Republicans voted against it.

Thousands expected to hit the streets for May Day protests

We have resist not only this fascist administration but an economic-political order that seeks to oppress the 99 percent:

Hundreds of thousands of demonstrators are expected to take to the streets Monday in massive May Day events across the USA mostly protesting the policies of President Trump.

May Day — also known as International Worker’s Day — has spawned protests around the globe in past years highlighting workers’ rights. But on Monday, the impetus for the U.S. marches span from immigrants’ rights to LGBT awareness to police misconduct.

With Trump As “Final Straw,” Immigrant and Workers’ Rights Groups Gear Up for May Day Strikes

Get ready. We are marching:

Immigrant and workers’ rights organizations on Monday announced a national strike to take place on May 1, commonly known as May Day, to demonstrate the critical role of immigrant labor in the U.S. economy.

Hundreds of thousands of workers have already pledged to participate in the strike known as the “Day Without Immigrants.” Organizers are expecting it to be the biggest turnout for this kind of event since the 2006 immigration reform marches, which saw over a million people take to the streets in hundreds of cities across the country in protest of raising penalties for undocumented immigration.

This year, they will be taking a stand against the criminalization of black and brown communities, raids and deportations, and worker exploitation under President Donald Trump, who is known for his xenophobic policies and rhetoric.

Half of College Grads earn Less now Than in 2000

These numbers undermine the whole argument made by defenders of the current order. They would argue that just by getting a college education that would be enough to pave the road for financial advancement. It also shows obama’s policies were not so great. College graduates are amassing large student loan debts and seeing little for it:

Median earnings for college grads stood at $24.99 per hour in 2016, about 1.5 percent less than they earned in 2000, according to EPI. Every income group among bachelor degree holders below the median also earned less in 2016 than they did in 2000. Those in the 60th percentile and above, however, benefited from wage growth during the past 16 years.

…Men with only high school degrees or some college education were among the economic losers during the past 16 years. Wages for those groups declined 0.1 percent and 0.2 percent on an annualized basis. Weaker unions, a federal minimum wage that remains mired at $7.25 an hour and globalization may be taking a toll on wages for less-educated workers.

‘Women’s work’ jobs keep millions of women in poverty, report finds

We have economic order intended to exploit human labor. And women are particularly susceptible. And the government works hand-and-glove with corporations to keep it that way:

Oxfam America, in partnership with the Institute for Women’s Policy Research (IWPR), recently released a report entitled “Undervalued and Underpaid in America: The Deck is Stacked Against Millions of Working Women.” The researchers found that of the millions of people in the U.S. working low-wage jobs, the majority are women.

Women in these jobs face many obstacles, such as low wages, few benefits, irregular hours, and little opportunity for advancement. “In the next decade, low-wage women’s jobs will increase at one and a half times the rate of all other jobs,” the study noted. “Even more women will be faced with the need to take jobs that undervalue their education and skills, undercompensate their contributions, and exact heavy physical and emotional costs.” The researchers concluded that significant policy changes that improve compensation and working conditions—while creating opportunities for advancement—are needed.

Walmart Increased Wages Only To Later Cut Hours

We could have known it was too good to be true. It will take much more activism to force Walmart, and other exploiters of labor, to stop their practices:

Late last year, in response to a series of strikes by workers and protests by activists, Walmart agreed to raise wages so that many of the company’s workers received at least a meager $9 an hour in 2015. The wage hike reached over 1,400 Walmart stores and gave the company some much needed positive publicity.

Unfortunately, Walmart’s entire business model is based on severely exploiting workers in the US and around the world to drive down prices, so even a minor uptick in wages hurts the bottom line.

As Bloomberg reports today, the order has now come down from Walmart executives to store managers to cut workers’ hours to lower company costs. So while many workers may have seen a pay increase from the rise to a minimum wage of $9 an hour, those same workers may now face a cut in the hours they can work to make the higher wage.

Millions strike in India to protest against Modi’s labor reforms

The war on labor is everywhere, including India:

Nearly 150 million workers in banking, manufacturing and construction, backed by 10 major unions, stayed away from work. Taxi and rickshaw drivers stayed off the streets in Delhi, and shops and banks closed in left-wing stronghold Kerala in the south.